London to Morocco
London to Morocco – Rail Adventure – an 8 day Private Tour from £2,330 per person.
From the magnificence of St Pancras’ Gothic revival Station to the quintessential capital of exotic Africa that is Marrakesh, relax and watch the world slide by, often at astonishing speeds.
Whilst the scenery southwards through France and Spain gradually becomes more unfamiliar, lush vineyard-clad valleys and coastal étangs giving way to rocky highlands and dry grasslands, nothing yet quite matches the joy of travel in North Africa. As the dusky outlines of Andalusia’s mountainous coastline recede, Tangier emerges to a thrill of white buildings cascading down tree-fringed hills to the harbour.
From here, as the continent’s fastest train edges out of its dramatic new station, the fascinating Moroccan landscape eagerly calls.
Our rail journey through Morocco begins in Tangiers, first port after Europe, launching ‘Al Boraq’ – Lightning – like a flashing rapier, gathering pace along the coast and then striking inland through the grassland hills. Sweeping over viaducts and plunging into underground tunnels, the vibrant coastal capital of Rabat recedes and the coastal plains’ aridity markedly increases.
Within 2¼ hours, Casablanca, heartbeat of the nation, emerges, surprisingly almost as white as promised. Having luxuriated in the magnificence of its sacred sites and the exuberant Habous Quarter, the Marrakesh Express presses you to wend your way south. Desiccated fields and cuttings through the living rock of the saffron Middle Atlas’ sandstone, and haphazard palms or occasional lone olive groves lead to the fabled wonders of Marrakesh.
Beyond, you may choose to link to our pioneering overland odyssey through Western Sahara, Mauritainia, Gambia, Senegal and Guinea Bissau. Africa awaits!
Day 1- London to Barcelona
Take a morning Eurostar to Paris. Upon arrival at Gare du Nord make your own way to Gare de Lyon. As you will be travelling with luggage we would recommend a taxi, rather than taking the metro. Or for peace of mind we can pre-arrange a private car transfer. Just let us know at the time of booking. And make sure you allow plenty of time to travel across Paris; we would suggest a minimum of 1½ hours. Or allow a bit longer and why not break your journey for lunch at the fabulous Train Bleu restaurant inside the Gare de Lyon. Opened in 1900, it is decorated in a sumptuous art nouveau style – a great start to your adventure, be sure to book a table in advance. Continue from Paris to Barcelona on a double-decker TGV. We recommend a seat on the upper deck for the best views as the train speeds along the scenic Rhône valley past pretty French villages and picturesque churches. Then look out for colonies of flamingos on the étangs or lagoons in southern France. Check-in at your hotel conveniently located directly above the station. Stay overnight or let us know if you would like a longer stopover. Overnight NH Sants Hotel or similar.
Day 2 – Barcelona to Algeciras
After breakfast leave Barcelona Sants by high-speed AVE train for Madrid and change there for a regional train to Algeciras arriving in the evening. It is a very scenic ride. After the dash along the high-speed line from Barcelona to the Spanish capital, you slow right down onto the route down to Algeciras on the Straits of Gibraltar. From the station it is about a 10 minute walk to your hotel, or a short taxi ride. Overnight Hotel Globales Reina Cristina or similar. (B)
Day 3 – Algeciras to Tangier
Although there are direct ferries from Algeciras these arrive on the Moroccan side of the Straits of Gibraltar at Tangier’s Med Port, located some 50km from the city. Therefore, we recommend that you use an alternative route, a fast ferry from Tarifa which more conveniently arrives in the heart of Tangier. The ferry operator provides a dedicated connecting bus service for the 30 minute transfer from Algeciras’ modern ferry passenger terminal, located about a 10 minute walk from your hotel or a short taxi ride. There are several crossings a day and we suggest you take an early afternoon departure. The connecting bus will depart from Algeciras so this will give you time for a leisurely breakfast. The crossing takes just one hour. Upon arrival at Tangier’s bustling port you will be met and transferred to your hotel. In this itinerary we have scheduled a one night stopover before you continue your journey south. But as with all our rail based holidays we can design the programme based on your requirements. And of course you have the option to extend your stay in Tangier. Overnight Hilton Garden Inn Tangier City Centre. (B)
