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TNN’s Morocco Tour

September 22 - October 4, 2023

If you’re looking for a culturally immersive experience in an exotic destination, this tour will go places other tours don’t visit. Morocco is an enthralling place – full of food, a rich culture, beautiful ruins, and maze-like medinas. We’ll explore medinas, ancient ruins, gaze under the stars in the Sahara, and see the country through the eys of local friends. If you want a more cultural look at Morocco, this is it.

Chaotic. Colorful. Overwhelming. Enthralling. From the high Atlas Mountains to the desert to the coasts, Morocco is a country that mesmerizes travelers.

With a history dating back to the Carthaginian Empire, Morocco is a mix of cultures, which makes it one of the most interesting places in the world. The sprawling and disorderly medinas can test your patience, but they reward your senses each and every visit.

Using our local connections, you’ll get a cultural experience not available with other companies. You’ll learn about the history of the country, eat fabulous meals, and get off the beaten path through immersive experiences with traditional Berber and Bedouin tribes. We have some really special things planned.

This tour is for people looking to see more than just the famous sites of Morocco — it’s for travelers who want to understand the country’s culture, history, and food more.

If you’re the kind of person who wants a more authentic and nuanced travel experience, this tour is for you.

Options

Twin Share Room, Single Room

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To reserve your spot on a tour, a 40% deposit is required. This deposit is 100% refundable for 30 days. See our terms and conditions for more on our refund policy.

Tour Itinerary

Arriving in the bustling city of Casablanca, this Morocco trip officially gets off to a start! A private driver will pick you up from the airport and transfer you to our hotel in the center. The remainder of the day will be yours to rest and recover from jet lag and meet your fellow travelers. In the early evening, we’ll have a quick orientation meeting followed by a welcome dinner.

Leaving early, we’ll drive to the laid-back royal city of Meknes. Upon arrival, we’ll take a walking tour that will include the sprawling local markets and the fascinating ancient Royal Stables. Afterward, we’ll have lunch at a unique, local restaurant in the heart of the medina before continuing to beautiful Fes. You can join us for an optional group dinner later in the evening.

Heading straight into the heart of the largest ancient medina in the world (the old walled city – a UNESCO site), we’ll enter the main gate for a half-day walking tour that will include the leather tanneries, spice shops, gorgeous 800-year-old schools, mosques, friendly residential areas, food markets and more, with endless stops in this maze of lanes. After lunch, you’ll have time to explore more of the vibrant medina at your own pace. You can join us for an optional group dinner later in the evening.

Today involves a scenic journey to Merzouga, straight across the magnificent Middle Atlas Mountains and ending up at the edge of the great Sahara Desert. The trip will take approximately 8 hours but will involve several stops along the way including the Swiss-like town of Ifrane, the gorgeous Ziz Valley, a forest that’s home to the unique Barbary Apes, and an epic lunch stop. We’ll then arrive at our fantastic riad in the small village of Merzouga just in time to catch the sunset over the desert where we’ll have dinner in our riad.

In the morning, we’ll out to a local Gnawa village (a small ethnic group from sub-Saharan Africa known for their unique music). We’ll spend some time with the villagers, listen to their music, and have a traditional Gnawa lunch. After lunch, you can choose a 1.5 hour camel trek or a 30 minute jeep safari across the mesmerizing Erg Chebbi sand dunes to reach our idyllic Sahara Desert Camp. We’ll spend the evening in the desert with traditional music around the campfire, eating incredible traditional food, and stargazing before sleeping in our yurts.

With an early wake-up, you’ll have a chance to witness the sunrise over the dunes, creating a magical, multi-colored start to the day. After breakfast at our camp, we’ll begin our trip out of the desert, via jeep, and back to Merzouga. We’ll then drive towards the Dades Gorge. En route, we’ll visit an excellent fossil workshop in Erfoud where they extract marine fossils from under the desert. Eventually, we’ll cross the Jebl Sahro Mountains and reach our next beautiful spot located in the stunning Dades Valley.

