Highlights of Morocco

Morocco · about Escorted or Guided Tour

If you want to hit Morocco’s highlights, this is your adventure. Wander through kasbahs, spice markets, and cities pulsing with energy on this comprehensive trip. Climb onto a camel and explore the edge of the Sahara before admiring the views from the heights of the Atlas Mountains. Experience the energy of imperial cities as you explore souks stuffed with exotic wares. Then take a moment to appreciate this amazing adventure as you camp under the stars among some of the world’s biggest sand dunes.

What's Included

Tangier guided tour. G Adventures-supported traditional lunch. Meknes guided tour. Volubilis guided tour. Fes medina guided tour. Sahara Desert excursion with camel ride and overnight Berber camp. Todra Gorge stay with walk through local villages. Aït Ben Haddou kasbah visit. Aroumd village walk (High Atlas). Gîte stay with traditional meals. Marrakech medina guided walk. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.

Highlights

Wander ancient medinas and Roman ruins, ride a camel into the Sahara, spend a night in a desert tent and a mountain gîte, enjoy traditional Moroccan fare at a local home, shop in seaside Essaouira, set eyes on the blue city of Chefchaouen

Dossier Disclaimer

The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.

VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.

Itinerary Disclaimer

While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission.

Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.

Important Notes

1. ITINERARY PACE
This is a very fast paced itinerary which covers lots of ground. While this is great as it allows us to see a huge amount in the available time, it also means some early starts, some long drives in the mini van and less free time than many other G Adventures. We feel that if you enter this trip with this knowledge and expectation, you will appreciate even more the variety of locations we are able to include in this itinerary.

2. TRANSPORT
We use a 16-seater minivan for this tour. With a full group every seat will be used. The legroom in the minivan is possibly smaller than you may be used to and taller passengers may find space a little cramped. It is important to be aware that as it is not a legal requirement in buses in Morocco, your vehicle may not be equipped with seat belts.

3. CAMEL RIDE AND DESERT CAMP
Please note that it is not possible to reach our desert camp by 4WD or any other vehicle. There is the option to walk (can be very hot and tiring) for those who cannot/prefer not to ride a camel.

4. WEATHER
Please note that the climate in Morocco can be both very hot during the day in summer months (up to 50°C) and cold at night in the mountains in autumn, early spring and winter (down to -6°C). Summer months, from April to September are very hot throughout Morocco. Winter months November to March can be cool to cold, especially in the Atlas Mountains, with high probability of snowfall. Most Moroccan buildings are not equipped with heating, so without proper layers you will be cold at night. Please bring appropriate clothing for the months in which you are travelling and check temperatures before you leave. Bedding is provided in the desert camp and the gîte, but in winter months if you feel the cold you may wish to bring a sleeping bag too.

5. RAMADAN
According to the lunar cycle, Ramadan will fall between May 15th and June 14th, 2018. Please note that Ramadan is a month of fasting observed by Muslims throughout the world, during which time the followers of Islam should not eat or drink between sunrise and sunset. There may be some limitations to services and disruptions to schedules during Ramadan, but generally our tours still operate effectively during this period and food is available to non-Muslims throughout the day. It is very important to display increased cultural sensitivity during Ramadan. Please wear loose fitting clothes, that cover knees and shoulders, and try to avoid eating, drinking or smoking in public out of respect for those who can’t at that time.

Group Leader Description

This G Adventures group trip is accompanied by one of our group leaders, otherwise known as a Chief Experience Officer (CEO).

As the group coordinator and manager, the aim of the CEO is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. You can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of Morocco, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. They will also offer suggestions for things to do and to see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends.

We also use certified local city guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting – we think it’s the best of both worlds.

Group Size Notes

Max 14, Avg 10.

Meals Included

14 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 3 dinners

Meals

Breakfasts on tour
Many breakfasts are included as part of your tour.
Moroccan breakfasts tend to be different from your usual cereal and toast morning fare – most will be very simple – a croissant or sweet roll with jam and instant coffee and some hotels will have buffets where you will have more variety.
While you are experiencing what a Moroccan family would eat, some travellers do find the provided breakfasts a bit “bread heavy” and enjoy buying fruit the day before to supplement their breakfast.

