Day 3: Chefchaouen Morning at Leisure to Explore Chefchaouen.
Chefchaouen Departure to Fes. Drive through the poetic Riff Moutnains passing the region of Ouzzane. Gastronomic lunch at a local restaurant that offers farm to table fare.
Overnight at a charming boutique Riad or Hotel in Fes.
Day 4: Fes Guided Historical Tour of this UNESCO World Heritage Site & City
Fes Historical Tour: Islamic Architecture, UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Historic Monuments, Jewish Heritage (Synagogue and Mellah), Craft Making and Shopping in the Souks.
Begin your day in Fès
, the oldest working medina in the world that many refer to as a living museum. Visit The 14th Century Palace Gates of the King
. The Royal Palace in Fes is one of the oldest (14th
Century) and largest in Morocco. Next visit the Jewish Mellah, the name of a Jewish quarters located in the old cities of Morocco, usually with a walled boundary. Continue onward to visit the Ibn Danan Jewish Synagogue.
Fes was once home to a flourishing Jewish community during the 17th
century and was also the location of two well-known temples: Rabbi Shlomo Ibn Danan Synagogue was built and founded by the Ibn Danan family and the
Cross the local fruit and vegetable market where you will witness the stalls of local traders and people buying their daily goods. Explore the Dyers souk of silk, wool and cotton.
Visit the following sites in the afternoon:
Mausoleum (Zaouia Sidi Ahmed Tijani)
University of Kairouine
Mausolem (Zaouia Moulay Idriss)
Cross the carpenter area and enter Attarine Street, filled with scents of Fes such as spices and oils. Shop and explore for carpets, scarves, and local handicrafts. Antique and Modern Carpets is one of the places in Fès el Bali where you can see a Berber carpet demonstration. Visit the The Bou Inania Medersa. The Madrasa Bou Inania is a madrassa founded in AD 1351-56 by Abu Inan Faris, who also founded the Madrasa Bou Inania in Meknes. Overnight at a Boutique Riad or Hotel in Fes.
Day 5 : Fes Food Tour, Discover Street Food in Morocco on a Souk Tasting Tour, Afternoon at Leisure or a Guided Visit to Palaces and Andalusian Gardens
Venture on a Fes
Food Tour. This Souks Tasting Trail in the historic Fes medina is a special opportunity to go deep in the heart of Fes
and discover local delicacies of the Fassis people. On this Fes Food Tour you will visit three different food souks that ofer the opportunity to try traditional Moroccan street food including dried meats, milawi, harsha, briwats, spicy sardines, spicy potato cakes, soups, olives and more. At the honey souk you will be able to taste an array of delicious wild honeys, discuss their flavors and health-giving properties and find out why honey is so important in Moroccan cooking and Islamic culture.
Afternoon Visit of Majestic Palaces and Andalusian Gardens
Visit the Dar el-Batha Museum and Andalusian Garden. Next visit the Batha Museum and Andalusian Gardens. he Musee Dar el-Batha offers up a great collection of pottery, leatherwork, wood, books, and manuscripts from the nineteenth century centered around a green spacious courtyard.
Visit Palais Mokri. Palais Mokri, also referred to as “El Mokri Palace”, is a landmark in Fes. Built around 1906 by If Tayeb El Mokri, son of the Grand Vizier (Prime Minister) of the king and himself Pasha of Casablanca, this residence covers about 220 meters of Fasis architecture and a gardens.
Visit Jnane S’bil Garden and Les Jardins De Biehn, an Andalusian Garden built by a French artist. Overnight at a Boutique Riad or Hotel in Fes.
Day 6:Fes Departure to the Merzouga Sahara Desert. Travel the Middle Atlas passing Ifrane, Azro and Midelt. (Driving Time: 8 1/2 Hours)
A Journey through the Middle Atlas to the Sahara Desert, Passing Ifrane, known as “Little Switzerland,” Midelt, Erfoud (the Capital of Fossils), and Rissani, Arriving in Merzouga for a Sunset Guided Camel Trek and Arabian Nights in the Great Sahara Desert.
Enroute to Merzouga, we will pass Ifrane, stopping to see the cedar tree forest and the local barbary monkeys. We will also pass the American- Moroccan University which was built by the Saudis. On arrive in the Saharan Desert explore the capital of fossils, Erfoud. Then continue to a remote region to see The Musicians of Khemlia in Merzouga. The Musicisans of Khemlia are a century-old Gnaoua group that performs ancient trance music. Tea and nuts will be served. Arrive in Merzouga before sunset and then take a Sunset Camel Trek into the Erg Chebbi Dunes. 1001 Arabian Nights Dinner & Overnight in a Luxury Desert Camp in Merzouga.
Day 7: Merzgouga Deaprture to Skoura. En route visit the Sahara desert town of Rissani, Alnif, and have lunch with a Berber Family (Driving Time: 3-4 Hours)
Explore the Merzouga Sahara Desert's flora and fauna. Then continue to the Sahara Desert town of Rissani which is known for one of the oldest souks in Morocco and it's ancient tradition of breadbaking called Mafouna. Continue the road via Alnif and the region of the Sahgro Mountains to Ait Ouzzine. Departure from the Region to the Saghro Mountains for Lunch in a Berber Village Enroute to Skoura
Visit the old ksars in the Berber Village of Ait Ouzzine, located in between the Saghro Mountain and Tamlalt Mountain region which surround the village and N’kob.
