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to take a guide in Morroco or not??

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We will arrive in Casablanca on 19th Feb and leave Marrakech 1st March. We've been to Morocco before long ago and are now what we politely call mature travellers...

We'd like a few days hanging out in Essaouira (possibly towards the end) but also want to spend a few days the desert area east of Marrakech which we didn't have enough time for last time. Ourzazate, the Draa Valley, Erg Chebbi, Kasbah ait ben Haddou etc etc...

No camel riding for us anymore (last time I could hardly walk for a couple of days and I am older now), colourful kasbahs, great towns, good food, gentle walking - that's our cup of (mint) tea.

I've looked at some highly recommended tours and they are tempting (if pricey). I guess what we'd like is advice about whether to use a guide for three or four days or just hire a car and wing it.

I remember very annoying hustlers when we didn't have guides. Is it like this out in the desert?

Will we be able to find all the lovely places we'd like to visit on our own?

All advice welcome...

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