Lunches and dinners
Moroccan cuisine is world famous and your CEO will be taking the chance to show you the best of it.
Staples include cous cous, a type of grain topped with stew, tagine which is actually the name of the pot this tasty dish is cooked in, and brochette, bbq skewers of meat. These dishes will generally cost between 45- 80 MAD depending on the type of restaurant and which part of the country you are in.
Other tastes not to be missed include pastilla, a sweet pasty with a savoury filling which is traditionally pigeon and harira, a delicious soup based on chick peas and filling enough when teamed with fresh bread to be a whole lunch. If you are heading to the coast the fresh seafood cooked at one of the local markets is a must eat!

Snacks
Morocco’s fresh orange juice is highly recommended and you should not leave without trying a glass. The brave can try the tiny snails which are perhaps the local’s favourite snack but you might prefer a cone of piping hot bite-size fried cake donuts.

Generally meals are not included in the trip price when there is a choice of eating options, to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat. It also gives you more budgeting flexibility, though generally food is cheap. Our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other’s company. There is no obligation to do this though. Your CEO will be able to suggest favourite restaurants during your trip. The above information applies to G Adventures group trips. For Independent trips please check the itinerary for details of meals included. For all trips please refer to the meals included and budget information for included meals and meal budgets.

Transport

Private air-con van, camel, walking.

About our Transportation

Please note that there is a lot of fast paced travel on this itinerary which necessitates some long travel days in our mini van. We feel that if you enter this trip with this knowledge and expectation, you will appreciate even more the variety of locations we are able to include in this itinerary.

We use a 16-seater minivan and with a full group every seat will be used. The legroom in the minivan is possibly smaller than you may be used to and taller passengers may find space a little cramped. It is important to be aware that as it is not a legal requirement in buses in Morocco, your vehicle may not be equipped with seat belts. The minivans have air conditioning, however please note that summer temperatures in Morocco can easily reach 50 celsius. When the outside temperature is so hot, a minibus air conditioning system will not be able to cool the bus to the temperatures you are used to enjoying at home. Please bear in mind that travelling in Morocco in summer will inevitably involve very hot temperatures and some discomfort may be experienced when travelling.

Please note that, owing to both space constraints in the minibus and weight constraints when transporting baggage by mule to Aremd mountain gite, we can carry no more than one check-in size bag and one day pack per person. Please see the What to Take section of these notes for further details.

Solo Travellers

We believe single travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and single travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.

Accommodation

Hotels (12 nts), mountain gîte (1 nt, multi-share), tented desert camp (1 nt, multi-share).

My Own Room Exceptions

Day 5 (desert hotel), Day 6 (desert camp), Day 9 (simple mountain gite).

About Accommodation

On this trip you can expect to stay in local hotels or pensions (with the exception of the start and finish hotels, which are often larger city hotels), which will vary a little in standard and facilities: some may not have elevators, air-conditioning or English-speaking staff, but most importantly all are locally-run, with some traditional character, and in excellent central locations to give you maximum time for exploring the sights.
Please note that Morocco is a developing country and as such the infrastructure is not as reliable as you would expect at home. Expect quirky plumbing and the odd cold shower!

While in the mountains our accommodation will be basic refuge-style multi-share with shared unisex facilities.

In Merzouga we will stay in a traditional desert auberge (guesthouse). In the desert we will spend a night at a nomad camp: Facilities at the camp are very basic. Travellers will sleep in multi-share tents (4 per tent). Mattresses and bedding are provided. For those travelling in the winter months (Nov- April), we recommend a sleeping bag for additional warmth. There will be the chance to take a shower after breakfast on our return to Merzouga the following morning.

Joining Hotel

For details of your joining hotel please refer to your tour voucher, G Account, the G Adventures App or contact your travel agent.

Joining Instructions

If you have pre-arranged an arrival transfer, please look for the driver holding a G Adventures sign. The driver will be waiting outside (they are not permitted to enter inside the airport) in front of the cafeteria Tokey’s that is located in-between the exit doors of terminal 1 and terminal 2. Please approach them, and ask them who they are supposed to be picking up (do not tell them your name, they should have this information already). Once they give you the correct name, have your passport ready to show them and you will be on your way!

Getting to the Moroccan House Hotel

From the airport:

You can take a taxi from the airport entrance which will take approximately 1hour (35km) to the hotel. Cost is around 300dh.

There is also a train that you can take to Casa Voyager Station. From there, take a 10 minute taxi drive to the Hotel for around 20dh.

