- Experience a memorable Fado performance in Coimbra – an emotional form of Portuguese music expressing the hard realities of the daily life and balancing both resignation and hopefulness.
- Soak up the sun on the Portuguese coast's gorgeous beaches along the Algarve, walking across rocky cliff tops, exploring remote coves and taking in a sunset over the Atlantic Ocean with your small group.
- Relive a glorious medieval past in in the labyrinthine streets of Fes city, and discover the cultural capital, Marrakech, through its people – drummers, dancers, fortune tellers, jugglers and medicine men.
- Scale the High Atlas Mountains and trek through scenic Berber villages, spending a night in a traditional Berber homestay to get a true sense of rural Moroccan life.
- Travel through the Sahara in a camel convoy, sleeping under a blanket the North African stars and enjoy an evening beside the campfire listening to traditional Bedouin tales.
27 Mar 2020
Spain, Portugal & Morocco
Validity: 01 Jan 2020 to 31 Dec 2020
Colour and charisma in some of Europe’s hotspots – all packed into one unforgettable adventure. Spend 24 days covering Spain, Portugal and Morocco, revelling in chaotic markets, relaxing in coastal retreats and sharing conversation and cuisine with the locals. Marvel at artistic masterpieces and architectural wonders in Madrid, taste the rich history of Portugal in its delightful towns, historic performance art and complex cuisine, and be enchanted by the magic and majesty of Morocco’s metropolises and far-flung mountains. With a knowledgeable leader to recommend the best places and take you behind the tourist trail, dig a little deeper in these three countries to discover a local way of life.
Train,Ferry,Metro,Private vehicle,Public bus,Taxi
This trip can be enjoyed by just about anyone with a reasonable level of fitness. Some trips may have individual inclusions that may be of a higher physical rating compared to the overall rating of the trip. Please read the day-to-day itinerary carefully to find out more details on each day's activities, and whether they are suitable for you. Activities can be opted out of if you don't want to participate.
Gran Legazpi Hotel
Paseo de la Chopera 71
Phone: +34 915396600
The Gran Legazpi Hotel is located in the Legazpi neighbourhood of Madrid, next to the emblematic Plaza de Legazpi, close to Madrid's shopping, cultural and financial centre. It is situated on Metro line 3, with a ride into the centre of Madrid taking approximately 15 minutes. The Gran Legazpi is a modern hotel, offering fully equipped rooms with the latest amenities.
Madrid International Airport Barajas (airport code MAD) is located within the city limits, just 9km from the city centre. From the airport take metro line 8 to Nuevos Ministerios metro station and then metro line 6 (circular line clockwise) to Legazpi metro station. Alternatively metered taxis are available in taxi ranks outside any of the main terminal exits. Please note that the metro line from the airport to the city centre is particularly notorious for pickpockets, and travellers with backpacks or suitcases are indeed a target. Please ensure you are careful with your valuables on the metro. Pre booked arrival transfer from the airport: If you have pre booked an arrival transfer, your transfer driver will be waiting in the arrivals hall holding a board with the Intrepid Logo or your name. In case of flight cancellations, changes, if you experience severe delays at immigration, baggage collection or customs, or if you are not able to find to the driver, please contact the transfer operator directly: +34 657 547 304
Hotel Le Caspien
12 Rue Loubnane
Phone: +212 524422282
Hotel Le Caspien has 40 rooms equipped with TV, air-conditioning, phone, Wi-Fi and private bathrooms. The hotel is in Marrakech's new town of Gueliz surrounded by plenty of restaurants, cafes and shopping options. Other hotel facilities include 2 restaurants and a small pool. It takes only a few minutes by taxi to reach the Old Medina and gardens.
Marrakech Menara Airport (airport code RAK) is approximately 5km from the city centre. Petite taxis (small cars which are light brown in colour) can easily be hailed from the street, or ask the hotel to assist. Negotiate the fare before getting in. If you have pre booked a departure transfer you will be collected at the hotel reception 3 hours before your flight departure time. Please reconfirm your departure transfers with your tour leader. In case of flight cancellations, changes or if you are not able find the driver, please contact the transfer operator directly: +212 6 61 24 31 06 and +212 6 66 19 27 66. Onward travel to Casablanca: Trains from Marrakech to Casablanca depart every 2 hours throughout the day. The trip is scheduled to take approximately 3 hours but is subject to frequent delays. From Casablanca Voyageurs Railway Station, trains run to Casablanca airport (airport code CMN) approximately every two hours. Please check up-to-date timetables online: oncf.ma (in French). Please note that we can also organise a private transfer for you from your Marrakech hotel to Casablanca airport.
