You'll gain a whole new appreciation for Moroccan culture and the Berber way of life after embarking on this 11-day tour through the country. Guided by your trusted CEO (Chief Experience Officer), you'll visit incredible sites like the Kasbah of Aït Ben Haddou, stay overnight in unique accommodations like a traditional mountain gîte, and hit the coast with surf lessons of the beaches of Taghazout.
- Travel Style : 18-to-Thirtysomethings
- Service Level : Basic
- Physical Grading : 2 - Light
- Trip Type : Small Group
- What's Included:Your Welcome Moment: Meet Your CEO and Group
Your First Night Out Moment: Connect With New Friends
Your Local Living Moment: Mountain Gîte Stay with Traditional Moroccan Meal, Aroumd (Aremd)
Your Discover Moment: Marrakech
Your Big Night Out Moment: Marrakech. Tinghir orientation walk. Local village walk along the Todra Valley. Sunset camel ride in the desert. Traditional dinner and drums under the stars. Aït Ben Haddou kasbah tour. Hike in the Atlas Mountains. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities. Swimming in rock pools and exploring waterfalls in Paradise Valley. Surf lesson in Taghazout. Sunset beach bonfire. Essaouira orientation walk. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.
- Highlights:Stay overnight between cliff walls of Todra Gorge, Venture on a camel ride through sand dunes, Explore the kasbah of Ait Ben Haddou, Hike around the magnificent High Atlas Mountain, Go surfing in Taghazout, Wander around the coastal city of Essaouira
- Itinerary Notes:Please note that if you are travelling to Morocco between November and February, your tour will have a level of flexibility based off of winter weather conditions on roads in the mountains. Heavy snow is not uncommon, so plan on packing warmer clothing to suit conditions.
- Important Notes:1. CAMEL RIDE
It is not possible to reach the middle of the dunes, where we watch the sunset, by 4WD or any other vehicle. There is the option to walk (can be very hot and tiring) for those who cannot/prefer not to ride a camel.
Please note that the climate in Morocco can be both very hot during the day in summer months (up to 50°C) and cold at night in the mountains in autumn, early spring and winter (down to -6°C). Summer months, from April to September are very hot throughout Morocco. Winter months November to March can be cool to cold, especially in the Atlas Mountains, with high probability of snowfall. Most Moroccan buildings are not equipped with heating, so without proper layers you will be cold at night. Please bring appropriate clothing for the months in which you are travelling and check temperatures before you leave.
According to the lunar cycle, Ramadan will fall between April 23rd and May 23rd, 2020. Please note that Ramadan is a month of fasting observed by Muslims throughout the world, during which time the followers of Islam should not eat or drink between sunrise and sunset. There may be some limitations to services and disruptions to schedules during Ramadan, but generally our tours still operate effectively during this period and food is available to non-Muslims throughout the day. It is very important to display increased cultural sensitivity during Ramadan. Please wear loose fitting clothes, that cover knees and shoulders, and try to avoid eating, drinking or smoking in public out of respect for those who can't at that time.
4. COMBO TRIP
Please note that this tour combines with other G Adventures tours. As such, the staff and some travel companions on your tour may have previously been traveling together with G Adventures, prior to Day 1 of your tour. Likewise, some staff and travel companions may be continuing together on another G Adventures tour, after your trip concludes.
- Group Leader Description:This G Adventures group trip is accompanied by one of our group leaders, otherwise known as a Chief Experience Officer (CEO).
As the group coordinator and manager, the aim of the CEO is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. You can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of Morocco, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. They will also offer suggestions for things to do and to see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends.
We also use certified local city guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting - we think it's the best of both worlds.
- Group Size Notes:Max 14, avg 10.
- Meals Included:10 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 4 dinners
- Transport:Private air-con van, public bus.
- About our Transportation:Please note that there is a lot of fast paced travel on this itinerary which necessitates some long travel days in our mini van. We feel that if you enter this trip with this knowledge and expectation, you will appreciate even more the variety of locations we are able to include in this itinerary.
