Imperial Cities Morocco (8days)
Day 1: Airport – Marrakech
We will meet you at Marrakech airport and take you to the hotel where you will have dinner and spend the night.
Day 2: Marrakech
On day two we explore Marrakech, the most important of Morocco’s four former imperial cities Morocco, founded in 1062 by Abu Bakribn Umar, chieftain and cousin of Almoravid king Yusuf ibn Tashfin.
We will see the old city (or medina), the tranquil Menara gardens, with their artificial lake, orchards and olive groves, and the Majorelle gardens, all of which are listed UNESCO World Heritage sites. We will also visit the minaret of the Koutoubia, Saadian tombs and the Museum Dar Si Said.
In the afternoon we will continue our tour and visit Jemaa el-Fnaa, one of the best-known squares in Africa and the centre of city activity and trade, and the traditional colorful Berber markets or souks for which the city is famous.
Day 3: Marrakech –Ouzoud waterfalls
We start the day with breakfast in the hotel, then leave Marrakech at 8.00am and travel to the middle Atlas Mountains, close to the city of Azilal, to visit the spectacular Ouzoud waterfalls. The water cascades down from a height over 100 meters, in a series of falls and over several tiers of rocky ledges, before converging in the pool below.
As well admiring as the waterfalls you will have the chance to see old watermills, beautiful green valleys and orchards, and if we’re lucky we may even see monkeys. In the afternoon you can swim in the river or go for a boat ride.
In the evening we will have dinner and spend the night in a local hotel.
Day 4: Ouzoud Waterfalls – BeniMellal – Fez
We leave our hotel at the Ouzoud falls after breakfast and cross the Middle Atlas Mountains, passing through the city of Beni Mellal, the capital of the Tadla-Azilal region and an important economic centre with a lively agricultural market, at 625 meters above sea level.
We continue our journey to the city of Fez, passing through dramatically changing landscapes: plateaus of limestone, rivers and waterfalls, peaks of ancient volcanoes covered with dense forests of cedar and oak.
On arrival in Fez, we check into a hotel and have dinner.
Day 5: Fez
We have breakfast in our hotel then spend the day exploring Fez, the oldest city in Morocco and home to the world’s oldest university, which was for centuries the cultural and religious centre of the Muslim West.
We will visit the old town or Medina, which feels like stepping back in time. This beautifully preserved medieval city is yet another UNESCO World Heritage site, with its magical maze of alleyways and bustling markets or souks, all surrounded by high wall. We will also visit the Medersa(or religious schools) of el-Attarine and BouInania, with their fine examples of Merenid craftsmanship and fabulous views of the old city from the rooftop of el-Attarine; and the Nejjarine fountainwith its beautiful mosaics.
We have lunch in a former palace in the medina, and then visit the Bathahmuseum of folk art, the Royal Palace and the Mérinidestombs, where we have a fabulous view over the city and its ramparts, before returning to our hotel for dinner and a second night.
Day 6: Fez – Meknès – Rabat
After breakfast we leave Fez and continue our journey, passing through pretty Berber villages and pausing for lunch.
After lunch we visit Meknes, the 16th century capital whose ruler, Moulay Ismail, modeled himself on Louis XIV of France, the ‘Sun King’. After, plundering his country he opened his spectacular palace decorated with colorful and intricate stucco work, huge and beautifully detailed bronze doors and many stunning mosaics.
Next we continue via MoulayIdriss, to Rabat, Morocco’s second largest city, situated on the Atlantic coast. This is the capital city and residence of the King of Morocco. Here we will have time to visit the city’s many attractions, including the beautiful Mausoleum of Mohamed V, the imposing Hassan Tower (all that remains of a once-splendid ancient mosque), ChellahGardens and Necropolis, and the Oudaya Kasbah, before having dinner and spending the night in a hotel.
Day 7: Rabat – Casablanca
We leave our hotel after breakfast and travel to Casablanca, Morocco’s largest city and economic capital, steeped in history and full of famous landmarks like the splendid Hassan II Mosque, the largest in Africa and 7th largest in the world, with its towering minaret, which at 210 meters is the world’s tallest.
We will experience Casablanca old and new, visiting both the old medina and Place Mohammed V, a busy shopping street lined by residential blocks dating back to the 1930’s, the United Nations Square and the league of Arab States Park with its palm trees.
We will have dinner and spend the night in a hotel.
Day 8: Casablanca – Marrakech
After breakfast we leave Casablanca and travel back to Marrakech, where we will drop you straight back to your hotel.