For trips departing on the following dates, use this finish point.
24 Aug 2020 (ZMSQC200824), 07 Sep 2020 (ZMSQC200907), 28 Sep 2020 (ZMSQC200928)
Moroccan House Hotel Marrakech
3 Rue Loubnane
Phone: +212 524420305
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT A Single Supplement is bookable on this trip, subject to availability at the time of booking. The price of the single supplement does not include Day 9, 16 & 19, where a single room does not form part of the package. In this case you will be matched up with another traveller of the same gender. If a single room becomes available at check-in for these nights, there may be the option for you to upgrade to a single room and pay the surcharge locally for that night. Please also note that due to the small properties we use in Europe there is only a limited amount of single supplements available per trip departure. If you would like to book a single supplement and enquire about availability please speak to your booking agent. RAMADAN In 2020, Ramadan will take place from 23 April through until 22 May. This is the holiest month of the year for Muslims in Morocco and around the world. Ramadan may cause some disruption and limitations to this trip around this time. Some regular services may not be available or open during the daytime, such as restaurants or coffee bars. Please consider your travel arrangements carefully. On the other hand, Ramadan can also be a rewarding time to visit Morocco. PASSPORT DETAILS In order for our local operator to be able to buy ferry tickets we need your passport details. Please advise these at least 6 weeks prior to the trip's departure. ITINERARY On this trip there is limited time in Madrid at the start of the trip. If you would like to explore this amazing city in depth we recommend you book additional nights before the trip. Your booking agent will be happy to book additional services for you (subject to availability). SHOPPING & COMMISSION The receipt of commissions or kickbacks in exchange for recommending particular shops, services or activities is ingrained in the culture of the Moroccan tourism industry. In an effort to best control and monitor shopping and activities with an aim for the best experience possible, Intrepid has established a system of carefully selected shopping experiences and activities based on positive feedback from our previous travellers. On occasion these will be as part of included walking tours or outside of included activities in free time. Please note that if you feel that you do not wish to join in on these shopping experiences we assure you there is no obligation and if you indicate your desire to not partake your group leader will help to facilitate a suitable alternative during this time. Intrepid have set up a centralised system of receiving payments from these recommended suppliers, which are then distributed towards local Responsible Travel projects (such as 'say no to plastic' cotton bags for our travellers and drinking water refilling stations), traveller information packs, and leader bonuses. Further details of these arrangements can be provided by your group leader on request. While Intrepid endeavors to ensure that these suppliers and services maintain reasonable levels of quality, please note recommended suppliers are chosen based on past travellers feedback and experiences and Intrepid cannot explicitly guarantee the quality of the product. A priority in establishing this fund is that the experience of you our traveller is not compromised in any way. Please let us know via the feedback after your trip if we are successfully meeting this objective. COMBINATION TRIP Please note that the European part of the trip will be led by a European leader, while the Moroccan part will be led by one of our experienced local Moroccan leaders. The changeover will take place upon arrival at the port of Tangier in Morocco from where the European leader will return to Spain. Additionally, as this is a combination of two trips, your leader and the composition of your group may change in Marrakech.
All Intrepid group trips in Europe are accompanied by one of our local European group leaders. ’Local’ in this context means a leader who is European or lives in Europe. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders. Your leader takes care of logistics, will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. At Intrepid we also aim to support local guides in the individual cities or locations we travel to. If you are interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend an optional local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip. COMBINATION TRIP Please note that the European part of the trip will be led by a European leader, while the Moroccan part will be led by one of our experienced local Moroccan leaders. The changeover will take place upon arrival at the port of Tangier in Morocco from where the European leader will return to Spain. Additionally, as this is a combination of two trips, your leader and the composition of your group may change in Marrakech.
Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itinerary covers. Please refer to our website's safety page for links to major travel advisories and updates on safety issues affecting our trips. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, flight tickets, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of our hotels have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however during your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests or relax and take it easy. While your leader will assist you with the available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your Intrepid itinerary, and Intrepid makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your Leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns. For more details on the type of conditions and safety standards you can expect on your trip, please refer to Intrepid's operational safety policy on our website. We recommend that you take a moment to read through this information before travelling, and would appreciate any feedback on how well it's being implemented in the field:
MADRID METRO Please be aware that we have had reports of travellers being pickpocketed on public transport in Madrid. Please be careful with your valuables while travelling on the metro or the bus.
SCAMS When walking through touristy areas of Moroccan cities you may be approached by 'helpful' locals who want to show you where to go or take you to a local spice shop. They will either ask to be your local guide for the day or expect money when you arrive at your destination. Please note these people are not registered guides and may try and get as much money from you as they can. A friendly 'no thank you' (or 'la Shukran') should suffice.
WOMEN'S SAFETY Women should exercise caution when travelling in Morocco. While the risk of an incident occurring on your trip is very low, below are some things you can do for your safety and peace of mind when travelling: - As with all travel, it’s important to use common sense and be vigilant. - Respect local dress codes and customs, perhaps dressing more conservatively than you do at home. - Avoid isolated areas when alone at any time of day. - Lock your door when you are inside your room. Keep the door locked when you are leaving your room, even for a short time. - If hotel staff need access to your room for any reason, request that they do this while you are out, or wait at reception while they attend to any cleaning or repairs. For the protection of both our travellers and staff, our leaders worldwide are not permitted to be alone in a room with a group member. - Always take a hotel card with you when going out so you know the address and have contact numbers in case you need it. - Should you encounter any inappropriate behaviour, inform your leader straight away. - For further information and advice please visit your government's department of foreign affairs which will have further helpful tips.
FIRE PRECAUTIONS: Please be aware that local laws governing tourism facilities in this region differ from those in your home country and not all the accommodation which we use has a fire exit, fire extinguishers or smoke alarms.
TRAFFIC AND DRIVING ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ROAD: Depending on where you come from please note that drivers in this part of the world may drive on the opposite side of the road from what you are used to. Look both ways before crossing any road. Traffic can be a little more chaotic than you might be used to at home. Be aware!
PETTY THEFT AND PERSONAL SAFETY: While travelling there is always the risk of pick-pocketing and petty theft, particularly in the more touristy cities. We recommend that you exercise caution when walking alone at night and encourage you to walk together and only on main, well-lit thoroughfares. Be particularly vigilant on public transport. Simple measures like carrying your day pack on your front, not hanging your bag over the back of your chair or on the floor and wearing a money belt will reduce any chance that your valuables should go missing.
Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. Entry requirements can change at any time, so it's important that you check for the latest information. Please visit the relevant consular website of the country or countries you’re visiting for detailed and up-to-date visa information specific to your nationality. Your consultant will also be happy to point you in the right direction with acquiring visas. Visas can take several weeks to process, so familiarise yourself with any requirements as soon as you have booked your trip to allow for processing time. Your passport details are required to complete your booking. Please ensure the name on your passport matches the name on your booking Australian, New Zealand, Canadian, US, EU and UK citizens currently do not require a visa to enter the countries visited on this trip, including Morocco. Other nationalities should check with the relevant embassy or consulate in their home country for up to date visa information.
Experience a memorable Fado performance in Coimbra – an emotional form of Portuguese music expressing the hard realities of the daily life and balancing both resignation and hopefulness.
Soak up the sun on the Portuguese coast's gorgeous beaches along the Algarve, walking across rocky cliff tops, exploring remote coves and taking in a sunset over the Atlantic Ocean with your small group.
Relive a glorious medieval past in in the labyrinthine streets of Fes city, and discover the cultural capital, Marrakech, through its people – drummers, dancers, fortune tellers, jugglers and medicine men.
Scale the High Atlas Mountains and trek through scenic Berber villages, spending a night in a traditional Berber homestay to get a true sense of rural Moroccan life.
Travel through the Sahara in a camel convoy, sleeping under a blanket the North African stars and enjoy an evening beside the campfire listening to traditional Bedouin tales.
