The Best of Morocco (Oct. 2020)

Morocco Spice Market.jpg
Morocco Spice Market.jpg

The Best of Morocco (Oct. 2020)

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TOUR PRICE: To be established in November, 2019.

AVAILABILITY: Accepting reservations on our advance courtesy interest list.

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BEST OF MOROCCO 2020

At the crossroads of Europe, Africa and Arabia, Morocco is one of the most exotic and exciting travel destinations in the world. Even the most cursory research reveals a land loaded with incredible natural scenery, labyrinthine medinas (walled cities), fabulous shopping in the colorful souks (markets), impressive Kasbahs (fortresses); delicious cuisine made with magical
blends of spices, engaging and hospitable people, and a fascinating history. Westerners are beginning to flock to Morocco in record numbers, for more and more people are discovering the allure of this magical land and the fact that it is a bargain destination relative to some other Western European destinations. The tour below is designed to give you a wonderful introduction to Morocco and all it has to offer. After two nights in Casablanca, two in Fez, two in Erfoud, two in Ouarzazate and three in Marrakesh, you will return to the United States being able truly to say that you've really been to Morocco (day trips from Spain just don't provided the kind depth of cultural understanding that a trip like this one affords). I encourage you to take a serious look at our itinerary below and to consider the adventure of a lifetime with us in 2020. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us. We are accepting advance courtesy reservations on this tour immediately.

DAILY ITINERARY:

Day 1:

Departure from the USA for Casablanca, Morocco.

Day 2: Casablanca

Arrival in Casablanca. After checking into the hotel you can relax and enjoy exploring this bustling and dynamic business city made famous by Humphrey Bogart. In the evening, share a group welcome dinner with your fellow Nomads and get psyched for the rest of the journey. Overnight in Casablanca.

Day 3: Casablanca-Rabat-Meknes- Fez

This morning travel along the Barbary Coast to Morocco's capital and imperial city, Rabat, once home to Barbary pirates. Sightseeing today includes the Royal Palace and residence of King Mohammed VI, Mohammed V's Mausoleum, Hassan Tower and the fortified Kasbah des Oudaias. A highlight will also be a visit to the impressive Roman Relics of Chellah. Our second
stop will be at the imperial city of Mecknes, with monumental gates and city walls. We will visit the Old Granaries and Stables, which housed up to 12,000 horses. We will also at the Market Square to view the Bab el-Mansour, the most grandiose gateway in North Africa. Overnight in Fez.

Day 4: Fez

Today, our exciting day of sightseeing in Fez starts with a view of the entrance to the Royal Palace, a drive through the Mellah, the old Jewish quarter, and continues to the beautifully ornate Bab Bou Jeloud, which is the traditional entrance to Old Fez. We will visit the labyrinthine Medina and Medersa Bou Inania and will finish our tour with a drive around the ancient fortifications that protect this amazing city. We will return to the hotel in time for you to relax by the pool.

Day 5: Fez-Erfoud

Today we drive through some of the most spectacular regions or Morocco, with landscapes that continue to change and impress. Heading south, we will have a morning break in the Swiss-style village oflfrane. We will continue through cedar forests, volcanic mountains and open plains as we travel across the Middle Atlas range to the Midelt. We will pass mud and straw villages,
eventually descending into the incredible Ziz Gorges and arriving at Er-Rachidia, once an important crossroad controlled by the French Foreign Legion. Gradually the landscape changes to stony dessert, but eventually leads to the breathtaking oasis of Ziz Valley replete with fortified strongholds, palm-fringed towns and other scenes of rural life. Our overnight is in Erfoud.

