Tour type: Private
Group size: Min: 2 | Max: 14
Accommodation: 3 to 4-star hotels & Berber camp
Transport: AC minibus & 4x4 vehicle
Highlights: Djemaa El Fna Square in Marrakech, Todra Gorge, Dades Canyon, Berber Desert Camp, Dramatic Ouarzazate, Ait Benhaddou, Taroudant and Essaouira
This tour of Morocco gives a great insight into the incredible history and culture of this Northern African gem and in addition, we'll take in the beautiful scenery of the Atlas Mountains, Sahara Desert and Atlantic Coast.
We start with a full day tour of the magical city of Marrakech, visiting mosques and minarets and bustling bazaars. The next day we leave and head through Berber villages as we travel through the Atlas Mountains over the highest mountain pass in Africa to the spectacular rocky gorges at Todra and the Dades Canyon.
Our next highlight of our trip to Morocco is a jeep safari, sunset camel ride and comfortable overnight Berber Camp amidst the sand dunes of the Erg Chebbi sand desert. Then, we drive through the scenic Draa Valley to Ouarzazate, where numerous movies have been filmed.
The UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ait Benhaddou is next before we head towards the coast, stopping at the walled market town of Taroudant on the way. We'll hope to see herds of camels and some of the regions famous tree climbing goats along the way.
Finally we enjoy some free time at the lovely seaside town of Essaouira on the Atlantic coast before heading back to Marrakech to finish the tour of Morocco.
If our scheduled departure dates don't work for you, or you would prefer not to travel with a group, then we can also run this tour of Morocco privately for you. Please contact us for more information and prices.
Your tour of Morocco starts in Marrakech. On your arrival in Marrakech airport (RAK) our representative will greet you and transfer you to your hotel. The rest of the day is free for you to settle in, relax after your flight, and have a first look around. Extra nights before the tour starts are available on request.
If you arrive early enough, you can head into Marrakech's famous Djemaa el Fna Square for a first taste of Moroccan food at one of the main street stalls, while watching the many street performers and salesmen offering their wares.
Single room supplement (MOSGMM)
Extra day in Marrakech - pre-tour
Today's tour of Marrakech begins with a trip to the iconic Koutoubia Mosque, home to the minaret which has become a symbol of the city. We then visit the Mausoleum and Bahia Palace which both host intricate and beautiful Arabic craftsmanship. Then we head to the lively souks and bazaars in Marrakech's famous medina. Home to many different types of traders these narrow and winding streets are bustling with activity and full of sights sounds and smells uniquely Moroccan. Today's tour ends at the lively Djemaa El Fna Square.
After breakfast this morning we enjoy a spectacular drive across the Tizi N'tichka col which at 2,260m is the highest pass in Northern Africa. You'll get great views of the Atlas mountains, with many of the tops covered with snow for much of the year. We then descend and pass Ouarzazate, or 'place of no noise'. An incredibly dramatic landscape, this area has played host to countless well known films. Our final highlight today is a drive through the Dades Canyon with its steep winding access road with numerous switchbacks providing great views of the steep cliffs and the river below which rushes dramatically through the gorge, especially in the spring when the mountain snows are melting. We finish today in Tinghir where we spend the night.
Our next taste of dramatic Moroccan scenery comes at the Todra Gorge close to Tinghir, where we'll stop for a short hike along the valley floor with rocky cliffs towering above us on both sides. We then continue along the 'road of a thousand Kasbahs' to Erfoud before switching into 4WD vehicles to travel to Merzouga and through the Erg Chebbi sand desert to a traditional Berber camp amidst the dunes. Here a sunset camel ride is included plus a walk to the top of some of the dunes for spectacular views as the sun sinks below the horizon. You'll enjoy a hearty Bedouin meal and a campfire this evening, often with local musicians helping enhance the atmosphere, before sleeping in comfortable Berber camel-hair tents.
After breakfast with our Berber hosts we head out of the dunes and drive back to Rissani and the birthplace of the Alaouita Dynasty.
We leave our 4WD vehicles here and drive to Erfoud. Lodged in an idyllic setting between the Atlas mountains to the north and the Sahara desert to the south, Erfoud is the administrative capital of the region. We continue back along the Road of a Thousand Kasbahs through the Draa Valley to Ouarzazate where we spend the night.