When travelling in Spain, Portugal and Morocco, summer temperatures can get extremely hot. Have a think about what time of year suits you best to travel. Accommodation on this trip includes twin-share rooms in simple hotels. A single supplement is available for most nights if you wish to have your own room. See the Important Notes for more details. In Morocco, you will be expected to dress conservatively in public places, especially when visiting religious sites. This trip has departures that run during Ramadan. During this time, some restaurants and shops are closed, but you'll get unique insight into local customs. See Important Notes for more details. For more details on specific logistical information for this trip, see the Important Notes and Essential Trip Information sections located below the trip itinerary.
All travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, Intrepid Travel reserves the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund. You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements as they may not easily be obtained at the locations on this trip. Please ensure that you are adequately prepared. DRINKING WATER As a rule we recommend you don't drink tap water in Morocco, even in hotels, as it contains much higher levels of different minerals than the water you may be used to at home. For local people this is not a problem as their bodies are used to this and can cope, but for visitors drinking the tap water can result in illness. Generally this isn't serious, an upset stomach being the only symptom, but it's enough to spoil a day or two of your holiday. Bottled water is widely available and your leader can recommend safe alternatives when available. Water consumption should be about two to three litres a day. Rehydration salts, motion sickness tablets, and diarrhoea blockers are recommended for you to pack in your personal first aid kit. ASTHMA For some travellers, the desert sand and dust can bring on bouts of asthma. If you suffer from asthma even occasionally, we recommend you bring your medication as it cannot be administered by your group leader and may not be readily available while you are travelling.
While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. To give you maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat, generally not all meals are included in the trip price. This also gives you more budgeting flexibility. As a rule our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. There's no obligation to do this though. MEAL TIMES IN SPAIN Please note that meal times in Spain are later than in many other countries. Dinner is usually served between 8pm and 10pm. While this takes some getting used to it is a great way to observe Spanish food culture. VEGETARIANS Vegetarians might find the menu selection in Europe less varied than they would see at home. Vegetarianism is not as common in this region and generally the choices are basic, involving vegetables, soups, salads, bread, cheese, fruit, yoghurt, eggs etc. Vegans and those on gluten-free diets may find this region very challenging and may need to supplement meals with their own supplies from supermarkets and markets. Wherever possible we will cater for dietary needs for any included meals, but there may be times when those with special requirements may need to provide their own. BREAKFASTS There are some continental breakfasts included on this trip which may simply include bread/toast or pastries, butter, jam, coffee/tea/juice (or similar). FOOD IN MOROCCO Moroccan food is, generally speaking, excellent, though not particularly varied. Breakfasts usually consist of bread and jam with coffee or tea. Meals eaten out are reasonably priced - kebab and bread can be found virtually everywhere. In main towns it is possible to find very good French and Moroccan restaurants. Soft drinks are available at very reasonable prices, but generally speaking alcohol is not widely available in Morocco due to cultural and religious reasons. Still, in some hotels and restaurants you will be able to purchase beer, wine and spirits, but you can expect to pay western prices or more for imported alcohol. Please be aware of local laws, believes and traditions, and be very sensitive and respectful when consuming alcohol. Your leader can help recommend restaurants each evening. Vegetarians can be catered for but there is a fairly limited choice of vegetarian dishes. Couscous, vegetable tajine or omelettes are your best bet. This is particularly the case in the rural parts of this itinerary. Please note that if you have any special dietary requirements you should inform us prior to the trip.
