Morocco with Jose Salazar

June 7 - 15, 2023 | One Exclusive Departure

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Morocco Heart & Soul

Savor Morocco's rich cultural and culinary heritage with chef Jose Salazar

June 7 - 15, 2023

One exclusive departure — and likely to sell out!

9 Days, 8 Nights

Best of Marrakech, Fes and the Atlas Mountains

Price from

$6,500

per person, based on double occupancy

Questions? Text or call us
+1 (855) 219-8018

A subtle breeze of sage, mint and lemongrass drifts across the terrace. Beyond the patio, tiered pastures shine under the gaze of the Atlas mountains, the sky a navy canvas of burgeoning stars. As the steam rises from your bronze tea kettle, you suddenly realize that Morocco feels like actual magic. Just two days ago—among snake-charmers, spice merchants and acrobats—you were immersed in the vibrant bustle of Marrakech. Tomorrow, you’ll skirt donkeys and street vendors in the labyrinth markets of Fes, a city that feels beautifully lost somewhere in a past century. But you won’t get ahead of yourself. If you’ve learned anything so far, it’s that Morocco is a place to slow down and savor. Right now, the golden foothills beckon, and every step is like a line in a diary, and every vista, rugged and immaculate.

You’re joined by Jose Salazar,Food and Wine Best Chef and one of Cincinnati’s most respected culinary personalities. His restaurants—Salazar, Mita’s, Goose & Elder—are acclaimed spots for New American cuisine combining the traditions and flavors of Latin America and the world. Since the beginning of his illustrious career, he’s been drawn to Moroccan cuisine—the pungent spices, the French and Spanish influences, the simple harmony of a humble tagine. We can’t wait to explore this incredible country with Chef Salazar at our side.

If your idea of the perfect adventure involves slowing down and experiencing a place deeply—and if you love really good food—this trip is for you. Learn the meaning and tradition behind every bite, at bustling souks and markets, at hands-on workshops with local chefs and artisans.

Savor

Slow-cooked tagines, traditional street foods and spices, the rich complexity of Moroccan cuisine

Discover

Art and architecture, the sounds of a bazaar, a sunrise call to prayer, the colors and textures of the markets

Explore

Marrakech timeless souks, breathtaking Atlas Mountain villages, the centuries-old workshops of Fes

Connect

With Jose and with local chefs and artisans at hands-on workshops devoted to Arab, Berber and Jewish culture

3 Reasons to Travel with Jose Salazar

From re-watching Casablanca to his weekly pilgrimage to a New York City bodega just for Merguez sausage, Jose has dreamed about Morocco for the last 15 years. We just cannot wait to experience the electric energy of Marrakesh and the quiet solitude of the Atlas mountains, alongside the 2022 James Beard Best Chef Semifinalist.

Trained in the Classics

Jose has worked alongside culinary heavy hitters, including Thomas Keller, who helped Jose cement his cooking philosophies. Today, his Cincinnati restaurants are the places to go for innovative fare from the multi-award-winning chef.

Exotic Yet Familiar

Jose has put in the long hours and long weeks as a chef. And he wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s what spawned his “New American” food – think tapas, seafood, and more — in a way that educates as much as it satisfies.

A Mind for Morocco

Years ago, as a culinary student, Jose chose to explore Morocco as his capstone project. Ever since then, he's been obsessed with the myriad of flavor profiles that drive even the simplest dishes.

Your Experience

“Surrounded by the colorful and vibrant spices of Morocco, how can you not be inspired to go cook something!?”
Jose Salazar

Marrakech, Atlas Mountains, Fes

“Every dish, every ingredient has a story. By virtue of delving into those things, you're going to hear about someone's past.”
Jose Salazar

Day by Day

Day 1: Marrakech

Salam alaikum! Welcome to Marrakech, the heart of a 1,000-year-old desert empire at the confluence of southern Europe and Africa. Marrakech is an intoxicating blend of the ancient and the modern, a culinary cross-roads reaching back millennia.

We’ll meet up with Jose at our hotel, and dive right in. Our first order of business: a morning to explore Marrakech’s warren of medieval souks and narrow lanes, stopping at Morocco’s largest mosque, Koutoubia, and at the 19th-century Palais Bahia. Then, we’ll wander through market stalls overflowing with rich and pungent spices, the centerpiece for tonight’s hands-on cooking collaboration with Jose Salazar and a local Marrakech chef. We’re creating our own dinner tonight, feasting on Moroccan delicacies and toasting to our adventures to come.