Day 6: Erfoud

Today we visit holy Rissani, once a lush oasis and trading post for caravans from the Niger River, where gold was exchanged for salt and surgar. Sightseeing includes visits to the Grand Gateway of the town and the Mausoleum ofMoulay Ali Sharif, who was the first ruler of the Alawite Dynasty. A highlight of the day will be a visit to the desert tribes' markets, known as Souks, where, by slapping one another's hands, Berber, Tuareg and Blue people meet and swap silver jewelry and rugs for vegetables, salt and other goods. Weather permitting, an optional excursion to the 450-foot-high Erg Chebbi dunes will be offered later in the day to give you an intimate encounter with the Sahara Desert. Overnight in Erfoud.

Day 7: Erfoud-Ouarzazate

Our journey continues today along the eastern slopes of the Atlas mountains to one of the most fantastic natural sights in all of Morocco a, the famous Todra Gorge, sometimes referred to as the "Grand Canyon of the Sahara. We will take a look at its narrowest point (33 feet wide), through which runs a beautiful river. We will then drive through the "Valley of the Thousand Kasbahs" (known as the Dades Valley) before arriving at Ouarzazate, a resort town famous for its film studios. Overnight in Ouarzazate.

Day 8: Ouarzazate-Ait Benhaddou- Taourirt

Continuing through spectacular landscapes, today we visit the small village of Ait Benhaddou on the south side of the Atlas mountains. Ait Benhaddou is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the location for the filming of several great movies, including Lawrence of Arabia and Gladiator. Later in the day, we will visit the Taourirt Kasbah for fantastic views of the fortified town and
valley. This should be a remarkable day! Overnight in Ouarzazate.

 Day 9: Ouarzazate-Marrakesh

This morning, we drive to one of the great cities of our tour--Marrakesh, where we will settle in for three nights and days of amazing experiences. En route to Marrakesh, we will pass picturesque villages nestled between mountains as we approach the 7,414-foot-high Tizi-n- Tichka Pass in the High Atlas mountains. Marrakesh is situated in the heart of an oasis that an a half a million palm trees surrounded by steep walls. After lunch, we will have a carriage ride through the city followed by a stroll through the famous Yves Saint Laurent Gardens. Overnight in Marrakesh.

Day 10: Marrakesh

Our focus today in on Marrakesh. Sightseeing visits include the Menara Park, including its man-made lake and pavilion; the Bahia Palace; the beautifully decorated 16th-century Saadian Tombs; and the Djemaa EI-Fna, the busy town center overlooked by a 222-foot-high Koutoubia Minaret. In the afternoon you will have time to visit the souks (markets) or relax by the pool. In the evening, we will offer an optional excursion known as the "Chez Ali," which is a 30-horse fantasia and Moroccan feast. Overnight in Marrakesh.

Day 11: Marrakesh

A full day to relax and shop in this beautiful "Pink City." For those interested, we will offer an optional excursion to the picturesque water resort of Essaouira. Enjoy the day!!! Overnight in Marrakesh.

Day 12: Marrakesh-Casablanca

Today we head back to Casablanca to enjoy our last day of sightseeing in Morocco. We will visit the United Nations Square, the Arab League Park, Anfa's residential quarters, the Synagogue, the Church of Our Lady of Lourdes and the imposing Hassan II Mosque, situated in a fabulous location on the shores of the Atlantic Ocean. Overnight in Casablanca.

Day 13:

Return flight to the United States.

SUMMARY OF TOUR FEATURES: Round trip trans-Atlantic air transportation from Newark or JFK to Casablanca, Morocco; a full-time Moroccan tour escort/ guide throughout our journey; private long distance motor coach transportation and driver; extensive sightseeing as outlined above with the exception of a few optional excursions which are extra; a welcome dinner in Casablanca; two nights in Marrakesh in a four or five star hotel with breakfasts daily; two nights in Fez in a four star hotel with breakfasts daily; two nights in Erfoud in a first class hotel with breakfasts daily; two nights in Ouarzazate in a four or five star hotel with breakfasts
daily; three nights in lovely Marrakesh in a four star hotel with breakfasts daily; a pre-departure dinner and orientation and the services of a full-time ArawjoTours tour representative.