Few countries hold as much dreamy fascination for travelers as the beautiful country of Morocco. Made up of four different areas: the Sahara desert, full of Berber towns and oases; the Atlas Mountains, perfect for hikers; the imperial cities of Marrakesh and Fez; and finally the sandy coastlines of the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, graced by small beach towns and the cities of Rabat and Casablanca. A blend of Africa, Arabia and Europe, there are few places more evocative than Morocco …
Morocco ~ the bespoke to do list
Below, are the can’t miss highlights every traveler needs on their list, when traveling to Morocco.
• Get lost in the labyrinthine streets, with its winding souks, fresh-juice stalls and tanneries.
• Delve into a Moroccan cuisine during a hands-on cooking class and visit a hammam in Marrakesh.
• Discover the well-preserved mosaics of Roman villas at Volubilis and the medieval-era Medina of Fez, both UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
• Stay in a traditional Riad and spend a day exploring this imperial city.
• Hike to an indigenous Berber village set amongst the snow-capped peaks of the Atlas mountains. Retreat to Sir Richard Branson’s picturesque hotel perched high in the Atlas Mountains.
• Stroll along the blue walls of Chefchaouen.
• Learn to kitesurf on the stiff Atlantic breeze.
• Take glamping to the next level, with one or two nights in an exclusive Desert Tented Camp.
• And if you don’t have time to make it to Sahara, spend a night camping beneath the stars of the Agafay Desert, a barren but stunning wilderness only 40km’s from Marrakech.
• Ride into the sunset on camelback in the Sahara’s Erg Chebbi dunes – a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience – perfect for slowing down to take in the remoteness of the desert.
hotels we love
La maison arabe
Villa des orangers
riad numero 9
La Mamounia (luxury)
kasbah tamadot (luxury)
royal mansour (luxury)
Terre des Etoiles, Agafay Desert
Create an oasis in the desert. That was the crazy dream, the seed from which utopia would spring into reality: Cradle of Stars, Terres des Etoiles ecolodge, emerged from the hilly landscapes of a stone desert and today offers a unique desert experience. As a result of Pierre-Yves Marais’ commitment, the camp provides guests with the opportunity to take in the magic of this striking setting in unusual, environmentally-friendly accommodation. Their tents combine the best of outdoors experience with all modern conveniences in tented accommodation for a fantastic night in the desert. An unique environment to relax, explore, conquer or indulge and submit to. Choose from their wide range of activities to immerse yourself in the cradle of stars. Terre des Etoiles Desert Lodge Camp is also the starting point of many excursions set in these exceptional landscapes Visit the hotel website.
Tucked into a beautiful corner of the Atlas Mountain range, is ‘an unusual encampment in an exceptional setting“. The very definition of glamping, the Scarabeo Camp’s beautifully appointed Camp is a charming bivouac of a dozen oriental-inspired tents, decorated with unique sourced pieces and locally crafted artwork forming a harmonious whole with their surroundings. The stunning dining set-up with African women matting and Berber rugs, and atmospheric Moroccan lanterns, looks like something out of a storybook and gives the impression of being on an expedition from another time. These spacious and comfortable tents are decorated with handpicked local decor (Berger rugs and cushions; Moroccan lamps throughout) and the meals, including fresh-baked breads, are prepped from scratch. Visit the camp website.
Dramatically set between the Atlas Mountains and Morocco’s stretch of the Sahara desert, the Dar Ahlam hotel is a renovated 19th century Kasbah whose name means ‘House of Dreams’. A stay here includes 4×4 excursions with your private guide & driver, camel riding, special gala dinners and a cooking class – you can even continue your adventure in a private Bedouin-sytle tent set up in the heart of the desert. Visit the hotel website.
hotel ksar el kabbaba
Located in the heart of Skoura palm grove, the Ksar El Kebbaba comes to life in the middle of lush greenness and precisely under the branches of an olive tree that witnessed the life of generations for more than three centuries. During the night, the garden becomes an intimate place, warm, romantic and quiet thanks to the many candles and lights hanging from the palms and other trees. Visit the hotel website.