Day 1: Marrakech Highlights

  • Arrive in Marrakech
  • Medina & souks tour
  • Hands-on cooking with Jose Salazar
  • Stay at La Maison Arabe

Day 2: Marrakech

Our themes for today are culture and cuisine, starting with a morning visit to the Moroccan Culinary Arts Museum. This former riad (residential palace) showcases a rich journey through Morocco’s culinary heritage and local cuisines. We’ll meet the chefs behind the museum over tea and traditional pastries.

Lunch at Le Jardin is hyperlocal, casual and authentic, set in the lush courtyard of a 16th-century residence. We’ll treat ourselves to all kinds of traditional deliciousness— anything from scratch hummus and couscous to lamb shoulder simmered in carrot puree and tarragon-brushed octopus in romesco sauce.

The afternoon is ours to relax and recharge at our hotel’s spa and hammam (Turkish-style bath), or maybe to explore deeper in the city’s medina.

In the early evening we’ll dive into the buzzing heart of the city, Djemaa El Fna. At night this square is a vast open-air show filled with soothsayers and snake charmers, musicians and acrobats. We’ll taste our way through its bustling stalls for dinner on the move, sampling Morocco’s traditional street foods: harira soups, grilled sardines, fried maakouda fritters and, yes, steaming bowls of fragrant babbouche (snails).

Day 2: Marrakech Highlights

  • Culinary Arts Museum
  • Lunch at Le Jardin
  • Djemaa El Fna street-food tour
  • Stay at La Maison Arabe

Day 3: Atlas Mountains

Amal is a nonprofit created by Nora Fitzgerald Belahcen, an American-Moroccan who first conceived of Amal to help disadvantaged women from Marrakech to build culinary skills and, ultimately, a better life. We’ll meet the trainees and chefs of Amal, and join them for a delicious farm-to-table lunch. 

After lunch we head into the Atlas Mountains, swapping African, French and Arabic influences for Berber. The Saharan Berbers—who call themselves Amazigh, or “free people”—have ruled unconquered for thousands of years. They were once instrumental in setting up trade networks between North Africa and the Middle East; today they live in scattered communities in the Atlas Mountains. We’ll check in and relax at our blissful mountain retreat, then reconvene for dinner to celebrate this next phase of our journey.

Day 3: Atlas Mountains Highlights

  • Amal chef visit & lunch
  • Transfer to Atlas Mountains
  • Dinner at hotel
  • Stay at Kasbah Bab Ourika

Day 4: Atlas Mountains

Awake in serene luxury, as sunshine filters gently through our kasbah’s terrace windows. After breakfast we drive to the village of Imil, to lace up our walking shoes and hike the stunning foothills of the Atlas Mountains. The views are as rewarding as our traditional Amazigh lunch with a local family. They’ll also be our guides in a hands-on workshop preparing dishes of the region like msemmen (flat bread), an aromatic delicacy either stuffed with fillings like kefta and onions or herbs and vegetables, and local tagines.

Back at the kasbah, the rest of the afternoon is ours to take advantage of our stunning surroundings: pick herbs in the garden to make your own tea, relax in the hammam spa, or simply reflect on this magical journey with a poolside cocktail. We’ll meet back up for dinner.

Day 4: Atlas Mountains Highlights

  • Atlas Mountain hike
  • Hands-on lunch with Amazigh family
  • Group dinner at hotel
  • Stay at Kasbah Bab Ourika

Day 5: Fes

We say goodbye to the Atlas Mountains and transfer to Fes, Morocco’s second-largest city and one of its most perfectly preserved. We’ll spend a lot of time on the road today, but fortune is smiling upon us. Domaine de la Zounia, one of Morocco’s most storied wineries just happens to be on the way. We’ll stop here for an education in North African viticulture through a nuanced tasting and expertly paired late-afternoon dinner.

After dinner, we’ll make our way to Fes. Dating from the 8th century, Fes was for centuries the ‘Athens of Africa’ and a gathering place for the Islamic world’s brightest minds; it’s still a cultural and culinary beacon. Fes’ walled-in medina is the most magical in all of Morocco, beautifully stuck in time with donkeys pulling carts along narrow, cobbled car-free lanes. We’ll dive right in and explore the labyrinth of narrow passages, visiting souks and market stalls and meeting some of the local artisans: coppersmiths, goldsmiths, carpenters, glass makers, weavers, potters and more.

