Jewish Tour

Jewish Culture Morocco Tour

Jewish Culture Morocco Tour 14 Days / 13 Nights

Route Details:

This Jewish Culture Morocco Tour is not just only for Mountains, Desert, Atlantic Ocean and Berber villages it’s a tour for all kinds including for those who are eager to explore Morocco deep Jewish roots. It’s about reconnecting the Jews with their roots in the land where they were and still largely welcomed compared to other places. It’s about Preserving Religious Diversity in the land of peace. We have no Jews in Morocco, only Moroccans. This was the King Mohammed V famous respond to the appeal by the French Vichy regime to get a list of the Moroccan Jews for depuration. The existence of Jews in Morocco goes back, they were and still living peacefully with the Moroccan Muslims side by side, shop by shop, home by home, synagogue next the mosque and next the church.

Itinerary

Day 1

Arrival to Casablanca

Welcome to Morocco! depends upon your time of arrival, you will be driven to your hotel/Riad to loosen up and have rest. You might like to figure out some of Casablanca’s sights, the architectural masterpiece, Hassan II Mosque that completed in the 90s, overlooks the Atlantic Ocean and has a retractable roof to let in sunlight, and one of few mosque that Jews are accorded the rare opportunity to enter. Overnight at a deluxe hotel down town Casablanca.

Day 2

Casablanca City Tour

Morning visit of Temple Beth-El This is your first day of pilgrimage tour of Jewish legacy in Morocco, Casablanca is a good place to start for a grounding pilgrimage tour of Jewish legacy, your most vivid memory will be of your visit to Beth El and Eim Habanim synagogues which are not the only Synagogues in Casablanca, then you move to the only Jewish museum in Islamic world, Admission Ticket Not Included Museum of Moroccan Judaism you’re going to discover the Moroccan Judaism Museum where you’ll discover the Jewish-Berber costumes and jewelry, and you’ll find among its walls 2000-year history reflected on art, ornate clothing, religious relics and artifacts, besides a photo and video library, and rooms with partial reproductions of synagogues. This place was once, before renewing, serving as a Jewish orphanage. Carrying on our legacy discovery to the last Moroccan Jewish day school, Neve Shalom and Casablanca’s Jewish Mellah and Jewish Cemetery. You can have lunch in one of many kosher restaurant and later on at the afternoon you might like to have a drink in Tahiti Beach club that once was a local Jewish hangout. Overnight at a deluxe hotel down town Casablanca.

Day 3

Casablanca - Azemmour - Essaouira

Morning departure toward Medina of Azemmour You’ll have much time to explore Jimi Hendrix’s town. But before we get there we’ll stopover at Azemmour the charming former Portuguese fortified town on the great Oum Er-Rabia river 75 km from Casablanca that was once embracing 2500 Jews residents in its white cliftop historic old town during the 15 century. Here we’ll discover the historic sites, Riads, and shrines and we’ll experience a different pace of life in it, Medina of Essaouira Afternoon, when you’re in Essaouira you’re free to roam in the city that was once and still a haven for hippie backpackers and Gnawa musicians. You can start your visit by the ramparts a series of forts that were built in the 15th century around the Medina of Mogador. Inside the Medina you’ll have the chance visit the Mellah where two-thirds of the population settled in the 19 century as well as Bayt Dakira, a spiritual and heritage space that seeks to preserve and enhance the Judeo-Moroccan memory. Each year in Sept more than 2000 Jews from all over the world meet at the grave of Rabbi Chaim Pinto who was, in the 16th century Jewish cemetery, well-known by his ability to perform miracles. Essaouira’s port is Morocco’s 3rd fishing port where you can have a delicious fish meal. For the sports-oriented travelers, Essaouira is a place to some fine wind and kitesurfing schools. Overnight at a charming Riad in the Medina of Essaouira.

Day 4

Essaouira - Marrakech

Departure for Tetouan, sightseeing tour of the city: Tetouan’s jewish community, originating from the time of the expulsion of the Jews from Spain in 1492, was for many centuries the intellectual and religious center of the North of Morocco. Over half of the more than 500 Jews (7500 in 1950) live in a well kept mellah built in the traditional Andalusian style in 1808. The Tetouan Mellah enjoys the distinction of being the only one, apart from the new Mellah of Meknes built more than a century later, that still houses a majority of the resident community, who faithfully maintain their Judeo-Spanish language, traditions and customs. The city’s large and excellently preserved cemetery comprises another historical landmark of great interest, most particularly the Castilian section, the burial ground for the earliest settlers from Spain, whose unusual anthropomorphically shaped and inscriptionless tombstones have furnished material for a number of scholarly articles. In the Mellah are three active Synagogues, all of tourist interest. Among these, the Synagogue Rabbi Isaac Ben Oualid, on the ground floor of the Rabbi’s home, is the most historic, and its interior the most picturesque, and many legends surround this building. Tetouan is the site of the first Alliance Israelite Universelle School, established in 1862 after Morocco regained control of the city from the Spanish. The major saint is Isaac Benoualide… Then continue to Chaouen. Dinner and overnight at the hotel.

