Table Of Contents
- 1 Northern Morocco Itinerary 7 days – Explore Ttangier, Fez, Chefchaouen and head to Marrakech.
- 2 Best itinerary of Northern Morocco 7 days for new visitors
- 3 Day 1 – 2 Itinerary Northern Morocco – Arrival in Morocco and 2 nights in Tangier
- 4 Where to stay in Tangier, Morocco?
- 5 Day 2 : Northern Morocco Itinerary – Exploring more of Tangier
- 6 Day 3 – 4 Northern Morocco Itinerary – Chefchaouen (Option 1: 2 nights in Chefchaouen OR Option 2: Chefchaouen & Rabat day tours from Tangier).
- 7 Day 3 Northern Morocco itinerary – day trip to Chefchaouen for a day excursion.
- 8 Day 4 Northern Morocco itinerary – Day Trip To Rabat.
- 9 Day 5 of your Northern Morocco round trip – Arrive in Fes and relax and bathe in your riad/hotel.
- 10 Day 6 – 7 of the Northern Morocco trip – Spend 2 days in Fes (with an option for a day trip to Volubilis).
- 11 Tannery in Fes – Morocco itinerary 7 days
- 12 Morocco Packing List
- 13 7 Days Morocco Itinerary Example with Sahara Desert Tour
- 14 Morocco General Information
- 15 Best time to travel in Morocco
- 16 What should you pack for Morocco?
- 17 Safety in Morocco.
Northern Morocco Itinerary 7 days – Explore Ttangier, Fez, Chefchaouen and head to Marrakech.
Itinerary Northern Morocco 7 days, Morocco’s cities are colorful and you are sure to enjoy an unforgettable cultural and historical journey.
The reason why we have included the northern region in our 7 day Morocco itinerary is that you can easily add a trip to Africa from Spain without taking a plane.
This 7-day itinerary in Morocco is here to help you plan your trip! We have included essential travel tips to help you plan your trip as well as suggestions for small group tours if you are a solo traveler.
Best itinerary of Northern Morocco 7 days for new visitors
One week in Morocco is enough to discover some of the oldest cities in the country. If you have more time, it’s better. We have also included in this ticket an example of a 10-day itinerary in Morocco.
Keep in mind that Morocco is MORE of a cultural experience than just visiting tourist attractions. As you visit Paris, you will want to see the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, the Arc de Triomphe, to name a few. But Morocco is different. In Morocco, you live and breathe centuries-old history and traditions. Popular cities have a medina – where you will see the oldest schools, mosques, baths or hammams, riads to stay in, spellbinding mountains, good food, yet affordable.
Imperials Moroccan cities like Fez, Marrakech, Tangier, Casablanca, Rabat – they all have “new city” areas with airports, western restaurants, grocery and shopping areas, and almost every modern amenity.
But when in Morocco, travelers avoid new cities for all the right reasons, as there’s not much to see there. The action takes place (and every photographer enjoys it) in the souks and the medina, those narrow streets, the colorful textile vendors, the beautiful teapot where Moroccan mint tea is served and the hot plate or sizzling tagine – that’s where you need to be.
Before we take you into the colorful alleys of northern Morocco, here’s what you need to know about the medinas, souks and all the fun words we’ve just described. We’ve included a section on Morocco tips at the end of the itinerary (so keep reading).
Souks – Souks are market places and consist of many stores offering a variety of products such as food and spices, textiles, and perfumes. Traders and craftsmen such as tanners and metalworkers also exist within a souk.
Medina – The Medina is a fortified district with narrow, labyrinthine streets. In the neighborhood, there are souks, residential houses, schools, mosques, a community oven to make bread, a bath, etc.. The oldest and largest medina is in Fez (Fez el Bali, discovered between 789 and 808 AD and was the ancient capital of Morocco and one of the four imperial cities).
Riad – The riad is a traditional house (mainly large family houses), two or more stories high, with interior gardens and fountains. Riads do not have a large capacity like hotels. Most riads have only 6 to 14 rooms (of different occupancy levels). Some riads have more than a century of existence. (The Dars are houses with courtyard, without garden).
