Arrive at Casablanca airport. Transfer to the hotel, accommodation, and then we go on a bried walk around the city. The name “Casablanca” in Spanish means “White City”.
Of course, the main attraction of Casablanca is the Hassan II Mosque.
“The throne of Allah rests on the water” said King of Morocco Hassan II, announcing in 1980 his intention to build the largest mosque in the world. “And so we will build a new mosque on the water.” Indeed, the mosque of Hassan II stands on the water, or rather, above the water. This huge building was erected on a platform serving at sea. The construction lasted thirteen years, from 1980 to 1993. It became only the second largest in the world, but in terms of its architectural and artistic merits, it undoubtedly takes first place among the great buildings of the second half of 20th century.
After breakfast, we wait for a transfer to Rabat – the capital of Morocco, where we will visit the main attraction of the city – Udaya Kasbah. On a rocky cliff, in the place where the Bou Regreg river flows into the ocean the inhabitants of Sale laid down a fortress, which later became a formidable stronghold of Almohad, and then the citadel of the corsair republic. In the XVII century the Alawites, trying to strengthen their control over the pirates “the Moors of Rabat” and at the same time protect themselves from the raids of rebellious tribes, placed in the Kasbah the Arabian Udaya tribe which traditionally served the Sultans. Hence the name Kasba Udaya. After lunch, we continue our walk to the city of Chefchaouen, located among the gentle slopes of the Reef Mountains in the north of the country.
All day we will walk around the famous blue medina of Chefchaouen. Until recently, kufars (infidels) had to bypass this city. Until 1920 only three Europeans visited it. Two of them never returned back from Chefchaouen and died few hours after arriving here, and the third, the English writer and traveler Walter Harris, managed to escape. Now it is a very popular tourist destination, as evidenced by many hotels and souvenir shops. At sunset, we will take photos of Chefchaouen from a high point, and then move to Fez and have hotel accommodation.
This day we will devote to acquaintance with the old medina of the city of Fez, recognized as the world heritage of mankind. It is a giant maze of more than 6,000 streets that are closely intertwined. The main streets are full of endless shops. It is noteworthy that this whole gigantic zone is a pedestrian. We will visit the main attraction of Fez – the famous dyeing houses. The huge stone vats, built many centuries ago, have been used by the distant ancestors of the present artisans. Filled with tannins and dyes, they located in a closed courtyard directly under the open sky and resemble the artist’s colorful palette or a set of jars with gouache. Half-naked men are standing almost knee-deep in vats and tamp the skin by their feet in the special liquid, the recipe of which only they know. Then the skin is rinsed and dried on the sun. As dyes they use pomegranate peel, saffron, mint and mimosa bark. By the way, the skin is used only from those animals that the Koran allows to eat – cows, camels, sheep and goats.
Right after breakfast we leave Fez. We have to overcome more than 450 km along a picturesque road to the border of the Sahara desert. Along the way, we can see non-touristic landscapes, small villages and the simple life of people in the outback. We will take stops, walk and take unusual photos.
This day we have an acquaintance with the majestic desert. Waking up an hour before sunrise, we will go to the sands, where we will meet the dawn among the grandiose sand dunes. Then we will return to the hotel for breakfast, and after refreshment, we will continue to study the endless sands on our SUVs. Just imagine that some dunes reach hundreds of meters in height! We will ride along one of the parts of the Paris-Dakar rally, where simple and quiet sections of the road alternate with dizzying ones, we will drive into the abandoned Berber village, where quartz and hematite were mined. By dinner, we will return to the hotel, take a break from an eventful adventure and gain strength to go back to the dunes to see the sunset. This evening we will undoubtedly take many vivid and memorable photos.
After breakfast, we say goodbye to the desert and have a long drive to the city of Ouarzazate – a city called Moroccan Hollywood. We will visit the famous Atlas film studio, where many famous films were shot, as well as visit film sets and scenery. We will spend the night in a hotel that is successfully located on the territory of Ksar of Ait-Ben-Haddou, which has been included in the UNESCO World Heritage List and is a vivid example of the architecture of southern Morocco.
