May 2018

Morocco Backpacking

May 26 - June 7
13 Days
RM 7200
12 Pax

Price Details

Tour Date : 26/5/2018 – 7/6/2018 (13 days)
Tour Fee : RM 7,200
Booking deadline : 20/2/2018
Travel style : Backpacking
Tour status : Booking Open
Group size : min 8 pax, max 12 pax


Price Details

Fee includes:

  1. Accommodation (in major cities, stay at courtyard residency hotel known as Dar/ Riad, 2-3 sharing basis, depending on the size and layout of Dar/ Riad; during camel safari, multiple sharing at desert camp, no shower facility)
  2. Transport (long distance buses, airport transfers, chartered transport)
  3. 4D3N package to Atlas ranges and Sahara (include chartered transport, local guide, driver, breakfasts and dinners, one home visit lunch, camel safari, tips for local guide, driver, and camel handlers)
  4. Travel insurance (only for Malaysia-based tour members, the point of embarkation and return must be Malaysia. Overseas based members, please acquire own policy, the charges included in LevArt’s costing shall be deducted from tour fee)

Fee excludes:

  1. Flights (Multi-city returned flight between Kuala Lumpur and Morocco estimated cost RM 3,300-RM 4,000; suggested airlines Qatar or Emirates. Once the tour confirmed ON, LevArt will notify tour members to buy own air tickets online)
  2. Moroccan visa fee (single entry visa RM 90)
  3. Meals (except meals included during the 4D3N package as mentioned above)
  4. Entrance fees and photography fees for tourist sites (selective based on personal preferences; some heritage sites and street performers demand photo fee) 
  5. All cost incurred during free & easy sessions
  6. Optional entertainment & activities

Payment terms:

A non-refundable deposit (unless tour cancelled by LevArt) of RM 2,200 is payable to secure booking. Balance fee RM 5,000 to be collected upon booking deadline or when the tour is fully booked.

Terms & Conditions

Your travel has been booked with Levartravel Sdn Bhd (referred as LevArt herein), on the basis of the following terms and conditions:

  1. Tour: all LevArt tours are published on www.levart.com.my, please ensure you have read, understand, and agree to all details stated for the tour package you are interested in prior to booking.
  2. Tour Fee: all rates are quoted per person in Malaysia Ringgit (RM). LevArt reserves the right to alter the fee in the event of a significant spike in fuel prices, airfares, and foreign exchange rates.
  3. Tour Booking: all bookings must be registered and confirmed via LevArt official website or email to levartjourney@gmail.com, by furnishing personal details: full name (as in passport), mobile contact, and gender.
  4. Booking Fee: once confirmed tour registration, a non-refundable deposit as stated in individual itinerary’s price details is payable to secure booking. The deposit can be returned in full if LevArt cancelled the tour, for reasons such as insufficient number of participants, or unforeseen calamity (acts of god), etc.
  5. Balance Fee Payment: full payment upfront upon booking deadline or when the tour is fully booked. If registered tour member failed to make payment a month after LevArt issued balance fee collection notification, the booking will be cancelled and deposit forfeited.
  6. Tour Cancellation & No Show:
    • If a tour member wish to pull-out after full payment, LevArt may consider partial refund based on a case-to-case review. A RM200 administrative fee applied, and cost that has incurred for the tour arrangement applied.
    • If prior to departure, tour member’s visa application is rejected, may opt for tour cancellation and refund, but cost that has incurred for the tour arrangement applied.
    • If a tour member pulled out 1 month before tour departure, 100% tour fee non-refundable.
    • Cancellation must be formally informed via email to levartjourney@gmail.com, verbal cancellation unacceptable.
    • 100% charge will be applied for No Show booking.
    • After commence of travel, no refund in part or in full will be given for services included in the booking and not utilized by the tour member.
  7. Itinerary Amendment: itineraries may subject to change due to unforeseen circumstances beyond LevArt’s control. Every effort will be made to operate tours as planned, but alterations in accommodation arrangement, tour program, travel date, may occur when deem necessary.
  8. Travel Documents: tour member must possess a valid passport and is responsible for obtaining necessary visa prior to departure. LevArt cannot accept responsibility for your failure to ensure that you have correct travel information. We are not in any way liable if you are subsequently denied entry/deported at your destination due to your failure to follow the correct travel document procedures.
  9. Travel Insurance: LevArt tours included travel insurance to protect tour members. If a tour member has an existing policy, the insurance charges included in LevArt’s costing shall be deducted from tour fee. LevArt cannot be held responsible for any losses as a result of you being inadequately insured/ without insurance.
  10. Contents and T&C Amendment: LevArt reserves the rights to update or modify website contents and clauses in terms and conditions without prior notice, please check and keep tab of changes by browsing our website regularly.