Day 5: Fes Highlights

  • Transfer to Fes
  • Dinner & tasting at Domaine de la Zounia
  • Explore Fes medina & markets
  • Stay at Palais Amani

Day 6: Fes

This morning it’s back out to explore deeper into Fes’ medina and souks, and especially the leather tanneries. The largest and oldest—more than 1,000 years old—is Chouara Tannery, an otherworldly landscape of stone vessels filled with dye and hides, everything from cow and goat to camel, drying in the fierce sun. The process is essentially unchanged since medieval times, and utterly unforgettable.

Then it’s back to the market stalls for a tasting-tour lunch, discovering the most delicious of Fes’ traditional street foods, and gathering herbs and spices for our meal tonight, as we go. In the evening, gathered on our hotel’s rooftop overlooking the ancient skyline, Jose Salazar and a local chef will lead us in a hand-on cooking workshop, crafting a dinner to remember and a cultural exchange that goes well beyond the list of ingredients.

Day 6: Fes Highlights

  • Medina & leather tannery tour
  • Market-tasting lunch
  • Hands-on cooking & dinner with Jose Salazar
  • Stay at Palais Amani

Day 7: Fes

This morning we drive past past golden foothills and lush farmland to N’zala Bni Amir, a humble village that’s home to a cooperative designed, made and run exclusively by women. Focused on traditional Fessi embroidery and textile work, N’zala is paving the way for girls and women a chance to earn an income and gain independence, while also keeping alive an incredible art form. We’ll meet some of the women of N’zala, and also share a different kind of art they’re passionate about: baking. We’ll roll up our sleeves and make pastry and bread with village masters, followed by a traditional homemade lunch with the incredible women of N’zala.

Back in Fes, the evening is ours to explore the city and markets, or simply to relax at the hotel.

Day 7: Fes Highlights

  • Visit N'zala cooperative
  • Cooking workshop & lunch
  • Stay at Palais Amani

Day 8: Fes

Our culinary exploration continues, this time through the lens of Sephardic cooking. In the 1500s, Jews fleeing the Spanish Inquisition landed by the thousands in Morocco, home for centuries to the Muslim world’s largest community of Jews. A small and vibrant Jewish community remains today. We’ll explore the deep influence of Jewish traditions on Morocco’s cuisine at afternoon devoted to hands-on Sephardic cooking. And, of course, we’ll eat our own delicious creations for lunch.

The afternoon is ours to relax, and maybe visit a favorite souk or leather stall, before we regroup for a farewell feast. Chef Najat Kaanache has had a storied career, working in restaurants from Dallas to Morocco, hosting her own Moroccan cooking show and opening Nur, her answer to traditional Moroccan food with an avant-garde spin. It’s a 10-course farewell celebration to define all farewell celebrations, and a perfect end to our joyful journey together.

Day 8: Fes Highlights

  • Jewish-Moroccan cooking experience
  • Farewell dinner at Nur
  • Stay at Palais Amani

Day 9: Fes

Alas, our time together has come to an end, but our hearts and bellies are brimming with Morocco. We’ll bid farewell to Jose and our fellow Modern Adventurists, and transfer to Fes airport.

Day 9: Fes Highlights

  • Breakfast
  • Fes airport transfers

Where We Sleep

Serene kasbahs and traditional riads—our Moroccan accommodations are meant to treat, heal and comfort you

La Maison Arabe

Marrakech

Luxuriate in this palatial riad, a traditional stately home centered around a lush courtyard just steps from the medina. It's the epitome of elegance, offering traditional Moroccan craftsmanship, a world-class restaurant and hammam spa. But we won’t blame you if you spend all your time lounging by the swimming pool beneath the swaying palm fronds.

Kasbah Bab Ourikah

Atlas Mountains

Kasbahs are former fortresses built with high walls—which for us means sweeping views over Ourika Valley farmland and the serene foothills. The sunsets and stargazing here are spectacular. Wander the gardens, relax on your private terrace or in the infinity pool. Our kasbah experience is stylish and nurturing, a peaceful mountain escape with all the modern comforts.

