DISCOVER THE HIDDEN TREASURES OF MOROCCO & ITS RICH CULTURE ON THIS 11 DAYS MOROCCO GRAND TOUR FROM CASABLANCA
During this 11 days Morocco Grand tour, you will visit the ancient Moroccan Imperial cities of Rabat, Fes, Meknes and Marrakech and the Roman ruins of Volubilis. You will discover the uniquely modern architecture of the Hassan II Mosque, whilst evidencing Morocco’s remarkable antiquity and Morocco’s blue pearl city of Chefchaouen.
There will be a monumental desert trek by camel into the iconic Sahara Desert where you will enjoy a classic and a starry sky overnight in a Berber desert camp and may avail yourself of sand boarding and quad bike riding the golden orange Sahara dunes.
On this Morocco Grand tour, you will discover the most filmed location in Africa and the UNESCO site of Ksar ait Benhaddou. Visit a nomad family in Sahara, share a cup of tea with them and discover their lifestyle. You will be captivated by the remarkable Atlas Mountains, wondrous landscapes, deep gorges, soaring cliffs, valleys, luscious oases and unique rock formations. You will visit the amazing UNESCO protected site of the Oasis of Skoura which houses the iconic 17th century Kasbah of Amridil. A visit to view the production of the famous Argan Oil of Morocco will enthrall you. There will be adventures through ancient cities and their alleyways, markets, souks and Medinas which will fuel your curiosity throughout Morocco, pulsating with colour and ancient culture.
11 DAYS MOROCCO GRAND TOUR ITINERARY
“ Please click on each section below so that the details of each day of this 11 days Morocco Grand tour from Casablanca will appear ”
Day 1: Arrival at Casablanca airport:
On the 1st day of your 11 days Morocco grand tour, you will meet your Grand Morocco Guide / driver at Mohammed V international airport and get to know the cultural, historic and the economic center of Morocco. Casablanca is a captivating city in which to begin your wonderful Morocco Grand tour. You will be guided to observe the most important sights of this city.
Today, Casablanca is a modern city with boulevards, modern infrastructure and rich history. You will receive insight into the city’s history and heritage from your guide/driver.
Stroll along the Habous Quarter which is one of the most picturesque places in Casablanca with its small squares and narrow arcade streets, a fine example of successful adaptation of modern town planning in style of a Moroccan traditional Medina. Depending on your arrival time, you will visit the Mohammed V Square, Mahkama du Pacha, the famous Rick’s Café, the elegant Notre Dame de Lourdes Cathedral in the residential area of Anfa. You will also visit the famous and 5th largest mosque in the world Hassan II Mosque and the largest Mall complex in Africa (Morocco Mall). A leisurely wander along the seaside of La Corniche in Ain Diab.
You will then be transported to your Hotel for your first night. (Overnight in Casablanca).
Day 2: Casablanca » Rabat » Chefchaouen:
On the second day of your Morocco grand tour and after breakfast you will head to Rabat. This city is the political and administrative centre of Morocco, where the Royal Palaces, government institutions and International Embassies are located. Rabat’s architecture is testimony of its centuries of old rich history.
• Visit the Ahl Fes Mosque and the UNESCO listed site of Oudaya Kasbah where you will discover Rabat’s oldest Mosque and the beautiful Andalusian Gardens.
• After lunch you will head through the stunning Rif Mountains towards Chefchaouen, and marvel at the uniqueness of the world famous “Blue Pearl” city of Morocco.
• Chefchaouen is a city with special vibes. Its unique charm gives a surreal impression. Observe the city’s old Moorish way of life and take a dream wander for a wonderful photo opportunity. 11 days Morocco Grand tour. (Overnight in Chefchaouen).
Day 3: Sightseeing day guided tour of Chefchaouen:
• On this 3rd day of your Morocco grand tour, you will embark on a private guided tour of the exotic and vibrant Chefchaouen, exploring in depth, the rich cultural heritage, and antiquity of this charming town and stroll the blue narrow alleys with your Grand Morocco expert local guide.
• Visit Ras el-Maa, the Kasbah Museum, the Spanish Mosque, Plaza Uta-Hammam’ and more.
