Here’s some trivia for you: What was the first country to enter a friendship treaty with the United States? Any guesses? Okay, time’s up! Answer: Morocco. Over 230 years later, the secret is out; Morocco has so much more to offer than friendship. There’s the colors you never knew existed in its Islamic architecture, the spices that will wake up taste buds you didn’t know you had, the French emphasis on art, the Spanish influence on enjoying yourself, and the combination of exotic landscapes you never thought to be compatible. Ride some sand dunes, barter your face off, rock the kasbahs, and allow the vast grandeur of this Saharan paradise to remind you that we’re all just a single chickpea in this great big hummus that we call life.
What are the top highlights?
- Barter like a pro at one of Africa’s largest marketplaces
- Visit the Aït-Ben-Haddou—a desert film-set that has hosted dozens of your favorite movie shoots
- Have a date—the food kind, not the Tinder kind—with mouth-watering Moroccan food like chicken tagine, couscous, figs, zaalouk, and more
- Ride a 4x4 at the Erg Chebbi sand dunes
- Adjust your neck accordingly to stare up at the Atlas Mountains, down into Todra Gorge, or straight across the infinite Sahara Desert
- Monkey around with Barbary macaques in Ifrane
- Put your Intro to Art Appreciation class to work as you examine thousands of years of unparalleled masterpieces in the form of ornamented city gates, museums, and palaces
Your trip includes
- Round-trip flights & airport transfers
- Multilingual Tour Director & local guides
- Private deluxe motorcoach
- 9 nights in hand-picked accommodations
- Welcome Dinner with appetizers, full Moroccan meal & drinks
- Daily breakfast
- Four authentic Moroccan dinners
- Three-course farewell dinner
- Entrance to select attractions including Bahia Palace, Saadian Tombs, Ksar of Aït-Ben-Haddou, and more
You’ll stay at accommodations hand-picked by our team of local experts, in rooms only for EF Ultimate Break travelers. Each property is located in a safe, convenient area. You’ll receive your exact accommodations 30 days before your trip departs.
Click **here **for examples of where you'll stay.
Admit it, booking flights is the worst. Here's why you should let us do it for you:
- Flight costs are included in your monthly payment plan, so you can pay over time
- Airport transfers are included, so we’ll be waiting, sign in hand
- Flights are booked with major airlines
- 24/7 support no matter what time zone you’re in
- One checked bag included on most flights
- Option to make changes to your trip up to 99 days before departure
Booking with a friend? Let us know and we’ll do our best to make sure you’re on the same flight. Still want to book your own flights? That’s cool, simply select ‘No flights included’ instead of your departure city in the ‘Flights from’ dropdown.
- Day 1: Overnight Flight to Morocco
Board your overnight flight to Marrakesh, one of Morocco’s oldest cities and home to the largest market in the country (eat your heart out, Trader Joe’s).
- Day 2: Arrive in Marrakesh
Welcome to Morocco, the product of some mad-scientist-level cultural fusion. Start with a long history of traditional Islamic life, mix it up with nomadic desert tribe vibes from the indigenous Berbers, sprinkle in the remnants of Spanish and French colonialism, and you’re only beginning to understand this great African melting pot (or melting tagine, for you soon-to-be Moroccan cookware experts).
- Meet an EF representative at the airport.
- Transfer to your accommodation and check in.
- Receive the latest schedule from your Tour Director.
- Meet your fellow travelers as they arrive.
In the evening, it’s time for your Welcome Dinner. Enjoy drinks overlooking Jemaa el-Fna Square, then a traditional Moroccan meal with fellow travelers. Afterwards, you’re free to take the party elsewhere!
- Day 3: Explore Marrakesh
Marrakesh IS Morocco. Literally. In many languages, the name for Morocco is just “Marrakesh.” The Red City is easy to get lost in, but fear not, there’s excitement around every corner, and your local guide is here to ensure you get to see it all. Follow them today for your first real taste of Morocco—both metaphorically and culinarily.
- Feast your eyes on the pseudo-European floral beauty of the Gueliz District—designed by the French while feeling homesick for Paris.
- Pay respect to your elders when you see Koutoubia Mosque—it’s over 800 years old, but doesn’t look a day over 799.
- Bask in the gloriously geometric architecture of Bahia Palace, the Saadian Tombs, and the Medina (old city).
- Prepare to have your definition of “supermarket” blown out of the water as you haggle your way through the Marrakesh Souk, the city’s premiere market and meeting-place.
- Day 4: Free Day in Marrakesh + Optional Moroccan Cooking Class
Good morning! While most of Marrakesh is awake in time for the early Call to Prayer, we’re guessing you’re up early, too, in anticipation of the crazy day to come. Yesterday you saw the “must-see’s” of Marrakesh, and today is all about the hidden gems. Feel free to spend the day exploring, eating, or for the truly daring, learning to charm snakes.
- Catch a whiff of organized chaos as you weave in and out of Marrakesh’s spiraling alleyways mingling with the nearly one million city residents.
- Spend the day crafting puns on the word “souk,” meaning “market,” as you bargain for souvenirs at any of the hundreds of vendors around the city.
- Treat your taste buds with an optional Moroccan cooking class.
Free Time Suggestions
Garden Variety: Visit three different museums at the Majorelle Garden, named for the eponymous French painter who designed the sprawling grounds and lived in the shockingly blue villa on the property. The cactus-laden complex also includes the Islamic Art Museum, the Berber Museum, and the Yves Saint Laurent Museum.
Gate Grandpa: Not to be confused with the similarly named mashed eggplant dish, Bab Agnaou is a 12th century city gate that once represented Marrakesh’s doorway to Sub-Saharan Africa. These days, however, it’s mostly just a cool spot to take a selfie with a very old wall.