While in Ouarzazate we include a tour of the movie studios that have taken advantage of the amazing scenery in the area. Some of the most famous films that have been shot from the Atlas Studios here include Lawrence of Arabi, The Living Daylights, The Last Temptation of Christ, The Man who would be King, The Mummy, Gladiator, Asterix & Obelisk, Kingdom of Heaven, Kundun, Legionnaire, Hanna, and Salmon Fishing in the Yemen (2011), as well as part of the TV series Game of Thrones.
Our final visit today is to one of the main highlights of our tour of Morocco - the UNESCO world heritage site of Ait Benhaddou. This is a huge fortified city (ksar - a group of earthen buildings surrounded by high walls), with houses and kasbahs crowding together inside the defensive walls, an excellent example of traditional Moroccan earthen clay architecture.
Our drive today skirts the foothills of the Atlas mountains with some great views to our right hand side, stopping for a break en-route to see the Kasbah at Taliouine and to learn about the production of saffron, the world's most expensive spice, which takes place in only this area in Morocco. If we're lucky we'll see some of Morocco's famous tree climbing goats before we arrive in Taroudant this evening. These goats have learned to climb the local Argan trees in search of the fruit and nuts inside. Taroudant is a large walled Berber market town, and its souqs are reputed to be the best in the south with some excellent local crafts on sale. As you are off the main tourist trail here, you'll get a much more authentic glimpse of everyday life, as well as finding better value in the markets than in Marrakech. The town walls are some of the longest and best preserved in Morocco, with their mud construction changing colour atmospherically as the day progresses - they're best seen in the early evening. You'll have some free time here in Taroudant to explore the souqs, and walk along the walls.
We head to the coast today with our first stop at Morocco's main resort town of Agadir. We'll take a short tour of the harbour and the famous High Kasbah, destroyed by the earthquake of 1960, before continuing along the coast towards the North Atlantic coastal town of Essaouira. Well regarded as one of Morocco's most beautiful areas, Essaouira has always attracted and inspired artists, drawn by its good light and tranquil, relaxed way of life. Wandering around the old Medina and its fascinating streets dotted with art galleries it's not hard to imagine why the city drew visitors such as Orson Welles and Jimi Hendrix throughout the years. Essaouira has a wide sandy beach, though the prevailing winds and currents mean this is more of a mecca for kite surfers than for swimming or sunbathing.
The first half of the day is free today to explore Essaouira further. You could visit the working port with its busy fish auction market and traditional wooden boat builders; explore the craft stalls and shops in the walled Medina which is UNESCO World Heritage listed and a great example of late 18th century European fortifications in Africa; take a boat trip to the nearby island of Mogador which is a nature reserve popular with birdwatchers; try a windsurfing or kitesurfing lesson from the beach; or just explore randomly at your leisure. While you're here it's also well worth having a meal at one of Essaouira's well known fish stalls, where a wide range of local freshly caught fish and seafood are displayed, ready to be cooked in front of you and served with bread and salad. After lunch we drive back to Marrakech (approx. 2 1/2 hours) for a final evening in this chaotic and busy city.
Marrakech hot air balloon flight
Your tour of Morocco ends today. You have the day free to explore Marrakech further, and perhaps do some final souvenir shopping and sightseeing before we transfer you to the airport for your departure flight. Subject to your flight time, we can also offer a range of day trips and excursions, including a spectacular hot air balloon flight.
Marrakech hot air balloon flight
Ourika Valley half day tour
Extra day in Marrakech - post-tour
Hotel Gala Dinners
Many of Morocco's hotels arrange a very special gala dinner with entertainment in the evening on Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve. Payment for these is often optional on Christmas Eve (24 Dec) but may be compulsory on New Year's Eve (31 Dec), whether you attend or not. Prices can range from around US$50 to over US$150 per person. Final decisions on prices and whether dinners are compulsory are made relatively close to the time. We aim to always select hotels that make their Gala Dinners optional, though this is is not always possible. Gala dinner prices are therefore not included in our prices above, but will be added to your booking if they become required. More information is available on request.
If you are looking for a tour and not finding what you are looking for, have a look at our best other related tours to check out for your travel plans. At Encounters Travel, we offer a variety of tours to suit your needs. So sit back, relax, and let us help you plan the perfect getaway.
