Photo by: Ron Rosenstock
Morocco Explore the Mysteries with Ron Rosenstock
Tour Designed for Worcester JCC Members
- Jemaa el Fna Square and the ancient city and souk of Marrakech
- Travel along the Road of a 1000 Kasbahs, and stay in traditional kasbah
- Two evenings in the Sahara with a traditional camel ride
- The heart of Morocco, medina of Fes el-Bali
- Unique visits with our expert Moroccan guide
- The highlights and history of Casablanca
February 16-28, 2024
per person, double occupancy*
*U.S. dollars based upon minimum of 12 participants. There is a small group surcharge of $ 300 if 8-11 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 $675.
This itinerary encompasses all the highlights of Morocco: Casablanca, Marrakech, Fes, and the less touristy areas of southern Morocco in Skoura and the Sahara. In Casablanca you begin with the King Hassan II Mosque. 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...
This itinerary encompasses all the highlights of Morocco: Casablanca, Marrakech, Fes, and the less touristy areas of southern Morocco in Skoura and the Sahara. In Casablanca you begin with the King Hassan II Mosque. 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.
Travel further afield to the road of a thousand kasbahs in the more remote regions of Morocco, taking you through Skoura, and a stay in the middle of the Sahara Desert. Finish the tour in Fes, an ancient city, with its spectacular medina – where time seems to have stood still. 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, you 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 Ron Rosenstockthrough this special tour of Morocco. Ron started leading tours in 1967. In those years he has led hundreds of tours to many destinations worldwide. Ron has retired from Clark University after teaching photography there for thirty years. He has published five books of his exquisite black and white photographs: The Light of Ireland, Hymn to the Earth, Chiostro (Cloister), Inspirations, Photographs of Iceland, and his color book Journeys. Ron’s work has been featured in over one hundred exhibitions, both in the U.S. and abroad, and his photographs are to be found in the permanent collections of the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, MA. Fogg Art Museum at Harvard University, the Worcester Art Museum in Worcester, MA, and the International Center of Photography in New York City. Please feel free to view Ron’s website and e-mail regarding any questions. www.ronrosenstock.com
— N. Greenberg
— K. Kassap
Thank you for such a fantastic photo tour! I found it was a perfect balance of photo opportunities and learning about Morocco’s culture, people, history and economy. As I’ve been reviewing my photos, I find myself saying, “Wow— we were actually there!” Your evening photo talks were useful and informative— they’ve helped me to become a more relaxed and better photographer.
— Joanne Shapiro
At the end of 2018, my husband, Mark, and I went on a 17 day tour to Morocco with Strabo Tours. Led by renowned photographer, Ron Rosenstock, cultural ambassador, Ismail Bourqqadi, and our excellent driver, Yassim, we journeyed by van from King Hussan II’s amazing mosque in Casablanca to the enchanting blue town of Chefchaouen and then the tannery, weaver and pottery workshops of Fes. After traversing the snow capped Atlas Mountains, we slept 2 dreamy nights in desert tents after walking on foot and riding camels in the Merzouga dunes.
Next we travelled through the Land of 1000 Kasbahs, stopping at abandoned, but perfectly preserved shrines; fossilized marble, rug and spice shops; Yves St. Laurent’s Cactus Garden, and the Marrakech Medina with its’ musicians, snake charmers, etc. Lastly, 5 of our band of 7, went on an extended jaunt to the beaches of Essaourra, where Jimi Hendrix, Bob Marley and Cat Stevens used to hang out and saw nearby goats in argon trees.
Needless to say, it was the trip of a lifetime! There was plenty to eat, the lodgings were fantastic (often hidden in fountained courtyards behind busy alleys), but most important were the Moroccan people and places, that anyone would appreciate experiencing, but are especially inspirational to artists. We were the only couple and Mark was the only one without professional photographic equipment, but he took great pictures with his iPhone and we all enjoyed each other’s company. With Ron’s 20+ years taking artists all over the world, no matter where you go with him, you’re bound to have an incredible time. His Ireland trip should be special, because he had a house there for many years and really knows the lay of the land.
— A Dunkelman
Trip was a 10! I think the Sahara was the best. Loved sleeping in berber tents. The photography was gorgeous and many wonderful photo opportunities. Ron always knew where to be when for best photographs. I’ve known him since 1982 when I went to Ireland, and I always wanted to do his Morocco trip after seeing photos and notices on Facebook from him. His energy, enthusiasm and humor was contagious. I liked his photo talks every so often as he wanted us all to see different things and find our own vision. He showed us examples of his work and other photographers that influenced him. Always informative of our daily activities and culture of Morocco. I loved the variety of hotels and lodges.
