11 Days Moroccan Coastal Tour From Casablanca To Essaouira Via Desert :

If you are looking to escape the frantic actvity of the Imperial Cities and looking for blue skies over emerald waters…touring the Southern Atlantic coast will be your dream come true. The entire coastline offers panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean. The road from Casablanca to Agadir has an unexpected surprise around every turn, miles of pristeen deserted beaches and many of them a surfer’s delight. In between these two cities is charming Essaouira, one of the most enchanting places in all of Morocco. Following the coast slightly inland you will arrive at Tiznit, which holds the famous silver artisans that cannot be missed. As you make your way through the Anti-Atlas you will experience the mysterious landscapes of Tafraoute and Tarouant and end your captivating journey in Marrakech.

DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION Essaouira
DEPARTURE TIME Please arrive by 8:15 AM for a prompt departure at 8:30 AM.
RETURN TIME Approximately 6:30 PM.
DESTINATION Essaouira Via Desert
DURATION 11 Days / 10 Nights
DRESS CODE Casual, comfortable athletic clothing, hat and sun glaces
INCLUDED
100% Private Tour Arrival and departure assistance at the Airport
All accommodations Breakfast and Dinner
English speaking driver/escort Local guides for private city tours
Entrance fees for all excursions and monuments listed in the program Your driver is your personal contact from the beginning of the tour until the end
NOT INCLUDED
Lunch/drinks consumed during the tour
Airfare
Gratuities
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DAY 1 : ARRIVAL TO CASABLANA

Your driver, Aziz, will meet you at the Airport in Casablanca. We will begin our tour and stop along the way for a coffee break.   We will leave Casablanca and we will stop at the capital city of Rabat to see the mausoleum of King Mohammed V, Hassan Tower and the Royal Palace.  We will drive (approx. 3 hr drive)  from Rabat to Meknes for the night.  You will have a chance to relax in the riad before dinner.
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DAY 2 : Chefchaouen, Dar Chefchaouen

We will depart after breakfast, for Volubilis (approx. 1.5 hrs).   The Unesco site of Volubilis dates back from the 3rd century B.C. and is one of the best preserved Roman ruins in Morocco.  After our short visit to the Unesco site we will continue on to Chefchaouen (approx. 3 hrs drive). Once we arrive you will have a chance to take a stroll in the area of the riad and then return to the riad for dinner.
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DAY 3 : Chefchaouen, Dar Chefchaouen

After breakfast we will be on your own to discover Chefchaouen Medina and take a walk to the Waterfall of the Reef Mountains.  Aziz will be there to answer any questions or escort you if you need him.  Chefchaouen’s medina is one of the loveliest in Morocco. Small and uncrowded, it’s easy to explore, with enough winding paths to keep you diverted, but compact enough that you’ll never get too lost. Most of the buildings are painted a blinding blue-white.  You will have the afternoon on your own to explore the medina and shops in the area.
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DAY 4 : Fes – Riad Tafilalat

After breakfast we will leave Chefchouen and begin our drive to Fes (5 hrs).   Upon our arrival into the ancient city of Fes we will have a traditional Moroccan welcome at the Riad Tafililat with a cup of Moroccan Tea and goodies.  We will relax at the riad and enjoy the view of the ancient medina from the terrace before we have dinner at the riad.
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DAY 5 : Fes – Riad Tafilalat

After breakfast, you will have a day packed with fantastic sights and smells as you tour the historic medina of Fes.  You will visit the Jewish Quarter and the King’s Palace.  Fes had its’ golden age in the 14th century and today it is bustling with artisans and merchants.  We have an official guide arranged for a guided tour of the medina.  Lunch will be at your leisure in the medina.  Your driver will take you on a tour of the area and then back to the riad . Dinner will be served at the riad.
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DAY 6 : Erfoud – La Rose du Desert

After breakfast we will leave the ancient city of Fes.    This is our longest day of driving (approx. 7 hrs wth many stops along the way)  This day of driving will take you through the spectacular snow-capped Middle Atlas Mountains.    Pass through Ifrane (Switzerland of Morocco) before reaching the great cedar forests of Azrou and travel up through the magnificent Ziz Gorges.  We will spend the night in the small village of Erfoud at the edge of the Sahara Desert.
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After breakfast we will leave Erfoud and visit an old Kasbah where some of the locals still inhabit.  We will visit the Fabrique of the Fossils and the see the trilobites that are preserved within the granite, if anyone from your party wishes, otherwise we will head to the L’hein Kasbah.  You will have a unique opportunity to have lunch at the home of your Driver, Aziz.  His family will welcome you to Morocco.  After lunch with the family    we head towards the majestic Sahara Desert,   we will visit the small town of Rissanni and then on to Merzouga.  As we drive towards the golden dunes you will experience the wonders of the dunes of the Sahara. You will have time to choose the perfect camel for your ride into the dunes and catch the breathtaking sunset at the top of the dunes.  Enjoy a Moroccan dinner in the middle of the dunes and listen to drumming under the moon and stars of the desert sky.  Stay overnight in a comfortable tent/bivouc, then rise early next morning, and view the spectacular sunrise.  You will be guided to the dunes with Bivouc Tomboktu.  Ride your camel back to the hotel for breakfast.

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DAY 8 : Merzouga – Kasbah Tomboktu

After breakfast you will have a chance to take a shower and then we will visit the villages of Merzouga.    We will take you on a tour of the local carpet depot that sells local carpets crafted by the berbers of the area.  We will visit the Gnouwa Village to hear their ethnic music. Relax around the hotel before dinner.
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DAY 9 : Dades Gorge – Hotel Babylon

After breakfast we will leave the Sahara  towards  Dades Gorge and will take a detour to explore the Todra Gorge – the Grand Canyon of the Sahara.  At Boumaine-du-Dades, encounter the dry rugged Dades  Valley, dotted with oasis of figs, olives, date palms and with castellated mud houses hugging  the slopes.  Relax at the riad   before dinner.

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DAY 10 : Ouarzazate – Riad Ksar Ilane

After breakfast we will leave Boumaine Dades and drive towards Ouarzazate.  We will cross the Valley of 1000 Kasbahs and follow the ancient caravan route from many years ago. We will visit Dades Gorge, a stunning mountain oasis, featuring a riverside terrace lush with palm trees.   We will pass through the Valley of the Roses and stop to walk through the oasis of rose plants.    You will have plenty of time to visit the local shops that carry various rose products.  We will stop at the small town of Kalat Magoona which hosts the Rose Festival that begins on May 6th.  Ouarzazate is located at the gateway to the desert, it was founded in 1928 as a military garrison during French protectorate.     We will tour one of the main attractions, Tiourirt Kasbah, former palace of Glaoui, Pasha of Marrakech in the 19th century.

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DAY 11 : Essaouira – Maison du Sud

Today we have an early departure.  After breakfast we will start our drive from Ourzazate to Essaouira, across the High Atlas Mountains, it is approximately 7 hrs drive with plenty of stops along the way to stretch and see the sights.  Along the way we will visit Ait Benhaddou Kasbah, a Unesco Heritage Site.  We will have lunch along the way and continue on to the quaint seaside village of Essaouira.  When you arrive to your Riad and have a chance to relax and have dinner in the medina.

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