This sample itinerary is an excellent example of what we can customize for you.
Day 1: Arrival into Casablanca: Transfer to Rabat
Today you will arrive in Casablanca and be picked up from the airport by your private driver. Depending on your arrival time, you may have time for lunch in Casablanca and some self-guided exploring, or you may be taken directly to Rabat to check into your accommodations. The evening will be on your own to rest after your flight or explore Rabat a bit on your own.
Day 2: Rabat to Fez: Meknes and the Roman Ruins at Volubilis
Today you will depart Rabat towards Fez. After breakfast, you will depart for Meknes, your first stop. It has a smaller medina than Fez and can allow you time to explore at a more leisurely pace without worrying about the more aggressive shopkeepers. Your driver will lead you through the Ville Impériale area, where you can explore gardens, palaces, the impressive gate of Bab al-Mansour, The Mausoleum of Moulay Ismail, and the Royal Stables.
You move on to Moulay Idriss, which from a distance looks like a sitting camel. The oldest town in Morocco, it was founded by Moulay Idriss I in 789, having fled Mecca because of religious and tribal conflicts. It was here that the Idrisid dynasty was founded, and the town has the only round minaret in Morocco. Lunch is on your own here, with recommendations from your driver.
Lastly, you will arrive at Volubilis to see the ancient Roman ruins. You can take your time to leisurely stroll and explore this amazing locale.
Today ends in Fez, one of Morocco’s four Imperial cities, where you can relax and have the night at your leisure. You can partake in a guided hammam visit in the evening.
Day 3: Fez: Exploring the Imperial City and Medieval Medina & Hammam
On your second day in Fez, your tour guide will meet you at the riad to start your long day of walking to explore the Medina. This UNESCO protected medina is full of arms-width alleyways and donkey-width roads. Your Fez born-and-bred guide will unfold the hidden stories and tucked away corners, the minutiae of daily life and the magnificence of its madersas and palaces. You see the fabulous Fez as only a true local can know. During the tour, you will not only go to visit the historical schools and palaces but also engage with artisans to learn about their work and stories in becoming masters. A special focus will be on tanneries and mosaic workshops, and the traditional methods still used today in Fez. These are the top artisans of the country, who have been utilizing ancient methods to create beautiful work. Fez is a hub of the Moroccan crafts and arts.
Day 4: Day Trip to Sefrou
Today your tour guide will meet you at the riad to start your journey to the city of Sefrou, a little way outside of Fez. Sefrou is a walled town, nestled in the slopes of the middle Atlas, about 28 kilometers southeast of Fez in central Morocco. Sefrou has an interesting history and culture, which years ago brought it to the attention of world-renowned American anthropologist Clifford Geertz and his students, who based a few important scholarly books on their research there. The city began as a market town in the Roman era and as a stopping point for caravans of traders making their way from the Mediterranean to the Sahara Desert and became a major Moroccan town long before Fez was built in the 8th century. In fact, Moulay Idriss II lived in Sefrou while he was building Fez.
The town was a melting pot of culture as Jewish Berber Moroccans and Algerians had been settling there for many centuries. Before most Jewish Moroccans left the country when the French departed during the sixties and seventies, a third of Sefrou’s population was Jewish. Agriculture is the main activity in the region. The mountainous terrain is the ideal place for fruit trees, especially cherries. Sefrou is well known for its cherry festival, which is considered one of Morocco’s oldest and most prominent regional celebrations by the UNESCO. This annual event was introduced by the French in 1919 and takes place during the harvest of the cherries in early June. It gives the locals a chance to showcase the charming customs, traditions, arts, and crafts of the area to thousands of visitors. The festival reaches its pinnacle with the crowning of “Miss Cherry Festival” and a parade of beautiful and colorful floats on the third day of the festival.
While there, you will visit the Craft Center of Sefrou (Ensemble Artisanal de Sefrou). This beautiful complex is located by the old city and it is home of several workshops where artisans work on wood, ceramic, rug weaving, and even silk djellaba silk buttons. Here you will get the chance to see their work and learn their craft.
Day 5: Fez to Marrakesh: Beni-Mellal, Berber Villages in the Atlas Mountains & Hammam
You will start today early getting ready for your long day of travel from Fez to Marrakesh. This 8-hour journey takes you through the Middle Atlas and the high Atlas Mountains. Along the way, you will see Berber villages and can stop at a few if you would like. You will break for lunch at Beni-Mellal, with recommendations on where to eat from your driver. After all the tranquility of the mountains, soon you will be in the midst of the hustle, bustle, and clamor of vibrant Marrakech.
Once in Marrakesh, you may want to spend the rest of the afternoon at a slower pace. You will go on a guided hammam visit to relax after the long day traveling. In the early evening, the main square, Jemaa el Fna Square, comes alive with musicians, performers, snake charmers, games, food stalls and more. If you want to enjoy from a distance, there are many cafes surrounding the square where you can sit and watch the show over a meal.