Day 4 – Tangier to Casablanca
After a leisurely breakfast meet your guide at the hotel for a morning tour. See the highlights of Tangier on this 4-hour private tour. Explore the medina and the towering Kasbah with its marble courtyard. Take in stunning ocean views at the Caves of Hercules, where the Greek hero allegedly rested after digging the Strait of Gibraltar. Look for English, American, French, and Spanish influences in the architecture on the hilly outskirts of the city before your tour concludes with drop off and assistance at the railway station. Board Africa’s first high-speed service, the 300km/h (186mph) Al Boraq train for Casablanca, a journey time of just over 2 hours. Upon arrival at Casablanca’s Casa Voyageurs station you will be met and transferred to your hotel where you will stay for two nights. Overnight Radisson Blu Hotel Casablanca City Centre. (B)
Day 5 – Casablanca
In the morning meet your guide at the hotel. Explore the historic heart of Casablanca on a guided walking tour of the old medina. Take in the main landmarks such as the Hassan II Mosque and Rick’s Café, inspired by the movie Casablanca. Discover the traditional Habous quarter, shop for traditional handicrafts and souvenirs in the souks, and visit a local teahouse to sample traditional Moroccan tea and pastries (not included). Later return to your hotel. Enjoy a free afternoon. Overnight Radisson Blu Hotel Casablanca City Centre or similar. (B)
Day 6 – Casablanca to Marrakech
After breakfast you will be transferred back to the station. Take an Al Atlas express train for the 2½ hour journey south to Marrakech. The trains on this route are older than those which operate the high-speed service from Tangier to Casablanca, but nonetheless they are air-conditioned with comfortable seating. Normally refreshments can be purchased from a trolley which passes through the train; although we would always recommend that you travel with some basic provisions including water. Upon arrival in Marrakech you will be met at the station and transferred to your hotel. We have included a stay of two nights in Marrakech, which allows for a full day to explore the city. But this is just a suggestion and we can easily extend your stay. Alternatively contact one of our travel experts if you would like to visit other areas of Morocco. We can tailor-make an extension depending on your interests. Overnight Novotel Marrakech Hivernage or similar. (B)
Day 7 – Marrakech
After a leisurely breakfast meet your guide at the hotel. Uncover the enchanting mystery of Marrakesh’s souks and sights on a private 5-hour tour of Morocco’s vibrant capital city. With a knowledgeable guide, visit magnificent Moorish landmarks including the Medersa ben Youssef, and marvel at the opulent decor of the Bahia Palace. Enjoy a delicious Moroccan lunch and absorb the pulsating atmosphere of the UNESCO-listed Jemaa el Fna Square, replete with snake charmers and enticing food stalls. Overnight Novotel Marrakech Hivernage or similar. (BL)
Day 8 – Depart Marrakech
Your tour ends after check-out from your hotel. If you are planning to take a flight a transfer to the airport will be arranged included in the cost of your tour.
We offer this tour for private departures only
Prices start from £2,330 per person, based on two people travelling.
Call us to book.
Single Supplement from £300.
One-way flights from Marrakech to London start at £100. Contact us for a quotation.
Want to see details of your itinerary on a map?
Download the full tour dossier for this trip here.
For expert advice get in touch now with our passionate,
+44(0) 191 296 2674 from THE UK
1-800-614-2967 from THE US & CANADA
1-300-956-415 from AUSTRALIA
- All accommodation
- Transfers as per itinerary with a private car or minibus
- Rail travel based on 2nd class seats. Please contact for details of first class upgrades
- Private guided sightseeing tours as per itinerary, with the services of an English-speaking guide or driver/guide
- Meals as listed (B – Breakfast, L – Lunch)
- Entrance fees for sites listed as part of the itinerary
- International flights
- Any airport taxes
- Travel Insurance
- Meals not stated in the itinerary