Photo by: Betty Sederquist
Location: Sahara Desert Morocco
- Photo expertise and leadership of Betty Sederquist
- Unique visits with our expert Moroccan guide
- Rif Mountains and the blue washed town of Chefchaouen
- The heart of Morocco, medina of Fes el-Bali
- Two evenings in the Sahara with optional traditional camel ride
- Jemaa el Fna Square and the ancient city and souk of Marrakech
per person, double occupancy*
*U.S. dollars based upon minimum of 8 participants. There is a small group surcharge of $400 if 6-7 participants. We try to accommodate travelers who request single accommodations, as well as travelers who are looking for a roommate. If a single room is requested (subject to availability), or if we are unable to find a suitable roommate, there is a single room surcharge of $695.
This photo tour itinerary encompasses Marrakech, Fes, Northern Morocco in the blue washed town of Chefchaouen, and also spends two evenings in the Sahara, giving participants more opportunity to capture the pink and purple heud sunsets over the dunes. You will also tour and photograph the King Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca. In Marrakech you will visit the famous Djemaa el-Fna Square, perhaps the greatest open-air spectacle in the world. Traveling back in time, you will see snake charmers, musicians,...
This photo tour itinerary encompasses Marrakech, Fes, Northern Morocco in the blue washed town of Chefchaouen, and also spends two evenings in the Sahara, giving participants more opportunity to capture the pink and purple heud sunsets over the dunes. You will also tour and photograph the King Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca. In Marrakech you will visit the famous Djemaa el-Fna Square, perhaps the greatest open-air spectacle in the world. Traveling back in time, you will see snake charmers, musicians, magicians, acrobats, and dancers. Fes is an ancient city, with its spectacular medina – where time seems to have stood still and photographs beckon around every corner. You will see veiled women and laughing children, donkeys pulling carts, and vendors carrying huge mounds of bread on trays above their heads.
Combining the history and natural beauty of this rich and fascinating country with first-person encounters, we will visit native villages, ancient medinas, and craftsmen’s workshops, sharing experiences and sipping mint tea: symbolic of the warm, sincere Moroccan generosity. Hotels are comfortable, as is the private, air-conditioned coach for land transportation. An expert local Moroccan guide will add his unique touch to this extraordinary trip, sharing his insights into and his love of this exotic land.
Join accomplished photographer and guide Betty Sederquist through this special tour of Morocco. Betty attended one of the Morocco Strabo Tours in 2020 and can’t wait to return, sharing some of her favorite places with you.
November 1: Home
You will depart on an overnight flight from the U.S. to Casablanca, Morocco. We recommend your arrival to be tomorrow (November 2), by 11AM, in order to take part in the planned events.
PLEASE NOTE: Your airline ticket will need to be issued Home/CMN and return RAK/Home. Also, Betty likes to arrive a day early to get over jet lag. She invites you to do the same which would mean departing October 31, landing November 1. If you like she will take those on a brief photo walk to a market close by (additional night hotel stay estimated $250 single/$290 double).
November 2: Arrive Casablanca early morning
You will be transferred from the airport to the hotel upon arrival. Those that arrive in time will have an interior tour at 2PM inside the King Hassan II Mosque. Followed by additional photography outside the mosque, in later afternoon, evening light. North of the medina and rising up on a point above the Atlantic Ocean, the mosque is the largest religious monument in the world after Mecca. King Hassan II Mosque, building cost estimated at $750 million, is entirely funded by citizen donations. It was completed in 1993, after 6000 Moroccan craftsmen worked on it day and night for five years. Enjoy your welcome dinner after the photo shoot. Overnight CASABLANCA. (D)
November 3-4: Chefchaouen
From Casablanca, arrive late this afternoon in the Rif region of Northern Morocco and the town of Chefchaouen (shef-shau-en), built into the mountainside. The town was founded in 1492 by Moorish exiles from Spain, often called Chaouen by Moroccans. Chefchaouen was known as the hashish capital of Morocco and has been a favorite haunt of backpackers for years. Hash has been grown since the fifteenth century, and is called Kif, the short version of the Arabic word for pleasure. It is now known as the ‘Blue City’ for its abundance of blue paint. Our accommodations are set in the hillside just above the town, away from the hustle and bustle of the medina, yet walking distance to the areas we will be photographing.
