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15 Day Moroccan Allure (Discovery Tour)

15 days with Gate 1 Travel   Rating: First Class

800-680-2858 800-680-2858 Itinerary
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DAY 1, Sunday - Depart the USA
Depart the USA for Morocco.

DAY 2, Monday - Arrive Casablanca/Transfer to Rabat
Arrive in Casablanca this morning. We will return to see more of this legendary city at tour’s end. For now, we transfer to Rabat, a heady swirl of color, culture, and history. Arrive at your hotel and spend the afternoon at leisure. Tonight, join your fellow travelers for a welcome briefing. Following the orientation, we enjoy a welcome dinner at the hotel. (Dinner)

DAY 3, Tuesday - Rabat City Tour
After breakfast, we tour the capital. Begin with a drive past the beautifully tiled entrance to the Royal Palace, followed by a stop at Bab Rouah, or the city’s “Gate of the Winds,” so called because it’s been battered by Atlantic winds since its construction in 1197. We visit Hassan Tower, part of an unfinished mosque started by a 12th-century caliph. At the incredibly preserved Kasbah of the Udayas, we explore the fortress and take a shady stroll in the French-colonial Andalusian gardens. End our day at Chellah, the necropolis and ruins of an ancient Roman outpost. Balance of the day at leisure. (Breakfast)

DAY 4, Wednesday - Explore Volubilis & Meknes/Overland to Fez
After breakfast, we drive inland to Fez. Along the way, we stop to explore the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Volubilis, the once-bustling city and African administrative center of the Roman Empire. The site also has vestiges of the Berber civilization that took the city from Rome in AD 270. We continue to Meknes and view the Bab Mansour gate, beautifully patterned with zellij mosaics. We continue to Fez and enjoy dinner at the hotel later this evening. (Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 5, Thursday - Tour Fez /Enjoy Home Hosted Dinner
We explore the sprawling medina of Fez by foot this morning. It’s said that this is the world’s largest car-free urban area; undistracted by traffic, you’re sure to agree that strolling here is a feast for the senses. We’ll enter via the Bab Boujloud, or “Blue Gate” and visit the famed Al-Bou Inania madrasa. Then, stop at the Chouwara Tannery to see how leather is cut and dyed using traditional techniques. At the Nejjarine Museum, browse the collection of wooden arts and crafts, then view copper craftsmen at work in Seffarine Square. Our tour ends outside the Karaouine Mosque and University, the oldest continuously functioning university in the world, founded in the year 859. After lunch on your own in the medina , our guide leads us through the Jewish Quarter, or mellah, built in 1438. By the end of our walk, we’ll be at the King’s Palace. This evening, we’re the guests of a local Fez family for dinner. Over typical Moroccan, home-prepared food, we’ll connect with our hosts. (Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 6, Friday - Cross Middle Atlas Mountains/Drive to Erfoud
Today is a thrilling adventure into Morocco’s Middle Atlas Mountains. We begin with a stop in Ifran, a Moroccan ski resort. Then ascend scenic roads past pine groves and giant cedar trees. Midmorning, we cross the 6,000-foot pass and continue west toward the great Sahara. As we approach Erfoud, we have views of the remarkable Ziz Gorges and vast valleys. (Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 7, Saturday - Experience Rissani/Off-Road to Sahara Camp
This morning, we explore the small city of Rissani on the edge of the Sahara. In this former caravan center, we wander its lively souk, and visit an 18th-century ksar. Then, stop to discover the ancient ruins of Sijilmasa on the River Ziz, once a bustling Berber city and medieval trade depot. We’ll pause to visit a local bread shop, where we’ll witness and sample an ancient culinary art. After lunch at our hotel, we journey into the Sahara Desert, stopping en route to share tea with some welcoming locals in a Berber tent. Later, settle in to our Sahara camp, where dunes rise and fall around us and we feel the adventuresome spirit of explorers of old. You’ll even have the opportunity to enjoy a short camel ride. Later, we witness an incredible sunset here and enjoy traditional music under a canopy of stars. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 8, Sunday - Explore Desert & Todra Gorge/Overland to Ait Ben Haddou
We awake amidst the silence of the desert this morning. Morocco’s natural beauty continues to astound us today. After breakfast, we leave our camp and make our way to the lovely oasis of Tinghir for lunch. But the real attraction here is the spectacular Todra Gorge, a deep ravine carved by the Todra River over millennia. There’ll be time to marvel at this sight before we continue to the Dades Valley, where roses bloom in profusion in springtime. The locals make good use of the prolific flower by producing rose water here. Dinner tonight is at our Ait Ben Haddou hotel. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 9, Monday - Visit Ait Ben Haddou/Travel to Marrakesh
Enjoy a leisurely morning. Perhaps start your day relaxing by the pool. Explore the neighborhood by foot. Or cover more ground, riding into the village on a bicycle borrowed from our hotel. Late this morning, we take time to visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ait Benhaddou, a ksar – or fortified city – along a former caravan route. This is the true Morocco: a village that seems to rise from the sands. Its desert-dusted Kasbahs and maze-like warrens are sure to enthrall you. Next, we make our way to the magical city of Marrakesh. This evening, get the details about henna painting during a talk and demonstration. Dinner tonight at our Marrakesh hotel. (Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 10, Tuesday - City Tour of Marrakesh/El Badi Palace
Discover historic, exotic Marrakesh today, the “City of Ochre.” We begin at the 12th-century Koutoubia Mosque, its minaret still topped with four copper globes. Then we explore El Badi Palace, where 360 rooms were once adorned with Italian marble and Sudanese gold. For a more recent archaeological find, we’ll see the richy decorated tombs of the Saadi dynasty. Enjoy lunch on your own in the medina. Spend the rest of the day at leisure or continue to explore this fascinating city on your own. (Breakfast)