Today’s activities all take place in the Dades Valley, in local villages known for their hospitality. We’ll begin with a hike through the stunning Monkey Fingers Gorge. This slot canyon offers some of the most spectacular landscapes on the trip and there will be several hiking routes depending on how long each person wishes to hike. Afterward, we’ll stroll through a Berber village full of ancient kasbahs and unique rock formations. Today’s lunch will be at the home of friends who have invited us to join them for a traditional meal cooked up by the family. The rest of the day will be yours to relax and enjoy the surrounding nature. You can join us for an optional group dinner later in the evening.

Heading out in 4×4 vehicles, we’re going to leave the paved roads and drive straight across the high desert valleys towards the remote village of Bou Tharar. We’ll visit with real Bedouin cave-dwellers who spend half the year living inside of caves scattered across the countryside. We’ll learn about their traditions and way of life. From here, we’ll continue through the otherworldly landscape until we reach Bou Tharar. Upon arrival we’ll take a guided walk around the beautiful village, full of welcoming people, impressive 300 year old kasbahs (fortified homes of village leaders) and endless fields of flowers. After lunch, we’ll continue across this surreal landscape until we reach Ouarzazate, a sparkling town known for its movie studios and picture perfect kasbahs. After, we’ll continue to the tiny village of Tisseldei. You can join us for an optional group dinner later in the evening.

After a relaxing breakfast, we’ll head to Marrakech, perhaps the most lovable city in all of Morocco. The drive across this section of the striking High Atlas Mountains will include stops at a local rosewater cooperative and at viewpoints where you’ll stare in awe at the unbelievable scenery. When we arrive we’ll have an evening orientation walk through the main square of Marrakech and dinner at the evening pop-up food stalls.

Marrakech is full of bustling markets, incredible architecture, centuries old crafts, intense colors and aromas, constant celebrations and a positive vibe that is truly contagious. Our guided walking tour of medina will take us to the awe-inspiring Bahia Palace as well as local markets full of textiles, crafts, clothing, leather shoes, ceramics, metal work, wood work and so much more. We’ll also be doing a food tasting throughout the tour! After the walking tour, you’ll have free time to remain in the medina if you wish. You can join us for an optional group dinner later in the evening.

Today, we’ll spend in the lovely seaside town of Essaouira. With a guided tour, we’ll visit the city ramparts overlooking the water and stroll around the narrow streets of this very laid back town. With a calming sea breeze, as well as traditional woodworkers, potters and silversmiths working away in their workshops, you’ll enjoy wandering around and interacting with locals. For lunch, we’re going straight to the fish market where our guide will choose a variety of fresh fish that will be cooked up for us at a local restaurant. After some free time, we’ll drive to Marrakech in the late afternoon while also stopping at an Argan oil cooperative. You can join us for an optional group dinner later in the evening.

Today is a free day. You can spend your time wandering around the never-ending medina, people watching in the main square, visiting the beautiful Jardin Marjorelle, getting pampered at a wonderful hammam, or simply relaxing at the hotel. Our guides will be there to help you figure out what to do. In the evening, we’ll have our final dinner as a group.

Today, we say goodbye. You’ll be picked up at the hotel for your airport transfer according to your flight time. (If your return flight is from Casablanca, we provide a transfer at an extra cost.)

Tour Essentials

Accommodation

Accommodation on this trip will be 2 or 3 star riads, hotels, and desert camps. All the rooms come with en suite bathrooms. If you book a twin share room and are traveling solo, you’ll be paired with someone of the same gender.

Transport

During the trip, we’ll travel via private bus throughout the country. (And on some camels as we journey into the desert!)

Meals

Daily breakfast, six lunches, and six dinners are included. All dietary restrictions can be accommodated with prior notice. Alcohol is not included.

Sustainability

We aim to offer as sustainable an experience as we can. The tap water is safe to drink so we encourage you to bring a water bottle. Trash is recycled whenever possible and we avoid mass tourism activities that cause harm to the environment and/or do not benefit local communities.