Please note that day 1 is an arrival day and no activities have been planned on this day. Upon arrival to the city on day 1 (or earlier if you have booked pre-accommodation with us), please make your way to the joining hotel (note that check-in time will be in the afternoon). Once you arrive at the hotel, look for a note or bulletin board in the reception with a note from your CEO. This note will give the details of your Welcome Meeting on day 1 (usually between 5pm and 7pm), where you will get a chance to meet your CEO and other travellers, as well as learn more about how the tour will run. If you don’t see a note, please ask reception for details!

If you are arriving later and will miss the Welcome Meeting, your CEO will leave a note at reception for you with any information you may need, and with morning instructions for the next day.

Arrival Complications

We do not expect any complications and nor should you but the following information is supplied in case of extra ordinary circumstances.

PRE-BOOKED AIRPORT TO HOTEL TRANSFERS

If you have pre-arranged an arrival transfer, please look for the driver holding a G Adventures sign. The driver will be waiting outside (they are not permitted to enter inside the airport) in front of the cafeteria Tokey’s that is located in-between the exit doors of terminal 1 and terminal 2. Please approach them, and ask them who they are supposed to be picking up (do not tell them your name, they should have this information already). Once they give you the correct name, have your passport ready to show them and you will be on your way!

If you are unable to locate your G Adventures airport representative, please call our local staff at +212 528 824898 (during office hours Mon-Fri) or +212 661 429700 (after office hours or at any time if you are unable to get through to the office) They will assist you in getting to the joining hotel.

If you have arrived at Casablanca airport, before calling please double-check with the airport staff which terminal you have arrived at. (This may not be the terminal stated on your airline ticket, as Casablanca flight arrivals often experience a change in arrival terminal). Please make your way to the Airport Information Desk in Terminal 1 – a short walk from the other terminals.

If you are not travelling with a telephone, please head to the airport Information booth who will be able to assist you in the purchase of a phone card and direct you to a telephone.

If for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, or your flight is delayed, please call the above numbers to inform our staff so we can re-book your transfer.

Emergency Contact

Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call either the G Adventures Local Representative (if one is listed below) or our G Adventures Local Office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.

AIRPORT TRANSFER 
If you have purchased an arrival through G Adventures or if an arrival transfer is included in the cost of your tour, please note that:

Your arrival transfer has been arranged based on flight information provided to us. If you are advised of a flight schedule change within 48 hours of your scheduled arrival time, we will do our best to rearrange your arrival transfer however we cannot guarantee this. If your arrival transfer does not arrive within 30 minutes after you have exited the arrivals area please take a taxi to your start point hotel.

EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures Local Representative (Morocco)
During Office hours (Weekdays, 9am-5pm Local Time): +212 (0)528 824898
After hours emergency number: +212 (0)661 429700

If you are unable to contact either of these numbers please phone G Adventures Regional Emergency Cell Phone (Cairo, Egypt): +201222211699

If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below, which will connect you directly with our 24 hour Sales team, who will happily assist you.

Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from UK: 0344 272 0000
Calls from Germany: 0800 365 1000
Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618
Calls from New Zealand: 0800 333 307
Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999

Finishing Point Instructions

We are able to organise extra accommodation post-trip should you require it. Please enquire at the time of booking.

For departure to Marrakech International Airport: a taxi will cost spproximately MAD150. Ask the Hotel staff or your CEO for help in arranging a taxi.

For departure to Casablanca: Take the train from Marrakech to Casablanca. The train service is comfortable and fast (approx 3hrs 10 mins to Casablanca city centre and 4hrs 40 minutes to the airport). It is probably best to go to the Marrakech station and buy your ticket the day before travel. Ask your CEO if you need any advice.
Please note that Casablanca Airport is directly served by train so if you are going to the airport make sure you buy tickets to Casablanca Mohammed V Airport (approx MAD200 first class).
To give you sufficient time to catch your plane, please do not book a flight home which departs before 13:00 at the absolute earliest

Take a petit taxi from the hotel to the Gare (train station) in Marrakech (approx MAD20, may be more with luggage).

What to Take

You will be on the move a lot, so our advice is to pack as lightly as possible. We highly recommend using a backpack or light sports bag, whichever you find easiest to carry, plus a small daypack. Luggage space on transport is limited. You must be prepared to carry your own bags and be comfortable carrying them between transport and hotels, hopping on and off buses and up and down stairs.
Hard-shell suitcases, as well as being too heavy and difficult for you to carry, place an unreasonable burden on the mules we use to carry baggage to Aremd in the Atlas Mountains. Please bring a soft wheeled case, backpack or light sports bag. We are able to transport a maximum of one check-in size bag and one daypack per person.

