Tag Archives: Moroccan Kasbahs

Family Adventure Vacations to Morocco

Morocco Family Adventure Tour, Sahara Desert

Morocco Family Adventure Tour, Sahara Desert

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Morocco is the perfect family destination as it offers a unique blend of cultural and adventure experiences for families looking for an educational and active holiday. The combination of Morocco’s grand Sahara Desert, old world souks, and mountain regions offer a pure and relaxed setting. On Travel Exploration Morocco’s Family Adventure Tour you will visit luscious food markets and fanciful bazaars, zip line across Morocco’s High Atlas, camel trek in the Sahara Desert, take a hot air balloon ride, learn how to make a Moroccan tajine and meet a Berber family. Moroccans are wonderful hosts and family oriented which makes the country ideal for family travel.

Visitors who take their families to Morocco for an Adventure vacation with Travel Exploration always report back saying it was the best vacation ever! Morocco Family Adventure Vacations are ideal for parents who want to have the responsibility for planning a family holiday out of their hands to be passed along to a Morocco travel planner and agent who will take care of the details. At Travel Exploration you are guaranteed to receive a hand curated itinerary that is fit for the entire family.

Morocco Family Tour, Kasbahs

Morocco Family Tour, Kasbahs

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our family vacations to Morocco are private tours geared around each family’s interests. A private, English Speaking driver is provided along with luxury transportation for the entire family in 4×4 land cruisers or other comfortable vehicle suitable for Imperial City and Desert travel. Each Morocco family tour also includes stays at boutique riads and hotels that are well appointed in the old cities, family friendly and ideal for travelers to Morocco in all seasons.

Imagine a Morocco Private Tour where your entire family can have an authentic experience in their own private four wheel drive vehicle. Venture through the alleys of Morocco’s ancient medinas (cities) surrounded by exotic smells of the spices, olives, food markets, fresh baked bread and the sound of the muezzin call each day at prayer time. Discover a Souk Tasting Tour in Fez where you will visit a bread oven, try honeys, juices, dried fruits, soups, meats and other exotic flavors found on the streets of Fes. Visit palaces and gardens set inside the walls of UNESCO Fes.

Morocco Family Tour, Quad Biking

Morocco Family Tour, Quad Biking

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quad bike across the Sahara Desert Camel Trek across the magnificent Erg Chebb Dunes in the heart of Merzouga, then overnight in a charming Berber Desert Camp with a 1001 Arabian Nights dinner fireside with drumming and desert music. Visit the Skoura Palmeraie and the Valley of 1000 Kasbahs. Explore Morocco’s Oasis of Fint and have Tea at the Head Master’s house just foot steps outside Ouarzazate, the Hollwood of Morocco. Take an adventure ride by piste to the Atlas Film Studios where Kundun, Kingdom of Heaven, Body of Lies, Cleopatra and the Game of Thrones were filmed. Dine on couscous and bread bake with a Berber family in the heart of the Draa Valley, known for over 45 qualities of date. Continue on to more popular regions through snow capped mountain passes. Walk in the footsteps of Morocco’s ancestors to discover Ait Benhadd Ksar.

Morocco Family Tour, Valley of Roses and Skoura

Morocco Family Tour, Valley of Roses and Skoura

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Drift through the majestic Atlas Mountains and the Tizzin’ Tichka Mountain Pass where Moroccan families Berber and Jewish have lived nestled in Kasbah fortresses and old Ksars for centuries. Then continue onto Marrakech for the a popular city experience and memorable part of a Family Adventure tour where you will witness an evening of acrobats and fire throwers at the medieval carnival in Djemaa El Fna Square under the Moroccan stars. Embark on Tasting all of Marrakech as you enjoy a five course traditional tasting menu guided by locals. End your visit on the Essaouira Coast which is full of blue washed color and seaside views. Horseback ride with views on the Atlantic and Portugese Ramparts.

A Morocco Family Adventure Vacation is the idea tour for families of all ages and sizes. Take an Unforgettable Family Tour to Morocco with Travel Exploration this season.

