FROM: USD $1,445

Spend a cracking Christmas exploring the Atlas, snap up some bargains in the souks of Marrakech and ring in the New Year beachside in Essaouira, on Morocco's stunning Atlantic coast.

Inclusions
Itinerary
Prices & Dates
Hotels
Reviews

Trip Highlights

Marrakech - UNESCO-listed Place Djemaa el Fna, (medina and marketplace)
Jebel Sarho and Dades Gorge - a striking valley and stream cut within the mountain range
Merzouga - camel trek and Berber style camp
Essaouira - ancient medina, wind swept beaches and current day fishing village
High Atlas Mountains and views of snow capped Mt Toubkal
Erg Chebbi sand dunes - beginning of the Sahara
Ait Benhaddou - UNESCO-listed fortified kasbah city

Included

10 breakfasts, 4 lunches and 5 dinners including a traditional Berber meal at our Sahara camp
Arrival transfer from Marrakech airport on day 1
Guided sightseeing of Merzouga, Dades Gorge, = Ait Benhaddou and Marrakech
Escorted by a licensed English speaking Moroccan tour guide
All transportation and transfers in private air-conditioned tourism vehicles
9 nights 3 - 4 star accommodation and 1 night camping - Berber desert camp in the Sahara Desert (Hotel upgrade available)
Camel trek into the Sahara Desert
Essaouira - beachside bliss and free time
Specialist local guides at some sites
All road taxes and tolls

Not Included

International flights and visa
Note: On some road journeys, the tour leader may not be in your particular vehicle
Tipping Kitty: USD$30-40pp, paid in USD or local currency
Gratuity for your tour guide & driver. Budget approx USD$2 - 3 per person per day. Tipping your tour guide and driver is an entirely personal gesture
Entrance Fees: USD$30-50pp, paid in USD or local currency

Itinerary

Day 1

Marrakech

23 December 2019. Welcome to Morocco! Arrival transfer from Marrakech airport to our hotel. This evening (at 19:00) our welcome meeting takes place, where you'll meet your tour leader and fellow travellers.
Overnight: Marrakech

Day 2

Ait Benhaddou

Marrakech – Ait Benhaddou – Skoura. This morning we drive onwards to the legendary Ait Benhaddou - a ‘fortified city’ situated along the former caravan route between the Sahara and Marrakech, boasts some beautiful examples of ancient kasbahs. Only a handful of which remain inhabited. Granted UNESCO World Heritage listing, this incredible site had been the setting for many films including Gladiator. After exploring Ait Benhaddou we travel onwards to Skoura where we have an evening at leisure.
Overnight: Skoura  |  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3

Xmas Day in Dades Gorge

Skoura – Dades Gorge. Merry Christmas! We spend the morning visiting the kasbah Amherdhil before continuing to Gorge du Dades in the Dades valley. On arrival we take some time to explore the gorges, palmeries and kasbah ruins. We then have the evening to relax before enjoying a great Xmas dinner in the beautiful surroundings.
Overnight: Dades Gorge  |  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4

Discover the Sahara

Todra Gorge - Erg Chebbi. Crossing Jebel Sarhro, we enjoy lunch and a swim before travelling down to Erg Chebbi sand dunes, the start point of the mighty Sahara Desert. The Erg Chebbi dunes located near the remote frontier town of Merzouga are renowned for their incredible height and size. In parts the vast sand pile reaches skyward to heights of 150 metres!

The desert winds ensure this astonishing landscape is forever changing and no two days offer the same panorama. Mounting our camels, we trek across the vast rolling dunes of the Sahara and take in the breath-taking scenery. Arriving at our simple Berber camp, we enjoy dinner and a night under the Saharan stars. Wrap up warm and remember your winter weight sleeping bag.

