Discover Morocco from its ancient cities to the Sahara Desert on a Tailor-Made Journey. You can explore the imperial cities of Marrakech, Meknes,  and Fez, and venture to ancient kasbahs and everyday villages along the “Route of a Thousand Kasbahs”.

Request a Tailor-Made Itinerary Request Itinerary or Ask Us A Question or Call 855-215-8690
 Courtyard of a madrassah in Fez
 Dunes of the Sahara
 Traditional spices of Morocco
 Traditional mint tea
 Colorful Moroccan ceramics
 Collage of doors, Morocco
 Colorful architecture in Rabat
 Roman ruins of Volubilis
 Roman mosaics at Volubilis
 Traditional architectural design in Fez
 Entrance to the Royal Palace, Fez
 Gateway to the Atlas Mountains
 Berber village in the Atlas Mountains
 Riding camels in the Sahara
 Ait Ben Haddou
 Kasbah in Sourqua
 Djemaa El Fna Square and Koutoubia Mosque, Marrakech
 Koutoubia Mosque, Marrakech

Morocco's Imperial Cities and the Sahara : A Tailor-Made Journey

11 days from $6,595

Discover Morocco from its ancient cities to the Sahara Desert on a Tailor-Made Journey. You can explore the imperial cities of Marrakech, Meknes,  and Fez, and venture to ancient kasbahs and everyday villages along the “Route of a Thousand Kasbahs”.

Request a Tailor-Made Itinerary

or call 855-215-8690

Overview

When you travel on a tailor-made journey, you will receive a Friends of the Smithsonian Archivist Circle membership*. Benefits include:

  • A Smithsonian annual engagement calendar with full-color images of exceptional art and artifacts, mailed in the fall.
  • Subscription to Smithsonian, the award-winning magazine of the arts, sciences, and history. Early access to Smithsonian magazine produced events.
  • Invitations to four exclusive virtual programs for Friends of the Smithsonian members with Smithsonian experts.
  • 10% discount in Smithsonian Museum Stores (good on purchases up to $200); 10% discount with the SmithsonianStore.com, and Folkways Recordings
  • Recognition in the Friends of the Smithsonian Honor Roll, displayed electronically on the National Mall in the Membership Reception Center
  • Special member rate for tickets to the Smithsonian’s IMAX® theaters and Einstein Planetarium.
  • Free admission to the Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum in New York City.
  • A complimentary copy of the annual Smithsonian museum guidebook.
  • Invitation to a special welcome event for new members at a Smithsonian venue.

*Offer only available for first-time Smithsonian members. 

Sample Itinerary

Day 1 – Marrakech

Arrive in Marrakech and meet your driver for a private transfer to the hotel. Relax at the hotel or take a walk to get acquainted with this effervescent city. (B)

Day 2 – Marrakech

Join a guide for a private tour of the historic sites of Marrakech, including the beautiful El Bahia Palace and the Saadian Tombs. See Koutoubia Mosque, and venture into the souk, where merchants hawk everything from spices and nougat to cut brass lanterns and kitchenware. As night falls, visit the Djemaa el Fna, the main square and cultural heart of Marrakech, where locals flock to be entertained by snake charmers, storytellers, acrobats, and more. Wander through the lively food stalls to see what’s cooking, and find a spot on one of the café terraces that surround the square for a great view of the action. If you wish, return to your riad to learn how to cook Moroccan dishes during a cooking class with the chef. (B)

Day 3 – Marrakech

Today is unscheduled so that you can experience Marrakech as you wish on your final day. We recommend a visit to the Jardin Majorelle, where you can stroll through the exotic botanical gardens of Yves Saint Laurent and visit a gem of a museum dedicated to Berber culture. Located near the French Quarter, the garden offers a wonderful break from the hustle and bustle of Marrakech, and a delightful place to stop for lunch. If you wish, learn how to cook Moroccan dishes during a cooking class with a local chef.  (B)

Day 4 – Atlas Mountains / Skoura

This morning, experience astonishing landscapes as you set out along “The Road of a Thousand Kasbahs." Travel over the scenic Atlas Mountain range, then detour to the historic kasbahs of Telouet and Ait Ben Haddou to learn about these ancient caravans stops along the Trans-Saharan trade route. Continue to your accommodation in Skoura, where you will stay for two nights. (B,D)

Day 5 – Skoura

After several busy days, enjoy a day at leisure to relax by the pool at your hotel, or venture out into the surrounding red-rock country to explore oasis villages and historic kasbahs. (B,D)

Day 6 – Todra Gorge / Skoura

Drive through the Dades Valley, with a visit to the Todra Gorge enroute to the oasis town of Erfoud on the edge of the Sahara. Travel by 4x4 vehicle to a traditional Berber-style tented camp, then set out on a short camel trek to the top of the dunes to watch the sunset. Enjoy a chance to stargaze under dark desert skies tonight. (B,D)

Day 7 – Fez

Experience an astonishing range of landscapes today as you drive north, passing through the lush cedar forests of the Middle Atlas Mountains and the dry, scrub-covered High Atlas Mountains on the way to the ancient city of Fez. Settle into your traditional courtyard home, or riad, in the Fez medina this afternoon. (B)

Day 8 – Fez

Delve into enchanting Fez on a full-day tour, discovering Fes Jdid, the 13th-century so-called “new city,” as well as the legendary souks of the old city. Peer into magnificent mosques and madrassahs to see their carved Moorish arches and mosaics. Watch artisans plying timeless trades, from tanners straddling vats of lye to ceramicists painting delicate designs in glaze. At the end of the tour, sip a mint tea on the rooftop terrace at your riad, listening to the call to prayer echo over this medieval city at dusk. (B)

Day 9 – Fez / Meknes / Volubilis

Visit the imperial city of Meknes, which became Morocco’s capital in the late 17th century during the reign of Moulay Ismail. Also a World Heritage site, Meknes still boasts its original fortifications as well as the stunning Royal Stables, a remarkable feat of architecture and engineering built to house some 12,000 horses. Continue to Volubilis and enjoy a tour of this ancient Roman city, where colonnades and an impressive arch stand out on the surrounding plains. (B)

Day 10 – Casablanca

Depart by road for Casablanca, upon arrival visit the Hassan II mosque, one of the largest mosques in the world—and one of the few mosques in Morocco that allow non-Muslims to enter the interior. While the mosque was built in the 1990s, it is a stunning tribute to traditional Moorish architecture, with exquisite mosaics and carved stucco as well as remarkable technological innovations. (B)

Day 11 – Casablanca to the U.S.

After breakfast, transfer to the airport this morning for your return flight to the U.S. (B)

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)

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