Thought Morocco was all #wanderlust pics, camels and couscous? Well yeah, there’s that. But in 10 whirlwind days on our Moroccan Explorer trip, you’ll see the side of Morocco your Instagram feed can’t do justice. Delve deeper into a unique culture, throw yourself into new experiences and discover a world unlike any other with a small group of absolute legends. Yalla!
Rise to the sound of the call to prayer and bustling, organised chaos of the streets below. Welcome to Marrakech – the maze of mosaics and colour-filled souks of your dreams. Buzzing. Dynamic. Enchanting. Diving under the surface of this ancient city will give you all the feels.
We’ll start our Moroccan adventure by exploring the narrow streets of Marrakech’s labyrinth medina with your local Trip Leader. Trust us, if you went it alone, it sure as hell would be difficult to navigate this one! We’ll wriggle past the snake charmers and beckoning henna tattoo artists in Djemaa el-Fna square before deciding how to spend your free time. How does a tagine cooking class sound? Or maybe you want to explore further – we hear the lush gardens and lavishly decorated architecture of Le Jardin Secret is the perfect place to escape when the city gets too much.
Ancient Roman Cities
If you’ve ever sat in a history class, you would have heard of the Romans. And if not, educate yourself before coming to Morocco cos’ the ancient Roman city of Volubilis is seriously something else. One of the best-preserved Roman ruins in North Africa, the steadfast pillars of Volubilis’s ancient public houses and beautifully intricate mosaic floors gives you an insight into ancient Roman life that no stuffy classroom ever could.
As you wander around the remnants of public hammams and triumphal arches, your expert Trip Leader will fill you in on all the interesting historical bits – helping paint a picture of what life back in 168 AD would have been like. As the afternoon sun warms your skin, stop for a beat and take it all in. This is what you came for after all.
We’ll forgive you if all you know about Fes is that big, gold door everyone and their boyfriends of Instagram seem to have a picture of. Maybe. Aesthetically pleasing doors aside, Fes is a tantalising mix of exotic flavours, fascinating traditions and the type of chaotic buzz you can’t help but love.
We’ll hit the car-free cobbled streets of Fes el-Bali with your local Trip Leader – passing silk-shrouded storefronts, pilled-high spice vendors and glittering jewellery stands. Get an education in the local tannery practices that’s a bit hard on the nose (don’t say we didn’t warn you), before heading off to spend your afternoon whatever way you want. Hunt down a hammam for a traditional massage and scrub down. Or order a mint tea and sit amongst the locals watching daily life pass by. It’s moments like these that make the memories.
There’s only one way to enter the blazing red abyss of the Sahara Desert: on the back of Alice. That’s Alice the camel, people. Wrap your head scarf tightly around your head and get as comfy as you can atop your long-legged, two-humped steed. This is one ride for the memory bank.
We’ll reach our desert camp in time for sunset. Rally the gang together and head up the mountainous red dunes surrounding the camp. You’ll forget all about those burning calves as soon as you watch the burnt orange sky fade into a littered tapestry of stars. Magic doesn’t quite cover it. And in the morning, watch it all play out in reverse as we’re guided out of the desert at sunrise.
Mountains, Gorges and Movies
Cities, souks and ruins – we’re not going to lie, you can visit them on any old tour recommended by TripAdvisor. But you didn’t come here to be herded around the tourist attractions. You’re here to experience more and delve deeper. To discover the new and different. To find the real Morocco. That’s why we’ll take you to those off-the-beaten track destinations you didn’t know you wanted to visit, until now.
We’ll journey through the picturesque Atlas Mountains – stopping at the alpine resort town of Ifrane and sandstone-coloured village of Midelt. Try tear your eyes away from the coach windows as we rise, fall and zig zag our way through the middle and high Atlas regions. If you’re here between September and May, you might even catch some snow. Bet you didn’t expect that from Africa! Then it’s time to bunk down for the night in Erfoud – a small, Berber town equipped with local restaurants serving the most delicious madfouna (read: wood-fired Berber pizza).
And don’t forget our passage through tiny Berber villages and the lush palm groves of Tinerhir to Todra Gorge. Upon approach, the towering walls of pink rock will take your breath away as they close in around you. A 3D landscape of imposing orange sandstone peaks, trickling streams and the odd wild camel lazing in the afternoon sun – you’ll easily fill up your memory card here.
Lights, camera, action! We’ll round up our Moroccan experience-of-a-lifetime with another lesser-known gem. The sprawling Taourirt Kasbah of Ouarzazate and nearby Aït Benhaddou has played backdrop for blockbusters like Kingdom of Heaven, Gladiator, Prince of Persia and Game of Thrones. Spend the afternoon soaking up the last few rays of Moroccan sun before we round up this incredible adventure with a group dinner. Look around the table at all your new-found-friends – this trip wouldn’t have been the same without them.
Ready to discover the real Morocco in just 10 days? We’re waiting.