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12 Days Morocco Desert Tour from Marrakech to Merzouga desert, Fes, Chefchaouen, Casablanca and Essaouira
Explore Morocco in 12 Days Morocco Desert tour from Marrakech to Merzouga Sahara desert, Trekking, Desert Camp, discover moroccan culture with a guided tours in Marrakech and Fes.
Day 01: Marrakech city tour with an official guide
We will enjoy a guided tour with an official guide. Our journey in Marrakech will include a visit of antique Moroccan architecture. Koutoubia mosque, built in the 12th century by Caliph Abd al-Mumen with a 77 meters minaret. And the Saadian tomb, Bahia Palace and Badiaa Palace. Then we will continue toward Jama-a el Fna square, the famous world square and the symbol of Marrakech. A charming place with snake charmers, and the tastiest fresh orange juice. Crowding the square to give an exotic impression. Moreover, we will head into the Medina Souk (Market). The main cultural place to explore Morocco's historical culture. With the local artisans and experience the scents of all Moroccan spices.
Overnight in Marrakech
Day 02: Marrakech – Tishka – Ait ben haddou – Ouarzazate – Rose valley – Dades
Today we will pick you up in the morning from Marrakech and start traveling to Ouarzazate city. Via Tizi n'Tichka Pass; the highest road in Morocco. We will stop to enjoy the panoramic views of the High Atlas Mountains. And magnificent landscapes, scenery flavored by small Berber villages exemplarily of the region. After that, we will continue to visit the UNESCO Heritage Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou.
This Ksar or Kasbah is one of the most precious and well-preserved strongholds in Morocco. Built on a hilltop. Kasbah Ait Ben haddou inspired myriad movie makers like Gladiator and Game of Thrones filmed here. The view from the upper heights of the Kasbah is fright-inspiring and worth desiring mount through the sinuous streets. Next, we will continue along the Road of One Thousand Kasbahs, heading into the Skoura oasis. Then continue to visit Rose Valley, the Moroccan roses’ center and products. Where the acres of Persian roses grew. And reaped to breed rose water and creams throughout Morocco and other countries around the world. Our last step on this day will be in Dades. Passing over the prodigious rock creation of Tamnalt Hills, we will explore Dades valley and then move to our hotel.
Overnight in Dades
Day 03: Dades – Todra gorge – Tinjdad – Rissani – Merzouga desert
Today we will meet you in the morning at your hotel in Dades, and after breakfast, we will start making our way to the desert camp, then set onto Todra Gorge, the spectacular gash in the hills that surrounds Tinghir village to see the gigantic rock walls that changed colors when the sun unfolds. These 300 meters cliffs of limestone shaped weirdly and 15 meters separated from each other. We can often meet Nomads in the gorge.
Many deserted Kasbahs, nomad brick villages, and green oases. And then the scenery will change again as we start seeing the first sand dunes from the road. The great sand oasis of Merzouga desert is an amazing area of fine, apricot, colored sand extensions as far as the eye can see. We will then proceed to our hotel to rest. Also, we can go out to enjoy the desert sunset.
Overnight in Merzouga – Hotel
Day 04: Merzouga – Khamlia – Rissani – Camel ride
After breakfast, we will start our explorative desert journey of the area. Morning wake up early to take in the images of the sun rising over the sand dunes which gives the sand an impressive mix of colours. This morning we will explore the area a bit, Besides, we can visit the ruins in Rissani village with local market. And then, we will move to explore Khamlia village where we will listen to the Gnaoua (tuareg) music played by the black men with descendants from Sudan, here we can dance or just relax and listen to music.
Late afternoon, we will head off into the vastness of the Sahara sand dunes. On a camel caravan guided by a local guide. The manly camel was a desert life pole over the centuries. And used to ship precious cargoes from Sub-Saharan Africa to the trading ports of the Mediterranean coast. We can ride or walk alongside as we reach the pace of the caravan led by Berber guides and marvel at the awesome spectacle of the desert and the solitude a silence that comes with it. After that, we will discover the beauty behind this region, and then slowly return back to our camp.
As the sun goes down, we will head to our comfort and luxury private desert camp. To enchanted with the mint tea and dates or nuts. The desert camp sits between the golden sand dunes of the Sahara. And gives the impression of being in solitude in the vast African desert. Again, while enjoying the comforts of Saharan camp. We will enjoy a delicious dinner. Prepared by local people and followed by music and a campfire beneath the starry African sky. Nothing compares to the millions of stars, silence, and peacefulness of the Sahara. Later on, we will go to rest in luxury canvas tents. Feeling like stepping back into one of the stories from the Arabian nights.
Overnight in Merzouga - Camp
Day 05: Merzouga desert – Erfoud – Midelt – Azrou – Ifran – Fes
We will start the day early to enjoy the magnificent desert sunrise before we are treated to breakfast. Then we will enjoy a shower and then start our trip to Fez city. On our way to Midelt, where we will break for lunch, we will pass through Ziz Oasis. After Lunch, we will continue through the Middle Atlas. Then we will stop at Azrou to view the Atlas cedar-forested hills that populated with myriad Barbary monkeys. This city well known for its Atlas cedars forest. Next, we will continue to the charming Swiss village of Ifrane city; called Switzerland of Morocco. Late afternoon we will proceed directly to Fes.