Hammam – Although the origins of the hammam or public baths are associated with Turkey, in Morocco they date back to Roman times. In Islamic traditions, public baths were practiced as a means of purification before prayer. Today, you can experience a hammam that includes purification, scrubbing, bathing, messaging and relaxation.
Tajine – The Moroccan tagine is the traditional cooking vessel, like a hot plate where food is heated evenly.
Day 1 – 2 Itinerary Northern Morocco – Arrival in Morocco and 2 nights in Tangier
Get to the North of Morocco
Northern Morocco has located a short distance from Spain. You can travel from Seville or Tarifa Spain to Tangier (or Tangier) in Morocco. A road trip and a ferry trip of 45 minutes and you will arrive in Tangier in Morocco.
If this is your first trip to Morocco and you need a little help, opt for a day trip from Seville and then stay in Tangier to continue your itinerary. Inform your tour guide when you start the trip. You will be given an open ferry ticket that you can use to return later (if you plan to fly from Spain).
Arrival in Morocco by plane
Tangier Morocco is served by the Ibn Battuta airport of Tangier. This is an international airport serving Tangier (capital of the Tangier-Tetouan-Al Hoceima region). So you can certainly start directly in Morocco by taking the plane.
Why Tangier or Tangier as a starting point for Morocco?
One of my favorite historical figures is Ibn Battuta – an explorer with a worldwide EPIC itinerary. He is often quoted in medieval history and was born in Tangier!
Of all the places we visited in Morocco, Tangier was our favorite. It is one of those places where you explore the waters, the port, and beaches, the old Medina (which is slightly more navigable and cleaner than Fez), great restaurants, and sightseeing.
Oh and Tangier is also called Tangier which is the Moroccan – Arabic version.
After your arrival in Tangier, spend the rest of the day in the medina. Eat-in a local restaurant and try dishes such as couscous with meat and the famous Moroccan mint tea.
In the medina of Tangier, explore different souks and do a quick demonstration of textiles and handicrafts, essential oils from which the famous Moroccan argan oil is made.
Where to stay in Tangier, Morocco?
Our stay in Tangier took place at the hotel Mamora. And we loved it. The rooms were clean and had free wifi and breakfast was included for a rate per night. The hotel is located in the medina. You can see the port of Tangier from their rooftop restaurant.
Other accommodation in Tangier Morocco
The House of Tangier
Magnificent guest house with sea view, lush gardens and outdoor swimming pool.
The hotel overlooks the Strait of Gibraltar and the Rif mountains.
Walking distance from the Dar el Makhzen Palace and the Kasbah Museum.
This whitewashed guesthouse has a romantic look, with a rooftop restaurant.
The hotel overlooks the medina and the bay of Tangier.
Walking distance from the Kasbah Museum and 5 km from the Tangier City train station.
Day 2 : Northern Morocco Itinerary – Exploring more of Tangier
After breakfast at the hotel, start exploring the other side of Tangier – outside the walls of the Medina. As Tangier is a port city, you will see many pristine beaches. They are not very crowded and are perfect for swimming or sunbathing (or even picnicking).
Near the coastline, you can also visit the mythical Hercules Caves. The Caves of Hercules (grotto d Hercules) is an archaeological cave complex in Cape Spartel and is located about 14 kilometers west of Tangier. The caves are breathtaking to look at from the inside.
The cave has two openings and the one that opens to the sea is said to be the entrance to the “Map of Africa”.
Very close to the caves is the summer palace of the King of Morocco. You can visit the palace from the outside, but you cannot go inside. There are many palaces throughout Morocco and even when the king is out of town, you cannot enter the royal residence. Still, the exteriors are beautiful and worth a quick (photo) stop.
We have a recommended 6 hour tour of Tangier and this is perfect if you are flying into Tangier Morocco. The tour also includes a walking tour of the Kasbah. There is an archaeological museum that is also worth a visit. BOOK 6 HOUR TOUR OF TANGER CITY
In the evening, take a walk along the marina – Tanja Marina Bay. Across Marina Bay, there are a lot of restaurants and lounges that are very busy (families, couples, locals and tourists) and worth a visit.
