Blue City, Morocco Tour from Casablanca – 12 days

Blue City, Imperial Cities and Sahara Desert:

Experience the diverse wonders of Morocco on this 12-day adventure, where you will traverse Imperial Cities, delve into the Sahara Desert, and explore the famous Blue City, all while immersing yourself in the rich history, vibrant culture, and warm hospitality of this North African gem.

Begin your journey in Casablanca with a visit to the majestic Hassan II Mosque before exploring the captivating sights of Rabat, including the historic Hassan Tower and the tranquil Ouadayas Gardens.

Continue your exploration with a tour of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Volubilis, marvelling at its ancient Roman ruins, and venture into the medina of Meknes to photograph its impressive walls and gates. In Fes, embark on a full-day sightseeing tour, where you’ll wander the labyrinthine medina, visit iconic landmarks like the Royal Palace and Madrasa Bou Inania, and witness the traditional craft of leather tanning.

Experience the magic of the Sahara Desert with a camel trek in the Erg Chebbi dunes, watching the sunset from the summit and spending nights under the starlit sky in comfortable nomad tents. Explore the picturesque Dades Valley, discovering Berber villages and hiking through the stunning Toudgha Gorges, before venturing over the Atlas Mountains via the Tizi-n-Tichka pass, capturing breathtaking views along the way.

In Marrakech, soak up the vibrant atmosphere of the medina, visit historic sites such as Medersa Ben Youssef and the Saadian Tombs, and explore the bustling Djemaa El Fna square.

Along the way, enjoy culinary delights, stay in beautiful riads and guesthouses, and experience the true essence of Moroccan hospitality. This itinerary promises an unforgettable journey through the heart of Morocco.

12-day Morocco tour from Casablanca – highlights:

  • Visit the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca and discover the monuments of Rabat.
  • Explore the famous Chefchaouen’s white-washed alleyways and blue-painted houses.
  • Explore Meknes, photograph its imposing walls and gates, and uncover the ancient ruins of Volubilis.
  • Delve into the lively medina of Fes, visit historic Madrassas, witness leather tanneries, explore the Royal Palace, and meander through its bustling alleyways.
  • Enjoy a camel ride, witness the desert sunset, dine under the starry sky, and sleep in nomadic tents.
  • Discover traditional brick-mud Berber villages and gain insight into the daily lives of the locals.
  • Roam through the Dades Valley, stroll along the riverbank, or hike around the Toudgha Gorges.
  • Visit Kasbah Amredhil, and explore the renowned Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou and Telouet Kasbah.
  • Traverse the Atlas Mountains and Tizi-n-Tichka pass, capturing breathtaking views along the way.
  • Explore the enchanting sites of Marrakech, including beautiful gardens, ancient Madrasas, royal palaces, and the lively Djemaa El Fna square.

What is included:

  • Transport in a private air-conditioned & comfortable van or 4WD vehicle
  • Experienced English-speaking nomad driver-guide
  • Overnight comfortable hotels with air-conditioned rooms with private bathroom
  • Two nights in a luxury desert camp in Erg Chebbi under private & comfortable tents equipped with private bathrooms and shower
  • A camel ride for about two hours with a guide in Erg Chebbi and free sand-boarding, if desired
  • Berber drumming & music in the desert camp
  • Guided tours in Fes and Marrakech
  • Hiking amid beautiful scenery and free time to explore the sites of interest
  • Tea/ coffee in the desert camp

What is not included:

  • Lunches and dinners
  • Drinks
  • Entrance fees
  • Tipping

Around Morocco Tour from Casablanca – itinerary:

1st day: Casablanca – Rabat

Upon your arrival, your driver will greet you warmly and transport you to your lodgings in Casablanca. Depending on your arrival time, you may have the chance to tour the Hassan II Mosque, celebrated as the largest mosque in Africa and the foremost religious institution worldwide. Adorned with stunning Moroccan craftsmanship and embellished with exquisite tiles, the mosque provides awe-inspiring vistas of the ocean, presenting an unforgettable spectacle.

Subsequently, we embark on a one-hour journey along the highway to reach Rabat, the esteemed capital city. During your exploration, you will admire the iconic Hassan Tower, emblematic of the city’s heritage, before delving into the Mausoleum of Mohamed V, a remarkable tribute to the revered monarch. Immerse yourself further in the vibrant ambience of the medina.