We use a 16-seater minivan and with a full group every seat will be used. The legroom in the minivan is possibly smaller than you may be used to and taller passengers may find space a little cramped. It is important to be aware that as it is not a legal requirement in buses in Morocco, your vehicle may not be equipped with seat belts. The minivans have air conditioning, however please note that summer temperatures in Morocco can easily reach 50 celsius. When the outside temperature is so hot, a minibus air conditioning system will not be able to cool the bus to the temperatures you are used to enjoying at home. Please bear in mind that travelling in Morocco in summer will inevitably involve very hot temperatures and some discomfort may be experienced when travelling.
- Accommodation:Hotels (7 nts), mountain gîte (1 nt, multi-share), surf house (2 nts)
- About Accommodation:On this trip you can expect to stay in local hotels or pensions (with the exception of the start and finish hotels, which are often larger city hotels), which will vary a little in standard and facilities: some may not have elevators, air-conditioning or English-speaking staff, but most importantly all are locally-run, with some traditional character, and in excellent central locations to give you maximum time for exploring the sights. Where a town has both an ancient medina and a "ville nouvelle" we generally stay in the ville nouvelle, both because the standard of hotels is higher, and because travellers (especially women) often find the medinas at night a little confronting.
Please note that Morocco is a developing country and as such the infrastructure is not as reliable as you would expect at home. Expect quirky plumbing and the odd cold shower!
Please be advised that some of the accommodation for this tour will have shared bathroom facilities.
- Joining Instructions:Please note that day 1 is an arrival day and no activities have been planned on this day. Upon arrival to the city on day 1 (or earlier if you have booked pre-accommodation with us), please make your way to the joining hotel (note that check-in time will be in the afternoon). Once you arrive at the hotel, look for a note or bulletin board in the reception with a note from your CEO. This note will give the details of your Welcome Meeting on day 1 (usually between 5pm and 7pm), where you will get a chance to meet your CEO and other travellers, as well as learn more about how the tour will run. If you don’t see a note, please ask reception for details!
If you are arriving later and will miss the Welcome Meeting, your CEO will leave a note at reception for you with any information you may need, and with morning instructions for the next day.
If you are taking a taxi, upon exiting the main terminal, walk straight ahead into the main car park where you will see the taxi stand with many taxis all queued and waiting. Although the Hotel Amalou is approximately a 20 minute drive from the airport, haggling is encouraged to attempt to get the lowest price.
If you have pre-arranged an arrival transfer, please look for the driver holding a G Adventures sign outside of the terminal hall. Please approach them, and ask them who they are supposed to be picking up (do not tell them your name, they should have this information already). Once they give you the correct name, have your passport ready to show them and you will be on your way!
- Emergency Contact:Should you need to contact G Adventures during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call our local G Adventures Morocco operator. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.
EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures Local Representative (Morocco)
During Office hours (Weekdays, 9am-5pm Local Time): +212 (0)528 824898
After hours emergency number: +212 (0) 661 861950
If you are unable to contact either of these numbers please phone G Adventures Regional Operations Manager Emergency Cell Phone: +212 06 13 54 20 21
If you are unable for any reason to contact these numbers, please call the numbers listed below, which will connect you directly with our 24 hour Sales team, who will happily assist you.
Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from UK: 0344 272 0000
Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618
Outside North America, Australia and the UK: +1 416 260 0999
- Packing List:Conservative Dress:
• Modest clothing that covers knees and shoulders (Long pants, long skirts, shirts that cover shoulders)
• Shawl or scarf (for temple visits)
• Flight info (required) (Printouts of e-tickets may be required at the border)
• Insurance info (required) (With photocopies)
• Passport (required) (With photocopies)
• Required visas or vaccination certificates (required) (With photocopies)
• Vouchers and pre-departure information (required)
• Binoculars (optional)
• Camera (With extra memory cards and batteries)
• Cash, credit and debit cards
• Day pack (Used for daily excursions or short overnights)
• Ear plugs
• First-aid kit (should contain lip balm with sunscreen, sunscreen, whistle, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, bandaids/plasters, tape, anti-histamines, antibacterial gel/wipes, antiseptic cream, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, rehydration powder, water purification tablets or drops, insect repellent, sewing kit, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)
• Flashlight/torch (Headlamps are ideal)
• Fleece top/sweater
• Locks for bags
• Long pants/jeans
• Outlet adapter
• Personal entertainment (Reading and writing materials, cards, music player, etc.)