Palais Amani

Fes

A traditional, opulent riad in the center of Fes with all the comforts of a modern stay. The family-run property puts an emphasis on local, working exclusively with a close community of artisans and craftspeople. With its palatial gardens, rooftop deck and traditional hammam spa, it is the definitive Fes getaway.

So many great experiences I'll take with me forever. All the accommodations were absolutely beautiful.
Jamie J.
Making bread with the family in the Atlas Mountains was unforgettable. I loved it!
Kate J.
Beautiful lodgings, epic day excursions to hidden cultural gems, great travel companions and wonderful accommodations.
Michelle B.

Book Morocco with Jose Salazar

Number of Travelers

Payment

Reserve your spot today with a $1,500 per-person deposit plus room supplements (if relevant). Full payment is due 180 days prior to your trip departure date. We’ll email you a reminder. If your trip departs in less than 180 days, we’ll collect full payment either 30 days from when we receive your deposit, or 60 days prior to your trip departure date, whichever is sooner. For details read our Deposit FAQs

$6,500

per person, based on double occupancy

Can't travel on these dates?
Call us at

+1 (855) 219-8018

Questions?

That’s OK, we have answers. Read our FAQs below. Or text or call us at +1 (855) 219-8018 to speak with a Modern Adventure Trip Specialist.

  1. What does the price include?

    Eight nights at unique four- and five-star accommodations; private travel for all day trips and excursions; private tours with local guides and cultural experts; exclusive VIP access, tastings and hands-on cooking experiences; guided activities, adventures and expeditions; entrance fees; daily breakfasts, most lunches and dinners; local beverages with meals; departure airport transfers.

  2. What does the price not include?

    International roundtrip airfare; travel insurance; transportation to the trip’s starting point; activities not included in the trip itinerary; hotel incidentals including room service, laundry service and hotel bar tabs; food and beverages not included in itinerary; gratuity for tour leader.

  3. What are the arrival & departure details?

    Our adventure begins at La Maison Arabe in Marrakech, Morocco. The closest airport is Marrakech’s Menara Airport (RAK), about a 20-minute drive from our hotel. We recommend arriving one day early to ensure you’re at our starting point on time. Our trips ends in Fes, Morocco, roughly a 40-minute drive from the Fes–Saïss Airport (FEZ).

  4. What travel documents are needed?

    US citizens are not required to have a visa for tourist visits to Morocco, but are required to show a valid US passport. It is recommended that your passport is valid for six months after your travels are over. For citizens of other countries, please check with the Morocco Embassy or Consulate for information and requirements.

  5. Do I need to pay a solo traveler supplement?

    For solo travelers there is a $1,800 single-supplement fee, paid at the time of booking to secure a private room. These spots are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

  6. Who is going on this trip?

    Our adventures typically have between 10 and 20 guests, and our Modern Adventure Team. Our experiences are fun and inclusive and you can expect to be joined by a diverse group in terms of age, background and interests—including solo travelers, couples and friends traveling together. This adventure is for travelers age 18 and above.

  7. Who is leading this trip?

    This trip is led by an expert Modern Adventure Trip Leader. They’re an experienced travel guide, a representative of Modern Adventure and your go-to person for questions or concerns on the trip. We’ll be joined throughout our adventure by local, expert guides who are deeply knowledgeable with respect to local cultures, customs and history and are passionate about sharing that with us.

  8. Do I need travel insurance?

    We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance. Travel insurance allows you to seek reimbursement for your trip costs; if your trip plans change for unforeseeable reasons, or if you need to get medical help, emergency transport, and for theft, loss or damage of items while traveling. For best coverage, always insure the full trip cost within two weeks of your initial trip deposit and note that most ‘Cancel For Any Reason’ policies must be purchased on the date of your initial deposit.

  9. What is the cancelation policy?

    You may cancel on or before February 7, 2023 and receive a full refund minus a $500 per-person service fee. On or after February 8, 2023 there is a 50% cancelation fee. On or after April 8, 2023 there is a 100% cancelation fee.

    We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance as we are not able to make exceptions to this policy in cases of family/medical emergency or of the trip being canceled (see our Terms and Conditions for full details). For best coverage, always insure the full trip cost within two weeks of your initial trip deposit and note that most ‘Cancel For Any Reason’ policies must be purchased on the date of your initial deposit.

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