This tour is also available for booking privately for travel anytime through the year, and we can also customise the itinerary to fit your personal requirements. Please contact us for details and prices.
The hotels and accommodations listed below are the ones we most often use on this tour. From time to time we may exchange these for similar properties at the same level. In general, specific hotels cannot be guaranteed on our group tours, but you may select your preferred options if you are booking a tailor-made trip.
Our tours are designed to include all that you need to enjoy a really special time in the destination youre visiting. However, we do also offer some extra options to complement the tour and add some additional sightseeing or activities, or some extra time at either end of the tour.
All accommodation based options (e.g. Single supplements, extra nights, cruise upgrades) should be booked and paid for in advance so that we can make the appropriate arrangements. Other options may either be booked and paid for in advance or while you are on the tour, though we recommend booking in advance to ensure there are no issues with availability.
Many options are priced the same throughout the year, but some may incur single or high season supplements - full details are given on the tour reservation form or on request.
The detailed Tour Notes below have been written to give you some more detailed information about how the tour runs, what to expect, and how to prepare for your holiday. We recommend downloading an up to date copy of these shortly before you travel in case of any changes.
As a private tour, the accommodation for this trip can be customised and adjusted as much or as litlte as you wish. The tour is described here using a selection of boutique style hotels and riads, at around the 3-4 star level depending on the location. These are packed full of character and provide excellent service. At the Berber desert camp out in the sand dunes, comfortable permanent Berber tents with mattresses and all bedding & traditional local blankets are provided. You do not need to bring a sleeping bag. Shared toilet facilities are available.
We use good quality hotels rated at the Moroccan 4-star level on this tour (except Taroudant which is 3-star). Local star ratings may vary slightly from international standards. However, we’re confident you’ll be impressed by the quality of the hotels used. Accommodation is based on double or twin en-suite rooms with air conditioning. All couples will be given a private double room. Single travellers may choose to pay a single room supplement to guarantee themselves a single room throughout the tour. Alternatively, they may choose to share a twin room with another traveller of the same sex. If there are no other single travellers available to pair up with at the time of your booking, then we will need to add the single supplement to the tour price, but will refund this or deduct it from your balance payment if we are able to pair you up later on.
At the Berber desert camp out in the sand dunes, comfortable permanent Berber tents with mattresses and traditional local blankets are provided. You do not need to bring a sleeping bag. Shared toilet facilities are available.
Our trips feature a mix of different transport options. We want you to feel like you’re really experiencing the country you’re travelling through, but at the same time we want you to finish journeys refreshed enough to enjoy the next stage of the tour. The terrain and public transport options in Morocco mean that we use private vehicles throughout this tour, including a 4x4 for your desert safari.
Our Morocco tours include a 24-hour airport meet & assist service in Casablanca/Marrakech airports (depending on the exact itinerary), your arrival and departure airport-hotel transfers and all other transfers.
Your airport transfers are only included in our tour prices on the first and last day of the set tour itinerary. We will be happy to arrange transfers on any additional days if you book your hotel room with us. If you make your own arrangements for additional accommodation at either the beginning or the end of the tour then you will need to arrange your own airport transfers on these days.
On our Shoestring group tours we do offer optional hotel upgrades. This may mean that additional pick-up and drop-offs are required each day. We do endeavour to ensure that all hotels used are close to each other and to streamline and time arrangements to limit any extra driving time as much as possible.
We want to give you as much flexibility as possible when it comes to booking your holiday with us. So, to take account of people with varying travel plans, we don’t include your international flights in the main tour price. We are however very happy to suggest flights to go with the tour. Please contact us with your preferred dates and departure airport and we’ll give you a selection of airlines, times and fares to choose from.
Your airport arrival & departure transfers are included on the first and last days of the tour. Airport transfers on any days before or after the main tour will incur a supplement. Our Morocco tours either start/finish in Marrakech (RAK) or Casablanca (CMN) airports.
Some packages on our website are sold as flight inclusive and in this event you will see the departure airport listed on the Dates & Prices section. Airlines may vary on these packages, and baggage fees may be subject to an extra fee. Where these are shown on our website, prices are correct at the time of quoting, but are subject to continued availability of the fare used. Prices will be reconfirmed at the time of booking, and we will also provide the flight times and airline details before tickets are issued.