In the medina, people sell all sorts of vegetables and fruits amid the narrow, cobbled alleyways of whitewashed walls and blue doors. Chaouen offers many native handicrafts that are not available elsewhere in Morocco, such as wool garments and woven blankets. The local goat cheese is also popular. Pack mules are still led throughout the streets carrying many of the handcrafted goods and supplies as they have for centuries. The eager merchants are more than willing to discuss their merchandise and engage in the time-honored art of negotiation. Notice the small squares, ornate fountains and ochre tile. Overnight CHEFCHOUEN HOTEL (B, D; B)
November 5-6: Fes
After sunrise photography in the mountains, have breakfast and drive to Fes. Your escorts will take into account the interests of the group and stop for photographic opportunities they feel appropriate and timely.
Fes, arguably the symbolic heart of Morocco, as all the great dynasties have left their mark on the city; it has, however, retained its Arab identity. The medina, Fes el-Bali, is one of the largest living medieval cities in the world. Its narrow, winding alleys and covered bazaars are intricate in their design and are awash with brilliant colors – a veritable assault on the senses as you squeeze past recalcitrant donkeys and submit to the sounds and smells of this jostling city. The dye makers, hills of spices, tannery vats, and palaces of merchants will beckon us. During a visit to a tannery we can watch the tanners as they work in the varied colors of this land. Your lodging in Fes are just within the medina walls, providing an excellent location for photography. Overnight FEZ RIAD. (B, D; B, L)
November 7-8: Erfoud – Merzouga
Today your destination is the Sahara where you will have two days to capture the sunset and sunrise over the dunes. After enjoying lunch en-route, continue to Erfoud, an oasis region at the edge of the Sahara. Here you will transfer to Land Rovers, taking with you the necessities for the next two days at the lodge in the middle of the desert. The next day you are invited to enjoy Sudanese music and dance at Khmlia, where we learn about life in the Sahara (participants can take donations of school supplies to the Sudanese school). If there is time this afternoon, enjoy your camel ride for sunset photography, or perhaps rise early for sunrise. Camels will carry you to the Erg Chebbi, Morocco’s only genuine Saharan Erg – a huge, drifting expanse of sand dunes that typify much of the Algerian Sahara.
Being in this remote region for two evenings there will certainly be time for photo discussion and review digital processing techniques for getting the most out of your amazing sand dune (and other) great images. The dunes themselves are fascinating, especially as the sun reaches the horizon and the colors change from pink to gold to red. This will be your most extraordinary and unforgettable desert experience. Don’t forget to pack your bathing suit in your overnight bag. Overnight AUBURGE DU SUD. (The group can decide to stay together in one location or divide in to two groups, one staying in the boutique hotel, the other in typical Berber Tents complete with indoor plumbing, each area has their own dining tent. (B, L, D both days)
November 9-10: Skoura
Your destination for the next two evenings is a renovated kasbah hotel, providing an ideal location for private photography in the early morning and late afternoon. Before you reach Skoura there will be a lovely photo opportunity at a partially abandoned kasbah in the Dades Gorge where you can capture the simplicity of what was once a traditional Moroccan home. The setting of your lodge is in the middle of a palm grove with lush greenness and olive tree branches, the hotel also offers a garden all its own. Skoura provides a respite from the busy medinas of Fez and Marrakech, with the snow-covered Atlas Mountains providing a picturesque backdrop. Betty will provide photography presentations during the middle of the day at the hotel. Overnight KASBAH SKOURA. (B, L, D both days)
November 11-12: Marrakech
Continue on to one of the most famous cities in Morocco, Marrakech. Late this afternoon (time to be announced) you will meet everyone in the hotel lobby for a brief introduction and off you go to your first photo shoot at the famous Djemaa el-Fna Square, perhaps the greatest open-air spectacle in the world, where one can see the colors and feel the pulse of Morocco.
Traveling back in time 2,000 years, we’ll see snake charmers, magicians, acrobats, and dancers, delighting children and adults alike. Enjoy another day in this imperial city that has been almost continually occupied since Neolithic times, and was once the Berber capital. Capture a glimpse of daily life, as we stroll the narrow streets. As time permits you may visit the Jardine Majorelle garden with huge bamboo trees and palms, swaying over beautiful pathways founded by Yves St. Laurent. Overnight MARRAKECH RIAD. (D; B, L)
November 13: Marrakech – Home
You will depart on your flight from Marrakech, Morocco (RAK) to your home. (B)
Note: This itinerary has been carefully constructed to assure participants the best Morocco has to offer. However, should events arise that are beyond our control, itinerary, activities and hotel arrangements are subject to change without notice. Be assured that we will make substitutions that are as similar in quality and interest as possible.