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Tailor Made Highlights of Morocco (2016)
Days: 13 | From: $10,350
Luxury Tailor Made Journeys depart on the dates that work for you and feature expert local guides throughout your journey. The itinerary below can be customized to your interests.
Day 1: Arrive Casablanca, Morocco
Arrive in Casablanca, where you are met and transferred to your hotel overlooking the medina.
Days 2-3: Casablanca/Rabat/Chefchaouen | Moorish Influences
See the vast Hassan II Grand Mosque. Continue overland to Rabat, a city marked by a Moorish past. See the 12th-century, Mauresque-style Hassan Tower and the adjacent mausoleum, dedicated to Mohamed V, the founder of modern Morocco and grandfather of the current king. Then, pay a visit to the Oudaya Kasbah, built on a bluff overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. Wander through its Andalusian garden, complete with melodious fountain and fragrant orange trees. Continue overland to Chefchaouen and check in to your hotel. The following day, explore the charming town of Chefchaouen, which is punctuated with blue buildings and features a notable medina.
Dar Echchaouen | Meals: B
Days 4-5: Fez | Meknes & Volubilis
Drive to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Meknes. It was built in the 17th century by the powerful sultan Moulay Ismail, to rival the court of his contemporary Louis XIV of France. See the monumental Bab Mansour gateway, among the finest in Morocco; the granaries and royal stables, built to accommodate some 12,000 horses; and Moulay Ismail’s Mausoleum, one of the few shrines in Morocco that can be visited by non-Muslims. Proceed to Volubilis, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with the largest and most well-preserved Roman ruins. See its triumphal arches, basilicas and capitals as well as its stunning mosaic floors. Continue to Fez and check in to your hotel. The next day, take a step back in time to explore imperial, timeless Fez el-Bali (Old Fez), the cultural heart of Morocco. Traverse its narrow lanes, alleys and souks in the old quarter. Visit Karaouine, one of the oldest, still-functioning universities in the world, and Attarine Medersa — a Koranic college and 14th-century jewel of Hispano-Moorish architecture. Proceed to Nejjarine Square, with its elaborately tiled fountain, and Fondouq (Caravanserai), a museum of carpentry artifacts. Then, explore Fez el-Jedid (New Fez), seeing its royal palace, mosques, medersas, souks and the city wall as well as the mellah, the old Jewish quarter, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Palais Faraj Suites & Spa | Meals: B
Day 6: Erfoud | Into the Desert
Drive through the valley to Erfoud, a small town at the edge of the desert. En route, take in views of endless palm plantations, Berber villages and the soaring Atlas Mountains. Check in to your hotel.
Kasbah Hotel Chergui | Meals: B D
Day 7: Erfoud | Sleeping Beneath Canvas
Discover the Tafilalet region, famed for its dates and stunning setting. Discover the fortified desert town of Rissani and explore the quarry, site of fossilized fish. Set off for the desert dunes of Erg Chebbi by four-wheel-drive vehicle, where a reception with mint tea and pastries awaits at your nomadic tented camp. Erg Chebbi’s stunning dunes can reach up to 500 feet high, creating an otherworldly landscape. Experience it like a local on camel-back. Then, return to your camp for a traditional meal before a campfire, along with local entertainment. This evening, slumber in comfort as the sounds of the Sahara lull you to sleep.
A&K Exclusive Desert Tented Camp | Meals: B D
Days 8-9: Ouarzazate | Desert & Dunes
Depart for to Skoura, a small city nestled on a palm grove near Ouarzazate — once a stopping point for African traders en route to Morocco and Europe. Pay a visit to the Todra Gorges and the picturesque oases hidden within. Travel through the southern slopes of the High Atlas range, following the Dades Valley and passing flourishing crops, irrigation canals and palm trees. Travel along the “Road of a Thousand Kasbahs,” pausing at a small museum in a Ksar near Tingherir to see its collection of local art and cultural exhibitions. Upon arrival at the Skoura Oasis, check in to your hotel, which was once part of the sultan’s private hunting ground. Spend the day enjoying your property and its activities, perhaps exploring scenic gorges by four-wheel-drive vehicle, visiting Skoura Palmery or learning about the art of Moroccan cuisine.
Dar Ahlam Skoura | Meals: B D (Day 8); B L D (Day 9)
Day 10: Ouarzazate | Gateway to the Desert
Begin the day exploring Ouarzazate, originally built as a French garrison in the 1920s. Today, the city is a regional trade center, known for its pottery and carpets. See the Glaoui Kasbah of Taourirt, taking note of its simple clay houses and crenellated towers that are decorated with geometric motifs. Continue to elaborate Aït Benhaddou, site of the region’s most exotic kasbahs, where structures all but defy the laws of gravity as they perch upon the steep slope. (Some of these buildings have been featured in films, including Lawrence of Arabia and Gladiator.) Proceed to the fascinating “Red City” of Marrakech and check in to your luxury hotel.
Four Seasons Hotel Marrakech | Meals: B L
Day 11: Marrakech | Fascinating Medina
Unearth the secrets of Marrakech, beginning in the medina, the old walled section of town and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This 1,000-year-old city was long a political, economic and cultural center. Marvel at its architectural jewels, including the soaring Koutoubia minaret, considered the most perfect Islamic religious structure in North Africa. Continue to the Bahia Palace, an exemplary specimen of privileged life in the 19th century. Visit Djemaa el-Fna, Marrakech’s main square, which is filled with orange juice stalls and vendors, along with fire-eaters, mime artists, snake-charmers and street musicians performing at every turn. You may also take the opportunity to explore the city’s fabled, labyrinthine souks, their bustling alleyways brimming with all manner of wares.
Four Seasons Hotel Marrakech | Meals: B
Day 12: Marrakech | Historic Gardens
Take a horse-drawn carriage for a ride through Marrakech’s gardens, seeing the beautiful, 12th-century Menara Gardens. Set against the backdrop of the Atlas Mountains, olive groves, orchards and reflecting pools, scenic vistas abound. Continue to Jardin Majorelle, a picturesque garden created by French artist Jacques Majorelle. The remainder of the day is at leisure.
Four Seasons Hotel Marrakech | Meals: B
Day 13: Depart Marrakech
Transfer to the airport and board your homebound flight.