Day 3 – 4 Northern Morocco Itinerary – Chefchaouen (Option 1: 2 nights in Chefchaouen OR Option 2: Chefchaouen & Rabat day tours from Tangier).
For the next 2 days, explore outside of Tangier and see more of Morocco. We have 2 options for the Northern Morocco round trip 7 days. Both include Chefchaouen.
Either stay in Tangier and do day trips or stay in Chefchaouen for the next 2 nights.
Chefchaouen is also known as Chaouen. It’s a town you’ll find on Instagram accounts with blue-washed houses. The city is nestled in the Rif Mountains in northwestern Morocco.
Arrival to Chefchaouen from Tangier
Travel time from Tangier to Chefchaouen is about 2.50 hours by road. There are no trains.
Drive or private tour – 2.50 hours one way. You can stop for photos along the way and customize your trip. We have listed tour options below if you would like to book a day tour before you arrive in Morocco. These day tours are usually private tours and are reserved for a group (1, 2 or any number – confirm when booking and pickup is included).
Buses – Buses to reach Chefchaouen are operated by CTM and Diane Voyages. Travel time is 3+ hours each way. Diana Voyages (or Najme Chamal) has more bus schedules than CTM and they start as early as 05:45. But you can’t book tickets online, you have to go to a bus station on the day or a day before the trip.
CTM bus tickets to Chefchauoen can be booked online, but their website doesn’t have SSL encryption, which is required for online purchases, so we wouldn’t recommend doing this online.
Bus tickets cost about 45 DH per person for the outbound trip. You can book a return trip at the same time.
Option 1: 2 nights in Chefchaouen.
Arrive in Chefchaouen from Tangier and explore the blue city. Regardless of what mode of transportation you use, remember that it will take you 2.50+ hours one way. And no cars are allowed inside the medina.
If you take the bus from Tangier station, get off at Chefchaouen station and then take a petit or grand cab to arrive in the medina (about 10 minutes). Chefchaouen bus station has luggage storage if you need it.
On Day 1 in Chefchaouen, you should head to the medina upon arrival. Their medina is small and easy to walk around. The alleys are amazingly blue-washed, but some of the houses are not. Therefore, it is best to stroll around and take photos.
There are 2-4 Instagram alleys in Chefchaouen. You will find them if you keep walking through the medina and do not turn. The stores in the medina are far apart, but the alleys are cleaner compared to Fez. Restaurants serving Moroccan delicacies can be found in the medina, so it’s definitely worth stopping for lunch. We had lunch at Lalla Massouda restaurant in the medina.
There are also opportunities to photograph the Rif Mountains from the medina. All in all, a day trip to Chefchaouen is all you need to explore the best of the city.
Taking a day tour is great because you can make the day whatever you want and capture the MOST. You can also ask the tour guide/driver to stop for photo opportunities and see the Rif Mountains.
Option 2: Chefchaouen & Rabat Day Tours from Tangier
Day 3 Northern Morocco itinerary – day trip to Chefchaouen for a day excursion.
Explore the best of Chefchaouen in one day. Start from Tangier in the morning and spend 5-6 hours in and around the medina. Enjoy a good lunch and return to Tangier in the evening.
Tangier is closer to Chefchaouen than Fes (Fes to Chefchaouen is 3.75 hours one way).
Day 4 Northern Morocco itinerary – Day Trip To Rabat.
Rabat is the capital of Morocco. It is located about 3.25 hours from Tangier. You can go to Rabat by car, by day tour or by bus. The bus schedules for Rabat may not be ideal for this day trip, as there is less time to explore the capital.
To make the most of your trip, you can drive or book a day tour. Here is a day tour from Tangier to Rabat.
In Rabat, explore the Kasbah of the Oudayas, Hassan Tower, the Mausoleum of Mohammed V, the Chellah ruins, the Royal Palace and the Medina.
You should not miss the archaeological site of Lixus. This site dates back to the Phoenician period and has only recently been opened to the public. The site houses the Roman amphitheater in Morocco and has a large industrial complex. The city was destroyed during the Muslim conquest of Morocco in the late 7th century and now consists of ruins.
