Morocco cultural holiday

“This excellent small group tour to Morocco’s landscapes and culture takes you from the heights of the Atlas Mountains to the delights of the country’s imperial cities. ”

Highlights

Marrakech | Ait Benhaddou | Todgha Gorge | Midelt | Fès | Volubilis | Moulay Idriss | Meknes | Bin Louidane

Description of Morocco cultural holiday

This ten day Morocco cultural holiday begins and ends in the legendary imperial city of Marrakech. In between, travellers will be enjoy a cultural tour of Morocco that includes the medieval walled city of Fes, the Roman ruins of Volubilis and the sacred hilltop town of Moulay Idriss, as well as time spent enjoying the peaceful atmosphere of the mighty Atlas Mountains.

These ten days will prove to be a real cultural eye opener. You’ll visit mosques and markets, kasbahs and souks, and spend time with nomadic herders, women’s co-operatives and Berber communities, sharing a lunch of home-cooked couscous with a family in Moulay Idriss.

You’ll stay in small, locally run hotels and you’ll travel with a small group of like minded travellers and will have expert guides to show you what's what along the way.


Travel Team

If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. The Travel Team.

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Date
Price
Basis
10 Nov 2019
£999
including UK flights
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22 Dec 2019
£1149
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05 Jan 2020
£979
including UK flights
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22 Mar 2020
£1129
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19 Apr 2020
£1079
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8 spaces left
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07 Jun 2020
£999
including UK flights
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13 Sep 2020
£1049
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18 Oct 2020
£1249
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08 Nov 2020
£1029
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20 Dec 2020
£1149
including UK flights
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Vouchers
Accepted
Holiday type

Small group holiday

Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modelled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, travelling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. If you’re heading off on a gap year your, perhaps – but for those with a two-week holiday, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.

The leaders are not guides – they’re not there to shepherd you around. Instead, they’ll let you know which local restaurant serves great value food – without running the risk of travellers’ tummy. They’ll allow you to avoid hour-long queues at train stations and attractions.

We like to think of small group travel as the Goldilocks option. It is independent travel without the fuss, worry and bunk beds – and organised travel without the coaches. And it’s cheaper than a tailor made tour. It’s sits somewhere in the middle – and we think it’s just about right.

What are the main benefits?
Big experiences
Have big, life-enriching experiences that would be impossible to organise without lots of time and insider knowledge.

Simplicity
Make the most of your holiday time by letting someone else do the hard work and boring logistics!

Peace of mind
Small group tours take care of the security aspects – and provide a safety net should anything unexpected happen.
Who is it ideal for?
Travellers who are short of time
If you don’t have three months to spend exploring, small groups trips let you cover more ground in less time. Your days are not spent queuing for tickets or finding hotels – so you can squeeze more into your holiday.

Solo travellers who’d like company
Likeminded travel companions plus peace of mind for those travelling alone. Single supplements are usually available – providing privacy if you want it.

Less confident travellers
Stray from the tourist trail without worrying about getting lost, and meet local people without dealing with the language barrier.
Mythbuster
“I won’t get any privacy!”
Couples and friends have private rooms, and you can choose to eat alone or not. Single supplements give solo travellers their own room.

“There won’t be any free time”
Free mornings or afternoons let you explore on your own, or just relax.

“The accommodation will be basic”
Trips are as high or low end as you like. Though off the beaten track destinations won’t have luxury hotels, this is all part of the adventure.

“I won’t like the other travellers!”
Tour operators try to create groups with a similar demographic – age, families, activity levels... Chances are, you’ll even make new friends.

“Will we be following an umbrella?”
No.
Valerie Parkinson
Meet a group Leader
Name: Valerie Parkinson

Story: The first British woman to climb Manaslu, Valerie climbed Everest for her 50th birthday. She’s spent fourteen Christmas Days trekking to Everest Base Camp, and is involved insetting up Responsible Tourism initiatives in the Himalayas.
Roshan Fernando
Meet a local guide
Name: Roshan Fernando

Story: Roshan has led over 130 trips – he adores showing travellers around Sri Lanka. He won the company Leader Award in 2010, but his career highlight was working on their Tsunami Project – which earned him a responsible tourism award.

Responsible tourism

Morocco cultural holiday

Carbon reduction

Your holiday will help support local people and conservation. We must also reduce CO2. Learn about the CO2 emissions of this holiday and how to reduce them.

Environment

Accommodation and Meals:
Our local operators generally prefer to select accommodation which is locally owned in order to support smaller businesses and their employees. This ensures that most income generated is reinvested into the area and the community.
Where meals are supplied, seasonal, fresh food is used wherever possible. Most vegetables come from the region of Sous; meat is locally supplied by butchers and fruits can be found at markets or farms in the countryside. The main Moroccan dishes most people are familiar with are couscous, meat and vegetable tagines, fish chermoula and bocadillos, which are available from street stalls almost everywhere.

Local Craft and Culture:
During the trip, we will visit Fez, an intellectual and religious centre of Morocco. There, our city guide walks us through different sections of the souk and the tanneries. Outside the medina we also visit the Jewish District, the exterior of the Royal Palace and the potteries where famous mosaic tables are made from the grey clay of the Rif Mountains. Another cultural highlight is Marrakech, where clients are encouraged to haggle for souvenirs, take a ride in a traditional Caliche, or to visit the world renowned Marjorelle gardens. In the evening, the Djemma el Fna central square comes alive with musicians, snake charmers, travelling acrobats and food stalls. This is the perfect opportunity to interact with local people, purchase locally produced handicrafts and to support small street vendors by trying authentic food.

Community:
Passing through Berber villages up in the High Atlas Mountains, hiring local guides, staying in local gites and using markets and mule transport has a positive impact on the local economy. There are also opportunities for us to stop at women’s co-operatives in the south east of the Atlas and in the Essaouira region. These co-operatives help local women to be more independent and take care of their children- especially if they are in difficult family situations. Stops can also be made at a care centre for those with disabilities, which aim to teach handicrafts skills and sell souvenirs.
In conjunction with Baraka Community Partnerships, we have sponsored the development of a small village called Tijhza for many years with a variety of projects. These include supplying a pipeline system and water tower to the village and a toilet block for the school. Thanks to our volunteer groups, Tijhza now also has electricity and an annual medical clinic, which has had a hugely positive effect on the welfare of the village. More recently, we have achieved our aim of building a Hammam to alleviate some of the hygiene issues in the area and to provide a sustainable source income for many inhabitants. Unfortunately, devastating storms struck in November 2014, leaving much of the village severely damaged. We were able to raise emergency funding to provide supplies and to re-build many of the homes affected.

Group size:
This is a small group tour, meaning that we have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run hotels that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.

Uk Office:
It all starts at home where we work towards reducing our carbon footprint in our offices through energy conservation measures, recycling policies and the promotion of cycling and walking as a means for our staff to commute. Our head office has become a plastic-free zone with the use of plastic bottles being banned in our head office and we distributed reusable water bottles and tote bags to every staff member. We also support a large number of community and environmental projects in different parts of the world and try to give something back to the places we visit.

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