Day 6: Marrakesh: Medina & City Tour
On your second day in Marrakesh, after you have your breakfast, you will meet your local tour guide who will take you on a tour to explore the stunning old medina of Marrakesh, a UNESCO world heritage site. In its vivacious souk, you will be dazzled by the displays of djellabas, soft brightly colored babouches, intricately pierced lanterns, conical mounds of exotic spices and the hubbub of life in the spider’s web of alleys. Our humble and energetic guide can regal you with history and stories of the Medina, the Souk, and the Mellah sections all kept within the city’s rose-pink walls. Lunch is on your own with the recommendation of your tour guide.
You will never get tired of Marrakesh. In the afternoon you will continue your private tour to explore more of the city. Some of the places you will see are Bahia Palace, El Badii Palace, Majorelle Gardens and Tombeaux Saadiens. Most of the top chefs who work for the Royal family are from Marrakesh, and it has some of the best food in the country, especially the street food that you surely shouldn’t miss.
Day 7: Marrakesh to Essaouira: Argan Oil & Seafood
Today, you will travel to Essaouira, made popular for its excellent surfing beaches. The 3-hour route takes you over extensive, rolling plains. On approaching the western seaboard of Morocco a unique forest is encountered. Argan trees grow only here (nowhere else) and their fruits are very useful. You will make a slight diversion to visit an association of local women that make Argan oil or “liquid gold”, known these days for its excellent health and beauty properties. You may see goats grazing on the fruits of the argan trees, high in the tree branches. It is quite a sight!
On arrival into Essaouira, you can enjoy walking the impressive seawalls, discovering delights in the Old Medina area, or perhaps enjoying some time down by the very active fishing harbor. Jewish heritage is very present in Essaouira, where one of the best preserved Jewish quarters in Morocco is located. It is a perfect example of a community of coexistence and a very interesting place to explore.
Day 8: Essaouira to Casablanca: The Atlantic Coast & Portuguese Ports
Today, you will head to Casablanca via the coastal route with stops in some other seaside cities along the way. The first city you will encounter is Safi, know for its excellent surfing beaches and views of the Atlantic Ocean. The second city is El Jadida. There, you can tour the hauntingly beautiful Portuguese cistern. You can also spend your time walking the ramparts and can visit the Church of the Assumption.
Next is Azemour, which has inspired many Moroccan artists over the decades, some of whom have chosen to live here. Life there is still traditional despite its close proximity to the cosmopolitan art market of Casablanca. A crumbling 16th-century medina squeezed between the Oud Er-Rbia (Mother of Spring River) and the ocean provide plenty of artistic inspiration.
Once in Casablanca, you will check into your hotel. After lunch, you will be picked up by your tour guide to start your Casablanca tour. The tour will include a trip around the medina, as well as a visit the Mosque Hassan II with the tallest minaret in the world. This a breathtaking building and it is representative of the best of Moroccan architecture, and it is also the only mosque that is open to the public with interior tours.
Day 9: Departure from Casablanca
After breakfast, you will be transferred to Mohamed V International airport for return flight and assistance with the boarding formalities.
Contact us now to begin planning your Morocco trip with one of our Travel Specialists. Check out the other activities/workshops we offer here.
"The trip was excellent. The Riads were First rate, The guides were knowledgeable, professional and friendly. Our driver, Mohamed Samouk, was one of the best parts of the trip. He became our friend, part of the family! We will recommend Morocco Off the Beaten Track to anyone wishing to explore Morocco."
"This trip was like a dream, everything went just perfect and as planned. Yassine was incredibly patient and accommodating, he listened to us, responded to every question we had and made sure we would be happy with our finalized itinerary. Our trip started in Casablanca, our flight was more than four hours delayed due to bad weather in Montreal, our driver Mohammed was patiently waiting for us and it was a relief to see him there and greeting us with a smile, we immediately felt welcomed and safe. All of our accommodations were unbelievable nice and charming, it was definitely a huge part of our whole experience, we mostly stayed at riads, which were the perfect selection for us. We were provided with a small cel phone for anything that we needed at any time. Our driver Mohammed was incredibly helpful and friendly, and most importantly, drove us with professionalism and great skills all around Morocco, which involved a lot of driving! I will definitely be using Morocco Off the Beaten Track services again and would recommend to anyone planning their next adventure!"
"From beginning to end, we were extremely well taken care of. From our first communication, Yassine patiently helped us prepare an itinerary that was perfect for our group. Once we arrived in Morocco, everything was seamless and well organized. Our driver Mohamed was polite, helpful and charming. He helped make the long drives between cities enjoyable and assured that we were always comfortable. We were quite pleased with the selection of riads; all three were beautiful and special, each in their own way. Guides were polite and well-informed. Ali in Marrakech did a great job choosing restaurants for us, and we had a few memorable and delicious dining experiences thanks to him. All in all, we had an excellent trip and were extremely satisfied with the level of service from Morocco Off the Beaten Track. We would do it all over again if we could. Thank you for a wonderful experience!!"
"Trip was wonderful. The contacts were responsive and super-helpful. Our arrival time changed and it was easy to contact both Yassine and Ali and adjust accordingly."
"Our entire experience with Morocco Off the Beaten Track was effortless. From the initial and follow-up planning with Yassine to the final follow-up was a great experience. We were met at Marrakesh airport by a young man named Ismael. We could not have asked for a better person to be our driver and to spend the trip with. He was engaging, courteous, helpful and a very cautious and competent driver. Interacting with him was one of the highlights of our trip..."