Imperial cities of Morocco from Casablanca 9 days overview:
9 days Morocco Atlantic Coast and imperial cities including sahara desert tour from casablanca is a great introduction to the moroccan history and culture. The impierial cities day trip from Casablanca allows you to experience the different flavors and traditions of Morocco by a true travel in time to discover the real history of the great moroccan imperial cities such as : Rabat , Fes , Meknes and Marrakech by getting to the very heart and soul of the places you visit.
Imperial cities of Morocco from Casablanca 9 days highlights :
Explore the medina of Fes
Visit Monuments in Rabat and Meknes
Discover the Roman ruins in Volubilis
Visit the medina of Marrakech
Drive through Tizi n Tichka Pass 2260 meters altitude in the High Atlas Mountains
Visit UNESCO World Heritage site Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou.
Explore the UNESCO world heritage site of the Taourirt Kasbah and Film Studios in ouarzazate.
Discover the city of Ouarzazate, considered the gate of the Sahara Desert
Drive along the Valley of the Roses and the road of 1001 Kasbahs
Enjoy beautiful scenery of the gorges Dades and Todra gorges
Take a short walks in Dades and Todra Gorges
Camel trekking across the dunes of Erg Chebbi in Merzouga sahara desert
Spend the night in a Berber camp
Enjoy an authentic Moroccan dinner and sleep under the stars in Sahara desert
Imperial cities of Morocco from Casablanca 9 days program :
CASABLANCA TO THE BLUE CITY (CHEFCHOUEN ) THROUGH RABAT:
Morocco Imperial Cities & Atlantic Coast tour from Casablanca including camel trekking and overnight in Sahara desert camp, invites you to explore Sahara desert in private tour from Casablanca. We pick up you around 8 am. We visit the Hassan II Mosque before departing to Rabat. In Rabat you can visit the Mechouar of the Royal Palace, the ruins of Chellah, the Mohammed V Mausoleum and the Hassan Tower. After lunch we will depart to Meknes to arrive in the early evening.
CHEFCHOUEN TO FES VIA VOULIBILIS AND MEKNES :
The Blue City deserves time spent walking through its blue streets, so after breakfast you will have approximately an hour and a half to walk around, take some pictures and enjoy this unique blue city. You will visit the fortress, Plaza Uta Hammam and the Medina. Your journey to Fes will then begin, taking you through Ouzzane, Volubilis and Meknes. The trip will take about 5 hours (including stops to see the attractions and breaks for lunch and to use the bathrooms!). First, you will stop at the Roman ruins of Volubilis, which was inhabited during the Neolithic Period, was occupied by the Carthaginians and then by the Romans, developing a thriving oil trade around 40 BC. At this historical place you will have a local guide to discover the house of Orpheus, the house of Dionysus and others. Lunch will be at a local restaurant and then we will begin our drive to Meknes. This city was founded in the 9th century and it was the last architectural project undertaken on the orders of Moulay Ismail. You will get to see the Moulay Ismail Mausoleum, the Medina, the Great Mosque and the Moulay Ismail Granaries. After your visit to Meknes is over, we will drive straight to Fes. You will stay overnight in a riad in the old Medina.
HISTORICAL AND CULTURAL TOUR OF FES WITH A LOCAL GUIDE
At 9.30am, a local guide will come to greet you at your riad to begin your exploration of the oldest of Morocco’s Imperial Cities. Fes was an important religious, intellectual and cultural centre. It is still renowned for its traditional crafts and because of the particularly high reputation of its university, it is known by many as the ‘Athens of Africa’. You will start your tour at the royal palace with its ‘tightly closed doors, eggshell façade and pine-green Saracen tiles’. You will visit the Mellah (the Jewish Quarter), the Blue Gate and next you will visit the Fes El Bali (the old Medina). Here you will explore the Andlous Quarter to see the Andalous Mosque (which was built in the 9th century) and then the Kairouyiene Mosque (built in 857). As you walk through the tiny streets of the medina you will see a lot of shops and workshops, where merchants and craftsmen are grouped according to speciality. You will visit also the Merinid Medersa (Bou Inania Mederssa) – another mosque. Afterwards, you will go to the tanneries to see where leather – used in the making of jackets, bags, shoes, etc… – is made. You will get to see the process by which the animal skins are rendered supple and rot-proof. You will have lunch in a local restaurant somewhere in the medina. After lunch, your driver will meet you again to drive you around so you can have the opportunity to see stunning, panoramic views of the city from uphill. Finally, you will get to see the pottery of Fes – tin-glazed earthenware, decorated with predominantly cobalt-blue designs. You will be returned once again to your riad in the city.