Day 5

Walking Marrakech city Tour

Morning walking tour of Marrakesh. You’ll have all day long to carry on your Morocco Jewish legacy cultural tour with you private guided tour as in other cities. You’ll be able to explore the famed Jamaa El-fnaa square and the highly recommended sites such as the newly opened Yves Saint Laurent Museum, the enchanting Majorelle garden and Berber Museum and the famed Jamaa El Fnaa square where the crazed cacophony of musicians, snake charmers, storytellers are performing. A visit to the narrow alleyways of the nearby Mellah is worth walking. Jewish stars punctuate doorposts leading to the tiny blue-and-white Lazama that was constructed by Jews escaping from Spain in 1492 and it’s recently opened for the public. Lazama synagogue has an interior courtyard and displays photographs and artifacts of Moroccan Jews. The tour also include The Saadiens Tombs and the Bahia and El Badi Palace. Overnight at a luxury Riad in the Medina.

Day 6

Marrakech - Ait Benhaddou - Ouarzazate - Valley of Roses - Dades Gorges

After breakfast heading to Atlas Mountains through Tizi- N’Tichka pass (2260m) in the High Atlas Mountains, you will enjoy a snaky windy road, beautiful landscapes with different colors and Berber villages along the way. The first pause will be in Ait Barka village to take beautiful pictures and have a cup of mint tea. It’s a point to start the highest Atlas Mountains of Morocco. The second pause will take place in the top of Tizi n’Tichka arriving to Ait Benhaddou, the 11th century UNESCO-protected red mud-brick ksar that has formed the backdrop for many Hollywood movies production such as Lawrence of Arabia, Jesus of Nazareth, Gladiator, Game of Thrones and many others. Here you will also have time to explore the history of this amazing heritage. Then you will have lunch before continuing via Ouarzazate, Cinema studio and Taourirte Kasbah. Traversing the valley of roses and daggers straight to Dades gorges a rust-red and mauve mountains. A series of crumbling Kasbahs and Ksours line the valley in the Berber villages to the monkey Fingers Mountains. Overnight at an eco-typical Moroccan hotel in the Dades valley.

Day 7

Dades Gorges - Todgha Gorges - Tinjdad - Erfoud - Risani - Merzouga Desert

Our adventure with Tinejdad This morning, you head southeast towards Merzouga and the gateway into the golden dunes of the Sahara desert. Before getting there you’ll be stuck between gigantic rock walls and a hard place is a sublime experience in the Todgha gorges. Then it’s onward to Tinjdad where a local Berber culture museum is worth a lunch stop, later on after lunch we head to Arfoud where you can marvel at the million-year-old fossils that the area is famous for. Merzouga Desert Then it’s off to Merzouga that has the highest dunes in Morocco, you can store any luggage while packing an overnight bag to bring along. You’ll have the chance to ride your camel ship of the desert into the sandy seas. After hour-long camel ride you will be among the luckiest to watch the sun set over the Sahara dunes. Your stay for the night will be a Bedouin style tent. Overnight under the twinkling stars in a luxury Nomad style tent in the middle of the Sahara.

Day 8

Merzouga - Midelt - Ifran - Fes

This morning you’ll wake up with the sun shining on you face to witness what we hope is a glorious sunrise among the dunes, meanwhile to watch the light creep slowly down the dunes and pull all the world around you outside their warmth heavy mound of blankets for an early-breakfast. After an hour-ride camel back out of the desert you will depart and head for Ifran through the Ziz Valley, among the largest producer oasis dates in Morocco. Ifrane After lunch in Midelt we will pass through the cedar forests of Ifran, the Switzerland of Morocco, if are lucky we’ll come across the Barbary macaques in our way to Fes where you can prepare for tomorrow’s amazing tour in its mysteries and secrets of the 9000 alleyways that make it a maze, do not panic the guide will show the must see sites. Overnight at a deluxe Riad in the Fes Medina.

