Wedged between the Mediterranean and the great Sahara, Morocco is home to some great beaches. But there is way more to do here than just lie around and tan. Bursting with captivating history and fascinating culture, this manageable 7-day itinerary is the perfect balm for your family’s all-inclusive resort blues. Kasbahs and Moroccan cuisine, the magic of Marrakech and more await. Don’t forget the sunblock!
City tour in Marrakech. Informal Arabic lesson. Camping on the beach.
Experience the hustle and bustle of Marrakech, try mint tea and learn Arabic, wander the souk of Essaouira
The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.
VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.
While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission.
Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.
This trip is designed for parents and children to enjoy together. You will be travelling as part of a group of families with other children. The itinerary has been designed with the needs of the whole family in mind. We have given this trip a minimum age for this trip to allow you to be sure that you have the right trip for you and your family. Minimum age of 5 years for this trip. Please see the activities for any specific minimum age requirements.
1. Weather: Please note that the climate in Morocco can be both very hot during the day in summer months (up to 50°C) and cold at night in the mountains in autumn, early spring and winter (down to -6°C). Summer months, from April to September are very hot throughout Morocco. Winter months November to March can be cool to cold, especially in the Atlas Mountains, with high probability of snowfall. Most Moroccan buildings are not equipped with heating, so without proper layers you will be cold at night. Please bring appropriate clothing for the months in which you are travelling and check temperatures before you leave.
Group Leader Description
This G Adventures group trip is accompanied by one of our group leaders, otherwise known as a Chief Experience Officer (CEO).
As the group coordinator and manager, the aim of the CEO is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. You can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of Morocco, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. They will also offer suggestions for things to do and to see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends.
We also use certified local city guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting – we think it’s the best of both worlds.
Group Size Notes
Max 20, avg 12
6 breakfasts, 1 dinner
Eating is a big part of traveling. Travelling with G Adventures you experience the vast array of wonderful food that is available out in the world. Generally meals are not included in the trip price when there is a choice of eating options, to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat. It also gives you more budgeting flexibility, though generally food is cheap. Our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other’s company. There is no obligation to do this though. Your CEO will be able to suggest favourite restaurants during your trip. The above information applies to G Adventures group trips. For Independent trips please check the itinerary for details of meals included. For all trips please refer to the meals included and budget information for included meals and meal budgets.
Private air-conditioned van, walking.
About our Transportation
On this trip we will travel by private air-conditioned van and on foot (luggage will be transported for you when walking to and from Aremd night stop).
We believe single travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and single travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.
Hotels (5 nts), beach camp (1 nt, multi-share).
My Own Room Exceptions
Nights 2-3, Aremd
Accommodation for family trips has been chosen to give the best location and facilities for your family. They may vary depending on the location and destination, but designed to give the most comfortable experience while travelling.
You and your family will generally be sharing rooms on a twin or triple share basis. These rooms will be either adjoining or located at close proximity to each other.
Families will be roomed together and not with other families everywhere we stay. If you have any special hotel requests at the time of booking, let us know and we will do what we can to accommodate them.
On this trip we will stay in comfortable local hotels in Marrakech and Essaouira. Rooms will be on a twin-share basis unless you have booked our My Own Room service. You can expect the rooms to have air-conditioning, private bathrooms and breakfast will be included daily. Some hotels may also have swimming pools and/or other recreational facilities.
For details of your joining hotel please refer to your tour voucher, G Account, the G Adventures App or contact your travel agent.
Please note that day 1 is an arrival day and no activities have been planned on this day. Upon arrival to the city on day 1 (or earlier if you have booked pre-accommodation with us), please make your way to the joining hotel (note that check-in time will be in the afternoon). Once you arrive at the hotel, look for a note or bulletin board in the reception with a note from your CEO. This note will give the details of your Welcome Meeting on day 1 (usually between 5pm and 7pm), where you will get a chance to meet your CEO and other travellers, as well as learn more about how the tour will run. If you don’t see a note, please ask reception for details!
If you are arriving later and will miss the Welcome Meeting, your CEO will leave a note at reception for you with any information you may need, and with morning instructions for the next day.