Discover The Best of Morocco - Travel Exploration
Travel Exploration specializes in Morocco Travel. We provide Tours and travel opportunities to Morocco for the independent traveler and tailor-made tours for families and groups with a distinctly unique flavor. From Morocco’s Seven Imperial Cities, to the Magical Sahara Travel Exploration offers a captivating experience that will inspire you. At Travel Exploration we guarantee that you will discover the best of Morocco! Call Travel Exploration at 1 (800) 787-8806 or + 1 (212) 618882681 and let’s book a tour to Morocco for you today.
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Moroccan Kasbah’s of the Great South, Your Morocco Tour Guide

Ait Benhaddou, Kasbahs of the Great South

Ait Benhaddou, Kasbahs of the Great South

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Moroccan Kasbah was a place for the local Caid or Pacha to live in and a place of defense when a city was under attack not unlike the medieval European keep. Sometimes, they were built on hilltops so that they could be more easily defended such as the famous Ait Benhaddou near Ouarzazate. It is no accident that many great films like Lawrence of Arabia and Gladiator were filmed here because it retains the character and atmosphere of centuries ago when it was an important post on the camel caravan route from Africa to Morocco.

Ait Benhaddou Kasbah was a busy teeming Ksar (a fortified town) with fortified towers and reinforced walls. Inside the Ksar, there was a central mosque surrounded by family homes, communal areas and small palaces. In its earlier history, Ait Benhaddou is believed to have housed thousands of inhabitants. It was composed of six Kasbahs and nearly fifty houses, made with red pisé and connected through a complex maze of narrow streets. Visitors can step straight into the medieval past and it is a great place to take the family to explore.

Valle of One-Thousand Kasbahs, Skoura Palmeraie

Valle of One-Thousand Kasbahs, Skoura Palmeraie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Morocco’s Southern region and in particular the region of Skoura is referred to the “Valley of one-thousand Kasbahs,” referring to the way-stations of ancient caravan routes traveled by tradesmen and adventurers. They brought with them customs and crafts, beliefs and skills, and they sought shelter and social interaction within secure Kasbah walls.

Skoura has superb Kasbahs on its doorstep, including the ruins of the Kasbah Amerhidil, and it is an excellent base from which to explore the Dades Valley, the Todra Gorge and the Valley of the Roses.

The Glaoui Kasbahs at Telouet and Taourit are also historic sites to visit on a Morocco Tour. Telouet, the seat of Thami El Glaoui Pacha of Marrakech under the French is an imposing ruin with a central living area which is relatively well preserved with the Glaoui’s living quarters bedecked in flowered zellij tiles looking out on to the village of Telouet. Kasbahs were also fortified mansions built by the rich and powerful caids and local feudal leaders. Kasbah Taourit is another imposing Glaoui Kasbah in Ouarzazate the capital of the South. The Krupp cannon which founded the fortunes of the Glaoui’s which enabled them to dominate rival tribes still lies outside Kasbah Taourit.

Ksar Ighnda Boutique Kasbah Hotel

Ksar Ighnda Boutique Kasbah Hotel

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Throughout the centuries Morocco’s strong and enduring Kasbahs have kept silent vigil guarding communities from potential attack which was all too common in the feudal era which lasted right up to the 1950’s chronicled in Gavin Maxwell’s epic account “Lords of the Atlas.”

Some of Morocco’s finest boutique riads and hotels are now converted Kasbahs. Built or rebuilt in traditional style, they have been renovated to accommodate tourists in luxury and style.

A few of the best examples are found in Ouarzazate and Skoura region. In the Ait Benhaddou Region, Riad Ksar Ighnda is a restored Kasbah with modern architecture that offers a luxury experience and stay inclusive of a private pool, roof top dining, a Hammam and is away from the city center.

In Skoura there are boutique riad guests houses, Les Jardins Des Skoura and Kasbah Ait Ben Damiette, converted Kasbahs that are French owned and offer up luxurious stays surrounded by gardens. Both are located in the heart of the Skoura palmeraie.