Aït Ouzzine is a Berber village inhabited by over 300 families who live in beautifully painted crenulated kasbahs, with their own henna fields, water wells, livestock, and gardens. This peaceful village is tucked away along an impressive desert route connecting the Draa Valley (Tansikht) and Rissani.
Meet a local Berber family, sip tea in the Sagro Mountains, and dine on couscous. Then explore and tour the village by foot. Walk in the green fields and see how the traditional Berbers live with their gardens of herbs, livestock, and henna plants. After lunch, you can have your hands and feet painted with hennaor your hair adorned with saffron by a local village artist and relax. Experience the tradition of Berber perfume made from musk and amber along with the villages own spices.End the afternoon in Ait Ouzzine with mint tea and almonds.
Drive through the Draa Valley back to Ouarzazate or the Skoura Palmeraie before sunset. The Draa Valley is the road of the old caravans that once traveled to transport dates and other goods from the Draa Region to Marrakech. Overnight at a Boutique Riad in Skoura.
Day 8: Skoura Visit of the Valley of One Thousdand Kasbahs, then take the road to visit the Valley of Nomads, the Valley of Roses and Boumalne Dades Valley (Driving Time: 4 Hours)
Visit Skoura and its “Valley of One Thousand Kasbahs.” Skoura is a fertile oasis lined with immense palm groves that provide great views of the Atlas Mountains alongside desert landscapes. It is renowned for the cultivation of roses.
Continue towards the perfumed Valley of Roses,just north of El Kelaa Des Mgouna. On the way to the Valley of Roses, your driver will stop for you to view the Capp et Florale distillation factories laid out in the small kasbah town that manufacture the entire nation’s production of eau de rose. The rose water and other products such as hand and body soaps, oil, cream, perfume, and dried flowers are for sale and also popular among Moroccans.
En route go by pise to the region of Mount Mgoun and the Valley of Nomads. Visit and break bread with a Nomad family and see how cave dwellers have lived in this mountainous region for centuries, isolated from the outside world peacefully. Sip tea with the Nomads in this region of Bouthgrar before heading towards the magnificent Dades Valley and the region of the Dades Gorge. Lunch will be at a well-respected guest house in the Dades Valley with views of a Gorge.
Your journey will then take you through the Dades Valley which covers 125 km between Ouarzazate and Boumalne du Dadès in the High Atlas Mountins. Once you reach Boumalne, at first sight you notice the limestone cliffs with uniquely shaped erosions and superb scenery and the valley’s pise (windy roads. Overnight at a Boutique Riad in Skoura.
Day 9: Skoura Departure to Ouarzazate to visit this region and the Ancient Kasbah of Ait Benhaddou and Kasbah Telouet en route to Marrakech (Driving Time: 5 1/2 Hours)
Visit the Adobe Village of Ait Benhaddou. During the French period, Ouarzazate expanded considerably as a garrison town and became the administrative center of the Zagora region. Ouarzazate became famous when its nearby Kasbah, Ait Benhaddou, appeared in the 1962 filmLawrence of Arabia. Ait Benhaddou Kasbah is 32 km from Ouarzazate lies in a picturesque village situated in Souss Massa Draa on a hill along the Ouarazazate River. Lawrence of Arabia was filmed here and Orson Welles used it as a location for Sodome and Gomorrah; for Jesus of Nazareth,the whole lower part of the village was rebuilt. After visiting Ait Benhaddou, take the road to Visit Kasbah Telouet, of the Pascha Glaoui.
You will pass the olive groves of the Oued Zat as you ascend onto the Tizi-N-Tichka Pass Road. Built by the French in the 1920’s, the Tizi-N-Tichka Pass can be described as having mountainous barriers, Mediterranean and oceanic influences and desert borders. Lunch Recommendation: Dine on local Moroccan fare made with fresh, argan oil from the local cooperative run by women.
Visit an argan cooperative where argan oil, butter, and cosmetics are made with the argan nut by hand as Berber women crack the nuts and the grind them one by one. Enjoy a complimentary tasting. This cooperative is run entirely by women. Continue on to Marrakech. Overnight at a Boutique Riad or Hotel in Marrakech
Day 10: Marrakech Guided Historical: Yves Saint Laurent Gardens, Mosques, Monuments, Souks, Gardens
Marrakech Guided Historical Tour of the Yves Saint Laurent Moroccan Gardens and Koutoubia Mosque and Gardens. Explore Historic Sites, Monuments and the Grand Medina with its Lively Souks.
Visit the Majorelle Gardens. The Majorelle Gardens, previously the Jardin Bou Saf, bears its name from its original creator, Jacques Majorelle, the French expatriate artist who was born in Nancy,France, in 1886. Jacques Majorelle was the son of the celebrated Art Nouveau furniture designer Louis Majorelle. In 1947, the son opened his gardens to the public and, during this time, also painted a magnificent ceiling at La Mamounia, a five-star hotel with exquisite gardens and the place where Alfred Hitchcock wrote The Birds.