Flight inclusive prices are based on the cheapest Economy ticket class available which is generally non-refundable and non-changeable unless the flight is cancelled for reasons such as Covid-19, in which case the airlines are more flexible. More flexible ticket options, as well as Premium Economy and Business Class tickets are available on request for an additional supplement. Any changes made to flight inclusive bookings will be subject to the airline rules on your ticket.
Check in times for international flights to Morocco are generally 2 or 3 hours before departure depending on the airline - we recommend you aim to get to the airport 3 hours before departure to allow for any delays en-route and in passing through security checks. Online check in is available with most airlines from 24 hours before departure, though low-cost airlines may allow this straight after booking. Seat selection can be done at the point of checking in, either online or at the airport, or by calling the airline direct.
We do also sometimes advertise flight inclusive packages from selected airports.
We are committed to being a small group operator as we feel this gives everyone in the group the best chance to get to know their fellow travellers and to hear and make the most of their guide. There's no point in us providing great guides if you've got to peer over 30-40 shoulders to see them! So, we won't ever put you in a 50-seater coach with 49 other people and just one guide. Instead, we set these tour departures to have a maximum of 20 travellers per guide.
The minimum number of travellers required for the tour to run is 4. If there are only 2 or 3 people in the group then those travellers will be offered the opportunity to still do the tour but to pay a supplement of GBP150 per person. This will be refunded should the group size increase closer to departure (this is very rarely an issue as this is one of our most popular tours).
In Morocco we provide fully trained, local English-speaking guides for all of the sightseeing tours. Our local reps in all the towns and cities en-route are also at your service, and will be handling all the practical arrangements for the tour.
At Encounters Travel we only use local Moroccan guides and reps. We feel this gives you the best experience of the country and the sites you are seeing and many people describe our Moroccan guides as one of the highlights of their holiday.
The tour price includes entrance fees to all the tourist sites mentioned in the itinerary. You will need to cover the cost of entrance to any other extra sites that you may wish to visit.
Tipping and Haggling is an accepted and usual part of life in Morocco and other countries in the region. Wages for service staff are very low and tips are a necessary supplement to meagre incomes. If you are visiting from a country where this is not the case, then we have given some guidelines below which will hopefully prove helpful. .
On our Small Group Tours we implement a Tipping Kitty for your convenience and to remove the hassle of being asked for tips by main people you may come across during the tour. This kitty will be collected in US Dollars cash at the start of the tour, and administred by your tour guide. You may ask for information on who they are tipping along the way if you wish as often they will do it out of sight for politeness. However, the tipping kitty amount covers people like hotel porters, hotel waiters, local guides for city tours, airport drivers, Berber camel herders and restaurant tips.It does not cover your main tour guide.
Please check the 'Not Included' section of the tour notes for details of the tipping kitty amount for your tour. This amount is payable per person (for adults only - children on family tours do not need to pay it).
This tipping kitty system works well on small group style tours. However, due to the different numbers of people travelling, we do not use it on our Shoestring or Private/Tailor-made tours.
Your main tour guide is not included in our Tipping Kitty. On group tours we suggest you budget around USD 2-4 per person per day to cover the main guide's tip, subject to your personal budget, and your satisfaction with the level of service provided. On private/tailor-made tours we recommend you budget a bit higher.
Throughout your trip you may at times also have a local guide in addition to your main guide. These are covered in the Tipping Kitty on our small group tours, but on other tours we suggest budgetting around USD2-3 per per day. The same applies to drivers on our Shoestring and Private/Tailor-made tours.
In local markets, and basic restaurants you can leave the loose change. For more up-market restaurants we suggest 5% to 10% of the bill.
Haggling is a traditional necessity, so never pay too much regard to initial prices. Instead fix an item's value in your mind then negotiate towards it unhurriedly (Moroccans never rush their bargaining), and don't be afraid to simply walk away if the price isn't right. However, if you do mention a price, then you should be prepared to pay it or risk causing offence.
You should ensure you are fully insured for medical emergencies including emergency evacuation and repatriation.
Recommended vaccinations and other health protection measures vary according to the country you are visiting and where you are travelling from. We recommend you contact your GP/medical practitioner or a travel clinic for current information on vaccinations needed for your destination. You should ensure that you are up to date with vaccines and boosters recommended for your normal life at home, including for example, vaccines required for occupational risk of exposure, lifestyle risks and underlying medical conditions. In addition, additional courses or boosters normally recommended for the countries in this region are:
South Africa: Additional vaccinations: Hepatitis A. Malaria map. Yellow Fever certificate: Required if arriving from or having transitted through an infected area.