Rabat is much more modern than typical Moroccan cities like Fes or Marrakech.
Day 5 of your Northern Morocco round trip – Arrive in Fes and relax and bathe in your riad/hotel.
On Day 5 of your Northern Morocco round trip, make preparations to arrive in Fes. Fes, or Fez, is like a mini-Marrakesh, only better. Fes boasts UNESCO world heritage status. Fes has 3 districts – Fes el Bali is (9th-century core of the medina), Fes Jdid (13th century extension of the medina), and the New Town.
Fes sees fewer visitors and offers a more authentic and relaxed Moroccan experience. The lack of cars in the medina of Fes el Bali makes it unique, and a hammam in the medina quarters gives you a taste of Moroccan traditions.
Plan the first half of your day for transit time. The drive from Tangier to Fes takes just over 4 hours one way. If you prefer to take the bus, expect 5.50 hours of travel time.
Where to stay in Fes (Fez).
In Fes, you can choose to stay in a riad, a dar or a hotel. Riads have gardens, dars are smaller and only have courtyards. You will find many options in the medina of Fes. Hotels are also available in the new urban area of Fes.
We recommend staying in a riad. We stayed at Riad Jaouhara and it was conveniently located at the Blue Gate in the medina. The riad was 110 years old, had beautiful floors and doors. There were gardens, fountains and a swimming pool on site. A complimentary breakfast was provided. Breakfast included toast, omelets on a hot plate, mint tea, coffee and juice.
Other accommodations in Fes Morocco
Beautiful and upscale riad with 5-star hospitality.
It is a listed property with a restaurant, a rooftop bar and a hammam. The hammam is one of the highest-rated in the city.
Located outside the medina, it is 8 km from the train station of Fez
Palais d’hotes Suites & Spa Fes
Situated in the medina of Fes, easy access to the sightseeings
They have a swimming pool, jacuzzi and spa on site
Once you arrive in Fes, check into your riad. Enjoy a nice bath and then head out to explore the medina and have a delicious dinner. If you are staying in the medina, you will find restaurants nearby. The medina is huge, so we don’t recommend going too far. Stay close to the riad so you can retrace your steps.
It is perfectly safe to stay out until 10-11pm. We had a late dinner in the medina and the market was still busy and restaurants were open.
If you stay at the riad we stayed at, consider eating at Chef Hakim restaurant – they have a rooftop dining area and the prices were decent. We had couscous with chicken and vegetables for dinner.
Day 6 – 7 of the Northern Morocco trip – Spend 2 days in Fes (with an option for a day trip to Volubilis).
On Day 6 of the Northern Morocco itinerary, explore the BEST of Fes.
Moroccan man walking in the medina of Fes in Northern Morocco itinerary 7 days.
Fes Medina opens after 10:00 am, so wake up late and enjoy a good breakfast in your riad. In Morocco, it’s better to wake up late because then you can capture the hustle and bustle of the souks and medina in photos.
We booked a tour of the medina as the area is HUGE. It was a private tour with just 2 of us and in about 3.50 hours we walked about 8 kilometers while photographing the alleys.
One of the most unique sights in Fes was the Chaouwara tanneries. We visited the tannery and saw the process from a nearby area. There was also a great view of the city of Fes from the balconies where we saw the tannery. A MUST VISIT!
Tannery in Fes – Morocco itinerary 7 days
In the evening, opt for a traditional hammam followed by dinner. A traditional hammam is typically a steam bath with cleansing and scrubbing. It may also include a massage and relaxation time.
This tradition originated during the Roman Empire and is still used. You can spend up to an hour in a hammam spa.
On Day 7 of the Morocco itinerary, venture outside the old medina walls and explore Fes Jdid (extension area of the medina) and the New Town.
The Royal Palace of Morocco is worth a visit from the outside. Since it is used as a royal residence, you cannot visit the interiors. Also explore the Jewish Quarter and the Batha Museum in the Fes el-Jdid district.
Ville Nouvelle or New Town is worth your time if you feel like eating something modern. There are fast food chains and huge grocery chains here. Your drive to the airport is via the New Town to Fes Saais International Airport. The Fes airport is small, but it can connect you to major destinations in Europe.