You will spend the night in a charming riad.

2nd day: Rabat – Chefchaouen

Following breakfast, your journey continues along the highway toward Chefchaouen, passing through Ouazzane and traversing the Middle Atlas Mountains before reaching the enchanting blue city.

After lunch, the remainder of the day is spent leisurely exploring the captivating blue-hued alleyways and vibrant medina. Unwind at one of the numerous cafes, offering splendid vistas of verdant hills and valleys.

Your accommodation for the night awaits at a delightful riad nestled within the medina.

3rd day: Chefchaouen

You can spend the morning on a sightseeing tour with a local guide who knows all the cool places you might miss if you’re on your own. If you want, you can also go for a hike in the Rif Mountains to see the amazing views of the blue city and its surroundings.

After lunch at a local restaurant, take a walk in Plaza Uta el-Hammam Square. You can try yummy street food, enjoy the mountain views, or just relax in a café and see how locals live.

You spend the night back in your riad.

4th day: Chefchaouen – Fes

After enjoying breakfast, you depart from the blue city towards Fes, renowned as the oldest Imperial City in Morocco. Along the way, the route passes through the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Roman ruins of Volubilis. Visitors have the option to engage a local guide to gain insightful knowledge about the history of this fascinating site.

Next, the journey proceeds to the sacred town of Moulay Idris. While the mausoleum itself is accessible only to Muslims, the main square provides stunning vistas and hosts various small shops selling souvenirs.

Later, the trip continues through the hills and countryside of the Rif region until reaching Fes. Here, a charming riad awaits, providing dinner and accommodation for the night.

5th day: Fes Guided Tour

After breakfast, embark on a guided journey through the bustling medina, known as one of Morocco’s largest fortified cities. Meander through its intricate alleys lined with vendors selling fresh produce, aromatic spices, finely woven Berber rugs, and an array of Moroccan artisanal goods.

Throughout the excursion, you’ll have the chance to explore significant landmarks including the Royal Palace, leather tanneries, and pottery studios. Moreover, delve into the architectural marvels of the Bou Inania Madrassa and the Al-Kairaouine Madrassa.

Savour the delights of Moroccan cuisine at a cosy local eatery nestled within the medina’s heart. Following lunch, wrap up your tour and return to your accommodation for the remainder of the

6th day: Fes – Merzouga

Following breakfast, embark on a southward journey, passing through Ifrane, fondly known as the Switzerland of Morocco, where houses feature pitched roofs—a distinctive characteristic in this North African nation, engineered to endure winter snowfall.

Continuing, your adventure leads you across the Middle Atlas Mountains and through the Tizi-n-Talremt pass, winding along picturesque roads flanked by oak and cedar trees until reaching Azrou. Here, take a break to observe Barbary macaques frolicking and foraging for treats.

Afterwards, proceed to Midelt for a midday meal, recognized as the “apple capital” and situated at the base of Ayachi Mountain. Pressing further southward, journey alongside the mountains, relishing in stunning vistas and passing through Berber communities. As you descend from the mountains, admire the lush green oases and majestic palm groves, signalling the onset of the Ziz Valley.

Upon reaching Errachidia and then Erfoud, renowned for its date festival and fossil finds, visit a local artisan workshop to witness the skilled craftsmanship involved in transforming fossil-rich rocks into both functional and decorative items.

Finally, arrive at the Merzouga dunes for a sunset camel excursion, arriving at the desert camp near the Erg Chebbi dunes (250m). From atop the dunes, witness a breathtaking sunset. Amidst the Erg Chebbi dunes, dine and spend the night at a desert camp nestled among the expansive sands.

7th day: Merzouga

After breakfast, explore the Merzouga region, beginning with a visit to the Gnawa people residing in Khamlia. Renowned for their expertise in Gnawa music, originally brought to the region through the sub-Saharan slave trade, they will treat you to a captivating performance of this unique musical style.

Next, head to the historic town of Rissani, the birthplace of the Alaouite dynasty, the current ruling royal family of Morocco. Surrounded by several ksars, fortified villages adorned with numerous towers, Rissani boasts a bustling souk and an open market held three times a week. Stroll through the souk, where a variety of items such as spices, vegetables, household items, and handmade crafts are sold. Rissani sits on the former site of Sijilmassa, a crucial meeting point for the salt caravans originating from Timbuktu in Mali.

