One of the many reasons to visit Morocco is to sample its unique cuisine. Of course most people have heard of the tagines but it goes a lot deeper than that – exquisite pastries and amazing vegetable salads. What is more you don’t have to enrol in a cookery school to understand the most important aspects of Moroccan cooking – it is about meeting the people and cooking and eating as a family or with friends.
Over the years we have gathered a great knowledge of the best places to see and experience Moroccan cooking but this is the first time we have brought it all together in one 8 day tour. Highlights include:
– Chef’s Souk tours in both Essaouira and Marrakesh
– Bread making in Atlas Mountains
– Berber family lunch
– Moroccan pastry demonstration
– Gastronomic last meal in Marrakech
Day 1 - Coast First
Arrive at Marrakech airport where your driver will meet you and take you straight down to the coast. Your base for the first few days is Rebali Riads in a small beachside village just south of Essaouira. It is an amazing place to relax and slip into the rhythm of Moroccan Rural life.Accommodation
Day 2 - Chef's Souk Tour
In the morning you will head into the souks of Essaouria with the Rebali chef (who speaks good English) and he will guide you around the meat, fish and vegetable souks, the part of the Medina that most tourists miss. This is a great way to be introduced to the ingredients you will be using and see a professional haggler in action…
After a couple of hours you are back at the riads and your villa kitchen is the base for your first hand cooking experience. Some clients like to view from the breakfast bar (with a glass of something not very Moroccan…) and just watch the chef in action. Equally, if you want to participate that is, of course, very much encouraged.
After all this work you will eat the results of your efforts, normally as a late lunch, and you will want to keep the evening meal light later that day.
Day 3 - Berber Lunch
Today you are not doing any cooking but instead visiting a traditional Berber house for lunch to see the famous hospitality first hand. We encourage you to go without an interpreter and just put yourself in their hands. Simple surroundings, wonderful food and an insight into a totally different culture.
It is also a small working farm and after lunch you have the option to have a farm tour and see the regional speciality, Argan Oil, being made.
Day 4 - Camel Picnic
This is your final day on the coast and we include a camel picnic (camels are the transport not the food…). Your camel comes into the riad garden to collect you and then it is off up the coast for around an hour on your “ship of the desert” and your host will prepare and lay out your picnic with, of course, the obligatory mint tea – yes, even on a picnic.
On return to Rebali the afternoon will be taken up with a pastry making demonstration. Our pastry chef doesn’t speak good English and if you would like a more formal lesson this can be arranged at a local cookery school for an additional £50 per person.
This is your final evening on the coast and we’d suggest an evening in Essaouira to try out one of the many restaurants or even the wonderful “le Kaouki” just a short stroll from Rebali.
Day 5 - Explore Marrakech
This morning you will take a transfer to Marrakech to the wonderful Riad El Zohar, right in the centre of Marrakech’s old Medina. There is nothing pre-arranged for this day but we’d recommend a walking tour of the Medina in the afternoon, visiting a mixture of historic sites and the souks. In the evening either eat in the riad, soak up the night-life at Le Comptoir or try out the famous BBQ’s in the main square.Accommodation
Day 6 - Cooking Demonstration
The main activity today is to enjoy another cooking demonstration and tour Marrakech’s food souks, followed by cooking and eating the results of your work. This is similar to your day in Essaouira but is a great way to really understand the way food is prepared and contrast two different styles. If you prefer a more formal cooking session this day we can book you into the famous Maison Arabe cooking school at the cost of £80 per person
Day 7 - Atlas Mountains
A complete change of scenery and it is off into the mountains for the day. You start with a visit to an organic spice garden in the foothills of the Atlas Mountains where you will be given a tour of the produce, join in a bread making demonstration and even enjoy a traditional foot spa…The morning finishes with lunch and then you take a scenic drive over one of the highest mountain roads for panoramic views and mint tea in a Berber village. For the more active we can arrange a scramble up to the best waterfalls in this part of the Atlas – please tell us your preference on booking.
Building up an appetite is a good idea as your last night in Marrakech will be the culinary highlight eating at at one of the Medina’s best restaurants. A spectacular finish to your culinary tour of Morocco
Day 8 - Home
Our driver will pick you up from the riad to take you to the airport but depending on your flight time, you may have a chance for some last minute shipping or a stroll around the Majorelle Gardens
Total cost for this trip based on 2 people sharing is £790 per person
You can get flights from as little as £100 per person return and do ask us for advice. Alternatively we can book the flights for you but a booking fee may apply.
- Prices start from £790 per person
- Accommodation on B&B basis
- Private transfers (air-conditioned vehicle with an English speaking driver)
- Two souk tours and savoury cooking demonstrations (Essaouira-includes lunch and Marrakech-includes dinner)
- Berber Village lunch
- Moroccan Pastries demonstration
- Camel Picnic
- Day trip to the Atlas Mountains, including lunch, bread-making and garden tour and Mountain tour.
- A fabulous meal in one of the famous Moroccan restaurants.
- Local taxes
- Formal Pastry Course (£50pp)
- Maison Arabe Cooking lesson (£80pp)
- Other meals