DAY 1: Tuesday, February 7, 2023 DEPARTURE
Departure from the USA for an evening flight to Europe.
Transfer to a flight to Fez, Morocco.
Airfare is not included. See our recommendations to join the group and start the trip in Fez.
DAY 2: Wednesday, February 8, 2023 ARRIVAL IN FEZ (D)
Connect to your flight to Fez. Upon arrival, meet your expert Moroccan guide, your coach, and your driver.
Check-in for two nights at Palais Amani, a deluxe Riad in the heart of the ancient medina of Fez and the former residence of Fez’s most prominent family.
In the afternoon, start the visit to our first Imperial City. Meet your travel companions at the internationally-renowned Modernist Moroccan restaurant, Nur, and meet Chef Najat Kaanache for a welcome dinner.
DAY 3: Thursday, February 9, 2023 FEZ (B, L, D)
Full-day sightseeing in Fez, the spiritual and cultural capital of Morocco. Discover the treasures of the city: the Royal Palace, the walled Medina, the Jewish Mellah. Sample the local food specialties for lunch as you stroll through the maze of thousands of cobbled narrow alleys.
Evening hands-on cooking class in Palais Amani. Dinner is part of the cooking class.
DAY 4: Friday, February 10, 2023 MEKNES-RABAT (B, L, D)
Leave for Meknes after breakfast and tour the 2nd Imperial City of your trip. Visit the Mausoleum of Moulay Ismail, the 18th century Warrior King of Morocco and Hri Souani, the Royal Stables of Moulay Ismail.
Lunch at nearby Domaine de la Zouina Winery, at the foot of the Middle Atlas Mountains, in the largest wine region of Morocco.
Proceed to Rabat, our third Imperial City, founded in the 12th century by the Almohad dynasty. The administrative center during the time of the French Protectorate, Rabat became the country’s capital in 1955.
Check in to the majestic Sofitel for 1 night after a brief orientation tour on arrival.
Enjoy a special evening at a delightfully-atmospheric restaurant beloved by locals.
DAY 5: Saturday, February 11, 2023 EL JADIDA (B, L)
We’ll continue our visit to Rabat before driving to Casablanca where we’ll visit the magnificent new Hassan II Mosque built right over the Atlantic Ocean: the 7th largest mosque in the world.
Lunch in Casablanca along the seaside Corniche, at a seafood restaurant.
Following the highway south, we arrive in El Jadida, known as Mazagan in the time of the Portuguese who fortified the old town.
Check in to our hotel for 1 night. Dinner on your own: choose among many possibilities right at the hotel.
DAY 6: Sunday, February 12, 2023 SAFI, ESSAOUIRA (B, L)
Morning guided tour of El Jadida to see the 16th century Old City Cistern which provided water to the inhabitants of the fortress.
Continue our drive along the Atlantic Coast to Safi.
Lunch in Safi at a lovely restaurant a few steps away from the potter’s district. Safi is the ceramic capital of Morocco where highly-skilled craftspeople make and display their creations.
Continue to Essaouira, the former Portuguese outpost of Mogador, and check-in to the Relais & Châteaux property in the heart of the old Medina, L’Heure Bleu Palais, for 3 nights.
Dinner on your own in Essaouira with many choices within steps of our hotel.
DAY 7: Monday, February 13, 2023 ESSAOUIRA (B, L, D)
Morning tour of Essaouira, known as “The Bride of the Atlantic” and long home to a large Jewish community. This small town has a significant fishing port and a history going back to the Carthaginians. The white and blue facades of the houses, the medieval ramparts, the beach, the medina, and the Jewish mellah with its many old synagogues make it unique. It is also the home of our local guide.
You’ll see the woodworker’s souk where artists create marquetry inlaid with ebony, walnut, and citrus wood, along with mother of pearl, camel bone, and threads of silver and copper, and the silver cooperative in this city is renowned for the skill of its silversmiths.
Lunch nearby at the beautiful organic winery of Val d’Argan where all the vegetables come from their own garden and the chef is a woman.
On the way back, discover the use of hand-pressed argan oil and its secrets at a cooperative run entirely by women
Dinner will be a selection of Spanish-style tapas at a unique restaurant inside the medina.
