Tangier: From the Coast to the Desert
tour 7 days
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Day 1: Pick-up in Tangier – Asilah
Our guide will pick you up from the Tangier port or airport at the agreed time. We will make a quick stop where we will be able to see the beach through the main avenues of the new city. We will also stop and explore the Caves of Hercules and Cape Spartel, the northern end of the African continent. We will resume our trip to the small seaside town of Asilah. The walls surrounding the town were built in the XV century by Afonso V of Portugal. We can still see several old cannons near the seaside area. Bab el Bhar, also known as “the sea gate”, as well as the squared Portuguese tower that overlooks the entire town, are located in the Sidi Ali Ben Hamdouche Square, the interior of which holds temporary exhibitions. Near the seaside, we can find the Raissouni Palace, a Hispano-Moresque mansion, now a cultural palace and the seat of the cultural museum. The medina consists of neat white houses with colourful mural paintings. The street lighting is original, and the paved streets are masterpieces made by local artists. A Muslim graveyard with ceramic multicoloured tombstones stands out near the sea. There is also the Sidi Ahmed Ou Moussa mausoleum, Saadian who reconquered the town after the “Battle of Three Kings”. Free time. Night at the hotel.
Day 2: Asilah – Rabat
After breakfast, we will head to Rabat, Morocco’s capital city. Once we reach Morocco’s capital city, we will visit the Kasbah of the Udayas, an ancient military fortress that was declared a World Heritage Site in 2012 by UNESCO. In this citadel, we can find the famous monumental door Bab el-Kébir, as well as one of the first palaces ever built by the Alaouite dynasty, which still reigns over Morocco. We will then visit the Hassan Tower. On the esplanade, we will see a minaret and dozens of columns, which are the remains of an unfinished mosque. The Mausoleum of Mohammed V, the first king of independent Morocco, was also built on the unfinished mosque’s esplanade. He is buried in the mausoleum, as well as his son and successor Hassan II, father of the current king. Free time. Night at the hotel.
Day 3: Rabat – Casablanca – Marrakesh
After breakfast, we will make our way to Marrakesh, also known as Morocco’s “Red City”. In Casablanca, we will have the chance to visit the Hassan II Mosque, the second largest mosque in Africa after Mecca. We will arrive to Marrakesh in the afternoon. Drop-off at the hotel. Free time. Night at the hotel.
Day 4: Full day in Marrakesh
After breakfast, you will have a guided tour around Marrakesh, where you will discover many places of historical and cultural interest, including Koutoubia Mosque’s minaret, the Saadian Tombs, the astonishing Bahia Palace, and the Ben Youssef Madrasa, a Koranic school. At last, you will be able to wander around the medina’s labyrinth-like narrow streets. Here, you will have the opportunity to witness the multiple artisans working on their masterpieces, right before reaching the famous Jemma el-Fnaa Square. After eating lunch on your own, we will visit the Majorelle Garden, and make a quick visit around the Gueliz district, the new part of the city. After eating dinner on your own, we strongly recommend you to walk around the Jemma el-Fnaa Square. You will be able to enjoy its beauty at night, as well as its magicians, storytellers, tooth pullers, and food vendors. Night at the hotel.
Day 5: Marrakesh – High Atlas Mountains – Ait Benhaddou – Ouarzazate – Dades Valley
After a pick-up at your hotel, we will set off towards the High Atlas Mountains. We will drive through the Tizi n’Tichka mountain pass, where we will make several quick stops to admire the panoramic views and take pictures of the Berber villages well camouflaged between the mountains. We will then head south to reach Ait Benhaddou, declared a World Heritage Site in 1986 by UNESCO. Some world-famous films and TV series, such as Gladiator, Asterix and Obelix, The Mummy, The Jewel of the Nile, Lawrence of Arabia or Game of Thrones, have been shot in such a spectacular setting. After lunch, we will head towards Ouarzazate, also known as the “Door of the Desert”. Some cultural sites, such as the Taourirt Kasbah, are worth mentioning in Ouarzazate. We will then pass through the palm grove of Skoura to reach the Valley of the Roses. We will be able to admire more than 700 palm trees and a great numbers of kasbah in the oasis of Skoura. We will then reach the Valley of the Roses, a charming valley where the beautiful Damask rose is harvested. We will then reach the Dades Valley, where we will spend the night. Night at the hotel.
Day 6: Dadès Valley – Todgha Gorge – Merzouga Dunes – camel ride – night in a haima in the desert
After breakfast, we will enjoy one of the most breathtaking views of the Dadès Valley. We will do that from one of the most strategic places that the mountains offer. From that viewpoint, we will notice hundreds of kasbahs and appreciate how picturesque each of them is. We will also visit the geological formations called “Monkey Fingers”. After several stops along the way, we will reach the Todgha Gorge. Surrounded by a valley covered with palm trees and adobe houses, climbing enthusiasts will find in these mountains some of the best climbing spots in Morocco. The Todgha and Dadès faults are the most well-known and breathtaking faults in Morocco. After wandering around the Todgha Gorge, we will resume our trip towards the desert to reach the magnificent dunes in Merzouga. We will then join a camel caravan. We will admire the astonishing sunset on the dunes before reaching the campsite. We will have a typical Moroccan dinner, which includes a tagine and delicious mint tea. We will enjoy some drum music by the bonfire and observe the magnificent sky and the stars. Night in a haima.
Day 7: Merzouga – Midelt – Azrou – Ifrane – Fez
Don’t forget to wake up at the crack of dawn to walk up the highest dune next to the campsite to enjoy the sunrise and the relaxing landscape that nature offers. After having a delicious breakfast, we will say goodbye to the desert. Our trip will continue through the magnificent Ziz Valley and the Tafilalet palm grove, famous for its dates crops. This palm grove spreads across more than 20 km, and it has more than 10 million palm trees, which makes it one of the biggest palm groves in the world. We will make our way to Midelt for lunch. We will then drive through the famous cedars forest and admire the great Cedre Gouraud, the largest ancient cedar in the region. We will be able to feed the hundreds of wild monkeys that live in the area. Afterwards, we will reach Ifrane, also known as the “Moroccan Switzerland” because of its striking resemblance with that country. One of the animals that used to live there was the Atlas lion. That’s why it has become the city’s landmark and a stone statue has been dedicated to it. We will have time to take some pictures. We will arrive to Fez in the afternoon. Drop-off at the hotel or at the airport. End of our services.
- Start of the trip: Tangier
- End of the trip: Fes
- Accommodation in charming hotels with private room and bathroom
The price includes
- Airport or hotel transfers in Tangier & Fes
- Private transport with A/C
- English-speaking driver/guide at your service during the whole trip
- Accommodation type: bed & breakfast, except in Dades and Merzouga (breakfast & dinner)
- Official guide in Marrakesh
- Camel ride in the desert
- Night in the desert in a haima with breakfast & dinner
- Dinners, except those in Dades and Merzouga