FES TO THE SAHARA DESERT ( camel trekking) VIA IFRANE
In the morning, you will begin your journey to the golden sand dunes of Merzouga. The drive today will be a long one – it takes about 8 hours to get to the Sahara Desert, including stops for photos, lunch and rest breaks. Along the way, you will drive through many towns: first, you will stop in Ifrane which was built as a mountain health resort (5,400ft) in 1929. With the tiled roofs of its chalets giving it a distinctly European appearance, it is often called ‘Moroccan Switzerland’ – it also often gets covered in snow from December to March. After that you will drive through the cedar forests of the Middle Atlas, stopping to see the Barbary Apes climbing up and down the trees. We will continue on through Midelt where you will stop for lunch in a local restaurant there. After lunch, we will cross the pre-Saharan plateau of the peaks of Jebel Ayachi and Errachidia, through the Ziz Valley – here, we will stop for some pictures of the Ziz Gorge. We will continue on to Erfoud, where there is one of the largest oases in Morocco (a date festival is held here in October). Before we arrive in the desert, you will drive through Rissani, home to a lot of Ksars (e.g. Ksar Abbar). Also here you will find the Mausoleum of Moulyay Ali Cherif, the founder of the Alaouite dynasty. 35km from here, we will find the golden sand dunes of Erg Chebbi – you will stay here overnight in a hotel at the edge of the sand dunes.
DISCOVER AROUND THE DESERT WITH A 4WD
Today we will explore the desert region and the marvel that is the Erg Chebbi desert dunes.After breakfast, you will drive around the desert to explore and look for fossils. First, you will start by visiting with the Khamliyya tribe, where music known as Gnawa music is played by these dark skinned people originally from Sudan. After spending some time here with them, listening to music and dancing, you will drive through the desert to see some nomads, who live here in their simple tents, tending animals like goats, sheep and camels. You will stop to spend some time with them, learning about their way of life and sharing tea. You will then continue driving to a rocky plateau where you will stop to look for fossils, ammonites, trilobites, nautiloidea and others. For lunch, you will drive to a local restaurant to try some Berber pizza! After lunch, you will return to the hotel for some time to relax and get ready to go camel trekking through the sand dunes of the Sahara – you will spend the night in a Berber tent in the desert..
SAHARA DESERT TO THE DADES VALLEY VIA TINJDAD AND TODRA GORGES:
In the morning, amongst the sand dunes, you will be given an early wake-up call to give you the opportunity to climb the sand dunes and watch the most beautiful Saharan sunrise. You will trek back to the hotel on the camels so that you can have breakfast and a shower. After that, we will begin our drive to the Dades Valley via Erfoud, where we will stop to visit a fossil museum. We will travel through Tinjdad and Tindhir where the road through the Todgha Gorge follows the right bank of the river lined with palm trees. We will stop at the steep Todgha Gorge for approx. 30 minutes to walk around, take pictures, breath the clean air coming up from the mountains, smell the herbs and walk through the running stream of the river. You will have lunch here in a local restaurant. After a break, your driver will bring you back to the main road and drive to the Dades Valley which is 72km away. You will drive in the Dades Valley through the town of Boumaine Dades, where the houses are built on the mountainside. You will visit the Kasbah, which stands at the entrance of the magnificent Dades Gorge. You will spend the night at a hotel here.
THE DADES VALLEY TO MARRAKECH VIA OUARZAZATE , AIT BEN HADDOU KASABAH
After breakfast at the hotel, you will begin your drive to Marrakech through the valley of one thousand Kasbahs (the Dades Valley). We will pass through the town of El Kelaa Mgouna where the roses grow in the spring. In May, the Festival of the Roses is held in this town. You will drive through the fertile oasis of Skoura, renowned for the cultivation of roses and palm trees. This fertile oasis has a fortified residence that once belonged to the most powerful family responsible for protecting the village and its land – this Kasbah deserves a visit! We will then continue through the ‘Moroccan Hollywood’ of Ouarzazate, where a lot of movies were shot like Gladiator, Lawrence of Arabia and many others. You will stop here for a visit of the cinema studio or the museum. We will continue on to the famous Kasbah of Ait Ben Haddou, which has been classified by UNESCO as a World Heritage site since 1987. It has also been used as a filming location for many films and television shows, for example, Game of Thrones. You will be given the opportunity to explore the Kasbah for around 1 hour. We will then continue our journey to Marrakech through the windy road of the High Atlas Mountains to see the highest pass in Morocco, the Tizi n Tichka Pass (2260m altitude). We will stop for lunch in a restaurant in the mountains and then drive on to Marrakech. You will spend the night in Marrakech in a riad in the old Medina.
EXPLORE MARRAKECH WITH A LOCAL GUIDE :
Discover the city of Marrakech in this sightseeing full day tour. After breakfast, you will meet with a local guide who will take you to explore all of the sights of Marrakech. First, you will start with the square Jemaa El Fna – the traditional meeting point for peasants and merchants from the High Atlas and the South of Morocco. Now has become the center of Marrakech. In the mornings this immense square, surronded by the souk district and bordered by shops and workshops, is crowded with fruit and spice and plants sellers, story tellers, snakecharmers and many more! You will then head to Iben Youssef Medersa, which was built in the 14 th century. You will enjoy seeing the beautiful motifs and architecture. After that you will go to visit the Bahia Palace, El Badi Palace, the Saadian Tombs and the main souks. Ideally placed on the Saharan trade routes, Marrakech was a convenient place for caravans and soon developed into a major craft and trading centre. You will have lunch here in a local restaurant and then continue to visit the famous Jairdin Majorelle. In 1917 the famous French artist Jaques Majorelle moved to Marrakech and created these gardens. After this, you will take a tour around the new part of the city and then your driver will drop you off at your riad or in the square.
MARRAKECH TO CASABLANCA AIRPORT
Today we departure to Casablanca airport.