Two Weeks in Morocco & a Ferry Ride to Spain
Two weeks in Morocco is just the right time to explore the places you wanna see and go. However, this is not enough to get to know the whole country. On this trip, I skipped the Sahara desert safari because I’ve been and have lived in the desert for months. So, I don’t need to be reminded of how beautiful the sand dunes are at sunset or sunrise.
Transport in Morocco
In between cities, the train is the most convenient transport for backpackers. Though trains are kinda slow, but it will get you there. It arrives almost always on-time. Taxis are also common in cities, but most of them (or the ones I had) don’t really have fare meters. You have to agree on the fare first before getting on the cab.
Day Trips in Morocco
Taking day trips via tours save time and inconvenience. If you’re in Marrakech or in Fez, there are tours that would take you to amazing tourist destinations.
Day 1 – Casablanca
Transport from the airport to downtown Casablanca:
Airport to downtown Casablanca is connected via a railway. The train departs every hour and it costs $3 for forty minutes ride. Get off at the last station where McDonald’s and Starbucks greet you at the exit. 😀
I arrived at my hotel around 4 in the afternoon. Then thirty minutes later, I went out and started walking on the corniche all the way to Hassan II Mosque. It is Casablanca’s most visited tourist attraction. I’ve got to witness the beauty of this grand mosque in late afternoon, at sunset and at night.
In the evening, I met up with the local couchsurfers who had iftar by the beach. Then, we all went to a cafe downtown where we had tea and beer.
Where to stay in Casablanca
I stayed at Hotel Azur Casablanca where my room was facing the Atlantic Ocean. And the best part is that I was in the bar district which the city is known for. Right outside the hotel are restaurants, bars, cafes, etc… It’s worth staying here for a night in Casablanca.
Day 2 – Marrakech
I arrived at noon but managed to be at my hostel around 2:30 in the afternoon. The cab driver pretended to know where my hostel was but he actually didn’t. I refused to get out of his car until we found it.
Things to do:
- Experience the sights, sounds and tastes of Morocco at Place de Jemaa El-Efna. It’s a culinary and visual feast here. Stay until midnight to see the spectacle of people doing all sorts of things to entertain everyone.
- Be hypnotized by the snake charmers of Morocco.
- Stroll at the myriad narrow lanes of the medina where Sex and the City 2 was filmed. The shopping extravaganza here is an assault to the senses.
Where to stay / hostel in Marrakech
True to its name, Rainbow Hostel is the most colourful hostel I’ve ever stayed in. It’s right in the medina and a few minutes walk to Place de Jemaa El-fnaa. They also have a tour desk. You can book it via HostelWorld.
Day 3 – Day Tour from Marrakech
I booked a day trip outside Marrakech through my hostel. It cost me around $30, excluding the food. The price is for transport and tickets only.
Things to do
- Visit Ait Benhaddou, Morocco’s most famous movie location where award-winning Hollywood films like, Prince of Persia, Alexander, Babel, Lawrence of Arabia, etc. were shot.
- Go inside the splendid Taourirt Kasbah, an important traditional home in the country’s trading history with the rest of Africa.
- Stop by the Atlas Film Museum in Ouarzazate and see if some of the rooms are familiar to you. These rooms where used in Hollywood films.
Day 4 – Day Trip from Marrakech
Spend a day at Ouzoud Waterfalls, one of Africa’s tallest falls. Pack your lunch if you don’t want to buy at one of the restaurants there. They’re pricey and not even that good. 😉
Day 5 – Marrakech
This was my last day in Marrakech and I just took it easy. In the morning, I did these things:
- I went around the gardens of Koutoubia Mosque, the largest in Marrakech.
- Though I was kind of disappointed, you should visit the Menara Garden. Probably, the renovation should be finished by now.
- Pay a visit to the house of a famous fashion designer, Yves St Laurent. He’s also buried here.
Day 6 – Rabat
I was in Rabat for 20 hours to visit a friend who also hosted me at his house. He showed me Hassan Tower, the medina, and Oudayas Kasbah. In the evening, he brought me to a wonderful shisha place outside the city.
Day 7 – Fes
Fes is dubbed as the intellectual capital of Morocco due to the existence of ancient academic institutions in the city. In fact, the city’s University of Al Quaraouiyine is the world’s oldest university and it is still open until now. After years of restoration, the university’s library, the oldest in the world, is finally open.
Things to do
- Explore Fes Medina in the morning and watch it get busy, ’till everyone is awake and the shops are open for business.
- Have a buffet dinner at Cafe Clock to end your day. The rooftop has a view of the medina.
Where to stay / Hostel in Fes
Hostel Dar Janat is in the middle of the medina. From here, you can also walk to the bus station. The hostel has a tour desk. It’s clean, and in one of the oldest buildings in the medina. Staff are friendly. You can book this via HostelWorld.
Day 8 – Day Tour from Fes
This day tour from Fes brought me to Volubilis, Moulay Idris and Meknes.
The Roman ruins of Volubilis is a testament that the area was once a progressive city that held power and might. The ruins are reminders that the Romans were there, settled, conquered it – and vanished.
Moulay Idriss is the birthplace of Islam in Morocco. The town is named after Moulay Idriss I, the great grandson of Prophet Mohammed and who brought Islam to the country. He is, of course, the country’s most-revered Saint.
Once the capital of the country, Meknes is home to some of a well-preserved Spanish-Moorish style buildings in the country.
Day 9 – Fes
On my last day in Fes, I chillaxed. I visited the Jewish Quarter and the palace where the King lives (just outside). Also, I had a feet massage.
In the evening, I walked around the bustling medina to find a good place for chicken tagine.
Day 10 and 11 – Chefchaouen
Chefchaouen is Morocco’s Blue City. And there’s no doubt that this is the country’s most photogenic city, too.
And while you’re here, don’t forget to photograph the doors. They’re very unique and super photogenic!
Where to stay / hostel in Chefchaouen
Casa Amina is your place to be. It is a family-owned hostel that is painted in blue, of course. It’s right in the middle of all the blue village.
Day 12 and 13- Tangier
Tangier is in the northernmost tip of Africa. It’s the door to Africa, obviously.
Things to do:
- Stroll around the medina.
- Stroll the whole length of the corniche. And if you like, take a dip at the beach.
- Hire a cab to bring you to Cap Sparkle where you can see the Meditteranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean meet.
- Explore Kasbah in the morning and visit the tomb of the great Moroccan traveler who was born here, Ibn Battuta.
- Marvel at the Grand Soco and the Grand Mosque of Tangier with a detailed pink minaret.
Where to stay in Tangier
I stayed at Hotel Mamora. It’s in the medina surrounded by a lot of cafes and restaurants. It’s walking distance to Kasbah, the corniche and the pier for the ferry that goes to Spain. You can book it via Expedia or at HostelWorld.
Day 14 – Ferry to Spain
From my hotel, I walked to the pier in 10 minutes. The ferry ride from Tangier to Algeciras, Spain lasted 30 minutes.
Not into travelling solo or alone? Discover Morocco via Intrepid Travel. They have tours that aren’t crowded but limited participants. Choose from the different itineraries they have, exploring part of or the whole country. You’ll love their tours!