CURRENCY Both Spain and Portugal have adopted the common currency of the European Union, the Euro (EUR). The Spanish Peseta and the Portuguese Escudo are no longer in circulation. The currency of Morocco is the Moroccan Dirham (MAD). CASH The most convenient and cheapest way to acquire money in Europe and Morocco is via an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) or Bancomat as they are often referred to. Check with your bank in advance concerning the suitability of your account / card overseas and any international fees that will be applied. You can withdraw local currencies easily at airports, major train stations and most city centres, but be sure to bring some extra emergency cash in a major currency that can be exchanged if the ATMs are not functioning. Some Moroccan ATMs, belonging to smaller banks, may not work so occasionally you may need to try two or three before you are successful. When leaving home don't forget your PIN and make sure you know the telephone number for cancelling your card if it is stolen. Keep this in a safe place. Credit cards are not always accepted in stores and restaurants. We recommend you carry some cash to pay for restaurant bills and other services. MONEY EXCHANGE Changing money in Morocco is easy and you will find banks and exchange bureaux in Casablanca, Fes and Marrakech, however please note Australian dollars are not always accepted. In the desert and Atlas Mountains opportunities to exchange money are limited. Please ensure you only use banks, licensed money exchangers or hotels. We also suggest you keep your receipts. Do not change money with street touts. This is illegal. CREDIT CARDS In Morocco credit cards are useful for large purchases such as carpets or gold from a large store, but generally speaking they are not accepted in many places. Local restaurants, markets, and many hotels will only accept cash as payment for goods or services. BARGAINING In Morocco some services and products are not a fixed price which means that your bartering skills will be tested from hiring taxis to buying a souvenir in the Medina. This can be challenging for travellers who have not experienced this before. Ask your leader for advice when you arrive however the best approach is to smile and have fun as this is an entrenched part of Moroccan culture. SPENDING MONEY When it comes to spending money on the trip, every traveller is a little different. You know your spending habits better than we do, so please budget a sensible amount for things like meals not included, drinks, shopping, optional activities and laundry. It's always better to bring a little more than you think you'll need. Also make sure you've read your trip details thoroughly so you know what's included in the trip price and what isn't. This should make budgeting a little easier. You'll find this info in the Inclusions section of your Essential Trip Information (that's this document). PRICES IN MOROCCO Morocco is often misjudged as being an inexpensive destination. With tourism booming, and the influx of cheap flights from Europe, prices for some items are becoming more equivalent to prices you would be used to at home. Eating in local restaurants, road side stalls and from markets can be inexpensive, but for nights out at tourist friendly restaurants you can expect to pay much more. With drinks, tipping and of course - shopping, it can all add up. Budgets are a personal choice but please bear in mind that you should not expect Morocco to be a budget destination. BUDGET Please budget for additional meals and expenses while on your trip. We suggest EUR 775.00 for meals not included on this trip. Our suggestion is based on past traveller feedback but you may choose to spend more or less. SHOPPING & COMMISSION The receipt of commissions or kickbacks in exchange for recommending particular shops, services or activities is ingrained in the culture of the Moroccan tourism industry. In an effort to best control and monitor shopping and activities with an aim for the best experience possible, Intrepid has established a system of carefully selected shopping experiences and activities based on positive feedback from our previous travellers. On occasion these will be as part of included walking tours or outside of included activities in free time. Please note that if you feel that you do not wish to join in on these shopping experiences we assure you there is no obligation and if you indicate your desire to not partake your group leader will help to facilitate a suitable alternative during this time. Intrepid have set up a centralised system of receiving payments from these recommended suppliers, which are then distributed towards local Responsible Travel projects (such as 'say no to plastic' cotton bags for our travellers and drinking water refilling stations), traveller information packs, and leader bonuses. Further details of these arrangements can be provided by your group leader on request. While Intrepid endeavors to ensure that these suppliers and services maintain reasonable levels of quality, please note recommended suppliers are chosen based on past travellers feedback and experiences and Intrepid cannot explicitly guarantee the quality of the product. A priority in establishing this fund is that the experience of you our traveller is not compromised in any way. Please let us know via the feedback after your trip if we are successfully meeting this objective. TIPPING If you're happy with the services provided a tip - though not compulsory - is appropriate. While it may not be customary to you, it's of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many Intrepid destinations. The following amounts are per person suggestions based on local considerations and feedback from our past travellers: In local markets and basic restaurants and cafes - round your bill up to the nearest €1. In more up-market restaurants we suggest 5% to 10% of your bill. Throughout your trip you may at times have a local guide in addition to your tour leader. We suggest €2-€3 or MAD 20-30 per day for local guides. You may also have a range of drivers on your trip. Some may be with you for a short journey while others may be with you for several days. We would suggest a higher tip for those more involved with the group, however we suggest €1-€2 or MAD 10-20 per day for drivers. You may also consider tipping your tour leader for outstanding service throughout your trip. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline €4-€5 or MAD 40-50 per person, per day can be used. Of course you are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length of your trip. Remember, a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service. In total, we recommend you budget approx €5-€10 or MAD 50-100 per day of your trip to cover tipping. Please don't tip with very small denomination coins, or dirty and ripped notes. This is regarded culturally as an insult. TIPPING KITTY Over the years we have found that many of our travellers find the need for tipping to be both tiresome and embarrassing, especially if they don't have the correct small change. To overcome this, we have established a tipping kitty system (for the Moroccan portion of the trip only). Your leader may discuss the idea of running a group tipping kitty, whereby everybody contributes an equal amount. Then your leader pays the tips for any included activities, while keeping a running record of all monies spent. The record can be checked at any time and any money remaining at the end of the tour returned to group members. This tipping kitty does not include tipping for any activities that aren't part of the itinerary (such as optional group meals), and it does not include a tip for your tour leader. This will be at your own discretion at the end of the trip. CONTINGENCY FUNDS We try to plan for every eventuality, but there are still some things beyond our control. Please make sure you have access to an extra US$500 for emergencies (e.g. severe weather, natural disasters, civil unrest) or other events that result in unavoidable changes to the itinerary (e.g. transport strikes or cancellations, airport closures). Sometimes these things necessitate last minute changes to enable our trips to continue to run, and as a result there may be some extra costs involved. The recommended amount is listed in USD for the relatability of universal travellers, however the local currency is needed in the countries you are visiting.
