Planando offers a 10-day trip to discover Morocco.
It’s a unique proposal for 2018 and 2019, starting from Marrakech, passing through the High Atlas and the Erg Chebbi desert, touches Meknes and reaches Fes.
Three Imperial cities, World Heritage Site and landscapes suspended between ancient history of Berber people and a possible redemption towards modernity, without renouncing to its identity.
A journey in search of peoples’ history.
Planando’s proposal is valid following this itinerary and also backwards, starting from Fes and arriving to Marrakech. During the trip your driver and guide, will always be at your disposal to modify some parts of the itinerary according to your curiosity and interests; it is possible, if conditions allow so, to travel by bicycle or by foot or to carry out other activities in agreement with your guide.
Do not hesitate in the acquaintance of people and their habits and rituals. Squares, markets, schools, artisans, merchants, shepherds, nomads, farmers and many other aspects of the everyday life, are before your eyes.
Your guide and your curiosity will give you the keys towards this world.
Have a good trip.
Planando Team will be happy to customize your trip.
Day 1: Marrakech
Arrival at the Marrakech-Menara airport at the scheduled time.
The airport is about 3 km from Marrakech city.
Transfer to Marrakech.
Your driver will take you directly to the booked Riad or the Riad staff will take care of you directly.
The Riad are located the old kasbah area center, 5 minutes’ walk from the Jemaa el-Fna square (Intangible Heritage of Humanity – UNESCO)
Marrakech | Imperial City | Medina World Heritage Site
The city sightseeing is not organized; in this way you can retain and preserve your personal impressions.
Every place, palace, site that you visit brings with it a knowledge and an infinite story; your experience is told only by living first hand every corner of Marrakech. Getting lost in Marrakech is like entering a historical and epoch-making novel.
We recommend a visit to the Museum of Photography, the Douiria Mouassine, the Bahia Palace, the Medersa of Ali ben Youssef, the Palais el-Badi, the Tombs of the Saadis and the Royal Palace. The new YSL Museum opened in 2017 and the Jardin Majorelle.
Departure from the Riad, where your driver, will come to pick you up.
It is easy to make friends and share your trip with him.
Departure at 8.00 am from Marrakech – Riad Le Close des Artes
A different departure time can be arranged directly with Moha but we strongly suggest to leave by 8.30 am maximum.
Planando reserves the right to confirm Moha’s presence as your guide for the tour, otherwise another carefully selected guide will be available, in coordination with Moha.
All our employees are provided with the necessary authorizations issued by the Ministry of Tourism in Morocco.
One of the most fascinating Moroccan imperial cities in Skoura is the “Thousand palms Oasis”.
- Tizi Path – N – Tichka mt 2260
- Telouet > break
- Ait – Benhaddou | Kasbah visit
- Skoura | “Thousand palms Oasis” visit
“After a two-month journey through the Sahara, the blue-robed Tuareg merchants unloaded the goods to Skoura and the High Atlas mountaineers loaded them on the mules and headed for Fes. Skoura’s historic cast-brick castles are still in place and desert merchants continue to crowd the souks, where you can find a vast assortment of desert products with very intense flavors”
In Skoura, walk through the palm groves protected by UNESCO,
between dates, fruit trees, apples, almonds, walnuts, pomegranates, figs; an immersion in the scents of the Moroccan land. In springtime it’s a real triumph.
“…the Oasis plays an important role, providing dates, shade and branches to be woven, which become raw material for the roofs, floors and fences coverings. Palm trees are severely threatened by Bayoud’s disease, a fungus that spreads from tree to tree. UNESCO has taken measures to protect the oasis, declaring their reservations of the BIOSPHERE.”
The market of Skoura is one of the most interesting in Morocco.
Night close to Skoura.
——————————— [Dinner, night and breakfast] at a chosen accommodation, according to availability.
From the “Thousand palms Oasis” to the Valley of Roses.
- Valle du Dadès > break
- El – Kelaa M’Gouna
- Boumalne Dades – City of Roses
- R704 – Ait-Arbi > Kasbah visit
- Gorges du Dades
“Fascinating desert nomads, valleys full of roses, two-colored kasbahs. From the majestic High Atlas to the Jbel Sarhro chain to the south, this valley is dotted with oases, rough-brick buildings, … the Valley of a thousand Kasbahs. Kelaa M’Gouna is famous for roses and daggers. At about 50 km from Skoura you begin to see pink rose bushes”
This day allows you to get to know one of the most evocative and interesting places of the whole itinerary. At this stage, you will approach landscapes, Kasbah and Berber nomad populations ways of life.
The distance between Skoura and Ait-Arbi / Gorges du Dades is short, so a series of stops and some walking is definitely recommended.
Taking a walk through the rose gardens of the valley is undoubtedly an experience you must do; arrange a stop with Moha, to walk through the fragrant rose gardens and to talk with the people of the villages will be a unique experience.
“Spring water rains are channeled into irrigation canals that feed wheat fields and orchards full of figs, almonds and olive trees. A series of crumbling Kasbahs and Ksour dots the valley near the Berber villages. The nomads.”
Ait Arbi requires a visit
The [dinner, night and breakfast] will be close to Ait Arbi in an accommodation to be chosen according to the availability..
Dalla Valle delle Rose al deserto rosato
- R703 – Agoudal
- Gorges du Todra – break
- N10 – Erfoud and the fossils
- R702 – Merzouga | Desert Erg Chebbi
“A several hours journey through rolling hills and the stony Tizgui n ‘Ouadda Valley.”