In the afternoon, embark on a camel ride led by an experienced guide, traversing the dunes of Erg Chebbi in Merzouga to witness the breathtaking sunset over the desert. Dinner will once again be served in the camp, followed by an evening of nomadic music and drumming around a cosy campfire.

8th day: Merzouga – Dades Gorges

If you rise early, witness the serene spectacle of the sunrise painting the dunes in enchanting colours. After breakfast, return to your hotel on camelback and begin your journey eastwards to Marrakech.

Travelling on the paved road, reach Tinjdad. Notice the strange piles of sand following the road, the heads of the “khettarat,” ingenious underground water channels designed to minimise evaporation in the desert heat. Experience the coolness below ground and marvel at the ancient engineering involved.

In the Todra Gorges, enjoy lunch in a local restaurant overlooking the valley, followed by a riverside stroll through the villages and mountains. Upon arrival at Dades Gorges, enjoy a walk amidst stunning rock formations, kasbahs, and picturesque villages. Spend the night in a beautiful guest house overlooking the valley.

9th day: Dades Gorges – Ouarzazate

After breakfast, continue your journey through the Valley of the Roses, with an optional stop at the cosmetics cooperative in Kalaat M’Gouna, which manufactures cosmetic products from the abundant valley roses.

Then, travel along the Road of One Thousand Kasbahs to Skoura Oasis, where you visit Kasbah Amredhil with its museum. This kasbah, once depicted on the old 50 dirham banknote, has been beautifully restored and is well worth a visit.

Before reaching Ouarzazate, stop to visit the Atlas Studios, known for their versatile sets and offering a unique experience of movie sets.

Spend the night in a beautiful riad.

10th day: Ouarzazate – Marrakech

After breakfast, a one-hour drive takes you to Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou, the most famous kasbah in Morocco and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. After lunch, explore the kasbah, renowned for its use as a filming location for numerous Hollywood blockbusters.

Drive along the Ounila Valley with its prosperous villages, stunning mountains, and views of Telouet. Reach Kasbah Telouet, once the palatial residence of the Lords of the Atlas, the Glaoui Family. Although now in ruins, be pleasantly surprised by the architectural marvel of this historic home. Lunch will be either here or later in the mountains.

Cross the Atlas Mountains via the Tizi-n-Tichka pass and arrive in Marrakech by late afternoon. Your driver will transfer you to your riad.

11th day: Marrakech Guided Tour

Set out on an extensive guided tour of Marrakech, covering the following key attractions:

Koutoubia Mosque: Standing tall as one of Marrakech’s grandest mosques, the Koutoubia Mosque is a prominent landmark in the city. Built in the classic Almohad style, its towering minaret, standing at 69 meters, is adorned with four striking copper spheres.

Bahia Palace: Often hailed as “the palace of beauty,” Bahia Palace is a splendid example of 19th-century Eastern architecture, showcasing the luxurious lifestyle of its time. Erected between 1894 and 1900 by Ahmad Ibn Musa, the palace features intricately tiled walls and elaborately adorned cedar wood ceilings, demonstrating exquisite craftsmanship from Fes.

Saadian Tombs: Dating back to the reign of Sultan Ahmed Al-Mansur (1578-1603), the Saadian Tombs were rediscovered in 1971 and meticulously renovated. Celebrated for their intricate decorations and unique architectural style, these burial sites have become a must-see attraction for Marrakech visitors.

Majorelle Gardens: Originally crafted by Jacques Majorelle and later owned by Yves Saint Laurent, these peaceful gardens boast a unique blue hue. Discover its serene ambience, tranquil fish ponds, charming bridges, lush greenery, and inviting cafes and eateries.

Djemaa El Fna Square: Marrakech’s vibrant central square offers a sensory feast, bustling with juice stalls, dried fruit merchants, spice vendors, snake charmers, henna artisans, and captivating storytellers. Explore the lively souks and colourful shops surrounding this iconic square, immersing yourself in Marrakech’s rich cultural and commercial tapestry.

12th day: Marrakech – Casablanca

Your driver will transfer you from riad to the airport in Marrakech or Casablanca for your flight, thus wrapping up your journey in Morocco.