Soak up Moroccan culture on this trip plan that features unique experiences (think a bespoke hammam experience, desert glamping, and hot air balloon ride) and the best of luxury pampering. You'll stay at five-star hotels and riads, where you can relax after days of private guided tours and hands-on cooking workshops. Wander medieval medinas, visit artisan workshops, and discover picturesque towns, ancient ruins, and incredible food. 

Highlights

  • Discover Morocco's Imperial Cities and the blue-hued Chefchaouen
  • Stay at five-star hotels and luxury riads
  • Take a private cooking class with a master chef
  • Stay overnight in a swanky camp in the Agafay desert
  • Fly over Marrakech in a hot air balloon

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Afternoon Arrival in Casablanca & Hassan II Mosque Casablanca
Day 2 Casablanca to Chefchaouen - A City Awash in Blue Chefchaouen
Day 3 Fes - Exploring the Imperial City and Medieval Medina & Hammam Fes
Day 4 Fes to Marrakech - Back Through The Imperial Cities Marrakech
Day 5 Marrakech - Medina & City Tour Marrakech
Day 6 Marrakesh - Morning Hot Air Balloon Ride & Afternoon Leisure Marrakech
Day 7 Night in the Agafay Desert Agafay
Day 8 Marrakech to Casablanca - the Atlantic Coast & Portuguese Ports Casablanca
Day 9 Depart from Casablanca  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Afternoon Arrival in Casablanca & Hassan II Mosque

The Hassan II Mosque at sunset
The Hassan II Mosque at sunset

Welcome to Morocco!

Your adventure begins when you land in Casablanca in the afternoon. Your private driver will pick you up from the airport and begin your tour with a visit to the enormous Hassan II Mosque, home to the tallest minaret in the world. This landmark not only showcases the best of Moroccan architecture but is the only mosque in Morrocco whose interior is open to non-Muslims. So step inside and lose yourself in the phenomenal craftsmanship, detailing, and divine vibes of this incredible site. 

Take the rest of the evening to relax at your five-star hotel. Your dinner tonight is on your own, but you'll be armed with recommendations from your driver, who will guide you to any number of luxurious restaurants around Morocco's economic capital. 

Driving time: approximately 2 hours

Day 2: Casablanca to Chefchaouen - A City Awash in Blue

Blue-hued Chefchaouen
Blue-hued Chefchaouen

Today, you will make your way to Chefchaouen. This little city is a visual delight in blue; walls, doors, windows, stairways, alleyways, and archways – everything is a combination of pastel sky blue and deeper, more vivid hues. Chefchaouen is located in the heart of the Rif Mountains and is famous for its sense of "old Morocco."

En route, you'll visit the imposing Hassan Tower monument, one of the most magnificent buildings of the Almohad Dynasty. A curiosity of a landmark, Hassan Tower is a minaret of a 12th-century mosque, a lofty construction project that was ultimately abandoned. All that remains today is the red sandstone tower, standing at 145 feet (44 m), and about 200 columns where a more extensive complex was meant to be. After you wander the ruins, check out the Mausoleum of Mohamed V, which serves as a stellar taste of the intricate tilework, mosaics, and craftsmanship that you'll see throughout the land. 

Lunch will be on your own with recommendations from your driver. After, you can explore the blue-painted Oudaya neighborhood perched above the Atlantic Ocean. The picturesque charm of this neighborhood is the perfect primer for what lies ahead on your journey today.

From Rabat, you'll head into the Rif Mountains to the Blue City of Chefchaouen. Check-in to your opulent riad and relax or head out to explore this laid back town at your own pace. Outa el-Hammam, the main square, is a place to watch the world go by.

Walk up the tiny higgledy-piggledy alleys away from the touristed areas to find a taste of local life. This is a great place to shop for handcrafted wool garments, woven blankets, cedarwood furniture, and other artisanal work from Northern Morocco.  Be sure to order a Maqlouba (upside-down) coffee and enjoy it while watching the local women retrieve water and wash their laundry in the nearby spring. Dinner will be on your own at one of the town's wonderful eateries.

Driving time: approximately 5 hours

Day 3: Fes - Exploring the Imperial City and Medieval Medina & Hammam

A view over the Tanneries Chouara, Fes
A view over the Tanneries Chouara, Fes

Your tour guide will meet you after breakfast to start your day of exploration in the Fes Medina. This UNESCO protected medina is full of arms-width alleyways and donkey-width roads. Your Fes born-and-bred guide will share hidden stories and show you secluded corners of the medina, and you will observe both the minutia of daily life and the magnificence of Fes's madrasas and palaces.  Your guide will help you know fabulous Fes as only a true local can. Be sure to ask your guide for lunch suggestions. There are many luxurious restaurants hidden behind unassuming doorways. 

Fes is a hub of the Moroccan crafts and arts, and you will meet artisans to learn about the history and importance of their trades. You will visit tanneries and mosaic workshops to observe traditional crafting methods still in use today. 

You will finish the day by bathing in an authentic Moroccan hammam. You will learn about the traditions and history of the hammam and you will enjoy a rejuvenating experience at one of Fes's most highly sought after spa experiences. Most hammams provide a variety of services including massages, baths, and an extensive treatment menu using locally sourced products like argan oil. 

Day 4: Fes to Marrakech - Back Through The Imperial Cities

Jamaa el Fna Square
Jamaa el Fna Square

You’ll depart from Fes this morning and travel back through the most well-known Imperial Cities of the kingdom, Rabat and Casablanca. You will stop in the latter for lunch with recommendations from your driver. Take advantage of your perch on the sea with some incredibly fresh fish from the Atlantic, prepared with traditional Moroccan flair. 