Checklist

Conservative Dress:
• Modest clothing that covers knees and shoulders (Long pants, long skirts, shirts that cover shoulders)
• Shawl or scarf (for temple visits)

Documents:
• Flight info (required) (Printouts of e-tickets may be required at the border)
• Insurance info (required) (With photocopies)
• Passport (required) (With photocopies)
• Required visas or vaccination certificates (required) (With photocopies)
• Vouchers and pre-departure information (required)

Essentials:
• Binoculars (optional)
• Camera (With extra memory cards and batteries)
• Cash, credit and debit cards
• Day pack (Used for daily excursions or short overnights)
• Ear plugs
• First-aid kit (should contain lip balm with sunscreen, sunscreen, whistle, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, bandaids/plasters, tape, anti-histamines, antibacterial gel/wipes, antiseptic cream, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, rehydration powder, water purification tablets or drops, insect repellent, sewing kit, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)
• Flashlight/torch (Headlamps are ideal)
• Fleece top/sweater
• Footwear
• Hat
• Locks for bags
• Long pants/jeans
• Moneybelt
• Outlet adapter
• Personal entertainment (Reading and writing materials, cards, music player, etc.)
• Reusable water bottle
• Shirts/t-shirts
• Sleepwear
• Small travel towel
• Sunglasses
• Toiletries (Preferably biodegradable)
• Watch and alarm clock
• Waterproof backpack cover
• Windproof rain jacket

Optional Items:
• Sleeping bag (optional) (Optional, but recommended for winter months)
• Swimwear

Warm Weather:
• Sandals/flip-flops
• Shorts/skirts (Longer shorts/skirts are recommended)
• Sun hat/bandana

Note: The weather conditions and temperature in Morocco can vary greatly from region to region, especially during the winter months (Nov-March). During these months, we recommend packing layers for insulation, as well as a waterproof layer. We also recommend packing a light sleeping sheet or sleeping bag for the nights spent in the desert camp and mountain gîte.

Note: For departures from Nov-Feb the weather can be cold, please bring warm clothing.

Laundry

Laundry facilities are offered by some of our hotels for a charge. There will be times when you may want to or have to do your own laundry so we suggest you bring non-polluting/biodegradable soap.

Visas

All countries require a valid passport (with a minimum 6 months validity).

To date, citizens of the UK, EU, US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand do not need visas for visits of up to three-months.
Other nationalities may need to organise a visa pre travel- please check the individual requirements of your passport nationality.

Please note this information is given in good faith, is beyond G Adventures control and subject to change at any time.

Contact your local embassy, or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements, or see your travel agent. It is the individual’s responsibility to ensure that travel documentation is correct.

Detailed Trip Notes

Climate:
The climate in Morocco is Mediterranean along the coast, becoming more extreme towards the interior of the country. The winter months are from October to March and are characterized by cold nights and pleasant days. Summer is from April to September and starts off very pleasantly with moderate temperatures until mid-June when temperatures get extremely hot, to return to more moderate heat in late September. Inland, the climate is very dry and high temperatures predominate during the day for most of the year, except in the higher mountain areas. It rains generally only in short bursts in the period from the beginning of November until March.

Electricity:
Morocco uses 220V, 50Hz and plugs are two prong rounded (as for Europe).

Languages:
Arabic is the official language of Morocco, spoken in the distinctive Moroccan dialect. Approximately 40% of the population (mainly in rural areas) speak Berber in one of its three different dialects (Tarafit, Tashelhiyt and Tamazight). French is Morocco’s unofficial second language and is taught universally, serving as the country’s primary language in economics and commerce, as well as being widely used in education and government. Many Moroccans in the north of the country speak Spanish and English is widely spoken in tourist areas.

Capital city: Rabat

Principal ethnic groups: 30% Arab, 60% Berber

Religion: Islam is the official state religion with almost the entire population being Sunni Muslim. 1% are Christian and about 0.2% are Jewish.

Spending Money

Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.

Money Exchange

The local currency in Morocco is the Moroccan Dirham (MAD).

ATMs are very common in Morocco with Cirrus and Plus system cards are the most widely accepted debit cards. .While ATMs are commonly available, there are no guarantees that your credit or debit cards will actually work – it is important you check with your bank before departure and advisable to travel with more than one type of card.

Visa cards are the most widely accepted credit cards, but are generally only useful for larger/expensive purchases. You should be aware when purchasing products or services on a credit card, that a fee usually applies.