GETTING TO HOTEL GOMASSINE:
From the airport:
Take yellow grand taxis from the main entrance of the airport. The ride will take around 15 minutes and should cost no more than 100dh.
We don’t expect any problems and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, as soon as possible please contact your joining hotel, requesting that you speak to or leave a message for your CEO (if you are not on a group tour please refer to the emergency contact details provided in this dossier). If you are unable to get in touch with your leader, please refer to our emergency contact details.
If you have not made contact with our airport transfer representative within 30 minutes of clearing customs and immigration, we recommend that you make your own way to the joining hotel or contact our local representatives (see emergency contact details) who will assist you in reaching the joining hotel.
Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call either the G Adventures Local Representative (if one is listed below) or our G Adventures Local Office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.
EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures Office, London, UK
After hours emergency number: +44 7817 262559
If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below, which will connect you directly with our 24 hour Sales team, who will happily assist you.
Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from UK: 0344 272 0000
Calls from Germany: 0800 365 1000
Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618
Calls from New Zealand: 0800 333 307
Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999
Finishing Point Instructions
We are able to organize extra accommodation post-trip should you require it, as well as departure transfer. Please inquire at the time of booking.
If you’d like to book a departure transfer from Marrakech Hotel to Casablanca International Airport, please choose an 8am shuttle option for flights departing after 14:30, and a 13:30 shuttle option for flights departing after 19:30.
From our Finishing Point Hotel you can arrange a transfer to the airport for an extra cost of approx 100 MAD. At the beginning of the tour please advise your CEO if you require a departure transfer, giving them your departure details and they will arrange this for you.
What to Take
We recommend using a backpack for your convenience, or a medium-sized suitcase if you prefer. A daypack is also essential for carrying everyday items. Space is limited on transportation, so there is a limit of one main piece of luggage per person. You will be responsible for carrying your own luggage. You must be prepared to carry your luggage up and down stairs, on and off transportation, and to hotels (max 15-20 mins.)
•Light fleece top
•Light windproof/waterproof jacket
•Small towel and swimwear
•Personal clothing for mild to hot weather (See also “What to Take” and “Local Dress” sections of this dossier)
•Hiking boots/sturdy walking shoes
•Watch or alarm clock
•First-aid kit (should contain lip salve, Aspirin, bandaids, anti-histamine,
Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, rehydration powder, insect
repellent, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)
Additionally for departures Nov-Jan:
•Sleeping bag (adapted thermally for overnights at high altitudes)
•Warm jacket, anorak or fiber filled jacket
•Camera and film
•Cover for backpacks
•Passport (with photocopies)
•Travel insurance (with photocopies)
•Airline tickets (with photocopies)
•Credit or debit card (see personal spending money)
•G Adventures vouchers, pre-departure information and dossier
•Any entry visas or vaccination certificates required
Laundry facilities are offered by some of our hotels for a charge. There will be times when you may want to or have to do your own laundry so we suggest you bring non-polluting/biodegradable soap.
Visas and Entry Requirements
All countries require a valid passport (with a minimum 6 months validity). Contact your local embassy, or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements, or see your travel agent. It is your own responsibility to have the correct travel documentation. Visa requirements for your trip will vary depending on where you are from and where you are going. We keep the following information up to date as far as possible, but rules do change and sometimes without warning. While we provide the following information in good faith, it is vital that you check yourself and understand that you are fully responsible for your own visa requirements.
Most visitors to Morocco, including citizens of the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and EU countries, do not require visas and can remain in the country without a visa for 90 days from the date of entry. Exceptions to this include Israeli and South African passport holders. Please check with your local embassy for more details.
Detailed Trip Notes
The climate in Morocco is Mediterranean along the coast, becoming more extreme towards the interior of the country. The winter months are from October to March and are characterized by cold nights and pleasant days. Summer is from April to September and starts off very pleasantly with moderate temperatures until mid-June when temperatures get extremely hot, to return to more moderate heat in late September. Inland, the climate is very dry and high temperatures predominate during the day for most of the year, except in the higher mountain areas. It rains generally only in short bursts in the period from the beginning of November until March.
The official unit of currency in Morocco is the Moroccan Dirham (MAD).
Morocco uses 220V, 50Hz and plugs are two prong rounded.
