Off the Beaten Path in Northern Morocco
April 10-20, 2024
Get a taste of the Moroccan culture from local residents as we tour Morocco!
As with most of my trips, I like to experience the local culture and not just the tourist sites. This trip includes both. Morocco is a country in North Africa which overlooks the Mediterranean Sea to the north and the Atlantic Ocean to the west. Our trip will be to the northern most region of the country. We will start in Tangier, a port city on the Strait of Gibraltar. From there we travel to Chefchaouen, also referred to as the Blue City where the homes and buildings in the old town are painted in all shades of blue. It is located in the Rif Mountains in northwest Morocco. Our final stop will be in the major city of Fez, known as the cultural capital of Morocco.
Sustainable Tourism in Morocco
Morocco is ranked 11th in the Global Sustainability Index. Because Morocco is 78% desert, they have been experiencing the effects of climate change for many years. Morocco is high on the list of water stressed countries, but the government has worked hard to improve water efficiency so they can make the best use of the water they do have. Farmers have switched to a high efficiency drop irrigation system which has conserved water and increased agricultural production. Morocco aims to source 52% of the country's energy needs from renewable resources by 2030, and 100% by 2050.
(KWT reserves the right to make changes to the houses and itinerary if needed.)
This trip is limited to only 6 participants.
Activity level for this trip: Moderate - you must be able to carry your own luggage, climb stairs, get in and out of vans and walk up to 2 hours with stops along the way. (Women with mobility issues would probably have difficulty with this trip and should consult their physicians.)
THURSDAY, APRIL 11TH
You've arrived in Morocco! You will be met at the airport and transported to our home. We'll stay just 1 night in Tangier to relax after our long flight. Our beautiful "riad" (traditional Moroccan home) is right in the heart of the old medina. The riad has 5 bedrooms, 5.5 bathrooms and a rooftop view of the Strait of Gibraltar. Click here to see more photos of the riad. Once at the house, we'll settle in and perhaps explore Tangier on our own. We will then be treated to a wonderful homemade Moroccan meal by the riad's Chef.
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 10TH
FRIDAY, APRIL 12TH
Fridays in Morocco are sacred, so many places close down for the day. We'll use this time to travel to our next destination where we will spend 4 nights. After being served breakfast by our Chef, we will meet up with our tour guide/driver who will drive us to the "Blue City"of Chefchouen, with a stop in his home town of Tetouan, a World Heritage Site. We are staying at a beautiful riad that has 4 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. Click here for photos. Once we arrive and settle in, we'll be treated to a wonderful dinner prepared by our new chef at the riad. (Meals: B, L, D)
SATURDAY, APRIL 13TH
The city re-opens and today will be the first of three days with our local tour guide, Rhani, in Chefchaouen. We'll tour the city and watch the sunset at the Spanish Mosque.
SUNDAY, APRIL 14TH
Day 2 with Rhani will include a visit to a traditional market followed by a cooking class where we will make a traditional Moroccan meal. Rhani is a trained chef in a variety of ethnic cooking styles: Japanese, French and Spanish. His specialty, of course, is Moroccan cooking.
MONDAY, APRIL 15TH
On Day 3 with Rhani, we will continue our tour of Chefchaouen. The itinerary for the day is flexible depending on the group's preferences. In the evening, we'll check out a vibrant spot where they do tea parties and have live music performances.
TUESDAY, APRIL 16TH
Our driver will take us to the city of Fez today, which is a 3.5 - 4 hour drive. We will break up the drive by stopping for a nice lunch and exploring a small town along the way. We will then arrive at our new home for the next 4 nights in Fez. Our riad has 5 bedrooms and 3.5 baths. Click here for more photos. We will, once again, be treated to a wonderful dinner at the riad. After dinner, we will be visited by an American Expat who will tell us of her experiences moving to Morocco.
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 17TH
After a relaxing morning, we'll explore the city of Fez with a local expert to find the hidden treasures. Our tour guide has a passion for sharing the rich history and culture of this magical city. Its vibrant markets, stunning architecture, and delicious cuisine make Fez a very special place.
(Meals: B, L, D)
THURSDAY, APRIL 18TH
Today is a free day. We'll stay together and decide as a group how to spend the day. (Any entrance or tour guide fees are not included.) In the evening, we will be learning about, and trying out, some traditional dances from different regions across Morocco and some for various occasions such as weddings.
FIRDAY, APRIL 19TH
We are in for a treat today! We will be spending the day with a local family, participating in a variety of cultural activities. We will have a cooking class after shopping at the local market. We will also learn to make the traditional Msemen, also called Rghaif, which are square flat Moroccan pancakes. We'll get beautifully designed henna tattoos which play a big part in the Moroccan culture.
SATURDAY, APRIL 20TH
Sadly, our trip comes to an end. We return home, flying out from the Fes-Saïss Airport, sporting our henna tattoos, having immersed ourselves in the Moroccan culture and having made new friends in our own little group. SAFE TRAVELS!