Moroccan Cooking Class (extra cost)
Learn the ins and outs of chicken tagine and assorted Moroccan salads as you cook and consume your own authentic lunch. Melt the rich flavors of the Mediterranean and the Maghreb together hands-on.
Why wait? Save money by booking this optional excursion before your trip departs.
- Day 5: Travel to Ouarzazate via Aït-Ben-Haddou
Ever seen a movie? Of course you have. Ever seen a movie with a scene that took place in the desert? Probably, right? That desert scene was most likely filmed at Aït-Ben-Haddou, which is a series of Saharan mud huts built into a hillside that you get to explore today on your way to Ouarzazate.
- Board your bus from Marrakesh bound for Ouarzazate.
- Stop for an included lunch in Aït-Ben-Haddou, and take some time to reenact your favorite Game of Thrones/Gladiator/Lawrence of Arabia desert scene.
- Stare at the imposing High Atlas Mountains—nothing to shrug at.
- Feast upon couscous—the food so nice, they named it twice—and other foods at an included dinner upon your arrival in Ouarzazate.
- Day 6: Explore Ouarzazate + Sightseeing En Route to Erfoud
When in Ouarzazate, be like a Berber. Or at least get to know your indigenous hosts in this Moroccan vacation town. Today is a day of desert sightseeing, so make space on your camera roll, stuff your pockets with olives, and stock up on sunscreen—you’re headed to Erfoud with several crazy-beautiful stops along the way.
- Walk the kasbah on your morning stroll through Ouarzazate’s fortified palace, the Taourirt Kasbah.
- Enjoy lunch in the quaint town of Tinghir
- Gawk at gorgeous gorges at Todra Gorge, featuring 500-foot high limestone walls on either side of a narrow canyon.
- Gorge yourself (today is a day of gorges) on an included dinner once you settle in Erfoud.
- Day 7: Explore Erfoud & Erg Chebbi Sand Dunes
Oasis is more than just the band that wrote “Wonderwall.” It’s also an area in the desert with enough vegetation and water to support life. A prime example of which is Erfoud, your splendid refuge on the Ziz River today for those of you already sick of sand.
- Enjoy a morning excursion, off-the-beaten path, to Rissani to see the spectacularly decorated Mausoleum of Moulay Ali Cherif, and the Ksar El Fida—a gigantic desert castle.
- Return to Erfoud, where you bet Jur-ass-ic you get to see some bones and fossils from some of the weird dinosaurs that lived here when the Sahara Desert was underwater.
- Cool off with a refreshing swim in the hotel pool—no, it’s not a desert illusion, it’s really there.
- Set out for the Erg Chebbi sand dunes.
- Stop at a traditional Bedouin tent for a musical performance (for watching), snacks (for eating), and classic Moroccan mint tea (for sipping, not spilling).
- Return to Erfoud for an included dinner and a free night.
- Day 8: Travel to Fez
You’re going to Fez today—home to over one million people, and the namesake to that tassled hat that Aladdin wears. Along the way to the “Athens of Africa,” you’ll see the quaint apple-country town of Midelt, mountains, monkeys and more.
- Board your private motorcoach bound for Fez.
- Say “Ziz Louise” as you have your mind-blown while passing through the lush and extremely photogenic Ziz River Valley and Atlas Mountains.
- Insist that your fellow travelers refer to you as “the Johnny Appleseed of Morocco” as you stop in Midelt—known for its abundant fruit trees—for some free time to grab lunch.
- Continue on to Ifrane, a Euro-inspired city built by the French last century in the high alpine forest plateaus of the Atlas Mountains.
- Enjoy an included dinner upon arrival in Fez.
- Day 9: Explore Fez
You think your Great Aunt Edwina is old? Just wait until you see how old Fez is. Hint: over 1,200 years old. Follow your Tour Director for an in-depth look at how the oldest Imperial City has shifted and morphed in its millennium-plus of existence.
- Be dazzled by Fez’s ornate Moorish architecture like that of the Royal Palace Gate and the Bab Bou Jeloud, and realize you certainly don’t want… less-ish.
- Visit the Old Jewish Quarter, known as the Mellah, and learn about the rise and fall of Fez’s once-numerous Jewish population.
- Attend a ceramics demonstration.
- Get down and dirty at one of the world’s oldest tanneries and learn that leather is traditionally soaked in cow urine and pigeon feces—just don’t tell that to your motorcycle gang.
- Day 10: Travel to Casablanca via Rabat + Farewell Dinner
You deserve the presidential treatment, which is why you’re going to white house today. Or as it’s more commonly known, Casablanca. Along the way, you’ll have a chance to explore Rabat, the country’s coastal capital. Once filled with pirates, these days it’s mostly filled with great seafood. Speaking of which, tonight in Casablanca, you’ll feast on a farewell dinner to commemorate the end of your spicy/sweet/exhilarating/pool-chilling/selfie-taking/history-learning/unforgettable 10-day desert odyssey.
- Kiss Fez goodbye (not literally—those are some old, old buildings) and board your private motorcoach en route to Casablanca via Rabat.
- Let out the occasional “ooh” and “aah” as you tour Rabat, visiting sights such as the emerald-roofed Mausoleum of Mohammed V, Kasbah of the Udayas, the Andalusian Gardens, and an Atlantic-coast beach that puts the Jersey Shore to shame.
- Reflect on how #relatable the Hassan Mosque is, envisioned to be the largest in the world before construction ceased in 1199—procrastination is real, people.
- Arrive in Casablanca and finally get around to declaring “quite frankly my dear I don’t give a damn,” but we won’t tell anyone that that’s from Gone With the Wind, not Casablanca.
Share some last laughs (and maybe shed a few tears) at an included farewell dinner with the group.