Arabic is the official language of Morocco, spoken in the distinctive Moroccan dialect. Approximately 40% of the population (mainly in rural areas) speak Berber in one of its three different dialects (Tarafit, Tashelhiyt and Tamazight). French is Morocco’s unofficial second language and is taught universally, serving as the country’s primary language in economics and commerce, as well as being widely used in education and government. Many Moroccans in the north of the country speak Spanish and English is widely spoken in tourist areas.
Capital city: Rabat
Principal ethnic groups: 30% Arab, 60% Berber
Islam is the official state religion with almost the entire population being Sunni Muslim. 1% are Christian and about 0.2% are Jewish.
Depending on the lunar cycle, Ramadan will fall between June 7th and July 7th, 2016. Please note that Ramadan is a month of fasting observed by Muslims throughout the world, during which time the followers of Islam should not eat or drink between sunrise and sunset. There may be some limitations to services and disruptions to schedules during Ramadan, but generally our tours still operate effectively during this period and food is available to non-Muslims throughout the day.
Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.
The local currency in Morocco is the Moroccan Dirham (MAD).
ATMs are very common in Morocco with Cirrus and Plus system cards are the most widely accepted debit cards. .While ATMs are commonly available, there are no guarantees that your credit or debit cards will actually work – it is important you check with your bank before departure and advisable to travel with more than one type of card.
Visa cards are the most widely accepted credit cards, but are generally only useful for larger/expensive purchases. You should be aware when purchasing products or services on a credit card, that a fee usually applies.
The foreign currency most commonly accepted in Morocco is the Euro. You will be able to exchange Euros, as well as GBP and USD at money exchange offices in major cities.
Do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money. A combination of cash (Euro/GBP or USD) and cards is best.
As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com
Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $200 (or equivalent) as an ‘emergency’ fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster) require a change to our planned route. This is a rare occurrence!
Usually included in flight tickets.
Morocco has a strong tipping culture – it is customary and even expected to tip small service providers such as restaurant and bar waiters, hotel staff, reception, cleaning personnel, bell boys, taxis and van drivers. Tips are regarded as an essential means of supplementing income for those working in the tourism industry.
Even though this might not be customary to you, nor such common practice in your home country, it is generally expected and of great significance to the people who will be assisting you during your travels.
Depending on your preference and/or that of the group, you may choose to tip individually, organize the tipping with your travelling companions, or, your CEO will offer to collect the tip money at the beginning of your tour and tip as a group with your participation as the tour progresses. A recommendation for tipping small service providers is about $3 USD per day, depending on the quality of the service (this does not include your G Adventures CEO).
Feel free to ask your CEO for the breakdown/distribution of the tips. Note that if you have been very disappointed by a particular service, please inform your CEO right away, and the tip will be adjusted accordingly.
Also, at the end of your trip if you felt your G Adventures CEO did an outstanding job, tipping is also expected and appreciated. The precise amount is entirely a personal preference, however $20-25 USD per person per week can be used as a general guideline.
No optional activities
Please note inoculations may be required for the country visited. It is your responsibility to consult with your travel doctor for up to date medical travel information well before departure.
DRINKING WATER: It is advisable to drink bottled water in Morocco.
There are no specific health requirements for this trip. However, we recommend protection against typhoid, tetanus, infectious hepatitis and polio. You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information before departure. We recommend that you carry a First Aid kit, hand sanitizers / antibacterial wipes as well as any personal medical requirements. Please be aware that we are in remote areas and away from medical facilities for some time during this trip, and for legal reasons our leaders are prohibited from administering any type of drug including headache tablets, antibiotics, etc.
Please note that your adventure travels to high altitude. This is medically defined as anything over 8,000ft (2,440m). Most people can travel to 8,000ft with minimal effects. However, everyone reacts to altitude differently and altitude sickness can on set with some people irrespective of fitness and age. For details on how to best prepare and what to do in the unlikely event you are affected on your adventure, please consult your physician.
Safety and Security
Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government’s advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers’ cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home – you won’t need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your CEO has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Your CEO will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgment when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions.