More Kasbah’s are being renovated and turned into boutique hotels and guesthouses to offer Moroccan travelers an exciting authentic experience.

The most well known Kasbah Hotel in Skoura is Dar Ahlam, “Dream House” which is an an opulent boutique hotel in the heart of the Skoura palmeraie. Built around a labyrinthine converted Kasbah from the early 20th century, this luxurious property consists of nine suites and three private villas in the attractive gardens with a large swimming pool.

Richard Branson’s Kasbah Tamadot is another well-known luxury Kasbah Hotel located in the foothills of the High Atlas Mountains. This property offers fantastic service, a beautiful spa, restaurant, and a stunning mountain backdrop.

Kasbah Bab Ourika in the Ourika Valley offers outstanding views of the High Atlas and is a great value place to stay with friendly staff and fantastic food made from produce from their own garden.

At Imlil at the foot of Jebel Toubkal with breathtaking terrace views of the peaks and valleys, Kasbah Du Toubkal is the perfect base for exploring the Atlas Mountains and experiencing Berber culture.

Today, as as Morocco traveler, the ancient Kasbahs of the Great South can be discovered through historic visits on a private tour and visitors also have the opportunity to stay in one.

For more information about Ancient Kasbahs of Morocco’s Great South or a Kasbah Tour.

For more information about the Fes Festival of World Sacred Music Morocco’s Imperial CitiesSeaside Resorts,Sahara Desert,Berber villagesA Taste of MoroccoMagical Kasbahs, Ruins & WaterfallsAbsolute Morocco, The Best of MarrakechFes, and Ouarzazate

Discover The Best of Morocco - Travel Exploration
Travel Exploration specializes in Morocco Travel.  We provide Tours and travel opportunities to Morocco for the independent traveler and tailor-made tours for families and groups with a distinctly unique flavor. From Morocco’s Seven Imperial Cities, to the Magical Sahara Travel Exploration offers a captivating experience that will inspire you. At Travel Exploration we guarantee that you will discover the best of Morocco! Call Travel Exploration at 1 (800) 787-8806 or + 1 (212) 618882681 and let’s book a tour to Morocco for you today.

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Best Books on Moroccan Decor, Your Morocco Tour Guide

World Design by Herbert Ypma

The French designer Yves Saint Laurent remarked of Marrakech that “This city leads me to color.” Morocco has fascinated many designers with its wealth of color and diversity of islamic design for the last century.  The color in Morocco’s bright zellij tiles, woodwork, silver jewelry and cedar hand-crafted ceilings blend effortlessly with modern interior design. Morocco’s winding medina street scenes, colorful souks, majestic gardens and palaces provide the perfect inspiration to adorn a home.

There are many fine coffee table books that reveal the hidden beauty of Moroccan décor and the various ways in which the novice can create their own interiors using Moroccan products and motifs. Some of the best books on Moroccan decor are:

Moroccan Interiors by Lisa Lovatt-Smith  – This book explores the diversity of contemporary modern design  in Morocco, contrasting the simplicity of  the rural environment with the ornamental Andalusian style of Morocco’s Imperial Cities. The variety of styles and the immediacy of colors of modern Moroccan design has won it its place in international interior design.

Marrakesh by Design, Maryam Montague

Marrakesh by Design  by Maryam Montague – Marayam Montague writes an award winning blog “ My Marrakesh” and has her own magnificent home and guest house Peacock Pavilions, in Marrakesh. In  Marrakesh by Design she advises  the reader about how to create their own Moroccan inspired interiors  blending elements of decorated tiles, colored walls and sculptured ceilings and the Andalusian ideals of ornamental gardens and fountains.  The well illustrated book, Marrakesh by Design, shows the reader how villas and riads in Marrakech have created their own modern day interiors. Montague discusses ideas and projects that people can use while decorating their homes.