Namibia: Additional vaccinations: Hepatitis A, Tetanus, Typhoid. Malaria map. Yellow Fever certificate: Required if arriving from an infected area.
Botswana: Additional vaccinations: Hepatitis A, Tetanus, Typhoid. Malaria map. Yellow Fever certificate: Required if arriving from or having transitted or travelled through an infected area.
Zimbabwe: Additional vaccinations: Hepatitis A, Tetanus, Typhoid. Malaria map. Yellow Fever certificate: Required if arriving from or having transitted through an infected area.
Zambia: Additional vaccinations: Hepatitis A, Tetanus, Typhoid. Malaria map. Yellow Fever certificate: Required if arriving from or having transitted through an infected area.
Malawi: Additional vaccinations: Hepatitis A, Tetanus, Typhoid. Malaria map. Yellow Fever certificate: Required if arriving from or having transitted through an infected area.
Tanzania: Additional vaccinations: Diphtheria, Hepatitis A, Tetanus, Typhoid. Malaria map. Yellow Fever certificate: Required if arriving from or having transitted through an infected area.
Kenya: Additional vaccinations: Diphtheria, Hepatitis A, Poliomyelitis, Tetanus, Typhoid. Malaria map. Yellow Fever certificate: Required if arriving from an infected area.
Uganda: Additional vaccinations: Diphtheria, Hepatitis A, Tetanus, Typhoid, Yellow Fever. Malaria map. Yellow Fever certificate: Required if arriving from an infected area.
Sudan: Additional vaccinations: Diphtheria, Hepatitis A, Tetanus, Typhoid, Yellow Fever. Malaria map. Yellow Fever certificate: Required if arriving from or having transitted through an infected area. A certificate may also be required for those departing Sudan.
Morocco: Additional vaccinations: Hepatitis A, Tetanus, Typhoid. Malaria not normally present. Yellow Fever certificate not required.
The above information can change at short notice. For up to date health information & vaccination requirements we recommend that you contact your medical practitioner or a travel clinic.
Malaria: Vaccinations are not available against Malaria, which is a disease transmitted by mosquitoes that can be very serious and sometimes fatal. You should avoid mosquito bites by covering up bare skin with clothing such as long sleeves and long trousers and applying insect repellents to exposed skin. When necessary, sleep under a mosquito net. Mosquitoes are most active during and after sunset. You should consult with your GP/medical practitioner/travel clinic about the most appropriate malaria prophylactic medication to take for the regions you are visiting.
Yellow Fever: This disease is spread by infected mosquitoes that bite during the day. A Yellow Fever Certificate of vacinnation is often required as a condition of entry depending on which country you are arriving from, or that you have travelled or transitted through recently (including connecting flights with stopovers of over 12 hours). You can view this US CDC information about where the virus is present and follow the links to further information detailing which countries need you to have a Yellow Fever vaccination as part of their entry requirements. Please ensure you have this certificate organised in advance and with you and to hand during the trip.
Please inform us of any pre-existing conditions such as diabetes or asthma and any prescription medicine you may be taking. We also need to know about any food allergies or physical disabilities that you may have.
If you are travelling on an Overland tour or your trip includes wildlife safaris then please bear in mind that you may be travelling on bumpy roads and/or rough ground for several hours at a time. This can be very uncomfortable or painful if you have a bad back, and make such conditions worse. Please contact us if you have any concerns.
Passports should be valid for at least six months after your departure from the country. Please do not bring an almost full or almost expired passport. Visa arrangements are the responsibility of the traveller, and requirements are subject to change by the local authorities. We recommend that you contact your closest Moroccan consulate or embassy for current information for your nationality.
Currently, many nationalities (including USA, Canada, UK, European, Australian, New Zealand) do not need to obtain a visa to enter Morocco as long as your stay is for less than 3 months. Other nationalities should check with their local consulate.
Sockets are two round pronged and 220 volts (Type C/E). Universal adaptors are available in most airport shops if you don't have one already. Standard European adapters will work fine, though sometimes they may feel a little loose in the sockets. All hotel rooms have electrical sockets where you can re-charge cameras, phones etc. Hair dryers are normally available on request from the hotel reception if not in your room already. If you have US appliances (110 volts) you will need a voltage converter as well as a plug adapter.