The foreign currency most commonly accepted in Morocco is the Euro. You will be able to exchange Euros, as well as GBP and USD at money exchange offices in major cities.

Do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money. A combination of cash (Euro/GBP or USD) and cards is best.

As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com

Emergency Fund

Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $200 (or equivalent) as an ‘emergency’ fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster) require a change to our planned route. This is a rare occurrence!

Departure Tax

UUsually included in flight tickets.

Tipping

Morocco has a strong tipping culture – it is customary and even expected to tip small service providers such as restaurant and bar waiters, hotel staff, reception, cleaning personnel, bell boys, taxis and van drivers. Tips are regarded as an essential means of supplementing income for those working in the tourism industry.

Even though this might not be customary to you, nor such common practice in your home country, it is generally expected and of great significance to the people who will be assisting you during your travels.

Depending on your preference and/or that of the group, you may choose to tip individually, organize the tipping with your travelling companions, or, your CEO will offer to collect the tip money at the beginning of your tour and tip as a group with your participation as the tour progresses. A recommendation for tipping small service providers is about $3 USD per day, depending on the quality of the service (this does not include your G Adventures CEO).

Feel free to ask your CEO for the breakdown/distribution of the tips. Note that if you have been very disappointed by a particular service, please inform your CEO right away, and the tip will be adjusted accordingly.

Also, at the end of your trip if you felt your G Adventures CEO did an outstanding job, tipping is also expected and appreciated. The precise amount is entirely a personal preference, however $20-25 USD per person per week can be used as a general guideline.

Optional Activities

Your CEO will recommend different optional activities, feel free to ask him/her for more information.

Please note that prices are quoted in Moroccan Dirhams (Dh)

Casablanca (for those who have time in the city before the trip starts)
Hassan II Mosque (Sat to Thurs) 9, 10, 11 and 2pm – Dh120
Villa de Arts (Tues to Sat) – free
Jewish Museum (Mon to Fri) – Dh30

Meknes
Dar Jamai Museum (Wed to Mon) – Dh20
Medersa bou Inania – Dh10
Koubbat as Sufara – Dh10
Heri es Souani – Dh10

Fez
Medersa bou inania – Dh10
Medersa el Attarine – Dh10
Dar batha museum (Wed to Mon) – Dh10
Belghazi museum – Dh20

Merzouga- Desert
Half-day 4×4 excursion around the Dunes of Merzouga
Price: 25 euro per person (270 dirhams) Includes: 4×4 jeeps with driver/guide

Ait Ben Haddou
Cooking class – Dh100 (includes dinner)

Essaouira
Kite Surfing – Dh 35 1(hrs), Dh 50 (2hrs)
Surfing rental – Dhs15, 20, 25, 30 (1hr, 2 hrs, 3 hrs, 1 day)
Boat excursion along the coast: Dh 20 (1hr)
All Essaouira activities are weather and season dependent.

Marrakech
Traditional Hammam (steam bath) including massage – Dh 300
Moroccan 3 course dinner and folklore entertainment in a traditional restaurant overlooking the famous Djemma el Fna Square – Dh 400
Ali Ben Youssef Medersa – Dh 40
Koubba Ba’adiyn – Dh 40
Museum of Marrakech – Dh 40
El Badi Palace – Dh10
Dar si Said – Dh10
Majorelle and Museum of Islamic Art – Dh 50
Bicycle hire – Dh 70–100 per day

All prices are per person (unless stated otherwise), and are subject to change as services are provided by third party operators.

Health

Please note inoculations may be required for the country visited. It is your responsibility to consult with your travel doctor for up to date medical travel information well before departure.

DRINKING WATER: It is advisable to drink bottled water in Morocco.

There are no specific health requirements for this trip. However, we recommend protection against typhoid, tetanus, infectious hepatitis and polio. You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information before departure. We recommend that you carry a First Aid kit, hand sanitizers / antibacterial wipes as well as any personal medical requirements. Please be aware that we are in remote areas and away from medical facilities for some time during this trip, and for legal reasons our leaders are prohibited from administering any type of drug including headache tablets, antibiotics, etc.

Please note that your adventure travels to high altitude. This is medically defined as anything over 8,000ft (2,440m). Most people can travel to 8,000ft with minimal effects. However, everyone reacts to altitude differently and altitude sickness can on set with some people irrespective of fitness and age. For details on how to best prepare and what to do in the unlikely event you are affected on your adventure, please consult your physician.