Protests and Demonstrations- Protests and demonstrations, even those that are well intended, have the potential to turn violent with no warning. Counter protests can also turn violent. Action by security forces to disperse demonstrators and protesters may occur at any time. If you are in an area where demonstrators or protesters are gathering, avoid the temptation of staying for a good photo opportunity and leave the area immediately.
Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards) have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s).
Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk.
We take all prudent measures in relation to your safety. For ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling, please visit:
Trip Specific Safety
Like anywhere in the world, major cities have areas safer than others, use common sense, be aware of your surroundings and mind your personal belongings.
A Couple of Rules
Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.
Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your CEO, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy we require that at a minimum you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.
Planeterra-The G Adventures Foundation
The Planeterra Foundation planeterra.org is a Canadian non-profit organization that helps empower local people to develop their communities, conserve their cultures, and create humane and supportive systems for their endeavours. Planeterra provides capacity building and catalyst grants to get community social enterprises off the ground. These businesses address local challenges by providing benefits for indigenous people, empowering marginalized women, and granting disadvantaged youth access to education, employment, and brighter futures. Planeterra also works to ensure these businesses have a thriving customer base by integrating programs into G Adventures’ itineraries globally.
G Adventures is Planeterra’s largest corporate donor, covering all operating costs so 100% of your donation will bring opportunity to people in need.
G Adventures’ Dollar-a-Day Program provides travellers with the opportunity to give back to the people and places visited on our tours by donating one dollar for every day you are on trip. 100% of these donations go directly to support community development projects worldwide that are implemented by Planeterra.
While visiting mosques and other religious monuments you should dress modestly, cover your shoulders and you shouldn’t wear short shorts or skirts. Outside of capital cities and the more touristic centres, local dress is often more conservative and as a matter of respect we ask that both men and women are aware of this and recommend loose-fitting clothes with your shoulders covered. Ask your CEO for more specific advice.
After your travels, we want to hear from you! Your feedback information is so important to us that we’ll give you 5% off the price of your next G Adventures trip if your feedback is completed on-line within 30 days of finishing your trip. Your tour evaluation will be e-mailed to you 24 hours after the conclusion of your trip. If you do not receive the tour evaluation link in the days after your tour has finished, please drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will send it on to you.
Our adventure travel e-newsletter is full of travel news, trip information, interesting stories and contests. To avoid missing out on special offers and updates from G Adventures, subscribe at www.gadventures.com/newsletters/
Stay current on how our company invests in our global community through our foundation – Planeterra. Sign up for Planeterra’s monthly news to learn more about how to give back and support the people and places we love to visit.
Minimum age of 6 years for this trip.
Check-in times and baggage allowances/restrictions vary by airline and can change at any time. For the most up-to-date information for your flight, please contact your airline. We recommend checking in online in advance to avoid potential delays at the airport.
Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, Local guides
PRODUCT_LINE: DCFF, ID: 23275
Day 1: Marrakech
Arrive in Marrakech at any time.
Please make sure to inform your G Adventures sales representative or travel agent of your flight arrival details in advance so we can arrange for your arrival transfer to our joining hotel.
Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting
Day 2: Marrakech/Ait Benhaddou (1B)
In the afternoon transfer to Ait Benhaddou and spend the night.
Private Vehicle (5.00 hour(s))
Day 3: Ait Benhaddou/Taroudant (1B)
Transfer to the thriving market town of Taroudant, along the way visit Tazernakht, famous for its traditional Moroccan carpets.
Day 4: Taroudant/Essaouira (1B)
Journey through remote villages and along plateaus dotted with argan trees, before arriving at Essaouria.
Argan Oil Co-operative Visit
Private Vehicle (3.00-3.50 hours, 260km)
Day 5: Essaouira/Sidi Kaouki (1B, 1D)
Get the basics and then hop on a board to try your hand at surfing the waves this morning.
Overnight Beach Camping
Private Vehicle (0.50 hour(s), 25km)
Day 6: Sidi Kaouki/Marrakech (1B)
Morning walk along the beach returning to Essaouira. Transfer to Marrakech in the afternoon. Enjoy a guided visit to explore the souks and bustling city of Marrakech.
Private Vehicle (3.00 hour(s))
Day 7: Marrakech (1B)
Depart at any time.