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Draft itinerary - Portugal, Andalucia, Morocco

Draft itinerary - Portugal, Andalucia, Morocco

Old Oct 25th, 2013, 02:45 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 46
Draft itinerary - Portugal, Andalucia, Morocco

Just starting trip plans for all of March/early April 2014 - hopefully 6 weeks. Experienced solo traveler; looking to do the slow tour.

Fly into Lisbon - acclimate a few days - day trip to Sintra
Fly to Maderia - 2 or 3 days
Fly back to Lisbon and rent a car from the airport to wander north to Porto - at least 4 days
Fly to Seville - base in Seville to day trip in Cordoba, Jerez, Cadiz, Ronda - 2 weeks
Drive to Granada - Alhambra - 4 nights
Transport to Algerciras - possible stop in Gibraltar
Ferry to Tangier - a few nights
Transport to Fes via Rabat and Meknes - 4 days
Transport to Marrakesh - 4 days with side trip to Atlas Mtns/Berber village etc
Transport to Essaouira - 3 days
Transport back to Marrakesh airport to fly to Madrid (2 nights just as a layover)

I've done a bit of research (and will read lots more trip reports!) and have more details in my head but just trying to block out the big picture right now - especially flights. One big question I have is regarding weather. Since this itinerary has me moving north to south, is there an advantage this time of year of moving south to north?

Also curious if anyone has ever done the ferry from Motril to El Hoceima. I think it could be more interesting all the way around. Basically Granada/Motril - ferry - El Hoceima/Fes and skip Algerciras and Tangier.

I'll post this in the African forum too.

acktom is offline  
Old Oct 27th, 2013, 05:44 PM
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I like that you are giving a chunk of time to Andalusia. I thought Cordoba worth 2 full days; not everyone agrees. I spent 3 nights = 2 full days in Granada and was glad I did; 4 nights there might be a tad much. Be sure to book in advance to see the Alhambra during both the day and the evening; I was glad to see it during the day first. For all your time in Spain (I don't know about your other destinations), watch out for Mondays: Many things will be closed. I think your idea of traveling from south to north is worth pursuing. Hope that helps!
kja is offline  
Old Oct 28th, 2013, 05:27 AM
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It sounds a reasonably well thought out trip, but do remember that a change of location will cost at least half a day each time, so your time on the ground in each location will be shorter than you think.

As far as Morocco is concerned, I'd think very carefully about Tangiers, as IMO you may be disappointed with the place. It's not a town that's ever filled me with a need to go back again and I found it dirty, pushy and uninspiring.
Rubicund is offline  
Old Oct 28th, 2013, 08:17 AM
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Thanks for the advise. As this is still early stages, as I refine I will include travel time. Rubicund, I'm still on the fence about Tangiers. I've heard horrible things and I know there are hoards of day trippers. I think entry via El Moceima might be an interesting route.
acktom is offline  
Old Oct 28th, 2013, 08:50 AM
Join Date: Jul 2006
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Tangiers, null point, avoid
Ronda replace with Malaga (castle, museum, normal people etc)
Take a day off Granada (at least) and give to northern Portugal

you are missing southern Portugal and the Alantejo along with the nice bits of the Algarve. I assuming you are using buses in Morroco or are you going for the train?

looks good
bilboburgler is offline  
Old Oct 30th, 2013, 06:39 AM
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Thanks bilboburgler! Tangiers is not going to make the cut. and i will save the Algarve for a future trip when I just want sun and fun
acktom is offline  
Old Oct 30th, 2013, 06:50 AM
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Tangiers is a port, not a tourist destination.

Four nights in Granada is excessive. There's Alhambra and the Royal Chapel and . . . nothing else that recommends four bloody nights there.
BigRuss is offline  
Old Nov 3rd, 2013, 10:22 AM
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Yes, cut two days off Granada. Don't be so quick as to ditch Tangiers. It can be a delightful place. See Zambezi's Morocco Solo on the African Board. All Hoceima is OK. From there you'd take a bus thru the marijuana (kif) plantations of the Rif and land up near Chaouan. Do not take any kif that is offered. Try to get ahold of a Michelin map of Morocco. Have fun !
Bedar is offline  
Old Apr 23rd, 2014, 07:51 AM
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I am just back from my amazing adventures in Portugal, Spain and Morocco. Thanks to all the fodorites that helped with the planning. My blog is up with some photos if you are so inclined at Feel free to post questions if you have them. Already planning the next trip!
acktom is offline  
Old Apr 23rd, 2014, 08:26 AM
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Thanks acktom, good write up

"Brits on holiday are mostly horrible. " ehem....
bilboburgler is offline  
Old Apr 23rd, 2014, 08:40 AM
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acktom is offline  
Old Apr 23rd, 2014, 08:45 AM
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That comment was in response to a group of Brits on holiday in Essaouira that were trying to explain to their waiter how to make a "shandy" and were complaining about "all the fish" on the menu.
acktom is offline  
Old Apr 23rd, 2014, 09:19 AM
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No worries, I like the way that in Essaouira there are restaurants that are "islamic" and "foreign" and only the "foreign" are allowed to sell alcohol. But all that means is you keep your wine glass on the seat beside you in the "islamic" ones so the police cannot see them.
bilboburgler is offline  
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