If you would prefer the comfort of a hotel with en-suite facilities this evening, opt for our Sahara hotel alternative at no additional cost. Please do let us know your preferred option at the time of booking.
Overnight: Merzouga  |  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5

Ouarzazate

Erg Chebbi – Agdz – Ouarzazate. Today we travel through Mercissi and Nkob in the Saghro Moutain region, passing the incredible rock formations and wells that have been dug over centuries by the nomads to get access to water, along the way. Onwards to the small town of Agdz, with its Palmeries, ancient Kasbahs and incredible views of Jebel Kissane Mountain. Our final stop of the day is Ouarzazate – Morocco’s film capital, where we lay our heads for the evening. Tonight, dinner is a group affair.
Overnight: Ouarzazate  |  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6

Ait Benhaddou

Ouarzazate – Tarouddant. We begin our day taking in the landscape of saffron fields as we make our way to Talouine, where we visit a local saffron farm. Later, we continue to Tazenacht, where we visit a carpet cooperative to learn the art of carpet making before finally stopping in Tarouddant, the former berber capital and our home for the night.
Overnight: Taroudant  |  Breakfast

Day 7

Agadir

Tarouddant – Agadir. This morning we have some time to enjoy a guided tour of Tarouddant’s souks. We spend the afternoon driving past banana plantations and fruit orchards along the coast as we make our way to Agadir, a quaint town along the coast which was destroyed by the 1960 earthquake. Here, we have the remainder of the day at leisure to wander around the harbour and perhaps try some of the fresh fish.
Overnight: Agadir  |  Breakfast, Dinner

Days 8-9

New Years Eve by the beach

This morning we continue along the coast until we reach Essaouira. With a laid back vibe Essaouira is Morocco’s hippest coastal town. The windswept fishing port, broad beaches and ancient walled medina with ramparts built into the cliff have long been a favourite refuge for artists, sculptors, food lovers, surfers and backpackers. The medina surrounded by a fortress with 5 main gates you can navigate by, has retained its traditional styles and is laden with quirky shops, coffee houses, antiques, art studios, calligraphers, t-shirt designers and souvenir curios. There’s a relaxed feel to the place and shopping here is a real delight. Locals and visitors alike enjoy strolling along the ramparts as the sun sets. The port is a hive of activity with fishing boats hauling in their daily catch.

On the evening of day 9 - New Year's Eve we'll all head out together for dinner and a few drinks.
Overnight: Essaouira  |  Breakfast x 1

Day 10

Essaouira - Marrakech. Happy New Year! This morning is spent at leisure, sleep in or head to beach for your first swim of the year. This afternoon we stop at a local Argan oil cooperative en route to Marrakech. On arrival in Marrakech, we enjoy a guided tour of the bustling medina.
Overnight: Marrakech  |  Breakfast

Day 11

Happy New Year

02 January 2020. Spend the morning relaxing or picking up a few last minute souvenirs. Our tour concludes upon hotel check out at 12 noon.
Breakfast

Prices & Dates

Departure dates noted with a 'G' are guaranteed to operate. All other departure dates are guaranteed with a minimum of 2 persons. Prices shown are per person travelling. 'Twin/Double' prices per person apply when there are 2 people travelling, sharing a room. The 'Single supplement' applies for single travellers who require their own room and needs to be added to the 'Twin/Double' price. If you are happy to be paired up with another single traveller of the same sex on your tour, this can be arranged, thus avoiding the single person supplement.

New Years departure, book early!
New Year Departure
Xmas departure, book early!
XMAS Departure
Guaranteed Departure
Available
Contact us to book
Sold out
2019
Price /
Person
Single
Supp.
23 Dec - 02 Jan New Years departure, book early!
New Years departure, book early!
Xmas departure, book early!
Xmas departure, book early!
G
USD $1,445
USD $440
2020
Price /
Person
Single
Supp.
USD $1,445
USD $440

Extra Prices

Price /
Person
Single
Supp.
Pre Tour Accom - Signature Tours
USD $100
USD $50
Post Tour Accom - Signature Tours
USD $90
USD $40

Hotels

The hotels listed below are ones which we frequently use on this tour. We reserve the right to substitute these hotels to ones of a similar standard when necessary.

