THE MARVEL OF MOROCCO - Morocco ONE TIME ONLY!
April 4 – 12 and April 12 – 20, 2018
The Marvel and Magic of Morocco! – A Journey through the Imperial City of Marrakech to the High Atlas Mountains and a magical adventure in the Sahara Desert!
TRAVEL DATES: APRIL 4 – 12, 2018 (STARTING IN MARRAKECH AND ENDING IN OUARZAZATE)
Featuring Ed Robertson (multi-Juno award winner and Grammy nominee), Danny Michel and Jeremy Fisher (Juno-nominated singer-songwriters) along with Olympic Gold, Double Silver and Bronze medalist in kayaking, Adam van Koeverden!
TRAVEL DATES: APRIL 12 – 20, 2018 (STARTING IN OUARZAZATE AND ENDING IN MARRAKECH)
Featuring Jim Cuddy (Canadian multi-Juno award winner/Canadian Music Hall of Fame and Order of Canada recipient), Barney Bentall (Canadian multi-Juno award winner), amazing fiddler Anne Lindsay and Devin Cuddy and Sam Polley, along with Chef de Mission for the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Games and Double Silver and Bronze medalist in speed skating, Isabelle Charest!
Mosques, palaces, royal gardens, vibrant markets, majestic mountains, alluring desert – this mystical land steeped in ancient history and artistry will be an expedition for those with an adventurous spirit and soul. We will journey through the Imperial City of Marrakech to North Africa’s highest mountain range, the High Atlas Mountains, to the rolling sand dunes of the Sahara
Desert by 4×4’s, coach and camels!
Morocco is a country of dizzying diversity. From majestic snowcapped mountain ranges, rugged coastlines, mystical cities, sweeping deserts and warm hospitality, this lyrical landscape is like the richly coloured and patterned rugs you’ll lust after in local markets. Morocco, with its mix of Arab and Berber population, forms a strong national identity, but an increasingly youthful one, taking the best of its traditions and weaving the pattern anew. From the countryside to the city, from the call to prayer to the beat of local hip hop, Morocco has a hundred faces and sounds, all waiting to welcome the traveller looking for the exotic, the fascinating and the surreal.
Your journey will include three nights in the medieval city of Marrakech, within the walls of the medina, famous for its mazelike alleys and captivating souks (marketplaces). Here you will experience an introduction to Morocco culture and explore the impressive Islamic architecture in a historical walking tour that will include learning the ancient history behind this diverse country and how religion permeates the rhythms of daily life. You will visit Medersa Ben Youssef, the Koranic School of Islam, once the largest in Africa, the 12th-century Koutoubia Mosque, the ancient Saadian Tombs and the opulent Bahia Palace. During the day, you can choose to do what the locals do, relax and people-watch in a street cafe with a coffee or mint tea, or partake in one of the optional activities, from learning to roll couscous in a female-run cooking school, to learning how to barter in the souks of the medina, to sweating it all out in a restorative hammam (traditional spa). The choice is yours!
You will also enjoy an amazing Moroccan feast in a former 15th century palace and sip cocktails on a rooftop terrace overlooking the magical city of Marrakech. You can end the night in the souks, strolling between snail-vendors, soothsayers, acrobats and conjurers, musicians and slapstick acting troupes to discover the old city’s frenetic pulse. The party doesn’t end until the lights go out!
You will venture to the unspoilt village of Ouirgane, a small Berber village 3,300 feet above sea level, nestled in the tranquil foothills of the High Atlas Mountains, in the heart of Toubkal National Park. You will spend two nights at the lovely Domaine de la Roseraie. As the name suggests, the hotel is surrounded by rose bushes, as well as olive trees and orchards. You will discover the local Berber villages and enjoy the beauty and tranquility of the High Atlas Mountains with your choice of transportation: by foot, by mountain bike or on horseback. At the end of the day, you’ll appreciate a dip in the hotel’s refreshing pool.
Like a page out of Lawrence of Arabia, you will be a part of a convoy of 4×4 Land Rovers which will take you on the trek to the Sahara Desert! This leg of the journey will have you exploring The Dades Valley (or the Valley of a Thousand Kasbahs) which is scattered with oases, palm groves and elaborate kasbahs (fortresses). At an altitude of 1612 meters, you will stay one night at Boumalne Dades Hotel, surrounded by the majestic mountains at the very spine of the Atlas range, whose impressive ravines stretch out to the winds in the sky!
It is here that you can choose to explore the sweeping vistas of the Boumalne Dades gorge on a road bike or by coach. The Land Rovers will be traded for camels as you head into the mighty Sahara Desert to the small town of Merzouga on the Algerian border, known as the gateway to Erg Chebbi, a huge expanse of sand dunes. You will spend one night ‘glamping’ in a Berber tent among the soaring sand dunes and watch as they change colour from dawn to dusk!
For the final destination on your expedition through Morocco, you will spend one night in the town of Ouarzazate, where movies including ‘Lawrence of Arabia,’ ‘Star Wars’, ‘Gladiator’ and ‘Game of Thrones’ have been filmed. This will be the location of a ‘super’ concert featuring all the musicians from both weeks – Jim, Ed, Barney, Anne, Danny, Jeremy, Devin and Sam! Whether you start or end in Ouarzazate you will be treated to this epic concert!
It will be a trip of a lifetime – pack light and bring your adventurous spirit because along the way you’ll learn to barter, smoke a hookah, get a henna tattoo, wear a djellaba, ride a camel and maybe even don a snake from a snake charmer!
YOUR NINE-DAY, EIGHT-NIGHT ADVENTURE FOR TWO INCLUDES:
- Three nights’ accommodation in Marrakesh, two nights’ accommodation in the High Atlas Mountain area in Ouirgane, one nights’ accommodation in the desert at Boumalne Dades Hotel, one nights’ accommodation in a luxurious desert tent on the Sahara Desert in the village of Merzouga and one nights’ accommodation in Ouarzazate. All locations include breakfast.
- A rooftop reception on a terrace overlooking the magical, colourful Medina in the city of Marrakesh followed by a traditional Moroccan dinner in a former palace from the 15th century
- A historical walking tour in Marrakesh to experience an introduction to Morocco culture and Medersa Ben Youssef, the Koranic School of Islam, the 12th-century Koutoubia Mosque, the Saadian Tombs and the
- Beautiful Moroccan BBQ in the foothills of the Atlas Mountains while hearing stories from your featured Olympian
- Two amazing dinners in the Sahara Desert with an unforgettable unplugged performance under the stars by your featured musicians!
- Visit to remote Berber villages in the High Atlas Mountains by mountain bike, by foot or on horseback
- Take an incredible ride through the Gorge of Boumaine Dades (bike rental not included)
- An epic ‘super’ concert featuring all the musicians from both weeks – Jim, Ed, Barney, Anne, Danny, Jeremy, Devin and Sam!
- Transportation throughout the journey by coach, 4×4 Land Rovers and by camel to get you to your various destinations!
Optional add-ons (at additional cost):
- Hot air balloon ride over the city of Marrakech
- Cooking class in Marrakech
- Learning how to barter in the souks
- Visit the famous gardens of Marrakech
- Enjoy a traditional Spa and Hammam
- Hiking, biking (mountain biking and road biking – there will be 5 optional days to either mountain bike or ride bike) and horseback riding in the High Atlas Mountains