Montague also advises her readers on how treasures bought in the souks of Marrakesh can be incorporated into the modern home and used to inspire distinct Moroccan character. Moreover she explains why certain design features have predominated in Moroccan homes. The book is also an introduction into Morocco’s diverse culture and history and its impact on style. The book has splendid photographs making it a stylish coffee table book for the home.

Morocco Modern-World Design by Herbert Ypma – This is an innovative visual resource book for all interested in interior design for the home. Herbert Ypma  follows the origins of Morocco’s greatest creative  traditions and craftsmanship. She conveys has contemporary designers continue to us these ancient skills fusing the traditional and the modern. The book is lavishly illustrated with 171 color photographs .

The Villas & Riads of Morocco, Corinne-Verner

The Villas and Riads of Morocco by Corinne Verner – The Villas and Riads of Morocco showcases palatial residences in Fes and Eassouira, riads in Marrakesh and converted kasbahs. With more than 200 photographs, this book reveals the treasures of Moroccan design. It features the fusion  of new concepts  with the highest quality materials including  luxurious Berber carpets, Rabati textiles, marble, along with intricate carvings and mosaics. The book offers an overview of the cultural history of Moroccan riads and palaces with their centrally placed courtyard gardens.

Morocco Design Decor by Philippe Saharoff & Francesca Torre – This is a small coffee table book is packed with authentic Moroccan interiors many of them typical of modern designs widely used in Marrakesh. There is excellent detail on commonly used features  such as zellij tiles, painted wood and lanterns. This is the perfect practical guide for Moroccan home decor.

Morocco – Mark Luscombe & Dominic Bradbury  – Published by Conran this is a good all round introduction to contemporary and traditional elements in Moroccan architecture and design from country houses to modern restored medina houses.

Living in Morocco: Design from Casablanca to Marrakesh by Lisl Dennis and Landt Dennis – Living in Morocco  covers the work of ancient  Moroccan craftsmenship which has been adapted to modern designs with exciting images of  ceilings, courtyards and tiled walls. The authors include information about the blue and white painted walls of  Chefchaouen in the north and the Kasbah’s and souk’s of the South. They also cover the history of Marrakesh’s iconic La Mamounia hotel and the deep blue of Yves Saint Laurent’s walls in the Majorelle Gardens. The book is lavishly illustrated with photos of the interiors of houses and  Moroccan arts and crafts.

Written by Colin Kilkelly

For More Information Books on Moroccan Decor or a Morocco Tour

Morocco’s Imperial CitiesSeaside Resorts,Sahara Desert,Berber villagesA Taste of MoroccoMagical Kasbahs, Ruins & WaterfallsAbsolute Morocco, The Best of MarrakechFes, and Ouarzazate

Discover The Best of Morocco - Travel Exploration
Travel Exploration specializes in Morocco Travel.  We provide Tours and travel opportunities to Morocco for the independent traveler and tailor-made tours for families and groups with a distinctly unique flavor. From Morocco’s Seven Imperial Cities, to the Magical Sahara Travel Exploration offers a captivating experience that will inspire you. At Travel Exploration we guarantee that you will discover the best of Morocco! Call Travel Exploration at 1 (800) 787-8806 or + 1 (212) 618882681 and let’s book a tour to Morocco for you today.

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Travel Morocco’s Historic Kasbahs and Majestic Waterfalls

Morocco boasts beautiful cities with majestic mosques, imperial palaces, and hotels worthy of royalty, but outside these sprawling cities there is a different sort of majesty and beauty for travelers to discover.  Leaving the chaotic and busy city centers the Atlas Mountains and the sprawling Sahara desert give way to a different Morocco, one of camel caravans, ancient trade routes, and breath-taking natural wonders.

ouzoudwaterfall2

Moroccan Kasbahs

Morocco is often referred to as the land “of a thousand Kasbahs”, the “way-stations” for the traveling merchants, tradesmen, and adventurers of ancient Morocco.  These fortified cities were safe havens for the weary traveler, a place to rest and to socialize with fellow travelers and inhabitants of the Kasbah towns.  Exotic goods, skills, languages, and beliefs were shared and exchanged at these Kasbahs attributing to Morocco’s rich and diverse history combining European, African, Christian, Muslim, as well as many other cultural and ethnic influences.  While the harsh dry climate of the Saharan desert takes a toll on these ancient cities the Moroccan government, as well as many private companies, are working to restore and ensure the survival of the Kasbahs.