After lunch, it's back on the road; you'll travel across the plains to Marrakech, nicknamed the Red City for the vermillion-hued clay used to construct its buildings. Check into your riad and, if you like, spend the rest of the afternoon at a slower pace.

In the early evening, the main square, Jemaa el Fna, comes alive with musicians, performers, snake charmers, games, food stalls and more. Jump into the spectacle and taste the delights from street vendors or, if you want to enjoy from a distance, sit down at a cafe overlooking the square; that way you can watch the show over a wonderful meal. Whichever dining option you choose, you'll be treated with fantastic flavors, as Marrakech is regarded as Morocco's culinary capital. Enjoy!

Driving time: approximately 6 hours

Day 5: Marrakech - Medina & City Tour

Koutoubia Mosque, Marrakech
Koutoubia Mosque, Marrakech

After breakfast, meet your local private guide who will lead you through the stunning old city of Marrakech. As you explore this UNESCO World Heritage Site, you will come across lively souks and maze-like alleys. You're sure to be dazzled by displays of djellabas, brightly colored babouches, intricately-pierced lanterns, conical mounds of exotic spices, and the intense hubbub of medina life. Along the way, your knowledgable and energetic guide will regale you with the history and stories of the Medina, the Souk, and the Mellah neighborhoods of the Red City. Your guide will also have some great recommendations for the best places to grab lunch!

In the afternoon you'll continue your private tour, exploring places like the Bahia and El Badii Palaces, and the Saadian Tombs. You'll also see the Majorelle Gardens, an iconic garden retreat built over forty years by French painter Jacques Majorelle and later inhabited by famed designer Yves Saint Laurent. Stroll through two and a half acres of peaceful water gardens, visit Morocco’s only museum dedicated entirely to Berber art and culture, and explore Yves Saint Laurent’s gallery, all within the walls of this stunning urban oasis.

Day 6: Marrakesh - Morning Hot Air Balloon Ride & Afternoon Leisure

Soaring over Marrakech
Soaring over Marrakech

Marrakesh sits where the High Atlas Mountains meet an expansive plain. What better way to observe these stunningly contrasted landscapes than taking a hot air balloon ride over Marrakesh at sunrise? You will wake up very early this morning so you can drive to the mountains and board your hot air balloon. Once you are aloft, you will be able to watch the sun climb over the highest mountains in North Africa and illuminate the red city far below. After returning to the ground you will be treated to a Berber breakfast and return to Marrakesh.

You will have the rest of the day to yourself. You may want to visit the Majorelle Gardens. This iconic garden retreat was built over forty years by French painter Jacques Majorelle and later inhabited by Yves Saint Laurent. Amble through two and a half acres of peaceful water gardens, visit Morocco’s only museum dedicated entirely to Berber art and culture, and explore Yves Saint Laurent’s gallery, all within the walls of this urban oasis.  

Dinner is on your own tonight.

Day 7: Night in the Agafay Desert

The sand dunes in the Agafay Desert
The sand dunes in the Agafay Desert

After breakfast, you will have a free morning in Marrakech. Enjoy one last lunch in town, then escape from the hustle and bustle of city life for a night in a luxurious desert tent. 

You will travel from Marrakech to the Agafay desert at the foot of the mountains. Although this desert features more stone than the Sahara,  you're sure to be swept away by the drama and romance of the vistas and vibes here. Spend your afternoon riding camels or taking 4x4 rides around the desert before enjoying a traditional candle-lit dinner in a beautifully appointed luxury tent.  

Be sure to look at the stars before going to sleep. There are some beautiful views this far out in your remote location!

Driving time: approximately one hour

Day 8: Marrakech to Casablanca - the Atlantic Coast & Portuguese Ports

El Jadida
El Jadida

Today, you will leave early to head to Casablanca via the coastal route and will visit two old  Portuguese fortified cities along the way. Your first stop is El Jadida, where you will tour the hauntingly beautiful Portuguese cistern. You can also stay to walk the ramparts and explore the Church of the Assumption.

Next is Azemour, which has inspired many Moroccan artists over the decades, some of whom have chosen to live here. Life here is still traditional despite its proximity to the cosmopolitan art market of Casablanca. You'll find that the crumbling 16th-century medina squeezed between the Oud Er-Rbia (Mother of Spring River) and the ocean provide plenty of artistic inspiration.

As you travel, take advantage of the Atlantic's incredible bounty and savor a traditional fish lunch. Your driver can take you to the local authentic fish markets, where unassuming food stalls serve some of the freshest grilled and fried seafood you can find. The traditional way to eat here is to buy the fish yourself in the market and have the grillmasters cook it for a small fee. You can also choose to although order fish straight from many of these food stalls. 

Once you arrive in Casablanca, check into your chic downtown hotel, then see how the locals live with an exploration of Casablanca's trendier neighborhoods. Start your discovery in Maarif, home of the French-style eponymous market, and Ain Diab, a prime beachfront community that is home to the Morocco Mall and miles of walking paths. The waterfront, or Corniche, is a great place to people watch, especially when the entire city comes out to promenade right before sunset. 

Driving time: approximately 5 hours

Day 9: Depart from Casablanca

Farewell Casablanca!
Farewell Casablanca!

It's time to say goodbye to beautiful Morocco. Depending on the time of your departure flight, you may be able to do some last-minute sightseeing in Casablanca or enjoy tea at one of the traditional cafés. When the time comes, you'll head to Casablanca's Mohammed V International Airport for your flight.