• Known as the blue pearl and ranked sixth of the most beautiful cities of the world. Chefchaouen is an artsy, blue washed mountain village which was founded in the 15th century and was populated by Jewish and Muslim refugees fleeing from the Spanish Inquisition in 1478.
• Chefchaouen was isolated until early 20th century but has preserved a Moorish way of life and is regarded as the prettiest town in Morocco. Chefchaouen presents glorious photo opportunities and walking here will make you feel as though moving through a dreamland.
• The town buildings are painted blue and white, so the entire village appears to be wonderfully drenched in many hues of glorious blue leaving the traveler with a surreal impression. A beautiful town you will admire while on your 11 days Morocco Grand tour. (Overnight in Chefchaouen).
Day 4: Chefchaouen to Fes via Volubilis & Meknes:
On day 4 of your Morocco grand tour & after leaving the beautiful Chefchaouen, you will head south via the stunning Rif Mountains towards the Roman ruins of Volubilis, where you will undertake a guided walking visit of the ruins.
• Morocco has one of the richest histories and cultures globally, influenced by centuries of diverse rulers which includes Roman rule. Explore the ancient Roman city of Volubilis. Dating back to 3rd century BC, Volubilis is home to some of the most impressive Roman ruins in North Africa.
• During Roman occupation of Morocco, Volubilis was the powerful ancient capital and administrative centre of Roman Africa and prospered economically. Among the most famous of the ruins are the luxury villas with their water tanks, large courtyard beautiful mosaic floors, various pavilions, Basilica, Triumphal Arch built in 217 A.D and more than 300 temples. It was UNESCO World Heritage listed in 1997.
• Depart to the Imperial city of Meknes. Visit the 18th century Bab Mansour gate which is the most exquisite of its kind in North Africa and one of the 4 most beautiful gates in the world, Lahdim square, the Royal stables (film makers also have marveled at this amazing structure and that led to scenes for the movies Ishtar and The Jewel of the Nile being made here) and the incredible Bassin Souani.
• Visit Moulay Ismail’s shrine (Sultan of Morocco from 1672–1727) to receive an insight into his interesting life and everlasting achievements.
• Continue your journey to the ancient, vibrant and the UNESCO listed Imperial city of Fes. This city is a north eastern Imperial Moroccan city referred to as The Mecca of the West or The Athens of Africa, also being the country’s capital of knowledge and culture. Fes is the oldest of Morocco’s imperial cities and an enchanting city you will admire while on your Morocco Grand tour, it is renowned for its exciting and colourful Fes El Bali walled Medina, its Marinid architecture, vibrant souks and old world atmosphere and charm. (Overnight in Fes).
Day 5: Sightseeing guided day tour of Fes:
Today, on the 5th day of your Morocco grand tour and after a tasty Moroccan breakfast in your charming Riad, you will begin a full day Heritage guided tour of Fes, with your expert Grand Morocco local guide. (Walking tour with some transportation between sites).
• Begin with a visit to the 12th century “Bab Boujloud” or “blue gate” with its stunning blue and green ceramics.
• Visit the largest royal palace in Morocco, Dar el Makhzen, exhibiting its seven golden doors and marvel at its wonderful golden gate, made of marble, copper and glorious mosaics.
• Stroll through the Mellah or Jewish quarter of old Moroccan Jewish heritage, built near the Royal residence for protection in 1438.
• Experience the panoramic view of the city from Borj Sud, an ancient fortress on a hill, from where you can view the UNESCO listed ancient Medina of Fes.
• Visit the amazing pottery factory and observe how the unique pottery of Fes is made with its intricate mosaics, which adorn half of Morocco.
• Visit the 14th century Madrasa Bou Inania religious school and be delighted by the Marinid architecture.
• Discover the holy school and historic University of Al-Qarawiyyin, the world’s oldest educational institution, i.e. University, as stated by UNESCO and the Guinness World Records. Founded by a woman, Fatima al-Fihir in 859 AD.
• Visit the famous 11th century iconic Chouara tannery, the oldest leather tannery in the world and explore the narrow Medina streets lined with shops selling fresh fruits, spices, intricately woven Berber carpets, silk weavers and numerous other art and craft items from Morocco, a must-do while on your Morocco grand tour.
• Lunch in an authentic restaurant in the Medina of Fes.