Optional: Moroccan Dinner with Horse-Drawn Carriage Ride ($79)

DAY 11, Wednesday - Palm Grove and Menara Gardens/ Experience Djemaa el Fna Square
Spend the morning at leisure or revisit some favorite spots from yesterday’s tour. This afternoon, we venture out to the lush Palm Grove and Menara Gardens, two lovely oases watched over by the snow-capped Atlas Mountains. We end our thrilling day in the famed Djemaa el Fna square, a dazzling display of acrobats, story tellers, and snake charmers. Take your time and absorb this vibrant kaleidoscope of culture, torn from the pages of Ali Baba. (Breakfast)

Optional: Ourika Valley and Botanical Gardens with Lunch ($59)

DAY 12, Thursday - Argan Oil Cooperative/Travel to Essaouira
We have a leisurely morning before departing Marrakesh. We stop at the Argan Oil Womens Cooperative to learn how this skin-nutrifying elixir is extracted from the argan nut. We arrive in Essaouira in time for dinner on your own. (Breakfast)

DAY 13, Friday - Discover Essaouira/Gnawa Performance
Seaside Essaouira has grown into an artist’s enclave over the years, and this makes for a fascinating mix of ancient and modern sensibilities. We’ll introduce you to its culture with a stroll through the vibrant medina and its bustling fish market. The rest of the afternoon is yours to explore its inviting ancient streets. This evening, we learn about traditional music during a talk with a local expert. Enjoy a refreshing cocktail while viewing a Gnawa performance and dance. (Breakfast)

DAY 14, Saturday - Travel to Casablanca/Enjoy City Tour
Transfer to Casablanca today, stopping en route for a light lunch in a local restaurant. Upon arrival, we see the fabled city’s important sights, including the Mohammed V Square, the city’s administrative seat. Next, marvel at the massive Hassan II Mosque, dramatically perched on a promontory on the Atlantic. Its indoor and outdoor space can accommodate 105,000 worshippers. In the Habous district, we peruse the market and admire the exterior of the Royal Palace. Tonight, we’ve selected a special venue for our farewell dinner. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 15, Sunday - Depart for the USA
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast)

800-680-2858 800-680-2858 Map
800-680-2858 800-680-2858 All This Included
  • Small groups of maximum 22 travelers guaranteed
  • Airline taxes & fuel surcharges
  • 13 nights in First Class accommodations
  • Hotel porterage
  • All transfers and sightseeing per itinerary in modern air-conditioned vehicles
  • 24 meals: 13 breakfasts, 3 lunches & 8 dinners (including a home hosted dinner, and welcome & farewell dinners)
  • Bottled water during sightseeing excursions
  • Services of local English-speaking tour manager throughout
  • Comprehensive, guided sightseeing and entrance fees per itinerary
  • Active itinerary with unique cultural features
800-680-2858 800-680-2858 Highlights
  • Thanks to our small group size, we can get to the heart of our destination, visit places that other tours miss, and get to know the locals.
  • Explore the remarkably preserved Volubilis, once a major African outpost of the Roman Empire
  • Join a Fez family for a dinner of home-cooked fare in their dining room
  • Meet the women of the Argan Oil Cooperative and see how they extract nutritive oil from this nut
  • Camp in the Sahara under an endless canopy of desert stars
  • Explore Ait Ben Haddou, an ancient desert village on an old caravan route
  • Marvel at the circus atmosphere of Marrakesh’s Djemaa el Fna Square, bustling with acrobats, performers, and snake charmers
  • Stroll the inviting medina in seaside Essaouira, bustling with crafts shops and fish mongers
800-680-2858 800-680-2858 Accommodations
Rabat:  Villa Mandarine
Fez: La Perle de la Medina
Erfoud: Kasbah Xaluca
Sahara: Xaluca Tented Camp
Ait Ben Haddou: Ksar Ighnda Hotel
Marrakesh: Palais Sebban
Essaouira: Dar L’Oussia Hotel
Casablanca: Kenzi Tower Hotel
800-680-2858 800-680-2858 Notes
  • Passengers arriving to Casablanca on Day 2 should select flights that arrive no later than 3:00 pm. Rabat is approximately a 1.5 hour drive from the Casablanca airport.
  • April 6 and December 21 departure will be accommodated at the Hotel Atlas Essaouira & Spa in Essaouira. Triple Rooms will be accommodated in a Single Room & Twin Room.
  • Due to limited space on the small jeeps used to travel from Erfoud to overnight stay in the desert, only one small piece of luggage per passenger is permitted. Additional luggage will be stored overnight at the Erfoud Hotel and returned back on Day 8. Luggage should be locked and valuables left overnight in the hotel safe. Please pack a small overnight bag.
  • Passengers traveling abroad require a passport valid for six months beyond their travel dates. All travelers are responsible to check if a visa is required for all countries on their itinerary.
  • Please ask your Vacations to Go travel counselor for more information.
800-680-2858 800-680-2858 Terms and Conditions
For Gate 1 Travel terms and conditions, please click here.

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.