My friends and I recently got back from a tour in Morocco with this company – I don’t often leave feedback unless I was blown away or extremely disappointed, but this tour left us extremely happy and felt I should share my experience to others! They were able to accommodate any of our requests and provided us with fantastic suggestions as well.
It was extremely exotic, educational, and fun. We were right to choose high-end Riads: they were delightful, wonderfully furnished, and the staff in each one were attentive, helpful and charming. Each Riad was unique and it was clear to us that the owners were determined to make us feel welcome and comfortable. For us, the riads were an important part of the Moroccan experience, and much more enjoyable than international hotel chains. We did end up staying in hotels but they were a great selection of boutique hotels. The driver recommended and arranged for us to stay at the Tombuctoo in Merzouga rather than driving back to (and then back from) the Xaluca in Erfoud, which turned out to be a great decision. The itinerary was well balanced – not changing hotels every day, and giving us enough time to see quite a lot in the big cities (Fes, Marakesh). Everything went smoothly and there were no unpleasant incidents. Our driver was very helpful, protective and easy to talk to, although we spoke French most of the time as he was more comfortable in that language. He drove well, was courteous, and looked after us attentively.
The local guides were well informed, helpful and friendly. We were particularly pleased about being able to get close enough to the guides and the driver to be able to learn much more about Islam and its importance in Muslim life – a real education that most westerners, like myself and my friends, could benefit from these days. It left us with considerably greater respect for the people and their religion.
We were particularly interested in the interior decoration – such as carvings, mosaics etc. in the mosques, riads and mausoleums. We also really enjoyed the visit to a Berber home – it was fascinating. Also, the Djemmaa-el-Fna Square was a high-point, especially arriving in the dark in the evening, with the overwhelming vitality of the scene – the crowd, the food, the smells, sounds, lights, music and general vibrance.
The Moroccan food was excellent, but the repetitiveness of it was tiresome. In virtually every arranged meal, the menu was the same: an array of “Moroccan salad” dishes, followed by tagine and couscous, with the only variation being the occasional addition of a bastilla. These meals were individually well prepared and well presented, especially in the high-end restaurants (Yacout, Maison Bleue), but having the same menu so often was a little disappointing. We found ourselves always looking for a varety of food such as fish or European cuisine. The shopping was excellent – it was nice knowing that we were able to contirbute to the Moroccan economy, especially in the textiles sector. We would happily have missed the Fantasia production at Borj Bladi: the whole thing was like a parody, with the staff and performers clearly uninterested and unmotivated. We left as quickly as possible.
But all in all, we had a great time, despite the inevitable digestive troubles! And I took hundreds of photos, which is very unusual for me. Many thanks for your help in putting the trip together.