Safety and Security

Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government’s advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers’ cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home – you won’t need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your CEO has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Your CEO will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgment when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions.

Protests and Demonstrations- Protests and demonstrations, even those that are well intended, have the potential to turn violent with no warning. Counter protests can also turn violent. Action by security forces to disperse demonstrators and protesters may occur at any time. If you are in an area where demonstrators or protesters are gathering, avoid the temptation of staying for a good photo opportunity and leave the area immediately.

Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards) have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s).

Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk.

We take all prudent measures in relation to your safety. For ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling, please visit:


www.gadventures.com/travel-resources/safety/

Trip Specific Safety

Like anywhere in the world, major cities have areas safer than others, use common sense, be aware of your surroundings and mind your personal belongings.

It is important to note that as it is not a legal requirement in buses in Morocco, your vehicle may not be equipped with seat belts.

Medical Form

Our small group adventures bring together people of all ages. It is very important you are aware that, as a minimum, an average level of fitness and mobility’ is required to undertake our easiest programs. Travellers must be able to walk without the aid of another person, climb 3-4 flights of stairs, step on and off small boats, and carry their own luggage at a minimum. Travellers with a pre-existing medical condition are required to complete a short medical questionnaire, which must be signed by their physician. This is to ensure that travellers have the necessary fitness and mobility to comfortably complete their chosen trip. While our CEOs work hard to ensure that all our travellers are catered for equally, it is not their responsibility to help individuals who cannot complete the day’s activities unaided. Please refer to the physical ratings in this Trip Details document for more information.

The medical questionnaire can be found online at:

www.gadventures.com/medical-form
.

A Couple of Rules

Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.

Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance: Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your CEO, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy please bear in mind that all clients must have medical coverage and that we require a minimum coverage of USD 200,000 for repatriation and emergency rescue. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.

Planeterra-The G Adventures Foundation

The Planeterra Foundation planeterra.org is a Canadian non-profit organization that helps empower local people to develop their communities, conserve their cultures, and create humane and supportive systems for their endeavours. Planeterra provides capacity building and catalyst grants to get community social enterprises off the ground. These businesses address local challenges by providing benefits for indigenous people, empowering marginalized women, and granting disadvantaged youth access to education, employment, and brighter futures. Planeterra also works to ensure these businesses have a thriving customer base by integrating programs into G Adventures’ itineraries globally.

G Adventures is Planeterra’s largest corporate donor, covering all operating costs so 100% of your donation will bring opportunity to people in need.

Dollar-a-Day Program
G Adventures’ Dollar-a-Day Program provides travellers with the opportunity to give back to the people and places visited on our tours by donating one dollar for every day you are on trip. 100% of these donations go directly to support community development projects worldwide that are implemented by Planeterra.

Local Dress

While visiting mosques and other religious monuments you should dress modestly, cover your shoulders and you shouldn’t wear short shorts or skirts. Outside of capital cities and the more touristic centres, local dress is often more conservative and as a matter of respect we ask that both men and women are aware of this and recommend loose-fitting clothes with your shoulders covered. Ask your CEO for more specific advice.

Feedback

After your travels, we want to hear from you! Your feedback information is so important to us that we’ll give you 5% off the price of your next G Adventures trip if your feedback is completed on-line within 30 days of finishing your trip. Your tour evaluation will be e-mailed to you 24 hours after the conclusion of your trip. If you do not receive the tour evaluation link in the days after your tour has finished, please drop us a line at customerservice@gadventures.com and we will send it on to you.

Newsletter

Our adventure travel e-newsletter is full of travel news, trip information, interesting stories and contests. To avoid missing out on special offers and updates from G Adventures, subscribe at www.gadventures.com/newsletters/

Stay current on how our company invests in our global community through our foundation – Planeterra. Sign up for Planeterra’s monthly news to learn more about how to give back and support the people and places we love to visit.

Travel Forum - The Watering Hole

Be sure to stop by The Watering Hole, our adventure travel forum. If you’re interested in meeting others booked on your upcoming trip, check out the Departure Lounge section of our forum and introduce yourself. Otherwise, just drop in at anytime to share some travel tips, ask questions, meet other travellers and quench your thirst for travel. Our forum is located at wateringhole.gadventures.com.

Minimum Age

You must be 18 to travel unaccompanied on a G Adventures tour. For minors travelling with a guardian over 21 years old, the minimum age is 12.