The trip begins with a sharp ascent to Tilmi, a town located 15 km north of Msemrir, then reach 2639 mt. of the Tizi n’Uguent Zegsaoun,
then descending through a long valley to re-emerge just north of Tamtattouchte.”
““Many nomadic Berbers living in Ait Haini reach summer pastures with their large flocks of sheep and tent.
If you stop close, they may invite you into their tents to have a cup of tea and tell their stories…”
“Tinerhir is known for a palm trees oasis on the eastern city border, where under their big green umbrella you can discover kasbah ruins, the Medersa Ikelane dating back to the nineteenth century (to recognize it, look for the white brick dome).
From Tinerhir towards Merzouga – Tafilalt
“Located south of Erfoud, the leathery Tafilalt – once was the main arrival point of the caravans that crossed the lucrative Salt Road and the original homeland of the Alawite ruling dynasty – was one of the last regions to pass under French control during the protectorate period. , because its tribes opposed the invaders with sporadic episodes of resistance until 1932. Two years later Morocco was officially declared ‘pacified’, but for greater security Erfoud was built to accommodate the garrison that was supposed to oversee the Tafilalt tribes.”
Erfoud is located in the heart of the main fossil zone of Morocco and the layers of the Paleozoic period.””
Erg Chebbi Desert
“Despite its continuously changing shape, the 28 km of extension from North to South and the height that can reach 160 m., the Erg Chebbi can appear unpretentious compared to the large expanses of sand of Algeria, Libya and of Namibia, but still boasts an extraordinarily suggestive landscape”.
Night in Tent
————————————–[optional transfer by dromedary to the camp, dinner, night and breakfast – 4 × 4 off-road return on dunes].
- Rissani e Sijilmassa > break
- Gorges du Ziz
- Midlet >
- Aouli > visit to the abandoned mine and surroundings
In Rissani you can still hear the echo of the past, where endless negotiations are held regarding birds, sheep and desert jewels. Do not miss the large square where from distant places and countries, on the back of a donkey or a mule, people park their quadruped to go shopping or bargain animals. A visit to the market is another unmissable experience .
“Coming from Merzouga, shortly after Rissani you meet the ruins of Sijilmassa, the capital of the first independent Islamic principality of the South. The foundation of Sijilmassa is lost in myth, but by the end of the 8th century it had already become an important post office, along the Transaharian commercial routes. From Sijilmassa, caravans made up of over 20,000 camels left for the remote salt mines of the Taodeni and Tagahaza desert (today’s Mali), and then continued towards Niger and Ghana, there a pound of Sahara salt was exchanged with an ounce of African gold
During the 12th century, Sudanese gold, refined in Sijilmassa, had now reached Europe, where it was melted to be used to produce coins. In the 18th century the Alawite sultan Moulay Ismail had Sijilmassa rebuilt, only to see it conquered and destroyed in 1818 by nomad warriors ait atta. Today the Sijilmassa site is a stretch of ruins, which preserves only two decorated portals and some other partially standing structure.”
We recommend a visit to the giant Kasbah alawita Ksar El Fida, a few kilometers east of Rissani.
Midlet – Aouli abandoned mines | mountain bike route [optional]
“Midlet’s position on the apex of the Eastern High Atlas makes this town convenient for exploring the region. Located 25 km from Midlet, an interesting excursion allows you to admire the Gorge d’Aouli. These cliffs excavated from the Moulaya have been exploited until recently for their lead, copper and silver deposits. Abandoned mines are visible and closed.”
Continuing along the road, you meet Aouli which is the background of the spectacular river gorge. You could make it on a mountain bike (rental exclude)..
Night at Midlet[dinner, night and breakfast]
or other accommodation – availability to be checked..
- Midlet > departure at 8 am
- Azrou – Cedar forest – Middle Atlas
- Meknes > arrival at noon
- Fes > arrival in the evening
Meknes | Imperial City | World Heritage Site
“Among the four imperial cities of Morocco, Meknes is the smallest (650,000 inhab.). A small medina and majestic palaces reminiscent of its ancient function of the sultanate of Morocco, Sultan Moualy Ismail, author of the days of glory of Meknes.”
The Meknes Medina’s heart is the Place el-Hedim, the large square facing Bab el-Mansour (not to be missed).
In Meknes there are numerous ‘qissariat’ (covered markets). Two of which are specialized in fabrics and carpets, which are auctioned every Sunday morning in an atmosphere of grade confusion.
Meknes is a small city that can be visited in about 3 hours, being the medina of modest size.
What you can do and see:
get lost in the Medina
Bab el – Mansour
Moulay Ismail Mausoleum
Madrasa Bou Inania
Dar Jamai Museum – wonderful collection of antique carpets
Arrival at Fes
Moha will take you to the Riad in Fes, towards evening, where he will conclude the time you have spent together.
Fes | Imperial City | Medina World Heritage Site.[Breakfast and night] or other accommodation – availability to be checked.
The transfer from the Riad to Fes airport can be booked directly at the reception. The cost of the transfer is excluded from the proposal. Fes airport from the medina is about 20 km away, so it is advisable to leave the Riad well in advance.
The city visit is unplanned and only in this way can you retain and preserve your personal story; Fes is a different Imperial city, different from Marrakech, on the border between the Berber and the Muslim world, where history is still written for Moroccan people.
Do not miss a visit inside the tanneries. It is possible to do it with a guide that you will find on location, if you manage!
The Marrakech full experience tour can be modified in its duration according to your availability.