Small Groups

This tour requires a minimum of 10 participants and has a maximum of 15 participants in order to ensure the best small group tour experience. With such a small group, you’ll be able to enjoy unique, rewarding activities that would not be accessible with more people.

Expert guides

Your tour will be led by a licensed and local expert guide. Our guides are always on hand, every day of the trip, to provide additional information, create spontaneous activities, join the group for non-included activities and meals, and to ensure that the trip is as memorable, fun, and informative as possible.

What's Included

What’s Included

  • Accommodation
  • Transportation in a private van with driver
  • All meals mentioned above
  • All activities and entrance fees mentioned above
  • Airport transfers (arrival Casablanca / departure Marrakech)
  • Local guides during activities
  • Expert Tour Leader throughout the trip

What’s Not Included

  • Flights to/from Morocco
  • Passport/visa fees
  • Meals not mentioned above
  • Travel insurance (which is required)
  • Optional activities not listed

FAQ

What are your COVID policies?
This tour is currently open to all travelers. We will closely monitor any new policies and comply with any new restrictions or requirements needed. If the rules change, we’ll let you know.

What about COVID testing?
Should COVID testing be required as a condition of entry or exit, we will help you find testing locations, though you are responsible for the cost of the COVID test and for booking your own tests.

What is the age range of people on this tour?
Our tours see people from 22 to 75. They really run the gambit. In the past, the average age on this tour is about 40. As we’ve found age is only a number, the variety in ages has never been detrimental to the group dynamics!

Is there a lot of walking?
All our tours have lots of walking tours involved that last between 2-3 hours each. While there is no strenuous hiking involved on this tour, you should be prepared to be on your feet a lot.

Tell me about your guides.
Our expert tour leaders are fully licensed guides. They’ll be responsible for ensuring the smooth operation of the trip, handling all of the local logistics, and dealing with any unforeseen situations that may arise. Our tour leaders are always on hand, every day of the trip, to provide additional information, create spontaneous activities, join the group for non-included activities and meals, and ensure that the trip is as memorable, fun, and informative as possible. During the course of the trip, we’ll also use other guides for some of our day tours.

Will I have any time to myself?
Of course! We hate tours that book every minute of your day. While we will be busy, there will also be plenty of time for you to explore on your own. Travel is about adventure and discovery, so we emphasize that on our tours. We want you to see stuff that interests you specifically.

What am I going to do during the listed “free time”?
Our guides will be on hand to give you suggestions, help you decide what to do, and be around. If you want to go off on your own, we get that. We want you to explore and break out of your comfort zone! Our guides are here to help and, after you join the tour, you’ll be sent a list of potential activities you can do on your own.

How many spots can I purchase at once?
Reservations on the tour are limited to a maximum of two per person to ensure that everyone who wants to gets a chance to go.

What kind of rooms are we staying in?
We will be staying in 2 star hotels the entire trip.

Is airfare provided?
No, you’ll be responsible for your own airfare to and from the tour.

Will I need travel insurance?
Yes, all guests will be required to have travel insurance for the duration of the trip. We’ll be asking for proof before departure. If you don’t have it, you won’t be able to continue on the tour.

Is there an age requirement?
You must be at least 18 years old.

Will I need to fill out any release forms?
Yes, you’ll be required to fill out and sign a liability waiver releasing us from any and all liability related to the tour.

What about visas?
If you require a visa to enter any of these destinations, you’ll need to get that in advance at your own expense. We do not offer any help in this area.

What if I change my mind? What is your refund policy?
We understand plans change. Deposits are refundable up to 30 days after purchase. They can be transferred once in a calendar year to another tour. (You have to do so within 90 days.) Balance payments are due 31 days after purchase. Cancelations made between 90 – 60 days before the tour start date: 50% refund of the balance amount (the deposit is not included in the refund). Cancelations made between 59 – 0 days before the tour start date: 0% refund of the balance amount.

Is there a waiting list?
People sometimes rush to secure a spot but don’t always get the time off work and might need to cancel. If you’d like to be added to a waiting list, please email us at [email protected]

I still have questions. Can I contact you?
Of course! Our email is [email protected]

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