Suggested Packing List
THINK LIGHT! You will have to put whatever you bring onto luggage racks in minibuses, trains, and you may have to carry your bag for long distances and we really don't want to end up like this. Here's a list of all that you will need to stay warm, dry, cool and comfortable. Since it will be the heart of summer, lightweight, breathable, cotton fabrics will be the most comfortable. The lighter you pack, the happier you--and the rest of the group--will be. Also keep in mind the great likelihood you will indulge in some shopping and that this saved space will come in handy towards the end of the tour. There will be opportunities to do “self-service” laundry or pay for outside laundry service where we’ll be staying.
PLEASE NOTE: We strive to be model visitors, and therefore ask that participants bring clothing that is lightweight and durable, but that also covers the body well, and looks respectable. Tie-dyed T-shirts, cut-off jeans, tight fitting leggings, short skirts, and tank tops are inappropriate, as they show disrespect for local cultures.
BACK PACK/SUITCASE/DUFFEL: Your main container to store your things. Something light weight and durable is best. An internal frame-pack or rolling duffel functions well for easy mobility.
DAY PACK: A book-bag or fanny-pack to use for daily excursions (to carry camera, water bottle, jacket, notebook, etc).
ZIPLOC BAGS: Like stuff sacks, these can be invaluable for organizing and keeping things organized and dry.
VALID PASSPORT: Good for at least 6 months from the beginning of your program.
MONEY BELT: A very important item to wear daily, under your clothes, safely hiding your passport, money, etc.
ALARM CLOCK/WATCH – Travel-size, to catch early buses and trains.
SWISS ARMY KNIFE
SNEAKERS/TRAIL SHOES: Durable and comfortable, for daily wear.
SANDALS/ TEVAS: Good for every day use in hot weather.
CHAPSTICK & SUNSCREEN
VISOR / SUN HAT
SUNGLASSES - With UV protection.
RAIN COAT/OUTER SHELL: A water-proof wind breaker, ideally light-weight and breathable—just in case we encounter an afternoon shower.
T-SHIRTS: 2-3, in decent shape with sleeves, preferably not too tight-fitting or low cut.
SPORT SHIRT/LONG-SLEEVE SHIRT: 1 of each, for meetings and special occasions.
BATHING SUIT: 1, modest one-piece.
PANTS: 2, ideally light-weight. Jeans are heavy and take a long time to dry.
SOCKS & UNDERWEAR: 3-5 pairs each.
SCARF: Women should bring one for entering the Hassan II Mosque and attending the dhikr
SLEEPWEAR: Ideally a T-shirt/shorts can double for this. Minimize extra weight!
SKIRT /DRESS: Skirt below the knees or a dress with sleeves. There may also be opportunities to buy inexpensive skirts in Morocco.
CAMERA & FILM: Extra film is available in Morocco, although it is more expensive. Do bring an extra camera battery! If you use a digital camera you might want to bring an extra memory card.
DIGITAL AUDIO RECORDER: If you have one, bring it to capture your impromptu thoughts, interview your home-stay host, etc., and capture some of the unique sounds emblematic of Morocco
TOWEL: Small and light (and ideally fast-drying). *Just in case—good to have when we travel between circuits—and in the event the towel-snatching camel appears at our lodgings
TOILETRIES: Just the basics! (Brush, toothbrush & paste, shampoo, tampons, etc.) No hair driers, irons, etc.
MEDICATIONS/VITAMINS: Bring any prescription medicine you take in its original container to avoid problems at customs.
GLASSES/CONTACTS: Bring a back-up pair too and contact solution for the duration of the trip.
NATURAL TEARS / VISINE EYE DROPS – With sandy, dusty conditions and a dry climate, this is handy to have.
NOTEBOOK / JOURNAL
PEN / PENCIL
TRAVEL BOOK: Ideally from the recommended reading list (we can share to minimize weight).
GIFTS: A few light items to share with home-stay families (post cards of your home state, a simple t-shirt, a small calendar or picture book); alternatively, you can buy inexpensive tokens of appreciation in the Fes medina.
SPENDING MONEY: American Express traveler's cheques are safest, in a mix of $20 and $50 denominations, but not every bank in Morocco cashes traveler’s cheques. ATMs are fairly widespread and just as efficient. NB: Notify your banks beforehand of your travels to Morocco so they won’t block any ATM or credit card transactions.
SHORTS or CAPRI PANTS (for women) - 1 pair; shorts should be at least mid-thigh length (these won't be appropriate much of the time; in fact, you may never wear them, but they can be good to sleep in). Capris may be acceptable for lounging at the hotel & beach—less so for the medina
BANDANA - These can serve multiple purposes while traveling.
EAR PLUGS - Help you sleep on long flights and bus rides—and if your roommate has a tendency to snore—or talk in his/her sleep!
PURELL - Anti-bacterial hand gel (a small bottle), or anti-bacterial hand-wipes.
WATER BOTTLES – If you prefer to drink out of these instead of the plastic bottles for-purchase, consider a “Nalgene-type” bottle that can be found at local outdoor gear shops.
LAPTOP COMPUTERS – Cyber Cafes are fairly prevalent in the cities which we’ll visit, so unless you plan to work during the tour, leave your laptops home; don’t expect WiFi access
ADAPTERS/CONVERTERS: Most of the country runs on 220v, so bring these for your camera, cell phone, iPod, or other electronic devices
BOTTLE OF WOOLITE/DETERGENT: A small bottle for hotel room washings….
PLEASE NOTE: Lugging a heavy pack around for the entire time we are in Morocco can be extremely tiresome. We can find almost anything you'll need in the countries we visit, and you'll also want to pick up new items. Seriously challenge yourself to pack light, and lighter still, you definitely will not regret it! If you have any questions about whether it is or isn't appropriate to bring certain items, please don't hesitate to ask.
One final thing that is essential equipment: a healthy body. Your experience will be so much more enjoyable if you come with a body that is fully prepared for the journey. If you are not already getting regular exercise, we recommend starting an aerobic workout program—or at least taking long walks--exercising at least 30 minutes a day, five days a week. Heat and dehydration will be our most formidable challenges on this tour.
Packing hints: Culturally appropriate clothing. What does this mean? When you are packing for this program it is really important that you bring clothes that will be both comfortable and suitable to the locations we are going to.
For female travelers this means loose fitting shirts that have sleeves at least the length of a usual t-shirt. Shirts that have spaghetti straps, are sleeveless, tight-fitting, or mid-riff baring are not appropriate and can lead to troubles that can almost certainly be avoided by more conservative dress. If you wear pants that have a low-waist line you need to have shirts long enough to cover your mid-riff. If you wear a skirt, it should be at least to your knees.
For male travelers it is best to have pants and shirts with short sleeves as well.
For all travelers: It is important that your clothes be clean (no holes, stains, rips, etc.).