Grand Morocco Tour: North to South - 10 Days - Sep 26 - Oct 5, 2019

Traveler: Susan L. - Local specialist: Brahim Bourrich

Brahim was splendid in helping us organize our trip. Particularly helpful was the tipping guide, that served as our bible throughout the trip. I am glad that he strongly recommended the camel ride in the desert. May I say that we were happy to have missed the sunset ride. Rising at 5 am and seeing the amazing starts, and enjoying the peace and quiet of early morning; plus, having a private ride of just we two with Mustafa our camel driver was amazing, and by far my favorite moment in the trip.

Our driver, Amine, was wonderful. He was particularly accessible to me, as I speak French, and we became closer when I discovered this. He was helpful and went out of his way to keep us in the loop and lend us a hand at the end of the trip.

Our nature and city guide in Chefchouan, Mohammed, was excellent. Very knowledgeable of the region and solicitous of us all along the way.

Our guide in Fés, Hamed (?) was very good as well. Particularly so when helping us understand bargaining in the souks. We had good discussions with him about the history of the people in this area

Marrakech was interesting - our guide was helpful in getting us into the different sites, but I would have preferred him standing in line ( over an hour) in the mausoleum there, and letting us watch the video of the restauration. We only got to see a bit of that, as we'd spent so much time waiting in line. Again, he was very knowledgeable. By this time we were very tired of the souks, and cut that part short.

Finally, our Berber guide and host was very nice. We were a bit surprised that we did not actually eat with the family. But we were happy, at least, to have been introduced to them.

I understand that the stops at the different cooperatives are meant to break up the long days of driving. However, I feel that the guides /driver did not make it clear whether we should be bargaining or not at the cooperatives. In the souks, it was clear, that bargaining was what was happening. I think it would be helpful to clarify how one pays in cooperatives a bit with the clients.

We loved our hotels with the exception of the Ouarzazate hotel (Riad Bouche d'Or) The room we had smelled of the sewer, and the bed we had to share was very small. Most of the time our rooms had twin beds that were very comfortable. All the hotels were charmingly decorated, but the Chefchouan Riad (Dar Meziana) was just gorgeous, and the Marrakech hotel (Riad l'Heure d'Eté) so comfortable, and the staff there the most helpful of all we encountered.