The local currency in Morocco is the Dirham. We recommend you bring some cash in a hard currency (US Dollars, GB Pounds, Euros) and a good ATM card. Most major currencies can be converted at most banks, but it's not wise to carry too much. Euros and US Dollars are welcomed more than GB Pounds. Travellers cheques are not easily exchanged. It can be awkward outside of Marrakech to find an ATM machine that takes your card as many Moroccan banks have ATMs that only work with Moroccan cards. Don't put your card in an ATM unless you see the symbol that matches your card on the machine, as you might lose your card! We also suggest trying to avoid using Post Office ATMs. In some smaller towns there are no ATMs that take foreign cards, so be sure you get enough cash to carry you until the next major city. BCM seems to be the best bank, accepting foreign cards in most of their ATMs.
While in Morocco you will need sufficient funds to cover meals not included in the itinerary, drinks, snacks, souvenirs, tips and personal expenses such as laundry. These should generally all be paid for in Moroccan Dirham. It is difficult to recommend a level of personal spending money which will suit everyone as this can differ greatly, but as a guideline, we would suggest allowing USD 15-25 per person per day as a minimum. Allow more if you plan on doing lots of shopping, or buying many alcoholic drinks.
Luggage: Small or medium sized suitcases, rucksacks or fabric holdalls are all fine to bring with you to Morocco. You should also bring a small daypack/bag to take out during the day. Your main luggage will often be left in the hotel during your sightseeing trips - you will not need to carry it far, and there are nearly always hotel porters to assist.
Luggage limits: There is no luggage limit for this tour. However, most airlines restrict you to between 20kg and 25kg for your hold luggage and between 5kg and 10kg for hand luggage. Please check with your airline before travelling to the airport.
Clothing: The Moroccan climate varies according to season and region. The coast has a warm, Mediterranean climate tempered on the eastern coast by southwest trade winds. Inland areas have a hotter, drier, continental climate. In the south of the country, the weather is very hot and dry throughout most of the year, though temperatures can drop dramatically at night, especially in desert and mountains and in the months of December and January. Rain falls from November to March in coastal areas, and the rest of the country is mostly dry with high temperatures in summer and a cooler climate in the mountains. Marrakech and Agadir enjoy an average temperature of 21°C (70ºF) in the winter. So, depending the time of year you are visiting you should pack for both hot and cooler conditions. Modesty rates highly in Morocco, especially for women, so to respect the local culture & people, please ensure all clothes are loose fitting and not revealing. Shorts (not hot-pants) are OK in tourist sites, as are T-shirts, but these should not show too much bare flesh (we suggest that your shoulders should remain covered). In the centre of towns and cities outside tourist areas, and when visiting any mosques, legs and arms should be covered.
Other items: If your tour includes a Berber desert camp then all bedding is provided. However, as sand has a nasty habit of getting everywhere, for comfort, we recommend bringing a light sleeping sheet or sleeping bag liner all year round, and a light sleeping bag in the winter months (November to February) when it can get very cold in the desert. We also recommend you bring a sun hat, sunscreen, sunglasses, a basic first aid kit, toiletries, money belt, small torch, camera & charger.
We run regular small-group departures on this tour starting on Saturday throughout the year. All departures are guaranteed to run if a minimum of 4 travellers is reached. If we do not reach this minimum number, we will offer you the option to either pay a small supplement to do the tour exactly as planned, change your departure date (or destination) or provide you with a full refund. Departure dates and prices are listed on our website and in our brochure. Please check the website for the most up-to-date prices and any special offers.
If you would like to book a place on this tour, please complete the online reservation form on our website (via the Dates & Prices tab on the tour page). You may make a deposit or full payment online, or just hold a reservation if you prefer (full payments are due 8 weeks before departure). We will then contact you with more details about how to complete your booking. Payments may be made by debit or credit card (subject to a card processing fee), or by making a bank transfer, or posting us a cheque/bank draft. Full details will be provided in your booking confirmation email. Please contact us if you would like any more information or have any questions before making a booking.