International Flights

Check-in times and baggage allowances/restrictions vary by airline and can change at any time. For the most up-to-date information for your flight, please contact your airline. We recommend checking in online in advance to avoid potential delays at the airport.

Max Pax

15

Group Leader

Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, driver

PRODUCT_LINE: DCMH, ID: 22844

Itinerary

Day 1: Casablanca

Please note that this tour does not spend any time in Casablanca.

You may wish to come a day early in order to explore Casablanca, and take some time to see its medina, beachfront, and classic examples of Art Deco architecture.

Be sure to also visit the spectacular Hassan II Mosque. Entrance is only permitted via guided tours, which operate from Saturday to Thursday (closed Fridays) at 09:00, 10:00, 11:00, and 14:00. These times are subject to change (particularly around Ramadan), please double check times with your hotel. Tickets can be purchased at the mosque.

Additional Notes:
A general note about this tour: it has a very fast-paced itinerary, which covers a lot of ground. This is great as it allows us to see a huge amount in the time available, but it also means some early starts, some long drives in the minivan, and less free time than many other G Adventures tours.

Included Activities:
Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting

Day 2: Casablanca/Chefchaouen (1B)

Depart in the morning for Tangier. Take a guided tour of city sites, including the medina, kasbah, Grand Socco (a bustling square at the entrance to the medina) and Petit Socco, a little square in the medina perfect for people-watching and mint tea-drinking. In the afternoon, continue on to Chefchaouen.

Included Activities:
Tangier Guided Tour

Transport:
Private Vehicle (5.00 hour(s))
Private Vehicle (2.00 hour(s))

Day 3: Chefchaouen (1B)

Enjoy a free day in Chefchaouen to explore. The city, whitewashed in different shades of blue, is spectacular on its own but with the surrounding mountains, it’s a sight to behold. At sunset, opt to visit the Spanish Mosque for a stunning panoramic view of the city.

Day 4: Chefchaouen/Fès (1B, 1L)

Drive to Meknes for a guided walk through this imperial city. Visit monuments, ornamental gates, and winding souks while you soak in the flavour of this charming city.

Later, continue through the rolling hills to the Roman ruins of Volubilis. Take a guided tour of the best-preserved Roman ruins in this part of Northern Africa, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

After, continue to the imperial city of Fès, one of Morocco’s most interesting cities.

Included Activities:
Traditional Moroccan Lunch
Meknes City Tour
Volubilis Guided Tour

Transport:
Private Vehicle (4.50 hour(s))
Private Vehicle (0.75 hour(s))
Private Vehicle (2.00 hour(s))

Day 5: Fès (1B)

Enjoy a half-day medina walking tour, with free time in the afternoon to explore more of the city.

The Fès medina is the world’s largest living medieval medina and a UNESCO site. Explore the artisan quarters, sample treats from the carts, and view Fès’ famous leather tannery from above.

In the evening, opt for dinner in a converted riad complete with local specialties, music, and belly dancing or visit a local hammam to chat with the locals.

Additional Notes:
Only certified local guides are allowed to act as guides in the medina, so your CEO cannot go with you to the medina during free time.

Included Activities:
Fès Medina Guided Tour

Day 6: Fès/Merzouga (1B, 1D)

Travel through the diverse landscapes that make Morocco so unique. Pass through cedar and pine forests, keeping an eye out for Barbary apes. Pass over the Middle Atlas Mountains through the pre-desert countryside with its deep gorges filled with a splendid oasis of green palm groves. Arrive at the sand dunes of the Sahara Desert.

Spend the night in a desert auberge (simple hotel), located right on the edge of the dunes. Have a local-style dinner and spend the night.

Additional Notes:
Some rooms may have shared bathroom facilities.

Transport:
Private Vehicle (10.00-11.00 hours)

Day 7: Merzouga/Sahara Bedouin Camp (1B, 1D)

Enjoy a free day until heading out on a camel safari in the late afternoon. Spend the cool morning exploring the undulating golden sand of the dunes or simply relaxing by the pool.

Opt to explore the surrounding communities on a 4×4 excursion.

In the afternoon, take an overnight bag and set off on a 1-hr camel ride to a desert camp deep in the dunes. Local guides will teach you how to mount and dismount and how to tie a turban to keep the desert sun off your face and add a little flare to your photos.

Enjoy a warm welcome at the desert camp followed by a traditional dinner under the stars. There will be time to hear stories about life in this region and perhaps, if lucky, be treated to some traditional music on the drums.

