Surprise the enormous cultural change that occurs in just 14.4 kilometers, the distance that separates Africa from Europe at the height of the Strait of Gibraltar. With a religion, a culture and a way of thinking very different from those of the European continent. Morocco becomes one of the most economical and close options for those who want to experience a cultural change. Today we are going to show point by point all there is to see in a trip to Morocco in a week or 10 days.
Trip to Morocco
Before starting to explain everything there is to see in a trip to Morocco in a week or 10 days. It is important to clarify that this country gives much more than a trip of that length. Its nature is very varied (you can find from high mountain to deserts through fertile valleys). Its culture is exciting, and its surface make the optimal time to enjoy it completely is 2 weeks and up. Even so, it can be covered in a week or 10 days.
How to travel around Morocco
The first thing to define (the factor that will mark what we can see) is the way we are going to travel through Morocco. There are three ways to travel around the country:
- Morocco by free.
- Renting the private car.
- Using other means of transport (taxis, buses, train, hitchhiking).
Guided tour of Morocco (there are activities that will be necessary to hire yes or yes, like going to the desert). See the 12 cheapest tourist location in the world.
Pros and cons of these ways of traveling:
Pros: Total independence, ability to stop when you want, more immersion with locals, more economical (depends on the price of car rental and how many people go to the trip).
Cons: Possibility of knowing less what is visited and seen for lack of a local guide, more risk of being fined by the police with the car (of the worst things in this country), we must manage the search for accommodation and reservations for activities that are compulsorily guided.
Pros: You will better understand the culture with a guide that explains the details. It allows you to disregard to organize details of the trip, more “protection” against the fines of the police.
Cons: Loss of independence when moving, more expensive (sometimes this is not the case. For example, if few people travel and rent a car), fewer options for spontaneity.
At the end of the post, I will go on to explain how to organize the trip to Morocco by free, while in the next section, the routes, apart from explaining a bit each. Let’s see what is all there is to see in a trip to Morocco in a week or 10 days.
Routes with everything there is to see on a trip to Morocco in a week
I am not much of recipes because each person has their way of traveling, but since this is an article about what to see on a trip to Morocco in a week, which is a relatively short time, I will divide it into different routes. Of course, they are all interchangeable and modifiable.
Marrakech, the Atlas and the Sahara desert in a week
I will start with the most required trip for all those who trip to Morocco in a week: Marrakech, the desert, and the Atlas Mountains.
On this route, you can see almost all the beauties that are worth living in the country. The rhythm of a large souk, the high mountain nature, the large adobe kasbahs, the small Berber villages and the incredible experience of the desert.
Excursion to the desert of Morocco. There are two options to experience the desert in Morocco: Erg Chebbi, near Merzouga, or Erg Chigaga, near Zagora or M’hammid. Both options are good (one has the highest dunes, and another is in the middle of nowhere, thus ensuring a more authentic experience, if possible). If you have doubts about which dessert to choose, look at this article where I talk about both areas of the Moroccan desert. Visit the king of desert Egypt.
Something important to know is that to go to the desert. You have to hire an expedition compulsorily.
The Atlas is a long mountain range located in the central part of Morocco whose highest level is the Toubkal, with 4165 meters. This could perfectly occupy the 7 days of travel if what you are looking for is nature, trekkings and deep gorges of reddish rock. On this route that combines Marrakech and the desert, we would focus on the southern slope of the mountain range, the Dades and Todrá gorges. Without a doubt, two of the great wonders that must be seen in Morocco in a week.
We would arrive in Marrakech by plane (several low-cost airlines fly to the city). In it, we could spend a day or two (we have to expect that we would return from here too) seeing its palaces, the vibrant life of Djemaa el Fna, its bazaar … In another article, I talk about it. So, to know what to see in Marrakech click here.
Afterward, either by private car, either by bus or with the guided group, we would head south, crossing the atlas through the port of Tizi’n tichka to Ouarzazate. Nearby is Ait Ben Haddou, a large Kasbah where movies such as Gladiator or Lawrence of Arabia were filmed. It could be seen if you have a car or have hired a guided expedition.
