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One Week in Morocco ! Do I SKIP essaouria, fez, or Rabat?

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Feb 6th, 2013, 06:34 PM
  #1
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Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 8
One Week in Morocco ! Do I SKIP essaouria, fez, or Rabat?

Thank you to everyone who responds to posts!!

Husband and I are visiting Morocco march 1 through march 9.
Flying in/out of Marrakech.

QUESTION 1: transportation
Are trains reliable? Looking like driving will take a long time from Marrakech to fez as example...better to fly? Train?

QUESTION 2: key cities? Not in right sequence but thinking about
Based on all I read, looking at
3 days Marrakech
2 days Fez
1 day essaouria (debatable)
1day Rabat

Thoughts?

QUESTION 3: dependable guides?
Trying to avoid the one post wonders who may be scamming, but looking for reliable tour guides. May look for ecotour guides next...

Thank you!!!!!!
baroness is offline  
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Feb 7th, 2013, 05:38 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 890
Looking forward to hearing the opinions. My wife and I have 9 nights to plan in October. Figuring on two nights each for Fez, Rabat, Marrakech, and a trek/desert tour between Fez and Marrakech.

My debate is the final night... do I add it to one of the above or spend a night in Essaouria or somewhere else.
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Feb 7th, 2013, 07:41 AM
  #3
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
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I would give more time for Fez, less time for Marrakesh. Essaouira is a nice place to rest up, less "Moroccan" than the other places. I found Rabat a good intro city (click on my name for my TR).

Trains are fine, although may not be spot on time, guide not necessary if you're just doing the cities, might be good if you're doing the desert.
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Feb 7th, 2013, 12:43 PM
  #4
jgg
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 2,683
We personally enjoyed having a guide to take us through the medinas of Fez and Marrakech. Allowed us to learn so much and be able to look at everything without getting lost (which we did the first day in Marrakech, outside the medina when we were exploring on our own). Our guide in Marrakech was someone recommended by our riad. For the rest of our trip Ouzarzate, Merzouga (desert) and Fez we loved our guide Zaid with BlueMenofMorocco.com.

Here is a link to my trip report which includes pictures:
http://www.fromhometoroam.com/catego...frica/morocco/
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Feb 9th, 2013, 09:19 AM
  #5
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@ JGG
I loved the HOMETOROAM web site, and I must tell you that I did read your report (appreciated the detail SO much, so thanks for volunteering your time to help others!) with great interest.
baroness is offline  
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Feb 9th, 2013, 09:20 AM
  #6
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@ THURSDAYSD

Thanks this may encourage me to skip Essaouria altogether...may not be worth time investment to get there for such a short vacation.

I am also interested in exploring the Jewish Quarter & history there, so welcome other input from all. THANKS AGAIN!
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Feb 9th, 2013, 04:37 PM
  #7
jgg
 
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baroness - so glad you enjoyed the site and that it was helpful!! Happy planning!
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Feb 12th, 2013, 08:52 AM
  #8
 
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I found Essaouira a nice place to chill after the more intense experiences of Fez and Marrakech. I also thought the site was beautiful and dramatic. Rabat was a little, oh, staid. It's a pleasant place but not really geared for the tourist. See my rather perfunctory trip report for more detail.

You are correct that the drive from Marrakech to Fes is quite long and interesting only in parts. The train, unfortunately, runs Marrakech, Casablanca, Rabat, Meknes, Fes -- so there is bound to be some backtracking somewhere. Essaouira is not on the line and is reached by bus -- Sopratour is comfortable from Marrakech.
Fra_Diavolo is online now  
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Feb 16th, 2013, 04:21 PM
  #9
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Just one more SINCERE thank you to all who took time to share an opinion. I settled on Marrakesh, Rabat, Fes, and High Atlas Mountain area.....excited to meet some local people and learn more about the customs !! Thank you again!
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Feb 17th, 2013, 08:16 AM
  #10
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
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You'll have a wonderful time wherever you go. But I must add my 2 cents worth, that I find Essaouira infinitely more fun than Rabat. Don't quite understand what "less Moroccan" implies but it is a lovely and lively place to spend a couple of days which I do every time I go. My favorite town in Morocco if I had to choose while Rabat is very skipable.
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Jun 24th, 2014, 11:10 PM
  #11
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 9
could you please suggest me any 3 places to visit in Morocco..
Also i am planning to do the desert safari..
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Jun 25th, 2014, 03:26 AM
  #12
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
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We did a loop of Rabat, Fez, a desert tour, Marrakech, and back to Rabat. We had a great time.

You can find the details in a short trip report at http://www.fodors.com/community/afri...rip-report.cfm
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