Morocco: Archaeology of the Western Kingdom
16 Nov — 29 Nov 2019 | Tour Director: Andrew Wilson
• Discover the delights of Marrakesh, including the 16th century El Badi Palace, Koutoubia Mosque and the Ben Youssef madrasa
• Explore the ruins of the Hassan Mosque and the citadel of the Chellah in Rabat
• Take an excursion into the High Atlas mountains, their peaks capped with snow
BA, BD, FSAScot
specialist in archaeology and ancient history
Depart Heathrow 1710 on Royal Air Maroc, arriving Casablanca 2030. Transfer to Hotel La Tour Blanche for overnight stay.
Casablanca (Art Deco architecture): Hassan II Mosque. Transfer to Rabat for two nights at Hotel La Tour Hassan. Evening lecture.
Rabat: walled citadel of Chellah (Roman town with 14th century burial ground for Marinid royals), Archaeological Museum, Hassan Mosque. Afternoon: medina with 17th century Andalusian walls, Kasbah des Oudaias (Almohad citadel), 17th century Palace Museum, Andalusian-style gardens. Evening lecture.
Via Larache for ancient Lixus (site of legendary Garden of Hesperides) and Asilah (walled town with beautiful medina). Continue to Taniger for overnight stay at El Minzah Hotel.
Tangier: walled kasbah, Museum of Moroccan Arts (outstanding ceramics from Fez and Meknes), reputed tomb of Ibn Battuta. Afternoon: depart for spectacularly sited mountain town of Chefchaouen for overnight stay at Hotel Casa Hassan.
Morning visits in Chefchaouen: kasbah, medina (magnificent views of Rif Mountains). Transfer to Fez for three nights at Hotel Les Mérinides. Evening lecture.
Morning: Roman ruins of Volubilis (Mauritanian capital founded in 3rd century BC). Afternoon: Meknes (ornate Bab el-Mansour gate, Bou Inania madrasa, Koubba, Dar Jamai Museum, vast complex of barracks, granaries and stables built by Moulay Ismaïl).
Fez: souks, 10th to 12th century Kairaouine Mosque, madrasas. Afternoon: optional visits in the Andalusian quarter (16th century mosque and madrasa) and Jewish quarter in Fez el Jedid.
Via Rabat and Casablanca to Marrakesh for three nights at Hotel Es Saadi (approx. 6 hour journey).
Whole day in Marrakesh. Morning: Saadian tombs, Almohad gateway of Bab Agnaou, vast ruins of 16th century El Badi Palace, Museum of Moroccan Arts (housed in charming Dar Si Said Palace). Afternoon: Almohad tower of Koutoubia Mosque, souks, intricate Ben Youssef madrasa, Koubba (main survival of Almoravid city), Musée Aman pour la Civlisation de l’Eau au Maroc (subject to confirmation).
Excursion into the High Atlas mountains followed by some free time in Marrakesh.
Essaouira (well preserved old Portuguese Atlantic town): fortifications and medina. Overnight stay at Hotel Thalassa Sea & Spa, Le Medina Essaouira.
Morning: free time followed by departure for El Jadida (Portuguese town of Mazagan with 16th century citadel) for overnight stay at Hotel Pullman Mazagan Royal Golf & Spa.
Depart Casablanca 1230, arriving Heathrow 1550.
16 Nov — 29 Nov 2019
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Cost of £3595 includes: return airfare, accommodation based on sharing a twin or double bedded room, breakfast, four lunches, dinner with water & coffee, excursions & admissions, gratuities.
Not included: travel insurance, double room for single use supplement £695.