After breakfast, we will go to the morning photo shooting of the textured streets of Ksar of Ait-Ben-Haddu, when the dawn rays flood the terraces and fortresses with molten gold, staining them with a violet-orange color and giving the marvelous castle an unearthly look.
Ait-Ben-Haddu is a vivid example of traditional Moroccan architecture, in which brick-red clay served as the building material. In ancient times, such Ksars adorned the slopes of the Atlas mountains everywhere, and many have survived to this day, but not one of them can be compared with the beaty and power of the legendary Ait-Ben-Haddu. The ancient city is woven from dozens of Kasbas – clay fortresses of various heights, which are crowned with a battlement and decorated with delicate ornaments. Numerous round arches and narrow passages connect the winding streets and create a complex labyrinth, so reminiscent of the intricate patterns of Arabic script. On the slope itself are located shelters with flat roofs, forming multi-tiered terraces.
Then we visit Ouarzazate also known as Moroccan Hollywood. Here we will visit the famous Atlas film studio, where many famous films were shot, including: Game of Thrones, Mummy, Clone, Gladiator, Asterix and Obelix, Pearl of the Nile, and see the movie sets. After the film studio, we start our way to Marrakesh.
All day we will walk and get to know the city. We will walk along Gemma El Fna Square, famous for its inhabitants: snake charmers, fakirs and other magicians. We will visit the Koutoubia Mosque, the El Badi Palace, the old medina and leather dyes, like those located in Fez. Will meet the famous tombs of the Saadites.
It’s not known when the first dead people began to be buried at the site of the future Saadite Tombs. However, it is known for certain that at the end of the 15th century, Sultan Ahmed al-Mansur began to systematically equip this place under a luxurious tomb for himself. Ahmed al-Mansur took his eternal refuge in the Tomb of the Saadis in 1603. The princes of royal blood were buried here with him. In the garden around the mausoleum lie more than 170 wives of the Sultan, as well as his first advisers. When the Alawites took power over the city, Moulay Ismail decided to get rid of the magnificent tomb of the past owners of Marrakesh but was afraid to disturb the souls of the dead. Therefore, he ordered the tombs to be surrounded with a high fence, after that the cemetery was forgotten for several centuries. It was discovered by the French only in the 1917th year, during aerial photography.
After breakfast, we will go to the city of Essaouira on the Atlantic Ocean. This city will amaze you with its ocean charm, the sound of the surf, the smell of the sea and the cries of gulls. On the way, we will take stops in the most photogenic places. After reaching Essaouira, we will settle in a real Moroccan riad, located in the heart of the old city, inside the fortress wall. A sightseeing tour of the city will help you to not get lost in the labyrinths of the pirate capital, and dinner with cool white wine and fresh seafood will complement your experience on this busy day.
Resting in Essaouira. We start the day with a morning walk around the medina, then visit the old Portuguese fortress of the 16th century, which recalls its former greatness and has already become a hallmark of the city. By the way, some scenes of the cult series Game of Thrones were filmed here.
After the fortress, we will visit the old port, which is famous not only for its rich history and beautiful design, but also for a popular among locals and tourists market, where you always can enjoy fresh seafood in one of the restaurants on the waterfront. Undoubtedly, this small coastal town has its own energy, inspiring creativity. This is a place of romantics and artists, so beloved by many celebrities. For example, in the 70s Jimmy Hendricks lived and wrote his best songs in Essaouira.
The final tea party. After breakfast, we wait for a transfer from Essaouira to Casablanca, where our journey through this colorful country will end. Transfer to the airport and departure to your home.
THE PROGRAMM CAN BE ADJUSTED IN ANY PART ON INDIVIDUAL REQUEST
Price and terms
Price — Upon request
Prepayment for participation — Upon request
– Meeting in airport
– Private transfer along the entire route
– Driver services
– Accommodation in comfortable hotels and riads (2-bed accommodation)
– Accompaniment of an English-speaking guide
– All excursions which declared in the program
– Fees, entrance tickets
– Flights to Casablanca
– Meals /drinks
– Other activities and services not included