Morocco is described as being a diverse land and a touch exotic. Your senses will be in heaven as we explore the spice markets and witness the best light show on earth under the night sky of the Saharan desert. Interior designs with swathes of colourful fabrics, carpets rich in detail, traditional riad style lodgings with sumptuous couches and stunning mosaic tiling will take your breath away. Earthen kasbahs, lush oasis, fresh fruit on donkey carts, endless alleyways full of trading goods, Andalusian influence, quaint seaside villages, the play of light on the sand dunes, pretty blue hillside villages, crumbling ruins, big skies, local people proud of their culture, life around the tagine, and vast landscapes. Take some time to meet Moroccans who are full of hospitality where everything revolves around a glass of mint tea!
Parallel 50. This is Life. This is Travel
- Heady Aromatic Spices
Casablanca! Arrive and have your breath taken away by the stunning Hassan II Mosque, the largest outside Mecca. Your sensory overload begins! The mosque is quite spectacular at dusk with wonderful shapes, textures, grandeur, the lighting and the backdrop of the ocean. And so our journey begins.
A coastal drive takes us to see the famous walls of this quaint fishing village of Asilah that have been painted by famous artists from the world over. Enjoy fortress walls with ocean views over the medina with its peeling painted houses and stunningly white walls against the bluest of skies. Lose yourself in the narrow alleyways away from the hustle and bustle of city life.
You will love exploring the blue city of Morocco! It is a beautiful unique village nestled at the base of the mountains known for its blue doors and blue and white washed walls. It has a real Andalucian feel to it and discovering its narrow lanes and lay back style will delight. Shops amongst the laneways Relax and take in life. Enjoy!
Travel today through the Rif Mountains as we make our way to Fes’s real attraction, the old medina. It is easy to lose yourself in the labyrinth of narrow lanes but you won’t mind one little bit as aromas of spices, the tinkering of tradespeople and the donkeys laden with goods all vie for your attention. This ancient city has much to see from crumbling old ruins, fascinating life in the tanneries, exquisite mosaics, Persian influenced architecture and a bustle of people in the bazaars. It has a great vibe and you will love our stay in a traditional riad
Here we are right on the edge of the dunes where early morning photos light makes for great shadows giving life to your photos. Visit Gnawa people, originally slaves brought from Sudan, to experience their music and lifestyle. Birds flock to a nearby lake and we will spend time in a traditional town, a meeting place of the trading Caravans from as far as Timbuktu in Mali. Traditional dress is still worn here. The local animal market feels like it hasn’t changed over time. And a visit to the desert would not be complete without a ride thru the desert by camel. The late afternoon shadows across the shifting sands are a breathtaking sight and the desert will surprise you. After a short ride you may like to climb the dunes to watch the sunset in the Sahara. Stuff that dreams are made of. A desert camp with some of life’s little luxuries will set you up for an entertaining evening under the stars before you head to your tents. And the stars will astound. A traditional tagine meal in the Sahara somehow tastes so much better! And the drums sound so much sweeter! Travel in mountain valleys that challenged Paris Dakar Rally competitors in days when the rally went through Morocco. The hills are rich in minerals and you will see how difficult life is for the nomads in this region.
Today will see us travel thru lush green valleys and the largest palm grove in Morocco. Plenty of landscapes here for our cameras. Mountain roads will wind us thru spectacular countryside with canyons and gorges. Enjoy the drive to another diverse area of Morocco…the gorge country. This is truly spectacular landscape. Luckily we have our own private vehicles so we can stop as often as you like. A true highlight of this little travelled area will be meeting the nomads who will be setting up their camps in the high country for the summer. Enjoy this exchange and learn how nomad life is while sipping some hot tea.
Glacial streams and tall cliffs surround us. Our riad is perched on the hillside with great views over the lush valley. Stunning big country again as we travel through the gorge. Strolling through the crops and palms or dangling your feet in the cool stream is a nice way to end the day. The ruins of kasbahs set in the oasis of palms, a visit to an ancient mosque and meeting the friendly peoples of this valley will offer many photo opportunities.
Here we come Marrakech! A visit to Morocco is not complete without a visit to this vibrant city with its cosmopolitan feel mixed in with its ancient medina. You will be continually surprised with stunning architecture, stories, jewish quarters, palaces, souks and the famous Jemaa El Fna square comes to life as night falls with its street performers and cafes. Enjoy!
We head to the coast now and pass thru trees that are famous for their production of Argan oil. You will love the scenery and seaside atmosphere of the old walled city of Essaouira. Explore the fortress and see artisans at work as we wind our way thru the alleys of the medina. Great for shoppers too! A true Moroccan lunch with fresh fish chosen and ‘cooked to order’. It is also known as the city of wind so take a wander to the beach and watch the wind surfers that come from all over the world to play here. Essaouira knew many civilisations – including Portugese occupation, which affects much of its architecture – however it remains a small village with much history. The rustic look of blue doors and whitewash walls give this place a lot of atmosphere and a stroll through the port always finds something going on as the boats come in and the sellers display their fish products.
Experience a different style of travel staying in a seaside cottage in little touristed Oualidia. Spectacular coastline both rugged and beautiful, cruising the calm lagoon waters, eating fresh oysters from the back of a scooter in the street, fresh fish grilled on the beach, relaxing on the cottage terrace while enjoying home cooked meals from a local. You may like to have a cooking lesson on how to cook ‘real’ couscous and traditional tagine. We will take a night visit for sunset at an intriguing mausoleum on the beach below the cliffs and visit the local market. Try not to fall in love with Oualidia!
Today ends our amazing journey thru Morocco. You will be transported to Casablanca airport (approx 2.5hr drive) for your departure flight. You will take home with you a richness of feeling for this amazing land, it’s unforgettable travel experiences and a bigger heart for the people you have met.