Reminders

Reminders

  • Be mentally prepared that backpacking trip involves many uncertainties, especially concerning public transport. Sometimes when bus and train schedule is delayed or cancelled, or no seat is available, change of plan or mode of transport may occur.
  • In desert areas, the day and night temperature gap is huge.
  • When visiting crowded places, such as souks (market), beware of pickpocket.
  • This tour visits many religious places, including synagogue, mosques, and madrassa. Please observe modesty in dress code when visiting religious sites, avoid wearing shorts, miniskirts, sleeveless tops, tight-fitting clothing; for ladies, it's advisable to bring along a scarf to cover the head when entering holy sites.

Hardship Levelrate-1

  • This is a backpacking trip, requires independent spirit from tour members.
  • This trip relies heavily on public transportations, such as local buses. In this itinerary, lots of walking to tour sights of interest, as most medina (old city quarter) are impassable by cars.
  • Popular tourism destinations are swarmed with touts trying to harass tourists for business or tipping; one should stay alert, but at the same time, should learn to deflect harassments cool headedly.
  • During camel safari in Sahara Desert, overnight in basic desert camp, no shower facilities, but there’s toilet and basin available for washing face and hands.

Tour Map


Tour Leader

Rachel

Rachel Lee

A nature lover, she guides forest tours, and started organic farming to lead a self-sustainable lifestyle. She’s interested in learning the relations between nature and humanity; she even traveled abroad to study the ancient ways of life of the American Indians. She believes nature shapes the culture and traditions of human life.

She thinks of travel as a process of cultural learning, which provides insights into human migration trail, just like the eco-system of a forest, where nature forces come in play. She cares about the world, not just the humankind, but also the nature and wildlife.

Itinerary

Let’s journey through Morocco, experience the local way of life that blends traditions and modernity. Sipping mint tea, enjoying traditional bath at hammam, staying in quaint courtyard residences, riding camel in the vast Sahara Desert, wandering through ancient ruins and castles, zigzagging through valleys and meadows, and be overwhelmed by the exoticness of Morocco. Set at the crossroads of several civilizations, today’s Moroccan culture is shaped by the Berbers, Arabs, Sharawis, French, and Spanish. Its diversity in landscape and culture has long inspired foreign movie makers to film on its soil, including Lawrence of Arabia, Gladiator, and Tomb Raider.


DAY 01 : Kuala Lumpur – Casablanca – Marrakesh (23h30m flight)

Wee hour flight from Kuala Lumpur International Airport, transit in the Middle East, same day afternoon arrive in the biggest Moroccan city Casablanca, then change to a domestic flight bound for Marrakesh. Upon arrival in evening, transfer to a Dar (courtyard hotel) converted from traditional residence. Enjoy dinner in privacy at the Dar, and retire early to bed to ease fatigue from long haul flight.


DAY 02 : Marrakesh

After breakfast take a stroll in the medina (old quarter), listed as a UNESCO heritage site. Visit Ben Youssef Madrassa – once the largest Islamic institution in North Africa – to admire its beautiful architecture. Wander through labyrinths of cobbled streets and souks (market) lined with traditional crafts. Visit the biggest and most lively square in Morocco – Djemaa El-Fna; a host of local artists ply their trade in the square, including story tellers, snake charmers, and musicians. Enjoy dinner at the square’s open-air food court.


DAY 03 : Marrakesh – Skoura (240km)

Embark on a 4D3N excursion through the Atlas Mountains to Sahara Desert with chartered transport. Journey through Atlas ranges dotted with cliffs, ridges, and rugged valleys. Lunch time arrive at Ait Benhaddou, listed as UNESCO heritage site; set in the foothill by a river, red earthen houses stand on hill slope and crowded within defensive walls. Known as the “most beautiful Moroccan village”, numerous movies were filmed here, including Gladiator and Babel. Later, drive to Skoura oasis for overnight stay.