If you feel like a day trip on your last day in Morocco, consider a full-day tour to Volubilis. Volubilis contains historical remains of a 3rd century BC Berber city, believed to have been the seat of the Kingdom of Mauritania, which was later abandoned.
Morocco Packing List
If you are traveling alone, consider booking a guided multi-day tour with G Adventures or TourRadar. G Adventures has many small group tours available. These tours are run with 10-15 like-minded people and include transportation and lodging, as well as some paid meals. Sometimes a group tour for solo travelers is much more convenient, safer, and also cheaper than going on your own.
You also get plenty of free time to explore on your own if you prefer! Here’s a 7-day Northern Morocco tour worth booking.
Desert tour from Fes to Marrakech: ideas for a 10-day Morocco round trip.
If you fancy a desert tour in Morocco, you can schedule it from Fes. Desert tours from Fes start early in the morning in Fes and then end in Marrakech, with one or two nights in a Berber camp. The minimum stay is 2 days, which you can include in your Morocco itinerary.
7 Days Morocco Itinerary Example with Sahara Desert Tour
To include a 2-day desert tour in Morocco, you should revise the above itinerary for northern Morocco
Day 1 – Arrival in Tangier Morocco
Day 2 – Half day excursion to Chefchauoen and spend the rest of the day in Tangier.
Day 3 – 4 – Arrive in Fes and explore in 1.5 days.
Day 5 – 7 – Take a 2-day Sahara desert tour from Fes to Fes and back. On this private desert tour, you will also explore the middle mountains of the Atlas and spend a night in a Berber tent.
Morocco General Information
Morocco is located on the African continent. It is considered one of the safest countries to travel in North Africa. The capital of Morocco is Rabat.
The currency in Morocco is MAD or Moroccan Dirham. However, Euros and USD are widely accepted. You will find exchange offices in the medina, at airports, etc. Unfortunately, no Canadian dollars.
Travel within Morocco Morocco Tips
Morocco has a good bus network. Buses are safe and clean and run on a schedule. CTM is a widely recognized bus network. Buses are also one of the cheapest ways to travel in Morocco.
Train services are available in most cities in Morocco. They are faster than buses and also clean. A first-class ticket is much cheaper than in Europe. Train tickets, unfortunately, must be purchased in Morocco. Their website takes online orders, but only accepts Moroccan credit cards. However, you can check the website for current train schedules. Here’s the website. The site is in French, but you can translate it to English through your browser.
Tours are always an option to get from point A to point B with a guide. Look for tours in Morocco.
Cabs are available for trips within the city. Petit cabs (small) are cheaper than grand cabs. They are safe to travel in.
Best time to travel in Morocco
If you want to visit northern Morocco, you are in luck – you can visit this part of the country at any time of the year. Fes can get very hot during the summer months, but Tangier, Rabat and Chefchaouen are suitable for all year round. During the summer months, a cool sea breeze blows in these coastal areas, making summer a little more bearable.
In general, the shoulder seasons are best for exploring the entire country, including the Sahara Desert. Low season in Morocco is from September to November and April/May. The summer months are busy due to the European summer vacations (although it is quite hot).
What should you pack for Morocco?
We’ve written a detailed guide to pack and what to wear in the Morocco Guide. But in a nutshell, here are some of the important things you’ll need on the road
Comfortable walking shoes – the medina districts are uneven and you’ll be doing a lot of walking. Get yourself some comfortable walking shoes. Buy them here.
Universal adapter/converter – Morocco uses the same power plugs as Europe. But the voltage ratings in the various riads may be different than the volt ratings in North American electronics. Bring a universal adapter/converter with you. Buy yours here.
Sunscreen – sunscreen is a must. Buy my sunscreen with SPF
Insect repellent – Click here to purchase insect repellent for your trip.
Daypack – A day bag for the essentials. Keep toilet paper or tissue paper, hand sanitizer, sunglasses, camera, power bank.
Safety in Morocco.
This is a million-dollar question. Because soo many of my friends and colleagues advised us against the trip. We felt Morocco was pretty safe overall.