See the Koutoubia Mosque and Gardens. The Koutoubia Mosque is the largest mosque inMarrakech. Experience the Jewish Mellah. Founded in 1558 by Moulay Abdallah, the Mellah district was designated as the Jewish quarter in Marrakech. Shop in the Old Spice Market.
Visit the Ben Youssef Madrasa, an Islamic college in Marrakech, Morocco, named after the Almoravid sultan Ali ibn Yusuf (reigned 1106–1142), who expanded the city and its influence considerably. It is the largest Medrasa in all of Morocco.The college was founded during the period of the Marinid (14th century) by the Marinid sultan Abu al-Hassan and allied to the neighbouring Ben Youssef Mosque. The building of the madrasa was re-constructed by the Saadian Sultan Abdallah al-Ghalib (1557–1574). In 1565 the works ordered by Abdallah al-Ghalib were finished, as confirmed by the inscription in the prayer room. Closed down in 1960, the building was refurbished and reopened to the public as a historical site in 1982.
Next explore the El Bahia Palace in Marrakech is a beautiful building and an excellent example of Eastern Architecture from the 19th century and represents trends and standards of the wealthy who lived at that time. Explore the Saadian Tombs. The Saadian tombs in Marrakech date back from the time of the Sultan Ammad al-Mansur (1578-1603). The tombs were only recently discovered (in 1917) and were restored by the Beaux-Arts service. Overnight at a Boutique Riad or Hotel in Marrakech.
Day 11: Marrakech Cooking Class with a Dada Chef, Afternoon Gardens & Palaces
Marrakech Morning Cooking Class in Marrakech
with a Dada Chef. The Marrakech
Cooking Class is conducted by a dada (traditional Moroccan cook) or a chef from and held at a kitchen in the medina or in a palmeraie garden setting. Classes are a total of 4 hours with an option of an add on of wines tasting accompaniment Small groups of maximum 10 participants work alongside a translator (Arabic/English/French), using easy-to-use modern equipment found in everyday kitchens. At the end of each class, you will dine on the meal you have prepared.
Afernoon at leisure or choose to visit the Mamounia Hotel and Gardens for tea and lunch or evening drinks. La Mamounia is where Alfred Hitchcock wrote the movie The Birds. It is situated on the edge of the walls of the old city of Marrakech and is named for its 200-year-old gardens, which were given as an 18th century wedding gift to Prince Moulay Mamoun by his father.
Evening – Visit Djemaa El Fna Square for an evening of adventure at dusk. Beneath the foothills of the Atlas Mountains in the city center of Marrakech lies Djemaa el Fna, a famous UNESCO-recognized city square. During the daylight, Djemma el Fna is every Moroccan travelers shopping paradise. As the sun sets, the real excitement starts. Enjoy a bowl of steamed snails in a local spice broth or, for the adventurous, sheep’s head. Enjoy the nightlife of Gnaoua trance-healers,Andalous musicians, and exotic snake charmers. Easily, this mysterious place can be compared to a land of Arabian fantasies. With its wild and colorful characters, Djemaa el Fna will bedazzle and astound you. Overnight at a Boutique Riad or Hotel in Marrakech.
Day 12: Marrakech Departure to Essaouira, often referred to as Old Mogador (Driving Time: 3 Hours)
Marrakech Departure to the Atlantic Coast of Essaouira. Take the road from Marrakech to seaside Essaouira. En route, visit the winery in Ounara. Embark on a local culinary experience lunch and a wine tasting or Le Fromagerie. Continue to Essaouira. Evening at Leisure. Overnight at a Boutique Riad or Hotel in Essaouira.
Day 13:Essaouira Guided Historical Tour of the Ramparts, Medina, Jewish Mellah and Heritage Sites. A Guided Exploration of this Historic Coastal Town.
Essaouira is a seaside medieval town.
Visit this charming artist colony that boasts lovely white-washed and blue-shuttered houses, colonnades, thuya wood workshops, art galleries, and mouthwatering seafood. Once called Mogador by European sailors and traders, Essaouria is known for its annual Gnaoua Music Festival
in June. Take a stroll along the town’s sunlit pedestrian main square, Place Prince Moulay el Hassan and the Skala du Port, the fishing harbor, offering breathtaking views of the Portuguese ramparts. The medina of Essaouira is a UNESCO World Heritage listed city, as an example of a late-18th
century fortified town.
Stop by the fish market. Visit the jewelry market and the cooperative of Thuya wood. Thuya is a wood that is indigenous to Essaouira and is unique for its earthy, menthol, and woody smell. Visit Orson Welles Square. Explore and shop for local musician instruments. Option to visit Jewish Hertiage Sites in Essaouira: the Synagogue and Mellah.Afternoon at leisure. Overnight at a Boutique Riad or Hotel in Essaouira.
Day 14: Essaouira Departure to Marrakech. Casabanca Departure (Driving Time: 3 Hours)
Breafkast at your Hotel. Marrakech Departure.