PACKING On this trip you must pack as lightly as possible because you will be expected to carry your own bag and although you won't be required to walk long distances with your luggage (max 30 minutes), we strongly recommend keeping the weight under 10kg / 22lb. Most travellers carry their luggage in a backpack, although an overnight bag with a shoulder strap would suffice if you travel lightly. Smaller bags or backpacks with wheels are convenient although we recommend your bag has carry straps to accommodate the cobbled streets, uneven surfaces, stairs and steps you are lightly to encounter while carrying your luggage. You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water and a camera etc for day trips. You can find Intrepid's Ultimate Packing List on our website. It should be used as a guide only and isn't intended to be a complete packing list.
WATER BOTTLE Consider bringing your own water bottle to refill along the way. The sale of bottled water contributes to an enormous environmental problem around the world. In addition to the water in bottles, the production of a 1 litre plastic bottle takes 2 litres of water and 200ml of oil. A large proportion ends up in limited landfill or discarded in waterways and natural environments. Although it can be difficult to avoid bottled water when travelling, please use the water dispensers which are provided at some of our accommodation or simply refill with tap water (your leader will advise whether tap water is safe to drink in your destination). When unable to avoid bottled water it is better to buy the largest available and distribute into your smaller bottle for the day.
DRONES IN MOROCCO Please note that drones are not permitted to enter or be used in Morocco, neither for personal nor professional/commercial use.
SUMMER Summer temperatures can be extreme in many of the regions visited (over 40°C), which can be uncomfortable. It’s important to use sun protection and drink plenty of water. Please carefully consider the time of the year you wish to travel and your suitability to that season. SHOULDER SEASON In contrast, weather in shoulder season can be unpredictable, and snow is not unheard of at higher altitudes. If you travel at the start or towards the end of the European season please pack accordingly with warm and/or waterproof clothes (preferably layers). The advantage of travelling during this time is that there are less tourists around. WINTER The winter months in Europe are usually quite cold and possibly snowy. Temperatures can drop to freezing or below, and snowfalls are common, especially at higher altitudes. You will need to be prepared to travel in varying temperatures and snow. Extra layers, a warm jacket, hat, gloves and good footwear are a must. SPANISH SIESTA Please note that shops, attractions, sights and businesses may be closed for up to 5 hours in the middle of the day for siesta time. This gives the locals time to escape the heat and spend time with their families, eat a large lunch or simply sleep through the most uncomfortable time of day. This means of course that people work later into the evening and dinner time can seem quite late: 9.30pm is not uncommon for family dinner time. One of the great things about our trips is that we encourage every member of the group to spend time interacting with local people. In order to best be able to do this in Spain, we recommend that you try to do as the locals do - avoid the heat of the day, and stay out later at night. RAMADAN & EID UL-FITR In 2020, the important month of Ramadan will be in progress from 23 April through until 22 May, and the Eid ul-Fitr festival will be held directly at its conclusion for 3-4 days. Ramadan is a festival of sacrifice where the devout refrain from eating or drinking during daylight hours. During Ramadan, business hours are shortened, including opening hours at some tourist attractions. Alcohol is not permitted during daylight hours and many restaurants will be closed. While you should expect some delays and inconveniences during this period, the month is a fantastic opportunity to travel in a Muslim country and witness this unique period, particularly the nightly celebrations when the sun sets and the fast is broken. Please note that although the Eid ul-Fitr festival can also be a fascinating time to travel it's a period of national holiday. Most government offices and businesses will be closed and some tourist site opening hours may be affected. EID AL-ADHA Eid Al-Adha (Sacrifice Feast) will take place in Morocco between 30th July and 1st August 2020. This festival honours the sacrifice Abraham made of his own son. In commemoration of this, an animal is sacrificed and divided into three parts: one third of the share is given to the poor and needy; another third is given to relatives, friends and neighbours; and the remaining third is retained by the family. Please expect delays or complete suspension of public services during that time which may