DAY 8: Tuesday, February 14, 2023 ESSAOUIRA (B, L, D)
Half-day excursion to the nearby argan tree forest to see the famous goats climbing the trees–these are not the fake display of goats in trees you might see at the side of the road, which are tied to small platforms. These goats learn from their mothers how to climb up into the argan trees to get their food. We will walk through the forest and learn about this mystical emblem of the region and of the Berber people.
Lunch could not be more local as we visit a private home.
Free time to stroll the streets of the Medina in the afternoon.
Great food and great entertainment are the plans for tonight’s dinner at a cabaret/gallery, the perfect place to celebrate Valentine's Day!
Overnight at L’Heure Bleu Palais
DAY 9: Wednesday, February 15, 2023 MARRAKECH (B, L, D)
Morning drive to reach Marrakech for lunch at the new Culinary Art Museum, located in a beautiful old palace, which tells the history and story behind Moroccan cuisine through live demonstrations and exhibits.
Check-in to the beautiful boutique hotel, La Maison Arabe, a restored palace where each room is unique, for 3 nights.
Drive to the Agafay Desert, a 45-minute trip for a Berber experience under the stars. Dinner and camel ride at Agafay and then return to our hotel.
DAY 10: Thursday, February 16, 2023 MARRAKECH (B, L, D)
Morning guided tour of the amazing city of Marrakech. Visit the souks, the Berber pharmacy, and spice store, tasting local specialties along the way with our local guide. We will visit the Badai Palace, the synagogue, and the Elbacha Museum.
Hammam experience (steam, scrub, and massage) at the hotel for half the group; free time for relaxation or shopping for the others.
Hands-on cooking class followed by dinner La Maison Arabe.
DAY 11: Friday, February 17, 2023 MARRAKECH (B, L, D)
Continue our tour of Marrakech starting at the exquisite Jardins Majorelle and the Yves Saint Laurent Museum next door. Lunch in the Medina at the French-Moroccan cafe, Le Jardin, surrounded by plants and birds.
Afternoon Hammam at the hotel for half the group; free time for the others.
Visit the world-famous Jemaa El Fna square at sunset and see all manner of street performers including snake-charmers, musicians, and storytellers.
Dinner at Al Fassia Restaurant, an all-women enterprise supporting women’s training and independence.
DAY 12: Saturday, February 18, 2023 RETURN FROM MARRAKECH (B)
Group transfer to the airport for your return flight to the USA from Marrakech Airport.
- Visit the four Imperial Cities: Fez, Meknes, Rabat & Marrakech
- Wine tasting and lunch at two wineries
- Explore the Portuguese cities of the Atlantic Coast: El Jadida, Safi & Essaouira
- Guided food & culture tour in the ancient medina of Fez and bustling Marrakech
- See artisans at work: ceramics, woodwork, silver
- Tour the magnificent Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca, a rare opportunity
- Learn about Morocco’s fascinating Jewish history and visit Jewish landmarks
- Hands-on cooking classes in Fez and Marrakech
- Learn about Berber culture, see the goats in the Argan trees, and taste argan oil
- Stories & history of Moroccan Cuisine at the new Culinary Art Museum
- Visit a traditional Berber pharmacy/spice shop with a talk about local remedies
- Ten night’s accommodation, double occupancy
- Deluxe properties at Riads (restored palaces) and Relais Chateaux
- Daily breakfast at the hotels
- Nine lunches and eight dinners at restaurants, cooking classes, or wineries
- Bottled water on the coach and with meals; coffee and tea with meals
- Expert commentary, culinary advice, and background by Chef Aliza Green
- Travel by private deluxe motorcoach
- Experienced Moroccan guide from arrival to departure
- Meals at carefully-selected restaurants on this exclusive tour
- Baggage porterage at hotels
Services Not Included
International flights arriving in Fez, departing from Marrakesch
Single supplement + $1495
Private transfers between the airport and the hotel, or vice versa, in case of different times of arrival and departure from the group
Other meals except the ones indicated as included
Beverages with some of the meals
Travel insurance and trip cancellation insurance
Gratuities to guides and drivers
Any other item not specified in the itinerary
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