For me, preparing to travel is actually the most nerve-wracking and anxiety-inducing part of the entire experience. Once I’ve arrived at my destination, I’m overwhelmed by excitement; I’m learning new things, meeting new people, and exploring as much as I possibly can. Before my departure, however, I spend a lot of time thinking about all of the ways that I could possibly prepare for my impending adventure. If I’ve learned one thing from several years of travel, it’s that most of the preparation isn’t even close to necessary. But, here we are, another 3-week backpacking adventure on the horizon, and I’ve been planning my packing list for 2 weeks already. You know, “just in case”. I’ll be spending 19 days living out of my backpack making my way through the gorgeous country of Morocco.
This trip has been at the top of my travel list for a long time, so I’m excited that I’m finally able to make it a reality! For months, I’ve been combing through pictures of Moroccan towns and cities, as well as the gorgeous landscapes that are plastered all over Pinterest. Who wouldn’t be excited?
As a travel blogger and expat, I often find myself embarrassed for talking about any pre-travel anxiety- after all, this is exactly what I’m supposed to love doing, right? Maybe I’m unique in that I essentially travel for a living and still get nervous about my upcoming trips, but this is who I am and it’s not like I can run from that. So, what do I do to ease the nervousness that comes before a big trip? I do research about where I’m traveling to, figure out the best things to pack so that I don’t have to worry about what I’ve forgotten, and consider all of the amazing experiences that I’m about to have!
I’ll be traveling to Morocco with Intrepid Travel, a travel and tour company that focuses on responsible, immersive, small-group travel. Usually I’m not one for tour groups. Actually, usually I despise tour groups with a pretty incredible passion, but I wanted to go with a group on this trip for a couple of reasons. First, despite all of the wonderful female bloggers out there singing the virtues of solo female travel (and I’m often one of them), I didn’t want to travel across Morocco for 3 weeks by myself, much to my parents’ relief. Secondly, I wanted a truly local experience, and this tour, Morocco Encompassed, allows for me to take local forms of transportation (my first overnight train!), stay with host families, and meet local people in a way that I might not otherwise have been able to. I am a little apprehensive about committing to such a long trip without any prior experience with this company, but I’m excited for the adventure and to meet my fellow group members as we make our way all across the country. I’m also excited that I didn’t have to do much planning for this trip. I plan travel all the time, so having a break from planning for one of my own vacations was a nice relief!
I’ll be blogging throughout my trip, so I’ll be able to give you an in depth and real-time look at my experience traveling through a large portion of this incredible country. I’ll also be uploading photos (probably more frequently than blog posts) on Instagram, so I encourage you to follow me there to see what I’m getting up to each day! I’m excited to have the opportunity to invite you along to join me on my adventure. I look forward to hearing from you as I go, and to sharing my thoughts, excitement, and fears with you as I embark on one of my dream trips. If you’d like to be notified of my new posts, please submit your e-mail on the right side of this page.
I should also mention, I am not in any way being sponsored by Intrepid Travel for any posts that I write throughout my experience. Everything that I write will be my completely honest opinion, and I hope that it will help you decide whether or not a trip like this is right for you!
- Days 1-3: Casablanca (I’m arriving 2 days early so that I can explore this city before our group departs)
- Day 4: Rabat/Moulay Idris
- Day 5: Volubilis/Fes
- Day 6: Fes
- Day 7-8: Chefchaouen (VERY excited about this!)
- Day 9: Tangier
- Day 10-11: Marrakech
- Day 12: Aroumd
- Day 13: Ait Benhaddou
- Day 14: Zagora
- Day 15: Sahara Camp
- Day 16: Taroudannt
- Day 17-18: Essaouira
- Day 19: Marrakech