• Visit Madrasa Al-Attarine, Nejjarine Museum, Moulay Idriss Mausoleum (founder of Fes).
• While negotiating the narrow alley-ways, your expert local guide will instruct you about Moroccan history, culture and the Moroccan Berber way of life, especially around Fes. An enchanting day of discovery you will enjoy while on your 11 days Morocco Grand tour. (Overnight in Fes).
Day 6: Fes » Ifrane » Middle Atlas » Ziz valley » Sahara desert:
On the 6th day of your Morocco grand tour & after breakfast, you will begin your spectacular journey towards the magical and legendary Sahara Desert, the largest hot desert in the world and where the undulating golden dunes glisten like gold in the sunlight. Travel dreams do come true and this visit to the desert may be one of yours.
• Travel to Ifrane known as the Little Switzerland of Morocco and stop for a break to enjoy its marvelous landscapes.
• Here in Ifrane, you will become aware that this magical mountain town is one of the most beautiful cities in Morocco and features in the top 10 cleanest cities of the world. A beautiful place you will admire while on your Morocco grand tour.
• Navigate the green and superb Middle Atlas Mountains, marvel at the largest Cedar plantations in Africa and be captivated by the antics of the Barbary Apes. This species of Apes is found only in Morocco, Gibraltar and Algeria.
• Stop in Zayda town for lunch and enjoy a Moroccan tajine or some fresh barbeque. Drive through the scenic Middle Atlas Mountains and the striking Ziz Valley oasis, containing the largest palm grove oasis in Morocco.
• Observe a dense canopy of palms between ancient striated cliffs dating back to the Jurassic period.
• Continue travel to the eminent dunes of Erg Chebbi and experience the glory of the Sahara Desert. Erg Chebbi is regarded as the gateway to the Grand African Sahara and has some dunes considered the highest sand dunes in north Africa at 350 M elevation.
• Meet your Camel caravan and the experienced camel man, who will guide your trek to explore the mysterious Sahara sand sea, an alluring and a unique trek that will make your Morocco grand tour a memorable experience.
• Enjoy a charming sunset over the Erg Chebbi dunes and spend the night in a Berber desert camp. The evening will include dinner, followed by entertainment around the campfire, listening to traditional Berber drum music, having the experience of a lifetime under the milky way stars. This will captivate your heart and soul, not for a night but forever. “Sand boarding is available in the camp”. 11 days Morocco Grand tour from Casablanca. (Overnight in Sahara Desert).
Day 7: Full day of sightseeing in Sahara desert:
On the 7th day of your Morocco grand tour, you may climb the sand dunes for a fantastic view of the amazing sunrise in the Sahara Desert, followed by a typical traditional Berber breakfast.
• Begin your day with a 1 hour Quad excursion through the Sahara Desert. Enjoy the exhilaration of speeding through the sands and up the dunes, where you will stop to enjoy a peaceful moment with just sky and sand for as far as you can see. You will have a professional guide to ensure your safety!
• Explore the Berber farms and fields of Merzouga and marvel at the ingenious underground water and irrigation system, for family agriculture and for spectacular date palms.
• Visit Dayet Srij Salt Lake or “Flamingos Lake”. During Spring the lake attracts many species of birds e.g. amazing colony of Greater Flamingos, desert Warbler, Egyptian Nightjar, Falcons, desert Sparrows and many more. Several species reside at the lake all year round. Other wild life to be spotted at the lake are lizards, hedgehogs and desert foxes.
• Visit the Black Village of Khamlia, a little village with a big story. This village has a population of 390 of Black African families and Berber ethnic groups and it is located at the foothills of Merzouga dunes, doors to the great Sahara Desert.
• For centuries black Africans from the Gnawa tribe, originating from sub-Saharan countries such as The Sudan, Mali and Niger, were forcibly moved from their homelands across the Sahara to Morocco as part of the worldwide slave trade. Shackled in chains as they crossed the desert, they sang to soothe their pain and found a mindfulness in the rhythmic chanting and clanking of the chains.
• Today Khamlia’s inhabitants are direct descendants of these slaves. We will visit one of the music associations, have a cup of tea and listen to the Gnawa inspirational African music which is legendary from their ancestors, preserved from their original homeland and still played in a traditional manner.
