Many people associate Morocco with the crumbling kasbahs, palm oases and Saharan dunes of the deep south, but the north of the country offers an equally enticing, albeit very different, experience. The cities of Rabat, Tangier and Fez are not only steeped in history, but each has a character of its own that helps to make this a special journey. Add to this the country’s prettiest town, Chefchaouen and the most southerly ruins of the Roman Empire and you have a complete and thoroughly absorbing journey. Starting out from Casablanca the “northern loop” makes its first stop in Rabat where you will sample what the country’s capital has to offer in its historic monuments and coastal location. Tangier, Morocco’s gateway to Europe is a melting pot of different cultural influences and remains a unique city. Its medina and kasbah are perched loftily over the Straits of Gibraltar, and wandering the streets of the old town evokes memories of the golden age of the Beatnik generation where writers and artists flocked to the city. On from Tangier, a journey through the untouristy Rif Mountains takes you to the blue-washed, Andalusian-style bijou of Chefchaouen, a surreal maze of mountainside streets and vibrant squares. Fez is the connoisseur’s choice with regard to Moroccan history and culture and the city can’t help but make a lasting impression, with its magical palaces, its winding streets where donkeys are still an important mode of transport, and its evocative sunsets enjoyed from the rooftop of your guesthouse accommodation. From here you can visit the Barbary apes of the Middle Atlas, together with former capital Meknes, and the wondrous Roman ruins of Volubilis on the sweeping plains around Moulay Idriss, before transferring to Casablanca for your flight home.
– Arrive Casablanca, meet English-speaking driver and transfer to Rabat for an overnight stay on a bed and breakfast basis in a traditional “riad” guesthouse.
– Morning visit to the Rabat’s principle monuments and afternoon continue to Tangier. Stay overnight in a guesthouse perched high above the Straits of Gibraltar.
– Morning in Tangier, exploring the city’s cultural heritage, and afternoon transfer to Chefchaouen via the Rif Mountains. Two nights in Morocco’s prettiest town.
– Explore the town and the surrounding mountains with a guide. Stay overnight in the Chefchaouen medina.
– Continue to Fez, afternoon exploring the extensive medina and three nights spent in the heart of the medina – a UNESCO World Heritage site.
– Day in the Middle Atlas Mountains visiting the famous cedar forests, home of Barbary apes, and some of the unusual villages of the region. Overnight in Fez.
– Exploring the Fez hinterland, including visits to Meknes and the Roman ruins of Volubilis, together with the holy hilltop village of Moulay Idriss. Overnight in Fez.
– Transfer to Casablanca for onward flight, visiting the Hassan II mosque, time permitting.
Prices from £1295 per person based on two travelling.
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