Morocco: Magic of the Orient Contact us
Shai Bar Ilan invites you to enter a world of mystery. Morocco is an initiation into the magic of the Islamic, Arabic, African world of medinas, minarets, desert and mountain, and yet retains a European patina. Imbibe the spirit of Morocco; wander the streets of the great cities. Fez is a stunning array of medieval buildings; the world-famous souk of Marrakech sells a bewildering array of goods; Casablanca, is a thriving commercial center, and Rabat reflects its modern French origins. The snow-capped Atlas Mountains lie inland. Beyond them are the fringes of the parched Sahara. Whether scaling distant ridges, haggling for exotic artifacts, gazing at ancient wonders or marveling at the pink of a desert dawn, in Morocco, you will be mesmerized.
Day 1 Monday: Casablanca - Meknes – Fes
Arrival to Casablanca the most important city in Morocco - Casablanca. We will travel to the city Meknes which was built by Sultan Mulai Ismail in the 17th century and which is fondly known as the Versailles of Morocco. Meknes was a
lively Jewish center until its Jewish inhabitants made aliyah with the founding of the State of Israel. We’ll tour the many sites that adorned the city in the times of Sultan Ismail, including the famous Mansur Gate. After our visit we will continue Fes for overnight.
Day 2 Tuesday: Fes
Today will be mostly devoted to the religious and cultural capital of Morocco, which combines old and new. There will be a guided tour with a local English speaking guide. The area of Fes is today a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its narrow lanes with their workshops remain as they have been for hundreds of years. We’ll visit the square of the Royal Palace, which is alongside the Jewish quarter – the oldest Melah in Morocco, as well as the Jewish cemetery and the
Abu Danan Synagogue in the Melah. We’ll view the Dynastic Tombs and city as a whole from the green roofs and walls of Fez. From the rooftops we’ll see the tannery quarter where hides are treated, and we’ll visit a ceramics factory where
we’ll learn about this unique local craft. The city’s ramparts surround a maze of winding alleys and a bustling market divided according the guilds of its artisans.
Day 3 Wednesday: Fes - Ifran- Midelt – Erfoud
After breakfast we travel to Ifran, a Swiss-type Moroccan town, located at 1600 meters above sea level. The entire area is surrounded by magnificent monkeyinhabited cedar forests. The town also hosts the Peace University, where
members of the three monotheistic religions were supposed to have studied
together. Follow the old caravan trail south. Stop for lunch in Midelt, a market town set in the high plains between the Middle and High Atlas mountain ranges. Continue along the palm-fringed Ziz Valley, famous for date cultivation, to the Tafilalt oasis on the edge of the Sahara Desert. Your day ends in Erfoud, where beautiful views across the shimmering Sahara have made this a popular location with filmmakers.
Day 4 Thursday: Erfoud - Merzouga dunes - Todra Gorge - Ouarzazate
We‘ll get up very early this morning and head out by Jeep to the Merzouga dunes, the largest dunes in the world, part of the western Sahara, from where we‘ll view a fantastic desert sunrise (weather permitting), and then return to Erfoud for breakfast. After breakfast we travel to the Todra Gorge at the southern edge of the High Atlas Mountains. We’ll see some magnificent scenery, dotted with orchards and Berber villages. We‘ll examine how the locals store water for the long dry season. We will continue to Tinghir, one of the most beautiful oases in southern Morocco. Toward evening we‘ll arrive to the French built regional city Ouarzazate. Well see the traditional villages and picturesque Kasbahs which are
often used as backgrounds in the production of Hollywood movies.
Day 5 Friday: Ouarzazate – Aït Benhaddou- Marrakesh
Today we will Visit Aït Ben Haddou in the High Atlas Mountains. Continue through
the Tizi-n-Tichka Pass to Marrakesh - the Red City. Like many other former imperial cities in Morocco, Marrakesh is comprised of an old fortified city, the médina, and an adjacent modern city. Marrakesh is home to Morocco׳s largest traditional market (souk) where you might like to do some shopping. We׳ll arrive to our hotel and preparing for Shabbat.
Day 6 Shabbat: Marrakesh
After Shabbat services and lunch we‘ll take a walking tour. In the evening, we׳ll all go out to see Fantasia – a Berber folklore show.