Day 9

Fes Walking Medina Tour

Medina of Fez With your private Fes born and bred guide you will have the opportunity to discover the ancient breeding ground for scholars and artisans and the largest medina of the world. You will see the America Fondouk, Nejjarines, the Tanneries and Karaouine the most ancient university in the world. Your guide will shed light on many tales and history of this UNESCO-protected Medina. For jews is highly recommended to scout about the winding streets to the 1438 Morocco’s oldest Mellah with its Spanish inspired Jewish balconies and windows faced outward the streets. The Jewish quarter is also has a 17th century synagogues, Slat Al Fassiyine. In Addition to the Aben Danan Synagogue which has unique features, and Beit Hachaim the most famous resting place for rabbis, Local jews. Overnight at a deluxe Riad in the Medina of Fes.

Day 10

Fes - Meknes - Fes

Day trip to Meknes Medina The lesser-visited Imperial city of Meknes is our 10th day visit. Today we will have the chance to see the famed gate Bab El Mansour, Dar Jamai Palace and Museum, the royal stables, Hedim square and Moulay Ismail tomb. Through the narrow lanes to the Mellah where the Jewish families used to live and to Jewish Zawiya where is the grave of Rabbi David Benmidan. 30 min driving away of Meknes is one of the earliest signs of Jewish existence is still struggling the age, Volubilus, a remarkable and fascinating archaeological site. A former Roman ruins Hidden among the intricate mosaics and rows of standing columns and building facades, excavators found a tombstone with Hebrew inscriptions dating back to the second century. Overnight at a deluxe Riad in the Medina of Fes.

Day 11

Fes - Sefrou - Chefchaouen

Heading to south of Fes towards Sefrou the little Jerusalem as it known due to its high percentage of Jews. It was once a meeting point of traders from around the world. The town hosted among it walls the Jewish settlers present since the 13th century. Upon Morocco’s independence Little Jerusalem’s Mellah makes up half of the old city. If you want to discover more of the Mellah you might like to cross the Aggai’s river and walk through alleyways to get to large school, the synagogue, and a cemetery holding the tombs of important saints, merchants, and flood victims. When you finish your visit of the medina we will drive out of Fes to have a delicious local food in Lalla Fatiha’s house In the afternoon your driver/guide will drive you towards the blue city where you’re goint to spend your night and visit it tomorrow morning. Overnight at a deluxe hotel, in the blue city Chefcahouen.

Day 12

Chefchaouen - Rabat

From coastal towns to the south and getting to the north, you will spend this morning in Chaouen before leaving to Rabat. Chefchaouen, Chaouen or the blue city as it known internationally. It was a refuge for Muslim and Jews escaping from the Spanish Reconquista. The presence of Jews remains evident in vivid blue washed-walls of each house and corner of the city. The blue color that cover the walls is a Jewish tradition of weaving prayer shawls with tekhelel an ancient natural blue dye representing the sky, the sea and God’s inescapable presence. In addition to this a lot of people enjoy roam arbitrary in the city. After having lunch we head to the Capital of Morocco. Overnight at a superior hotel down town Rabat.

Day 13

Rabat Walking City Tour

We start the guided tour of Rabat. In every inch of Morocco you can catch the footprints of Morocco’s once vibrant Jewish life in glimpses. In Rabat you will have a free day to explore the city, first through the monumental Hassan tower with the pillared stumps of its mosque being all that remains from the earthquake of 1755. There is also the near-by Mausoleum of the royal family. And do not miss to walk through the passenger ways of the Medina and Mellah to have a cup of mint tea in red Oudayas, a walled village within a city. Overnight at hotel down town Rabat.

Day 14

Departure Transfert - Casablanca airport

Your pilgrimage to the Jewish Legacy and reconnection with your roots is coming to an end today, and we sincerely hope that you refreshed and enjoyed your Morocco Jewish Legacy Cultural Tour with us. Your driver will pick you up from the hotel to Casablanca airport. End of our service…

Tour Included:

  • Private transportation A/C.
  • Fuel during the tour.
  • English speaking guide-driver.
  • Free time to explore sites like Aït Ben Haddou kasbah, walks, photo stops, etc …
  • 12 nights in Hotels / Kasbahs / with bathroom – A/C, breakfast
  • Dinners (possibility of vegetarian menu).
  • One night in the dunes of Erg Chebbi Merzouga in camp with dinner and breakfast (Private tent)
  • Camel ride for seeing the sunset and sunrise.
  • Airport Transfers
  • Fees of stay

Not included:

  • Lunches
  • Drinks
  • Dinners in Casa, Rabat, Tangier, Fez and Marrakech
  • Flight tickets 
  • Gratuities (optional)

Here you can see all the routes from Casablanca