Dellarosa Hotel Suites & Spa, Marrakech

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

Just a short walk from the medina, Dellarosa Hotel Suites & Spa tastefully blends modern architecture with Moroccan authenticity. Guest rooms are tastefully decorated with comfortable beds and excellent en suite facilities. The hotel also has a restaurant Organza serving up a delicious array of Moroccan and International dishes as well as a bar for a tasty beverage or two. Those looking for some pampering should head to the onsite spa and wellness centre.

Adam Park Hotel & Spa, Marrakech

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

Guests can expect a very comfortable stay at the Adam Park Hotel & Spa. Each of the elegant rooms feature a patio or balcony with views of the surrounding area. Guests are spoilt for choice when it comes to dining. Several restaurants offer a variety of options including Italian specialities, Moroccan favourites and international cuisine. There are also plenty of ways to unwind after a day exploring Marrakech, with an outdoor pool, fitness centre and a spa offering rejuvenating massage treatments.

Adam Park Hotel & Spa, Marrakech

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

Guests can expect a very comfortable stay at the Adam Park Hotel & Spa. Each of the elegant rooms feature a patio or balcony with views of the surrounding area. Guests are spoilt for choice when it comes to dining. Several restaurants offer a variety of options including Italian specialities, Moroccan favourites and international cuisine. There are also plenty of ways to unwind after a day exploring Marrakech, with an outdoor pool, fitness centre and a spa offering rejuvenating massage treatments.

Dellarosa Hotel Suites & Spa, Marrakech

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

Just a short walk from the medina, Dellarosa Hotel Suites & Spa tastefully blends modern architecture with Moroccan authenticity. Guest rooms are tastefully decorated with comfortable beds and excellent en suite facilities. The hotel also has a restaurant Organza serving up a delicious array of Moroccan and International dishes as well as a bar for a tasty beverage or two. Those looking for some pampering should head to the onsite spa and wellness centre.

Desert Camp, Merzouga

Our Category: Simple   |   Regional Category: Standard Camp

Set amongst the towering dunes of Erg Chebbi, the Berber camp is designed with a traditional Moroccan theme. The permanent tents include multiple beds and electricity (after night fall) Camping out in the desert is a wonderful experience, due to the lack of light pollution, the stars come out in abundance and really are a sight to behold.

Riad Zahra , Essaouira

Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: Standard Riad

Located in the residential district, the Zahra offers calm, relaxation and a peaceful stay. Its comfortable guestrooms are decorated in traditional Moroccan style and are equipped with an en suite and satellite TV. The property has a restaurant serving Moroccan and international specialities. There is another restaurant that serves grilled dishes. Riad Zahra is an ideal starting point for nautical activities or to discover Essaouira and the surrounding area. For your entertainment, the hotel proposes numerous activities including desert trips in a 4x4, surfing and kite surfing lessons.

Reviews

Travellers have rated this tour as 5 out of 5 based on 2 recent reviews

1  |  2

Hey John -

Xmas/NY in Morocco was excellent, a great escape for winter sun and really great fun! The group were all about the same age so we had a good laugh and the berber camp and Sahara camel trek was awsome. The history, scenery, shopping, food, culture and surfing made it an unforgettable experience - would love to say we'd be back but we have a travel wish-list as long our arms.

Next stop, ANZAC day!

Thanks - M&J Sinclair

Mark & Joanne Sinclair • Submitted 28 Jan 2010
1  |  2

In Brief

Range
Trip Type
Starts
Marrakech
Ends
Marrakech
Departs
23 Dec 2019
Group Size
Min 2 / Max 24
Hotel Rating
3 star
Tour Guide
Yes, - escorted by a tour guide
Meals
Breakfast: 9, Lunch: 4, Dinner: 5
Visiting
Countries

Extra Tour Info

Visiting the Sahara
Our guide to visiting the Sahara Desert in Morocco
Updated
14th March 2019

My wife and I had a marvelous time in Morocco! We would recommend it to all of our friends and family – and we would especially recommend that they request Jamal as their tour guide. He was an even better tour guide than we could have hoped for. Not only was he knowledgable about the sites, sounds, and people of Morocco, he was also quick to get the group laughing and having a good time. He knew how to read the group and adapted to our moods and interests. He made the trip truly special and memorable. Wouldn't have changed a thing!!!

David McClendon
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