kasbah

Ouarzazate – The Door of the Desert

Located just four hours from Marrakech, Ouarzazate is known as “The door of the desert” and is a main Berber town.  Once a major stop for travelers on the ancient camel caravan route through Morocco and much of Africa, Ouarzazate is a must-see for travelers wanting to experience Moroccan history as well as Moroccan natural wonders.  Ouarzazte boasts two Kasbahs, Ait Benhaddou and the Telouet Kasbah and the famous Cascades d’Ouzoud waterfalls.  This Berber town is a popular destination for travelers looking for a little adventure.

Ait Benhaddou

Ait Benhaddou is a fortified city located in Souss-Massa-Draa, not far from Ouarzazate, along the Ouarzazate River and is a wonderful example of the ancient Kasbahs found along the camel caravan routes throughout Morocco.  This enclosed city was home to many families all of whom had their own house within the city walls, although most of its inhabitants have since moved to more modern towns nearby a handful of Moroccans still live in this ancient town.

Since 1987 Ait Benhaddou has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site and its magnificent red walled buildings and impressive architecture has made Ait Benhaddou the site of many films including, most recently, the films Gladiator in 2000 and Alexander in 2004.  It is a city that’s rich with history, culture, and amazing architecture that is sure not to disappoint.

Taourirt Kasbah

kasbah22

The Taourirt Kasbah, while not as old as some of the more ancient Kasbahs in Morocco, is considered one of the most important sights in Morocco and has a significant history.  In 1893 Sultan Moulay Houssan was stranded in the Sahara Desert and he and his army of 3,000 were taken care of by two brothers, Glaoui, of the Taourirt Kasbah.  In return for their hospitality the Sultan gave the brothers political power over the

High Atlas Mountains.

The brothers maintained and strengthened their position and when the French occupied Morocco 20 years later they managed to enter into an agreement with them and by the end of the French colonial rule the Glaoui brothers had almost as much political power as the Sultan.

kasbah-telouet

While the Saharan Desert has taken its toll on the Kasbah the huge structures make for an impressive view that are sure to awe visitors.  The reception room and main halls, the only interior rooms still open to the public, are adorned with high vaulted ceilings with grand pillars and huge ornately carved wooden doors.  The large scale luxury of the Taourirt Kasbah is surprising to find so far into the desert and certainly speaks to the power and influence that the Glaoui brothers once held.

Cascades d’Ouzoud

cascades-des-ouzoud

Gorgeous cool blue water falls 100 meters through a lush green terrain into refreshing pools perfect for cooling off on a hot summer day.  The last thing you might expect to find in hot and deserty Morocco is waterfalls but the Cascades d’Ouzoud exist nonetheless and provide Morocco with just one more natural wonder for visitors to experience.

Located near Ouarzazte, through a tiny Berber village called Ouzoud, the cascades provide the perfect spot for locals and visitors alike to spend the day picnicking and swimming in the refreshing pools.  The cascades are a popular camping spot offering visitors the chance to sleep under the Moroccan stars next one of the most beautiful natural wonders in northern Africa.  At the summit of the falls there are several old mills, many of which are still in use, and, if you look carefully in among the trees you might even spot a troop of Barbary apes that live among these majestic falls.

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Travel Exploration specializes in Morocco Travel. We provide Tours and travel opportunities to Morocco for the independent traveler and tailor-made tours for families and groups with a distinctly unique flavor. From Morocco’s Seven Imperial Cities, to the Magical Sahara Travel Exploration offers a captivating experience that will inspire you. At Travel Exploration we guarantee that you will discover the best of Morocco! Google on call Travel Exploration at (917)703-2078 and let’s book a tour to Morocco for you today.

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