The Dar Zemora is a peaceful paradise just three miles from Marrakech’s city centre. With a inviting pool set in three acres of rose-filled gardens, bursting with palm trees, bourgainvillea, bamboo, fruit and olive trees. All the rooms are lovely, but we recommend the Perla Suite with is light, bright and has a huge roof terrace where you can catch the sun in private. Visit the hotel website.
la sultana oualidia
La Sultana Oualidia is the ideal place to unwind. A tranquil retreat located on a quiet and sheltered lagoon near the pretty fishing village of Oualidia on the Atlantic coast, facing a salt water lagoon and beach where ocean and coast merge. Guests can try their hand at surfing, go on a Bird Watching Safari, have a picnic on a secluded beach, or simply sit back, enjoy the in-house spa and dine on fresh oysters. Visit the hotel website.
This hotel is a true retreat (no children under 12 years allowed) set in the grounds of a four-hectare former olive farm in the foothills of the Atlas Mountains, a 45 minute drive from Marrakech. There’s a large heated pool, a good sized spa and the rooms are spacious and done in neutral tones – not typically Moroccan. We recommend the rooms at the front of the main house for the best views of the Atlas Mountains. Visit the hotel website.
If you’re looking for a sea breeze and the sand between your toes, then head to Morocco’s Atlantic coast where L’Heure Bleue (Member of the prestigious Relais & Chateaux association) with its famous roof top pool is one of our top pick in Essaouira. Visit the hotel website.
What Our Bespoke travelers Are Saying
Don’t just take it from us, let our bespoke clients do the talking!
Notes from the road: A few trip highlights included: staying in a traditional Riad and pottery making in Fes, hiking in the Atlas Mountains (and staying at the incredible Kasbah Tamadot), exploring the souks of Marrakech, and so happy we got to spend 2 nights glamping in the Sahara desert and riding into the sunset on camelback – a truly once in a lifetime experience.The Bell Family, March 2019
“Our trip to Morocco was great and definitely exceeded my expectations. All the hotels were fabulous and the staff extremely helpful. The Branson retreat (Kabash Tamadot, Atlas Mountains) was amazing! I’d go back there in a flash. It was my favourite part of the trip. I always recommend you to friends and will be in touch again soon, to plan our next adventure.”Patricia, Jack & Joshua Kay, August 2018
“After a few more amazing trips you’ve planned for us to Tahiti, Bora Bora, Australia (again) and this time Morocco, it’s time to update this review. Actually, not much has changed. You’re still a 5 star trip planner and, if anything, it’s even more apparent now how much you care about researching amazing places for us to go, things for us to do and hotels for us to stay at. These trips are definitely not “run of the mill” and you put so much work into making sure they’re perfect for us and not cookie cutter trips. You care about making sure we’re absolutely happy with everything, available to help while we’re traveling and do a wonderful job. Please keep it up! We can’t wait for our next trip.”Michael, Katherine, Alannah & Cole, August 2018
“We are back from our Moroccan getaway and the trip was incredible! I wanted to pass on a thank you to you for organizing such a diverse itinerary. Tanya and I feel we were able to enjoy the beauty and diversity of Morocco while also having a chance to understand the people, their background and customs. A special shout out to our tour guide (Said) and driver (Moustafa) who were courteous, insightful and always on time. They were a pleasure to tour with and provided enjoyable company esp. over some of the longer drives. The accommodations were incredible (every location was unique). Kasbah Tamadot in particular was a real treat and Eve Branson was there as well so you can see her passion for the property and the local Berber’s her foundation supports. Again, much appreciation from Tanya and myself. Now we can begin planning for Hawaii in March!”Richard & Tanya, October 2016
Looking to extend your trip?
Morocco tends to work as a stand-alone destination thanks to the variety of terrain and experiences it offers… but it’s only a short 30 minute flight from Marrakech to Seville (in Andalucia), so combining Morocco & Spain would make for a fantastic combination.