Additional Notes:
Notes for the Sahara Desert tented camp stay:

There will be a chance to repack and take only overnight bags out to the desert. The accommodations are basic, with four people per tent (though feel free to sleep out under the stars). Bathroom facilities are basic and shared.

Mattresses with sheet and blanket are provided. For winter months (Nov- April), we recommend bringing a sleeping bag for additional warmth.

There will be the chance to shower upon arrival in Merzouga the following morning.

Included Activities:
Overnight at Berber Desert Camp

Transport:
Camel (1.00 hour(s))

Day 8: Sahara Bedouin Camp/Todra Gorge (1B)

Rise early to get on our trusty camels. Watch the sunrise before returning to Merzouga.

Continue through a stone desert to the stunning Todra Gorge. Wedged between massive cliff walls, the gorge is filled with a green oasis of palm trees. This serene spot is great for hiking, relaxing on the edge of the river or sampling some local Berber delicacies.

Transport:
Camel (1.00 hour(s))
Private Vehicle (4.00-6.00 hours)

Day 9: Todra Gorge/Ait Benhaddou (1B)

Travel along the “Route of 1000 Kasbahs” to the thriving town of Ouarzazate for a lunch stop. This town is home to Atlas Film Studios, where many films have been shot over the years, including Lawrence of Arabia and Gladiator.

Continue on to the fascinating and beautiful Aït Ben Haddou, a wonderful example of a kasbah.

In the evening there may be the chance for an optional cooking class. Learn the secrets of how to make the perfect tagine and then sample your skills for dinner.

Included Activities:
Aït Ben Haddou Kasbah Guided Tour

Transport:
Private Vehicle (5.00-6.00 hours)

Day 10: Ait Benhaddou/Aroumd (1B, 1D)

Leave the pre-desert country for the magnificent High Atlas Mountain landscape, crossing the Tizi n’Tichka pass at 2260m. Head into the splendid Toubkal National Park, passing through small villages on winding mountain roads, arriving at the village of Imlil.

With our main luggage transported by mule, embark on the walk from Imlil to the little village of Aroumd (1 hr), arriving at our simple mountain gîte for the night.

Enjoy a homemade dinner of local produce in the cozy salon. Settle in and enjoy the tranquility, fantastic views, and clean mountain air of this magical region.

Additional Notes:
Accommodation is multi-share, up to six beds in each room. Bedding is provided, but you will need to bring a sleeping bag for additional warmth if travelling between November and April. You will also need to bring your own towel. Bathroom facilities are shared.

Included Activities:
Mountain Gîte Stay with Traditional Moroccan Meal
Mountain Gîte Stay with Traditional Moroccan Meal

Transport:
Private Vehicle (5.00 hour(s))
While the walk to the gîte is uphill, it is achievable by anyone of average fitness. Take it at a slow pace!
Walking (1.00 hour(s))

Day 11: Aroumd/Essaouira (1B)

After breakfast, take a scenic hike back down the mountain to meet the van in Imlil and head to the coastal town of Essaouira, arriving mid-afternoon. The rest of the day is free to explore as you wish.

Browse the many shops for leather, jewellery, lamps or trinkets. Watch the brightly painted ships bring their catch into the busy harbour or take a stroll along the long, sandy beach. This is the perfect place to enjoy some local seafood and unwind.

Transport:
Walking (1.00 hour(s))
Private Vehicle

Day 12: Essaouira (1B)

Enjoy a free day exploring this coastal port town any way you like.

Day 13: Essaouira/Marrakech (1B)

Journey to Marrakech. After arriving in the “Red City,” join a certified city guide for a tour of the Marrakech medina. Visit the historical Koutoubia Minaret and gardens, Bahia Palace, the Mellah, and the Saadian Tombs.

Later, opt to discover the secrets of this amazing, ancient city. Relax at one of the tea houses around the square, watching the hustle and bustle from a shady spot.

End the day like a local with an optional group dinner in the famous food stalls of Djemaa el Fna.

Included Activities:
Marrakech Medina Guided Walk

Transport:
Private Vehicle (3.00-4.00 hours)

Day 14: Marrakech (1B)

A great place to start your adventure is Djemaa el Fna square, in the heart of the medina. The square changes its offerings throughout the day. Finish up your souvenir shopping or wander the new part of the city for a taste of the modern.

Day 15: Marrakech (1B)

Depart at any time.

Interested in Highlights of Morocco?

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