• Partake of a delectable lunch of Berber Pizza which is a food specialty of the desert town of Merzouga.
• Visit a desert nomadic Berber family, share a cup of tea with them and be totally captivated by their life style, their traditional tents and the harsh desert environment in which they live.
• Head to your Riad/Hotel in front of the sand sea for a rest or a swim at your leisure. 11 days Morocco Grand tour from Casablanca. (Overnight in Sahara).
Day 8: Merzouga » Rissani » Todgha gorges » Dades valley:
Today, After breakfast and having experienced 2 memorable nights in the spectacular sand sea desert dunes of Sahara, we depart for the town of Rissani. This town was an ancient strategic cross roads destination on the trans-Saharan trade route linking Western Africa with Europe and Asia. It was a major camel caravan and commercial centre which gave great importance to the city from the 8th to 16th centuries.
• Caravans of up to 200,000 camels would arrive in Rissani each year, from many sub Saharan African countries, e.g. Mali, Ghana, Senegal, Niger, Sudan, all trading gold, ivory, local crafts, slaves and most importantly salt, which was sometimes used as trade currency and more valuable than gold at that time. Camels were first domesticated by the Native Berbers in north Africa, c.300 A.D. and the camel caravans traveled vast distances for long periods, up to 100 days to reach Rissani. They rarely traveled faster than the camel man’s walking speed and their ability to withstand hard conditions made them ideal for communication and trade.
• Rissani is renowned for its cultural diversity of Berber, Arab and desert communities, all recognisable and differentiated by their clothing style and colours worn. Also, it is a diverse city and well known for its traditional markets / Souks, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays, being the busiest shopping days for souvenirs, gifts, spices, crafts and jewelry such as silver. There is a live stock market for sheep, goats and donkeys, and traders in local fresh produce such as dates, olives, vegetables and many traditional items. It might be possible to stop here to explore these traditional markets and maybe taste some Moroccan sweet dates.
• Departing Rissani and continuing your Morocco grand tour from Casablanca, we will travel towards Tinghir, where we will deviate to a minor road following the river of Todgha Gorge. Contemplate the scenic panoramic views of the old Jewish and Berber mud villages, overlooking the valley. Some time at leisure to enjoy the immensity of the huge red cliffs, 400M elevation, where many international rock climbers come to enjoy their preferred sport.
• The Todgha Gorge is recognised worldwide for being one of the most spectacular rocky canyons. No wonder this place has been used for filming many movies due to its magnificent natural setting, one of the most famous movies being the “Mummy”.
• In this area, lives a large community of Berber nomads. Sometimes, you can sight Berber nomad women, who have Berber tattoos on their faces. They may be seen herding their goats to drink water at the river’s edge and collecting their own water which is carried by their mules back to the caves where they live.
• After lunch, we continue our journey towards one of the most beautiful valleys in the Kingdom and enjoy colourful Berber mud villages overlooking the amazing Dades Valley. We will drive along the spectacular Dades Valley to discover the amazing rock formations known as monkey toes or sometimes monkey fingers. These extraordinary rock formations are metamorphic rock which has been severely eroded by rain, water (which has produced a chemical breakdown of the rock), wind and possibly sand storms over thousands of years.
• The Dades Valley prides itself for the extensive production of roses, wall nuts, groves of palm and almond trees. It was the site of ancient nomad crossings and the valley is dotted with Oases and mud brick palaces known as kasbahs which gives the region its fairy tale nickname. Then it is time to arrive at your Riad / Hotel for a peaceful night in the Dades Valley. 11 days Morocco Grand tour from Casablanca. (Overnight in Dades valley).
Day 9: Dades valley » Rose valley » Ouarzazate » Ksar Ait Benhaddou » High Atlas mountains » Marrakech:
On day 9 of your Morocco grand tour, after breakfast and spending the night in the heart of the beautiful Dades Valley, we continue driving through the Rose valley and Kalaat Mgouna, known as the Rose Capital and known for Damaskina Roses, also known for the annual festival during the rose harvest in May to choose Miss Rose of Morocco.
• Continue through the “Road of the thousand Kasbahs”, the iconic Berber mud brick villages and earth castles to the “Oasis of Skoura”.