Ait Ben haddou (Village of Morocco)
In Ouarzazate, if we have a car, we have to choose between the two dessert options, since in this place the roads fork, one towards Erg Chebbi and the other towards Erg Chigaga. The expedition to the desert (compulsory with a guide) can be contracted either from Marrakech or the nearest town (Merzouga or Zagora).
To go to the gorges, on the road that goes to Merzouga (Erg Chebbi) we will find the respective detours towards the Dades gorges, through the so-called valley of the thousand kasbahs, and Todrá, with its towering reddish walls.
Marrakech, Fez, Chauen
If the desert and the mountain is not your choice and you prefer to know more about the Moroccan cities and towns. The best option is to combine Marrakech with Fez and, although somewhat adjusted, Chaouen.
Once we have visited Marrakech, we can travel to Fez, again, by car or public transport (train with the least tired option). Fez, compared to Marrakech is much less crowded with tourists. It shows in the way in which the local people relate.
The most striking thing about Fez
Its immense and labyrinthine souk, a place where getting lost is almost obligatory (if not inevitable). With its different sections divided into artisan sectors, Fez is one of the most surprising places. The recommended number of days to enjoy the city and visit it completely would be about 2-3 days.
Near Fez, half an hour by train, is Meknes, another jewel of this area of Morocco to which you can devote a round trip. It is worthwhile to stay overnight, it depends on the time you have.
If you want to visit Chaouen, the blue city, it would be possible from Fez (you would have to reduce the time in Fez or Marrakech). There is a bus that connects both cities in about 4 hours which would allow you to get there at noon, stay overnight and leave at noon the next day. My advice is to spend at least two nights, Chaouen is beautiful. Guided tours also include excursions from Fez or included in longer tours.
All these routes can be found in a guided way in the company Viajes Marrakech. With which I work together from time to time in the country.
Among the activities they offer, there are routes for families. Of which they know a lot, they have several children), and day trips and routes of several days, all with the driver.
I’ve been trip to Morocco three times. Each time I did it differently: renting a car, with guided and free travel using public transport and hitchhiking.
Traveling in Morocco by car (or motorbike)
The best way to trip to Morocco for free is by renting a car. This gives you total freedom of movement, which, for all passionate about photography, is a plus. This option, of course, is profitable if you travel, at least, two people. For a person, it can be an excessive expense. Note down this road traveling tips: https://magazinzoo.com/traveling-by-road-tips/
One thing to keep in mind is that some members of the Moroccan police force are slightly corrupt, putting fines in a somewhat random way (speed controls, etc.). Another piece of data is the way they drive in Morocco, sometimes a bit … erratic.
Travel through Morocco by public transport
The public transport network in Morocco is based on the train, buses and grand taxi or collective taxi. The train connects large cores such as Fez, Marrakech, Casablanca or Tangier. To go to the desert would be necessary other public transport such as bus or taxi.
At a lower price, some buses connect almost all the points of Morocco, being especially useful to connect cities such as Fez with Chauen. Some companies have wifi service on board.
The grand taxi or collective taxis are the fastest way to get around en route. These have the capacity for 6. If fewer people travel, the price to pay for each one would be higher, so it is convenient to look for other travelers with whom to share a route (there are routes in which the government has already fixed a base fare, such as 600 dirhams from Tangier to Chauen ).
Travel around Morocco by hitchhiking
During my trips, hitchhiking is one of the basic tools, both because of the savings in travel and in the depth of knowledge that is made about local people. In Morocco, hitchhiking is easy. A lot of drivers tend to want to ask for a price for transportation. In general, it would be enough to wait for the vehicle that wants to take you without any charge (sometimes, the person who wants to haggle, in the end, gives way and takes you) but you can also agree to pay a minimum price that equals the gasoline used. Don’t forget to know the curiosities of Eiffel tower.
There are so many things to see on a trip to Morocco in a week or 10 days. It is difficult to decide which route to do exactly. If it’s your first time in Morocco, do not hesitate: Marrakech, Atlas, and dessert will be a great option, although any of the other options is extremely interesting.