Despite Morocco’s popularity and the explosive growth of tourist infrastructure, it’s still a logistically intensive country to visit. Add kids to the mix and you have the recipe for the best – or worst – family vacation ever. Founder of CiaoBambino.com and Family Travel Expert Amie O’Shaughnessy shares the five tips for navigating the country with kids.
We recently visited Morocco with our then 8-year-old and hit many highlights including Marrakech, the High Atlas Mountains, Ouarzazate, and the Sahara Desert dunes at Merzouga. Despite bad luck with the weather, we had a tremendous experience and I highly recommend traveling to Morocco with kids.
I found that Morocco is on the top of many travel bucket lists, particularly now that so many other places in North Africa are experiencing political turmoil. Here are our five tips to optimize travel in Morocco with kids:
1. Unless you plan to visit a single major city and stay there, use a reputable tour operator with years of experience in Morocco to manage and coordinate all ground logistics.
There’s quite a bit of driving down remote roads required to visit the different parts of the country. You need someone experienced who knows exactly how to manage the itinerary to be in charge. Once you are in the countryside, it’s as rugged and “foreign” as it gets — it’s the beauty and the reward of Morocco — but you don’t want to be navigating through this terrain unaided with kids.
We selected Kensington Tours for our trip and were thrilled. A private driver and guide accompanied us everywhere, and not once did we feel scared or vulnerable, as we knew we were in good hands.
2. Ease into the experience by starting the trip in Marrakech in a kid-friendly resort.
Although Marrakech isn’t Kansas, it has hosted Europeans for years and has familiar elements to it, which helps ease kids into exotic environment.
Although the old Medina is the heart of the city, it’s a chaotic place with zero room for kids to safely roam on their own. Opt to stay in a kid-friendly resort where children can be free to run and play. We stayed at the new Four Seasons Marrakech with a supervised kids’ club, glorious garden, and a wonderful family pool. It’s only a 10-minute drive from the action, but offers an oasis from the elements. Moreover, the kids’ club provides a way for parents to explore the city on their own.
We also stayed at Hotel Beldi and loved this boutique property for families. Although it has fewer amenities than the Four Seasons, there’s an immense garden, beautiful pools, and an incredible pottery workshop for children.