aot icon new template
Call Us  
(800) 848-3273
 

Tuesday, 25 July 2017 09:48

Travel Inside Morocco - Luxury Experiences and Travel Tips Part 2

Escorted by Annette Stellhorn

Annette Rick with the camel and guides in the Saraha Dessert

Welcome back for the rest of our blog on Luxury Travel to Morocco - I just had too much to say to fit it all in one blog. 

Money matters.. Although VISA and Master Card credit cards are widely accepted, I would highly suggest you hit an ATM very quickly to get your money exchanged to Moroccan DH.   Change in 'coin' is given when buying small item(s) which you will need for the expected public bathroom tips. 

Sightseeing - I cannot over emphasize the fact that professional private guides are worth their weight in gold as tour guides, shopping hosts, historians, theologians, cultural educators, and culinary experts.  Although it can be fun to fly into Morocco for a four night stay in Marrakech and or an overnight in a luxury tent in the Sahara Desert, I would recommend staying as long as you can as long as the touring and accommodations are crafted to your preferred style of travel and experiences.

Moroccan culture - During Ramadan and the rest of the year:  We found Morocco to be our favorite Islamic and also the most open to its citizens and tourists.  During our travels, one of the most useful thoughts that arose was to keep in mind Moroccans are very welcoming people especially if you respect their culture.  VIsiting during Ramadan is different and still enjoyable if you keep in mind the country does a slight 'flipflop'.. I.e. there is more activity at 11pm than 11 am, and although food can be found for lunch, saving your hunger for after sunset will be rewarded with more traditional Moroccan good cooking.  It appears to be a time for them to be more focused on their spiritual growth supporting not just their religious beliefs, but also by treating their family and those less fortunate with more care.  In order to get through the fasting from sunrise to sunset, many Moroccans rest during the day which means everything slows down.  On the positive side, there is no real 'morning traffic' during Ramadan since many Moroccans sleep in a bit later or are still asleep after being up much of the night so getting.

Transportation Options - Traveling through Morocco - For those wanting creature comforts while traveling, I would avoid the local bus, taxi, and train and hire private transport for either a day up to the length of your stay which is not unreadably expensive compared to many other areas of the world.  Although traveling by private jet through Morocco sounds excessive, based on a group of 8 or so, it is certainly worth me mentioning if time or comfort is high on your travel requirements. 

Moroccan Culinary:   We decided to take a 1/2 day cooking class to top off our exploration of Moroccan cuisine.  the classroom was the finest room I have seen used in my world food travels and I highly recommend Rrserving a private or small group experience if you find yourself in Marrakech.  We made a luscious aubergine tapenade, chicken tagines with olives and lemons, and the traditional milk pudding.  Bottled water was readily available and required a must for brushing teeth to drinking everywhere to avoid stomach issues.  Eating any raw veggie can be an issue even herbs unless eating at the luxury hotels where they grow their own and rinse veggies only with filtered water. 

Tagines -  A pot used to make a meal of the same name.  Options include chicken, fish, lamb.  Dried dates ( a stable as a meal side dish), raisins, dried figs, lives, preserved lemons, etc may be included to make a sweet or tangy tagines ( I tried them all while visiting and found all to be delicious..

Soup - During Ramadan a traditional vegetable soup is served about 30 minutes after sundown to break the fast.. we also found this to be quite good.  Typically, it is served with their homemade daily bread and dates as the sweet. 

Snacks - some of the best almonds, olives, dates, veggies and fruit are available.

Moroccan deserts are such a wonderful treat.  With such a variety of fruits, nuts, and honey available even our most discerning anti-sugar travelers caved in to a few local delicacies.  Moroccan desserts have also been influenced by the French and Spanish so you can enjoy light custards and flaky pastillos worth every calorie.  We even enjoyed their sudden but welcome change to traditional almond and honey sweet options during Ramadan's more limited eating offerings.

Moroccan Accommodations - We were very fortunate to have contacts through Accent On Travel provide us valuable insights on where to stay and what type of accommodations. THrough the efforts of the staff, everyone in our group enjoyed upgrades valued at over 100% of rack rate, many additional included meals and even a complimentary hammam at Sir Richard Branson's Moroccan Retreat, Kasbot Tamadon. SPELL?  Our traditional Riads were all luxurious boutique properties perfectly situated for the best city stay experience possible.riads typically include a full and lengthy breakfast and optional dinners served either rooftop, open court, or small fashionable decorated small indoor dining areas.  Service in the luxury properties in Morocco is impeccable.  Our Sahara Desert private camp experience provided us the ultimate travel memory of arriving by camel at sunset to an exclusive use luxury tent (with private bathroom in each tent) and without view of any other camp sites.  topped off with Welcome drinks of either their traditional Moroccan whiskey (a special green tea steeped with mint leaves), a cold Casablanca beer, or a glass of Moroccan white or red wine, we were quite content while they made our three course dinner and completed their sunset absolutions and prayers. 

Sahara Desert visits vary from 4 x 4 races, sunset visits, one night stays or full luxury culinary events across the desert with a camping entourage to handle travelers needs.

Without question, working with a travel professional who knows the options and the contacts in Morocco is key to using your time wisely and staying healthy while traveling.  The travel experts at Accent On Travel work hand in hand with companies such as #AbercrombieandKent to design your perfect Moroccan travel experience.  Please feel free to contact us at consulting@accentontravel.us for your next memorable vacation plan.

Ciao! Annette