be disruptive to the trip's schedule. For some, it may also be disturbing to see animals being sacrificed, as this can take place in public. HIGH ATLAS MOUNTAIN PASSES On this trip you are going to cross the High Atlas Mountains through the impressive Tizi n’Tichka pass that rises to the altitude of 2,260 metres above sea level (7,415 ft). It is a great mountain road with breath taking views. During the winter months (November to March) this part of Morocco can be hit by heavy snow falls and it is possible for Tizi n’Tichka to become impassable. This usually lasts only for a day until authorities have a chance to clear the road. In the event of a snow storm, your itinerary may be required to change. This is dealt with on the ground and depending on the situation we may re-route your itinerary or reverse it. In any case, you will be adequately informed.
Everyone has the right to feel safe when they travel. We don’t tolerate any form of violence (verbal or physical) or sexual harassment, either between customers or involving our leaders, partners or local people. Sexual relationships between a tour leader and a customer are strictly forbidden. Use or possession of illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. If you choose to consume alcohol while travelling, we encourage responsible drinking, and expect that you’ll abide by the local laws regarding alcohol consumption. The sex tourism industry is known to exploit vulnerable people and have negative consequences on communities, including undermining the development of sustainable tourism. For this reason, patronising sex workers will not be tolerated on our trips. By travelling with us you are agreeing to adhere to these rules. Your group leader has the right to remove any member of the group for breaking any of these rules, with no right of refund. If you feel that someone is behaving inappropriately while travelling with us, please inform your tour leader or local guide immediately. Alternatively, contact us on the emergency contact number detailed in the Problems and Emergency Contact section of this Essential Trip Information.
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While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip. We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager. You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. But we do ask you to be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is complete. For general contact details please use the following page: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/contact/ If you have booked an arrival transfer, and you experience severe delays at immigration, baggage collection or customs, or if you are not able to find to the driver, please contact the transfer operator directly on the number listed in the joining point instructions in the section above. In the case of a genuine crisis or emergency, Intrepid's Europe and Morocco Operations Team can be reached on the numbers listed below: Intrepid's Local Operator: +212 661922693 Intrepid's Local Operator: +49 8677 9186 657
Our Responsible Travel Policy outlines our commitment to preserving the environment, supporting local communities, protecting the vulnerable and giving back to the places we travel. All our trip leaders, suppliers and staff are trained on these principles, and are core to us delivering sustainable, experience-rich travel. Explore the different parts of our Responsible Travel Policy by visiting: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/responsible-travel BULLFIGHTING Bullfighting is illegal in most countries, but remains legal in some areas of Spain. While supporters consider bullfighting an art form or cultural event, and in a recent court ruling has even been declared to be part of Spain's 'national heritage', we discourage our travellers to support this activity due to the pain, fear and discomfort the animals experience during these public shows. Please see our stance on animal welfare for further details: intrepidtravel.com/animal-welfare DRESS CODE In general, there are few dress restrictions in Europe. Note when visiting churches, monasteries or other religious sites modest dress is required - shorts or skimpy tops may not be permitted, for both men and women. Morocco can be considered a liberal Muslim country as many Moroccan women do not wear headscarves. However, Morocco is very conservative when compared with standards you may be accustomed to at home and you should dress accordingly. As a general guideline, shoulders, cleavage and knees should be covered at all times. Wearing shorts (men and women), low-cut tops, and showing midriff is not recommended as it will restrict your entry into buildings of a religious nature and family homes, and is considered disrespectful to the local culture. Long, light-coloured, lightweight sleeved shirts, trousers and skirts are respectful, cover your body, keep you cool in the heat and protect you from the harsh sun.