Travel insurance is compulsory on all of our tours and needs to cover personal accident & liability, medical expenses and repatriation, travel delay & abandonment. We also strongly recommend that you take out cover against cancellation and lost/stolen baggage. Personal medical insurance does not normally provide sufficient cover and is generally not suitable for travel on our tours. You will not be able to join your tour if you have not provided us with details of your insurance or if you arrive without cover in place (no refunds will be due in this event). More information...
You may arrange your own insurance, or you can take advantage of a comprehensive policy that we can arrange for you through Endsleigh Insurance which has been designed to be suitable for our tours. The policy is available to travellers of all nationalities and you do not need to live in the UK to take out the policy. For full details of cover provided, prices and to apply for one of our policies, please complete travel insurance application form.
Note: Any country that borders the Mediterranean is considered as 'Europe' for the purposes of travel insurance (including Turkey, Israel, Egypt and Morocco). If you are doing a tour that visits one country in 'Europe' and one that is 'Worldwide' (for example, an Egypt and Jordan tour), then you need a 'Worldwide' policy. When completing the form you should enter your travel dates including any extra days involved in overnight flights or connecting travel between your home and the tour. Our policies are not able to cover any extra time or activities other than your tour and options booked with us and your travel to & from home.
Note - to comply with insurance sales regulations, our travel insurance policies are only available to customers booking directly with us. If you have booked through a travel agent you will need to arrange your own insurance.
If your tour includes car hire, ior if you plan to arrange a hot air balloon flight locally or do some scuba diving during your tour, you should check the small print in your policy to make sure these are covered (these are covered in our policy). Please also check the maximum altitude that you will be reaching and that full cover including emergency evacuation is provided up to this altitude.
If you are taking expensive camera gear or other electronic equipment with you then please check the coverage and the fine print of your policy to ensure that you have sufficient cover.
IMPORTANT: We must have your travel insurance details (policy number and type of insurance) before you depart or you may not be allowed to join the tour. If you haven't told us already, please let us know the details when you can. You should take a paper copy of your insurance policy with you as you may be asked to show this at the start of the tour.
Before purchasing any travel insurance, please check the coverage provided for situations related to Covid-19, and for the rules about government travel advice. Your normal policy may not be suitable. Details about our own policies cover levels are given on our website.
We are a UK registered company and are committed to providing our customers with financial protection to provide peace of mind and to allow you to book with confidence.
We have therefore partnered with Trust My Travel Ltd., which provides financial protection services to over 2000 partners around the world. Funds paid to us by our customers are protected via an Insurance policy held by Trust My Travel. Each traveller and the description of services sold is declared against Trust My Travel’s insurance policy directly against our financial failure. In the event of our insolvency, you will be refunded for any unfulfilled products and/or repatriation to the UK (where applicable). Please see our website or booking conditions for more information.
It is impossible not to have an impact on the local environment, cultures and eco-systems when you travel. However, it is very possible to try and ensure that these impacts are as limited, or positive as possible. We are committed to ensuring that we try to leave our host countries in a better state than we found them and encourage and assist our travellers to help us with this.
The following are a few simple tips that require very little effort on your part but which will help ensure that any effect you have on the locations you visit is positive rather than negative.
All porters are employed and equipped following guidelines set by the International Porter Protection Group (IPPG).
You can stay in touch with us online by following us on Facebook and Twitter. We post updates on relevant travel news in our destination countries, special offers and discounts and other interesting travel related news and information.
www.twitter.com/encounterstravl (yes, without the 'e')
It is important when considering and preparing to travel anywhere in the world that you have a good understanding of the country you are visiting, its laws and customs, and the possible risks and situations that may occur. This includes specific risks related to your itinerary (eg. does it involve water & can you swim, are you fit enough for the activities included), as well as more general risks such as terrorism and natural disasters.
General details and links to more information about health risks, visa requirements, money, and travel insurance are given in these tour notes. We recommend that you re-read all these before your departure as well as the small print of your travel insurance policy so you know exactly what is covered and what is not.
You should take copies of your important travel documents with you and ideally also store them online securely as a backup. Make sure that you have given us your emergency contact details and told that person where and when you are travelling. Ensure you take enough money with you and that you have access to emergency funds.
Finally, you should read through and stay updated with the current official government travel advice for your destination. We are registered partners with the UK Foreign Office's 'Travel Aware' campaign which provides further useful and invaluable information.
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