— A Converse
My recent experience in Morocco was enriched by the kindness and friendliness of its’ people. Never did I feel any concern about being an American in a Muslim country. I was struck by how profound, personal, respectful, and diverse their religious connections are and felt privilegedthat I could meet and be in an Islamic community that is far different from what is portrayed in the news media. Along the way I met and spoke to many Israeli tourists who see Morocco as a “must visit” place to go.
— S.W. Pitlik
Ron was great, not only was he open and knowledgeable as an instructor, but a wonderful person. Couldnt have asked for better.
— N. Taveras
The Town of Chefchaouen was the highlight of the trip, a delightful place. Hope you keep it on your itinerary.It is obvious that Ron loves what he is doing. From start to finish he is helpful, knowledgeable, gets to know everyone and gives extra assistance where needed.
— K. Clarkin
We found the Moroccans to be hospitable and friendly, who are proud of their country and love their King. Our marvelous guide Ismail was about the best we have ever known, and we are experienced travellers. The country is exotic and beautiful – a must see! We felt safe at all times.
— T. & J. Beers
February 16: Home
You will depart on an overnight flight from the U.S. to Casablanca, Morocco. Your flight can arrive at any time tomorrow (February 17). PLEASE NOTE: Flights can be issued round trip Home/CMN
February 17-18: Casablanca
You will be transferred from the airport to the hotel upon arrival. This first day is a day to rest and get over jet lag. You will be overnighting at the Hyatt Regency with various amenities and restaurants at your disposal.
Begin the next day with an introductory tour to Morocco in the Art Nouveau district of Casablanca. Learn about the French influences, especially the architecture of Casablanca. In the afternoon enjoy a tour inside and out of the King Hassan II Mosque. 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. The mosque building cost is estimated to be $750 million, it was 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 group dinner at the hotel. Overnight CASABLANCA. (17th Meals on own, 18th B, L & D)
February 19-20: Marrakech
After breakfast drive south to the city of drama. Marrakech follows the beat of an African drum. This imperial city has been almost continually occupied since Neolithic times and was once the Berber capital. You will see snake charmers, magicians, acrobats, and dancers, delighting children and adults alike. Capture a glimpse of daily life, as you stroll the narrow streets of the famous Djemaa el-Fna Square, perhaps the greatest open-air spectacle in the world. One can see the colors and feel the pulse of Morocco.
The next day visit the exquisite Majorelle Garden. It is part of the former residence of French artist Louis Majorelle, beautifully renovated by the late couturier Yves St. Laurent. Surrounded by an abundance of plants is Majorelle’s deep-blue villa, which is simply breathtaking. In the afternoon explore more of the local souks and medinas, ending at the Mellah. It is the old Jewish Quarter of Marrakech and was created by Sultan Abdallah al-Ghalib of the Saadian dynasty in 1558. The purpose was to provide protection to Jews fleeing persecution in the Iberian Peninsula. Restored several times, the maze of tight laneways has less of the craziness of the medina, and more characteristics of an interesting local neighborhood. Overnight MARRAKECH (B, D; B, L)
February 21-22: Skoura
Your destination for the next two evenings is a renovated kasbah hotel, providing an ideal location in this region. The setting is 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. Overnight KASBAH SKOURA. (B, L, D both days
February 23-24: Erfoud - Sahara
Today your destination is the Sahara where you will spend two evening surrounded by beautiful dunes. You will get there through Erfoud, an oasis region at the edge of the Sahara. Travel deep into the Sahara via Jeeps. As you approach your lodge, you will be amazed at how it can exist in such a remote region.
The next day you are invited to enjoy Sudanese music and dance at Khmlia, where you 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. 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. (Accommodations are in the lodge or in typical Berber tents with mattress and blankets, which now have their own bathrooms and dining tent) (B, L, D both days)
February 25-26: Fes
After sunrise in the desert, have breakfast and drive north to Fes. Your escorts will consider the interests of the group and stop for 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 you. During a visit to a tannery you can watch the tanners as they work in the varied colors of this land. Your lodging in Fes is just within the medina walls, providing an excellent location to explore the city. Overnight FEZ RIAD. (B, D; B, L)
February 27: Rabat - Casablanca
After your last morning in Fez, leave the mountains behind and return to Casablanca. Stop and visit the beautiful city of Rabat and either the Chellah or Kasbah Oudaya. Continue on to Casablanca for your farewell dinner. Rest and repack for your flight home tomorrow. Overnight CASABLANCA (B, D)
February 28: Departure Home
Everyone will be transferred back to the CMN airport for your flight home. (B)