Help us change thousands of lives by creating meaningful work and supporting skills training in communities around the world. The Intrepid Foundation is the not-for-profit for Intrepid Group. We work with local organisations around the world to improve the livelihoods of vulnerable individuals and communities through sustainable travel experiences. With our travellers’ help, we’ve contributed more than AU $6 million to over 100 community organisations since 2002. Did you know that tourism is one of the biggest contributors to the global economy, making up 1 out of every 10 jobs? That’s why we support local projects that create meaningful jobs and give people the skills they need to work in the destinations we take you to. And it’s why we exist – to make it easy for travellers to give back to the communities and places they’ve been in an effective and meaningful way. Intrepid Group covers all administration costs, every cent goes directly to the projects. Donating is simple and secure. Please ask your leader for information about the projects we support through The Intrepid Foundation or visit our website: http://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/
OCCASIONAL ALTERNATIVE ACCOMMODATION The style of accommodation indicated in the day-to-day itinerary is a guideline. On rare occasions, alternative arrangements may need to be made due to the lack of availability of rooms in our usual accommodation. A similar standard of accommodation will be used in these instances. TWIN SHARE BASIS Accommodation on this trip is on a twin share basis (unless noted otherwise in the day-to-day itinerary). Please note there may be times where facilities will be shared rather than ensuite. CHECK-IN TIME Throughout the trip we request that our hotels prepare rooms in time for our arrival, especially if we're arriving prior to normal check-in time. However this isn't always possible which means we won't be able to check-in immediately on arrival at some hotels. Instead, we can store our luggage and explore our new destination. PRE/POST TRIP ACCOMMODATION If you've purchased pre-trip or post-trip accommodation (if available), you may be required to change rooms from your trip accommodation for these extra nights. FACILITIES Your accommodation may not always have private en suite facilities or air-conditioning. European hotels generally don't provide kettles or fridges.
TRANSPORT IN EUROPE Half the fun of travel is the travelling itself, that's why we like to travel the local way – whether that means mingling with commuters on a train in Spain, cycling past a historic chateau in France, or encountering the world's most extravagant public transport system on the Moscow Metro. In Europe, you are guaranteed to travel by genuine local public transport wherever possible, which puts you right in the centre of the action. LONG TRAVEL DAYS On this trip there are some long travel days and some rough travelling in areas away from main tourist routes. High passes, windy roads and rough surfaces make for some challenging travel experiences. On some travel days we depart early in the morning to ensure we optimise our time at our next destination. If you experience travel sickness we recommend you consider medication to help ease the discomfort. The best parts about all of these long drives are the spectacular views and fun stops en route. PUBLIC TRANSPORT On some stretches we use public transport in Spain, Portugal and Morocco. Be it a train or a public bus, remember that the best part of it is the possibility to interact with local people travelling along with you.
Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. When travelling on a trip, you won't be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and the insurance company's 24 hour emergency contact number has been seen by your leader. If you have credit card insurance your group leader will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number and emergency contact number rather than the bank's name and credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in-country. http://www.intrepidtravel.com/insurance.php
As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part. Due to privacy reasons we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure. SINGLE TRAVELLERS: Our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and don't involve a compulsory single supplement. Single travellers share with people of the same gender in accommodation ranging from twin to multishare. Some of our itineraries have accommodation booked on a mixed gender share basis and where applicable this will be specified in our Essential Trip Information. On a selection of our trips, you have the option to pay a single supplement to ensure that you have your own accommodation (where available). Please note that this only applies to accommodation during the tour - pre-trip and post-trip accommodation will be booked on a single room basis.
ITINERARY CHANGES: Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important that you print and review a final copy prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weather, local conditions, transport schedules, public holidays or other factors, further changes may be necessary to your itinerary once in country. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary seasonally to ensure our travellers have the best experience. Your tour leader will keep you up to date with any changes once on tour. OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES: A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability, and may be on a join-in basis. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your leader know you are interested and they can assist. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk. MUSEUM VISITS & OPENING TIMES Please note that many sights, attractions and museums are closed on Mondays (and sometimes even Tuesdays). We recommend you carefully consider which sites and museums you are going to want to visit and that you do some research and make your reservations in advance where required/possible.
Camp site (1 night),Gite (1 night),Hotel (18 nights),Riad (3 nights)