Day 7 Sunday: Marrakesh - Ourika valley - Marrakesh
The Red City or the Pearl of the South are but two of the names given to Marrakesh, the most beautiful city in Morocco that lies at the foot of the Atlas Mountains. The city is divided in two: the new and the ancient. We’ll visit the Almanara Gardens and the city center with its lively markets. We’ll pass through the Melah, and stop by the Koutoubia Mosque, visit a Berber pharmacy and the Bahia Palace. We’ll visit a Melah where Jews no longer live, but where there is an ancient synagogue that is more than 500 years old. We’ll tour the Medina: the market quarter of the city. The market is a mass of colors, voices and smells, a polyglot of all the treasures that exist in this country. The Medina is divided
according to type of product: an area for silver houses silversmiths and silver dealers, while gold is dealt in a different area, and rows upon rows of stalls sell leather, copper and jewelry. We‘ll end the day with a visit to the Ourika valley also known as Valley of the Jews where enjoy the view of the red wild scenery and the picturesque villages among the mountains. We‘ll return to Marrakech for
dinner and overnight.
Day 8 Monday: Marrakesh - Essaouira- Safi
Today our sightseeing will begin in Essaouira, ex Portuguese Mogador stronghold. In the 18th century, the Alaouite Sultan Mohamed Ben Abdallah charged some prominent Jewish families to promote international trade from the port of Essaouira. Essaouira׳s mellah covers over 10 percent of the town, but Jews constituted almost 40 percent of the population in the late 1880׳s. Jewish stars on the doors to the mellah show the degree to which Jews were accepted in Essaouira, to the point that some of the richer Jews did not even live in the
mellah. Commemorative plaques indicate the buildings in which synagogues were located. Former inhabitants of Essaouira, most of them Jewish, formed a committee to rehabilitate the town. The Jewish cemetery, just outside the city gates, is extremely well-kept. Two historical synagogues should be renovated soon Slat Rabbi Haim Pinto and Slat Attias. Continue to Safi and visit the Mellah in the Northern part of the medina, the sanctuary of Oulad Ben Zmirou and the Portuguese fortress.
Day 9 Tuesday: Azemmour – Casablanca
This morning we will visit Azemmour and explore the historic Kasbah and the attractive Jewish quarter. After the tour we will continue to Casablanca. Upon arrival we׳ll take a panoramic tour of the city during which we׳ll see the newer part of this North African metropolis, including the United Nations Square,
renowned for the Neo Moorish buildings that surround it, and for the fountain, which sprays water all around. From there we’ll head to Great Mosque built half on land and half on water. Many of Morocco’s finest artists and artisans worked for many years to create this magnificent edifice. In fact, every Moroccan citizen
donated funds for the project in one way or another to ensure that the project’s
costs, which soared to over 800 million USD, would be covered. The mosque’s minaret rises to a height of 200 meters, and its central prayer hall can contain thousands of worshippers. This is a true architectural wonder. We׳ll visit the new and old cities, the colorful bazaars and the promenade along the ocean.
Day 10 Wednesday: Casablanca, Rabat
Today we will visit the capital of Rabat, where we׳ll visit the Tour Hassan, the yet to be completed mammoth mosque. Then it׳s off to see the King׳s Palace and the mausoleum of King Hassan V as well as numerous other important sites. After the visit we will drive back to our hotel in Casablanca.
Day 11 Thursday: Casablanca – flight back home
After breakfast we׳ll bid a sad farewell to Morocco. Our tour is now over and we take our memories with us as we head to the airport from where we take our flights home.
Tour Start Date: Oct 15, 2018
Tour End Date: Oct 25, 2018
Price for land only: 3,490 USD.
Single Supplement: 1,450 USD.
Pre/Post night: 90 USD per person, per night BB.
Arrival/departure transfers: 40 USD per person, per way.
4 stars and 5 stars Hotels include Mamounia hotel in Marrakech
Entrance fees as per the itinerary
Comfortable air conditioned touring coach
Kosher half board and supplies for making sandwiches for lunch
Professional experienced English-speaking guide
Local English-speaking Guide as required
Visa to Morocco.
Tips for local service providers 100 USD per person
Travel and Health Insurance
Tip for our Tour Guide 5 USD per day per person.
Important to know:
There may be changes to the order of places visited. We will make every effort to visit every place mentioned in the itinerary. The tour organizers have no control over airline services such as seating, special meal requests, changes in departure times or delays. These remain the sole responsibility of the airline company.
Deposit, Cancellation Fees and Policy:
A 500 USD Deposit per person must be received at the time of booking in order to confirm your reservation. Payment in full is due 60 days before departure. A minimum number of participants are required to operate tour dates. If a minimum number has not been reached prior to tour departure and the tour is cancelled you will receive a FULL refund. 90 days before departure bookings are refundable less a 100 USD administration fee. 60-90 days prior to departure: 300 USD 100 USD per passenger. 60-30 days prior to departure: 500 USD 100 USD per passenger. 30-14 days prior to departure: 1,000 USD 100 USD per passenger. Less than 30 working days prior to departure: 100% of total - no refund.
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