• Reusable water bottle
• Small travel towel
• Toiletries (Preferably biodegradable)
• Watch and alarm clock
• Waterproof backpack cover
• Windproof rain jacket
• Shorts/skirts (Longer shorts/skirts are recommended)
• Sun hat/bandana
- Visas and Entry Requirements:All countries require a valid passport (with a minimum 6 months validity).
To date, citizens of the UK, EU, US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand do not need visas for visits of up to three-months.
Other nationalities may need to organise a visa pre travel- please check the individual requirements of your passport nationality.
Please note this information is given in good faith, is beyond G Adventures's control and subject to change at any time.
Contact your local embassy, or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements, or see your travel agent. It is the individual's responsibility to ensure that travel documentation is correct.
- Optional Activities:Aït Ben Haddou
- Tagine Cooking Demonstration (120MAD per person)
- Merzouga 4x4 Desert Excursion
- Djemaa el Fna Market Square Visit (Free)
- Musée de Marrakech (50MAD per person)
- El Badi Palace (70MAD per person)
- Jardins Majorelle (70-100MAD per person)
- Dar Si Said (30MAD per person)
- Optional Welcome Meeting for Travellers on Combos
- Berber Villages Visit
- Swimming in Paradise Valley
- Stand Up Paddle Boarding
- Windsurfing (60EUR per person)
- Kite Surfing (Group Lesson) (1100-1650MAD per person, 1650-3300MAD per group)
- Traditional Hammam Experience
- A Couple of Rules:Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of people in the sex trade is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they engage in any form of paid sex work.
- Minimum Age:Minimum age of 18 years for this trip.
- International Flights:Check-in times and baggage allowances/restrictions vary by airline and can change at any time. For the most up-to-date information for your flight, please contact your airline. We recommend checking in online in advance to avoid potential delays at the airport.
Itinerary (11 days)
Arrive at any time. Get ready to channel all of the buzz and excitement of arriving in a new place by heading out on the town with your CEO and crew. Take the fun to new heights as you grab drinks and kick back at a rooftop bar. Don’t get too distracted by the incredible views of Marrakech, though, that you forget to get to know your new travel companions and prepare for the thrilling journey ahead.
Head towards the stunning Todra Gorge.
Travel towards the desert and embark on a camel ride into the dunes to watch the sunset. Head back to the hotel and enjoy an evening of dinner and entertainment under the stars.
Merzouga/Aït Ben Haddou
Leave the desert behind and get lost exploring the famous kasbah of Ait Ben Haddou.
Aït Ben Haddou/Aroumd (Aremd)
Travel through the magnificent High Atlas Mountain landscape, crossing the Tizi n’Tichka pass at 2260m. Head into the splendid Toubkal National Park, passing through small villages on winding mountain roads, arriving at the village of Imlil. With our main luggage transported by mule, embark on the 1 hour hike from Imlil to the little village of Aroumd (Aremd). Arrive at our simple mountain gîte for the night and enjoy the stunning views of Mt Toubkal. Tonight, enjoy a homemade dinner of local produce in the cozy salon. Settle in and enjoy the tranquility, and clean mountain air of this magical region.
Hike back to Imlil and transfer to Marrakech.
Enjoy a free day to explore all that Marrakech has to offer. In the evening, welcome new friends to the group and join your CEO for a night on the town.
Head to Paradise valley to swim in rock pools and explore waterfalls. Opt for a guided hike or visit to the village of Izourki Oufella, a region that is known for its refined honey and argan oil. Continue to Taghazout.
In the morning enjoy a surf lesson before hitting the waves. Free afternoon to continue surfing, or opt for some stand up paddle boarding, hiking or yoga. In the evening, join the the group for a sunset bonfire on the beach.
Head to Essaouira and enjoy an orientation walk followed by free time to explore this coastal city.
Leave the coast behind and return to Marrakech. Trip ends on arrival.