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An amazing Morocco tour with a local tour operator

The journey with a driver was a constant reassurance, that allowed us to get in touch with the moroccan people and discover places or situations not known to all tourists.

Traveling does not only mean visiting a place but also means getting in touch with the culture of the place, with new people and new customs.

I didn't fully understand this meaning until I travelled with www.marrakech-expedition-4× and had the opportunity to get in touch with the Moroccan people at 360 degrees. They’re a local tour operator and they accompanied us (me and my husband) throughout the journey, from arrival at the airport to departure, in every stages (cities, hotels and riads) with their 4×4 car with ample space for luggage and equipped with air conditioning. The driver is also included in the package. The journey with a driver was a constant reassurance, that allowed us to get in touch with the moroccan people and discover places or situations not known to all tourists.

My trip to Morocco started from Fes. The city of Fès is in Northern Morocco and is one of the four imperial cities of this beautiful country, so called because it was chosen over the centuries as capitals by the ruling dynasties. Fes is the oldest of the Imperial Cities and its historic centre is recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The other Imperial Cities are Rabat (the current capital), Marrakech and Meknes.

Among the things to visit in Fez what intrigued me the most is the Jewish quarter, the ancient medina, the tanneries district and the first souk of the trip… you would enjoy every narrow street, markets, colourful carpets, sound of drums… was the first city but Morocco had already conquered my heart.

After that we head to Atlas region, along the way you can see a particular imagines: the Berber monkeys in their natural habitat and among the local tree species we saw the oak, the London plane tree and the native Atlas cedar. 

Arrived to Merzouga our Morocco trip continues in the Sahara Desert. We left some of our luggage’s in a safe place and we ride a camel to reach a Berber tent located in the middle of the Desert. I still don’t have words to describe this experience. The sunset, the campfire, the drum sounds by night and that sky completely full of stars: amazing! 

After seeing the Desert sunrise, we head back to the civilization driving our 4×4 car to continue our tour. We drove and passed from some cities ‘till we get to Tinghir, a charming city known for its magnificent palm grove and its famous Todra gorges, it is built in floors around a promontory dominated by the ruins of an old residence of Glaoui and is mainly visited by walking.

The next stage organized by www.marrakech-expedition-4×, bring us to the valley of roses in K’laat M’Gouna. In this city there are two major days of souk (market) one day for livestock trade and the other one for food and other goods. Here there’s a factory for the distillery of roses, production of rose water (l’eau de rose) and essential oils and cosmetic products. There is also a Roses Festival where we were unable to attend because it is held in May, it lasts 7 days to celebrate the season of roses. 

By then we will go to Ouarzazate, famous for its film studios in which world-famous films were made, and for the Kasbah Taourirt, which is well-preserved and can be viewed from the inside. The Kasbah Taourirt is a residential castle made of rammed earth and it’s considered the largest Kasbah in Marocco, in the inside there’s a myriad of mysterious stairwells leading into a series of uniquely shaped and sized rooms lit up by low windows.  You will be exposed to a myriad of mysterious stairwells leading into a series of uniquely shaped and sized rooms lit up by low windows. For those who loves movies like me, they should definitely visit the Cinema Museum. Located in the centre of Ouarzazate, in this museum are exhibited statues, decorations, costumes, film equipment and other stuff. And unless a film is being made, there is also a film studio you can visit as part of a guided tour, that’s famous for their film productions, such as “The Pope”, “Gladiator” and “The Mummy”. But also the CLA Studios are worth visiting, because here some scenes from Game of Thrones were filmed. 

Last but not least around Ouarzazate there is the main attraction recognized from the UNESCO as a World Heritage Site: Ait-Ben-Haddou, which is located around 30 kilometres away from the city. The beautiful mud brick city is one of the most interesting places to visit in Morocco. Built around 1,000 years ago, this village still enchants with a unique backdrop. It is no wonder that this location was also a set for many famous movies. It was charming to stay in this historic city, this place was magical… especially during sunset!

Our last stage of this Morocco tour brought us in Marrakech. Surrounded by a lush palm grove and with the often-snow-capped High Atlas Mountains providing a scenic backdrop, this bustling metropolitan oasis has a everything a traveller could want, that’s why this city is a top destination for many Europeans. Ancient markets (souks) housing an endless array of shops, cafés, and museums, history literally around every corner, and nearly year-round sunshine. To explore this big city a tour guide is recommended, as you can spend a day learning about the medina, monuments and museums. 

What I liked most about this city are the gardens and the souks. 

Many of the gardens in Marrakech are free or cheap, but they are essential to take a breath and get back to nature, especially after trawling the shops and souks. The Agdal Gardens is one of the most important gardens in Marrakech and its full of trees as orange, lemon, olive, fig, apricot and pomegranate trees. And if you are near Djemma El Fnaa ( a unique concentration of popular Moroccan cultural traditions where you can admire snake-charmens, Berber musician, henna tattooing, preaching, Gnaoua dancers, fruit and traditional food, dental care..) you can stop at Koutoubia Gardens and Cyber Park, as you can sit under a palm tree and read a book or simply watch the world go by.