DAY 04 : Skoura – Dades Gorge (80km)

Surrounded by palm groves, Skoura is known as the “valley of thousand Kasbah”. Located by a river bank, Skoura is a green lung amidst the barren and reddish undulating hills. Villages scattered around the lush palm groves, and punctuating the greenery are numerous earthen coloured Kasbah, built by tribal chieftains centuries ago. Morning stroll in palm groves, admire Kasbah Amridil built in 17th century, and have a village home visit lunch. Afternoon drive to Dades Gorge, zigzagging up the mountain passes with towering cliffs on both sides.


DAY 05 : Dades Gorge – Merzouga (250km)

Today drive to Sahara Desert, afternoon arrive in Merzouga, a village located at the edge of Sahara dunes. After brief refreshment, take a camel safari to explore the deeper part of the desert before sunset. Vast rolling sand dunes like waves stretching into the horizon. Camel riding for about two hours to reach the desert camp surrounded by sand dunes for overnight stay; enjoy dinner under star-lit sky.


DAY 06 : Merzouga – Fez (470km)

Climb a big sand dune to admire sunrise, the desert appears differently under varying sunlight. After morning tea, ride camel back to Merzouga, upon arrival, take a shower then enjoy breakfast. Afterwards, a long drive to Fez, en-route passes the impressive Ziz Valley, lush green palm groves flourished along the river banks surrounded by reddish mountains. Keep driving north, along the way passes the ski resort town Ifrane, known as Morocco’s little Switzerland. By night, arrive at the ancient city of Fez.


DAY 07 : Fez

Once the imperial capital of Morocco, Fez medina is a living open-air museum, and the world’s biggest car-free urban zone. The medina is lined with historical monuments and traditional crafts. Visit thousand- year-old Chaouwara tanneries to learn about the process of treating animal skin; stand on vantage viewpoint of leather shop to take in the tanneries’ colouful sight, but pungent smell filled the air, as pigeon poops are used in softening leather. Other sites of interest include madrassa, souks, and palaces.


DAY 08 : Fez

Take a day-excursion to ancient ruins Volubilis some 70km away. A UNESCO heritage site, Volubilis was founded in 3rd century BC, and later became an important outpost of the Roman Empire; it was also briefly the capital of Idrisid Muslim dynasty. Archeological remains include Roman architecture, mosaic arts, and marble statues. On the way back to Fez, stopover in Moulay Idriss, a holy hill town where the great-grandson of Prophet Mohammed, Idris I, arrived in 789, bringing with him the religion of Islam, and starting a new dynasty.


DAY 09 : Fez – Chefchaoune (200km)

Morning take a public inter-city bus to Chefchaoune, a scenic hill town. The four hours bus journey passes through rolling hills and meadows. Afternoon arrived in Chefchaoune, houses in the old city are mainly painted in blue; its architecture is influenced by Spanish Andalusian and Moorish styles. Walking tour in the old city, its narrow cobbled streets are winding and follow the contours of the hills, impassable by cars. Among the sites of interest include hammam (bathhouse), square, and commercial streets.


DAY 10 : Chefchaoun

Morning take a hike up the hill opposite the old city, en-route passing a small cascade of waterfall and walking path surrounded by woods. The hilltop offers impressive panoramic view of the blue town and surrounding mountains. Afternoon free and easy, one may explore the old city for street photography, take a stroll in the new city, enjoy slow time at a cozy café, or visit the hamman for traditional bath and mingle with the locals.


DAY 11 : Chefchaoun – Casablanca (335km)

Rise early to catch the Casablanca-bound long distance public bus (6 hrs journey), arrive around lunch time, check in to a hotel located in the medina. Afternoon visit Hassan II Mosque, which is partially built on the Atlantic Ocean, it has exquisitely hand-crafted marble walls and towering minaret. Later, walkabouts in city center, one could visit the old Central Post Office to send out postcards, or have a meal at the restaurant once frequented by the French author who penned “The Little Prince”, or take a tram ride to enjoy the city view in comfort.


DAY 12 : Casablanca – Kuala Lumpur (19h flight)

In the morning, take a combination of tram and train to reach the Mohammad V International Airport located in the outskirt of Casablanca. Board an afternoon flight to depart from Morocco, transit in the Middle East, arrival in Kuala Lumpur the following afternoon.


DAY 13 : Kuala Lumpur

Afternoon arrival in Kuala Lumpur, end of tour.

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