• This oasis is UNESCO protected and is famous for its numerous Majestic Kasbahs and here we will stop to visit the iconic 17th century Kasbah of Amridil, an ancient fortification providing visitors a glimpse into life in rural southern Morocco.
• Visit the city of Ouarzazate known as the “Hollywood of Africa” and the spectacular UNESCO listed Ksar Ait Benhaddou, the most intriguing of the red earth castles and one of the most eye-catching filming locations featured in Game of Thrones, Gladiator and more.
• Travel over the wilderness and natural beauty of the High Atlas Mountains, through the exceptionally scenic Tizi n Tichka Pass and witness the production of the world famous Argan Oil on the way to the magic city of Marrakech. 11 days Morocco Grand tour. (Overnight in Marrakech).
Day 10: Marrakech day sightseeing guided tour:
Today, you will embark on a full day city tour of exotic and vibrant Marrakech, exploring in-depth, the rich cultural heritage and antiquity of this enchanting city.
Your Grand Morocco expert local guide will lead you through the UNESCO World Heritage listed, ancient-walled Medina, which dates back to the ancient Berber inhabitants and which extends back to more than 1700 BC.
• Visit Bahia Palace, a masterpiece of Moroccan and Andalusian architecture and a major monument of Morocco’s heritage. This 19th century palace was built by “Ba Ahmed”, the grand vizier of Marrakech & named after his favorite wife “Bahia”. Craftsmen worked on this palace for fourteen years. The tiles were imported from Tetouan, the marble from Meknes while the cedar wood used for the painted and shimmering ceilings came from the Atlas Mountains.
• Stop at a Berber Apothecary shop, learning of the medicinal uses of many of the common spices and herbs that are still used across Morocco to treat common illnesses.
• Visit Ben Youssef Madrasa, a 14th century school founded by the Moroccan Monarch “Abu el Hassan”, another beautiful example of Moroccan and Andalusian architecture. The Saadian dynasty enlarged and redecorated the building in 1570 and it became the largest Islamic college in north Africa.
• Observe the 12th century & largest mosque in Marrakech, “Koutoubia Mosque” and its 77 meter high minaret. It was completed during the reign of the Berber Almohad caliph Yaqub al-Mansour (1184-1199), and inspired other buildings such as the Giralda of Seville and the Hassan Tower of Rabat. Local laws restrict any new building projects from exceeding the height of the minaret, providing a focal point for all to enjoy.
• Visit Saadien tombs, the only remains of the Saadian Dynasty which ruled Marrakech in 1524 to 1659.
• Explore the world famous UNESCO site of Djemaa el Fna plaza in the heart of Marrakech, a destination of all magic and a symbol of the ocher city where you will find a different and a unique atmosphere like snake charmers, storytellers, dancers, traditional musicians to mention just a few. 11 days Morocco Grand tour.. (Overnight in Marrakech).
What is included
in this 11 day Morocco grand tour from Casablanca
- Travel in a private air-conditioned 4WD or Minivan, with a professional, licenced English speaking driver/guide.
- Airport Pick up / drop off transfer.
- WiFi hotspot in the car + 2 bottles of water each per day during this 11 days Morocco Grand tour from casablanca.
- 11 days / 10 nights accommodation with breakfast in beautiful 3/4 or 5 star Hotels / Riads as you request.
- 3 dinners in (day 6/7/8).
- Camel trek and overnight stay in a Berber sahara desert camp.
- ATV quad bike excursion and sand boarding in the Sahara desert (Optional).
- Turbant (head wear) each for the camel trip in Sahara.
- Professional and official local city tour guides in Chefchaouen, Fes, Marrakech and Volubilis.
- A visit to a local Berber nomad family in Sahara.
- All taxes and fees for this 11 days Morocco Grand tour from Casablanca.
What is not included
in this 11 day Morocco grand tour from Casablanca
- Travel insurance.
- Flight ticket.
- Meals not noted as included in this 11 days Morocco Grand tour from Casablanca.
- Snacks, drinks and incidentals.
- Hotel services, such as room service or laundry service.
- Tips and gratuities.
- Personal expenses during this 11 days Morocco Grand tour from Casablanca.