Monday, 12 December 2011

Tour overview for morocco

We took a few tours in September / October 2011 and we’ve listed below the details of the tours to help when you are negotiating your own.  Remember in Morocco everything is open for negotiation!

Place Fes
Tour Cooking course
Company Lahcen's Moroccan Cooking School
Cost/pp 440 MAD

A great afternoon spent learning the art of Moroccan cuisine.  You begin with mint tea and traditional sweets while you discuss what main dish you would like to prepare.  Then you head into the Medina and buy all the ingredients from the local vendors (this is a great time to ask all those questions you have from previous explorations!) The chef and the helper to most of the leg work (i.e. washing, chopping and cleaning) and you get to enjoy putting the dish together.  Four people in a group is a good size, especially if everyone choses a different dish to cook as then you can see many different techniques.  If someone prepares the 'pastilla' go with the chef to the 'oven' which is located a few blocks away - it's a real experience.  When the food is prepared you also get to share traditional salads along with your main dish and a delicious dessert is also included.

In a nutshell

Great company to do the course with and cheaper than the popular 'Cafe Clock' course.  Sourcing the ingredients was the highlight for us.


Place Merzouga
Tour Camel Trekking
Company Auberge les Pyramids
Cost/pp 250 MAD

Overnight  camel trek.  Leave around 4pm and trek for 2 hours into the Sahara desert. Stay in a Berber style camp in a tent (bedding included).  Mint tea and snacks provided on arrival followed by soup and a freshly prepared tagine and fruit.  Entertainment around the campfire with all the guides singing and playing traditional music.  Optional night walk into the sand dunes to see the stars.  Wake up around 5am ride camels back to the auberge while watching the sunrise over the Sahara.  Breakfast is provided back at the auberge along with a shower.

In a nutshell

Highly recommend this tour, one of our overall highlights of Morocco.  Mohammed our guide was excellent, knew lots of information and had a great sense of humour.  Food was some of the best we had.


Place Tinghir
Tour Todra Gorge
Company Our hotel (Retour au Calme) organised a private taxi (2 hours)
Cost 100 MAD for the taxi

A beautiful drive into the Todra Gorge.  Our taxi driver knew all the great places to stop for photos and was also happy to stop anywhere else we asked.  We went for a short walk along the bottom of the gorge which is also a nice thing to do.  A note on the price - we tried to bargain a cheaper price by going into town and organising our own taxi but in the end the best price was the one offered from our hotel so always ask at your hotel first to get a base price.

In a nutshell

A great way to see the gorge if you're limited on time.  Definitely worth the drive.


Place Ouarzazate
Tour Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou
Company Private taxi (4 hours)
Cost 200 MAD for the taxi

A highlight of Ouarzazate and the easiest way to reach the Kasbah is with a taxi (your driver will wait for however long you have negotiated).  If there are other tourists around it's better to share but since we were travelling in low season we were the only tourists at the bus terminal.  It takes around 50 minutes to reach the Kasbah, but an hour there is sufficient to walk around and see everything at a leisurely pace.  NB Entrance to the Kasbah was free at the time of writing but the touts are very insistent.

In a nutshell

Definitely visit the Kasbah, but negotiate with the taxi driver not only with the price but with the amount of time you have in the Kasbah.

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