Overnight in Fes
Day 06: Fes city tour with an official guide
After breakfast in our Hotel or Riad. We will head into the city to explore the medina of Fes with an official friendly guide. Fes is the cultural capital and one of the most complete medieval Islamic cities in the world. We will start our sightseeing with a visit of the Royal palace from the towers of Borj. Then the cemetery Bab Fettouh, the mosaic house for traditional pottery methods used by Fassi artisans. Heading into the medina, passing through the gates and walls into the alleyways beyond transports you back in time.
The streets are just as they were when they were built in the 8th century. We will then pass through Bab Boujloud, the medina entrance to explore the largest famous tanneries in morocco. And the historical monument Idris's II tomb. In addition to the oldest university in the world; Al Qarawayine university. Also, Nejjarine is a place of wooden crafts. And other ancient buildings such as Bou-inania medersa, Al-Karawyn mosque, and then a stroll around al Attarine souk. After that, we close our guided tour with a hammam, or traditional bathhouse to steam away the stresses of life. Later on, we will move to our hotel or riad in the medina.
Overnight in Fes
Day 07: Fes – Meknes – Volubilis – Chefchaouen
Traveling from Fes to the Versailles of Morocco; Meknes, this city is the first capital of the Alouit dynasty under the ruler Moulay Idriss I. Our visit in this city will include Bab el Mansour one of the finest ornamented gates in Morocco. And the Mausoleum of king Moulay Ismail in the medina, the resting place of the admirer and most prolific builder of Meknes. Haras de Meknes – huge stable complex - underground cells which used completely to house the sultan’s army of slaves. Next, we will continue to Volubilis, this former roman ruins outpost is one of the most preserved archaeological places in morocco and is distinct with many mosaics that are still sound for us to behold. Declared a world heritage place in 1977 by UNESCO and it’s just a short drive to Meknes. Afternoon we will transfer to Chefchaouen.
Overnight in Chefchaouen
Day 08: Chefchaouen full day tour
Chefchaouen city has a very distinct pale blue. Buildings and winding alleyways with strong Andalusian connection with blue-washed walls. This city founded in 14th century by African Berbers is a home that attracts tourists from over the world. Our tour in this city will include the visit of Ras el-ma. Where the fresh water head from the mountain to the city. A short hike to explore the ruin of Spanish mosque for a wonderful panoramic view. Next, we will stroll around the Kasbah and gardens. After that, we will head into the city to explore the quieted blue streets. We will enjoy our time and get the chance to picture memories before we head back to our hotel.
Overnight in Chefchaouen
Day 09: Chefchaouen – Tangier
Today we will leave Chefchaouen and move to visit the gateway between Africa and Europe.Tangier, named for the goddess Tinge and the lover of Hercules, who mythically pulled Europe apart from Africa to form the Strait Gibraltar. First, we will visit Spartel Cap, Lighthouse, where the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean white sea converged.
After that, we will visit the cave of Hercules, where we can have much-photographed view from within the mythical dwelling cave of Hercules that resembles a map of Africa as it existed since Neolithic period, Next, we will back to the city for the visit of Museum Kasbah of Mediterranean culture. Here we will spend a few hours aliasing down the alleyways, within it’s 15th century Portuguese fortress walls. Then, we can move around St Andrew’s Church for a spot of gravestone reading, and then take in the latest art exhibition at the cultural center of Ibn Khaldoun.
Overnight in Tangier
Day 10: Tangier – Rabat – Casablanca
Today we will leave Tangier city. And move to explore Rabat, the capital of Morocco. Founded in the 10th century the by Phoenicians and Romans. Our visit in this city will include a visit the Royal tomb of Mohammed V. And Hassan tower; the major minaret of the spectacular Hassan mosque constructed by Almohad Yacoub El Mansour. We will then head into the city to visit Kasbah Oudaya a colonial heritage Kasbah in the city. In the afternoon, we will move to explore Casablanca for a 1-hour drive.
Overnight in Casablanca
Day 11: Casablanca – Essaouira
Today we will explore Casablanca, this modern city has the largest airport in morocco, our tour in Casablanca will include the visit of Mohamed V square; an Airy square built-in 1916 amid French Colonial buildings, with a statue & pigeon-covered fountain. The most visited sight of Hassan ll mosque, was built & Completed in 1993 by Bouygues, and designed by Pinseau. Hassan ll mosque is an incredible architecture and largest mosque that has a second tallest minaret at 210 meters in the world after the Algiers grand mosque. Next, we will have time for lunch and then we continue the exploration of Casablanca city by heading into the medina to discover the modern culture, here we can make a stroll around the corniche row and Atlantic boardwalk that shined by many restaurants. After the visit of Casablanca, we will transfer to Essaouira.
Overnight in Essaouira
Day 12: Essaouira – Marrakech
After breakfast, we will have a stroll around the lively old port - Mogador port - that is full of color and interest and full of visual surprises, this port was the main trade route round the Cape of Good Hope to Western Europe. It later became a free port, when it had a small international community of merchants. The cosmopolitan mixture of different influences makes it a wonderful place to explore. We will head over the smallest streets of the medina that are full of various handicraft Artisans, and visit the largest square of Moulay El Hassan.
Besides, we are going to visit the Berber association where the Argan oil manufactured by the local women. Then, we will proceed to discover the workshop that produces the ornate wood of the local conifer. After that, we will have a fresh fish lunch near the souk (Market). Later on, we will move to Marrakech for a 2 hours drive.
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