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portugal to marrakech

We are doing the Rick Steves tour Heart of Portugal (12 days, Sept.29/15 to Oct. 9/15) and would like to go somewhere after that.
We are thinking of Marrakech. Our tour ends in Porto. How do we get from there to Morocco?
Does anyone have any other suggestions for a post-tour destination after Portugal? Azores?
Thank you.

Posted by
16771 posts

I would look at www.sksyscanner.com for flights from anywhere in Portugal to anywhere in Morocco. For instance, I see that Vueling flies from Porto to Casablanca. Otherwise, it's a long way by train or bus through Spain to Tarifa, then ferry, then another train within Morocco.

Posted by
984 posts

How much time do you have? Why would Spain not be your first choice?

Posted by
9 posts

Thank you Laura. Skyscanner is a great resource.
And Neil, as to your question, we did the RS tour of Spain last year and at the time we wished that we had more time to see Portugal. So now we do, and are.
No direct flights from Porto to Marrakech so may change our destination.
Thank you both for your help.

Posted by
409 posts

I am a big cheerleader for Azores! I posted on September 20, 2014 a description of the Azores and some of the islands...if you want to look over it, see if this "backdoor" destination appeals to you. There are easy flights from Porto to some of the islands on SATA airlines.

I would love to help you plan a nice trip there if you do decide that is where you would like to go. Remember, a trip there would be very different from your RS tour even though you would still be in Portugal. I am also helping out a few other Rick Steves readers with trips to the Azores...my intentions are to recommend what I think he would recommend and maybe add in a few extras, like Azorean genealogy research, if you have any roots there. Whatever you decide, good luck!!!

Posted by
9 posts

Thank you Carl! We are definitely thinking of the Azores. We would love your help. We don't have relatives there but we heard it is great and thought it would be a good place to relax for a week after the tour ends in mid October.
Where should we go? Where should we stay? We would love any suggestions you can make. Thanks a lot!

Posted by
9 posts

I just read your post, Carl, on the Azores. Excellent help.
Should our destination be Ponta Delgado on the island of Sao Miguel? Should we reserve a car?
Any suggestions as to where we should stay? I await your response. Thank you.

Posted by
409 posts

Most definitely rent a car, and if there are only 2-4 of you then get the smallest car available. I normally look on Kayak and rent from the airport, code is PDL, from the cheapest agency. Insurance, especially the Super CDW is costly, but you will have no worries. If you stay in Ponta Delgada, you must pay to park but there are garages that do not cost much. You will find very few tourists in the Azores during this time, and no traffic, except the occasional herd of cows moving from one pasture to another on the roads. This just adds character! There are no big must see sites to visit here, as you will do that in mainland Portugal on your tour, but this paradise is very much off the beaten path and truly unique.

I was just in Sao Miguel in late October-early November, mainly for genealogy research...I stayed there 2 weeks. Our first week we rented www.vrbo.com/322100 Look it up...my comment and many others are on the website, and the owner has 2 condos available for large groups. You are in the heart of Ponta Delgada...the condo is big and stunning!!!!! Our second week we stayed at Quinta de Santana, near Ribeira Grande...go through www.booking.com to see it...this is another great option for a small or large group, but you are a 15 minute car ride from Ponta Delgada, but we loved it! We rented our own car both weeks so transportation was easy. For my other visits to Sao Miguel we stayed in different hotels, and they vary immensely...I like booking.com to see the differences. It all depends on your tastes and style of travel. The rates for the time you will be there will be very good, and there will be lots of availability for hotels so you could wait until a few weeks before to reserve for a real good deal. But if renting through VRBO, you may want to reserve early if there is one you really like.

Our home island, Santa Maria, is a short 15 minute flight away from Sao Miguel if you really want laid back relaxation and simply BE with nature, with absolutely no tourists for a few days. Our family swims at the Praia Formosa (beach) sometimes up until December. There is one main village, Vila do Porto, on Santa Maria. Put it this way, there is one stop light on the island (in front of the fire station), if this is an atmosphere you might want to try. I mentioned to someone else on this forum that I put together a scavenger hunt for Santa Maria which I can email if you send me a Private Message with your email address. The hunt takes an entire day to accomplish, you traverse the entire island, and we did it for our family reunion back in 2010 for one of our activities! One of the locations is a chapel built by Christopher Columbus and his crew on his return trip from America.

I hope this is a good start...but now you should look more in-depth at the websites I recommended and look over at Youtube for some videos of these islands to help lead you in the direction of the trip you envision. Based upon your interests and wants, I can come up with nice options and smooth logistics for the Azores portion of your trip to culminate an amazing Rick Steves' Portugal adventure.

So if the Azores does fit as an option of what you are looking for after Porto, we will make it work. Take care and happy planning!!!

Posted by
9 posts

Hi Carl,
Do you know if there are any direct flights from Porto to Ponta Delgado? I have been looking but it seems as if they all go through Lisbon.

Posted by
409 posts

I just checked the website, www.SATA.pt and here is the schedule for direct flights from Porto to Sao Miguel during October:
Sata Internacional ( S4 175) Sunday and Friday
22:00 Porto to 23:20 Ponta Delgada
SATA Internacional ( S4 171) Monday
12:35 Porto to 13:55 Ponta Delgada
SATA Internacional ( S4 5561) Tuesday and Saturday
20:35 Porto to 21:55 Ponta Delgada

There are multiple daily flights on Wednesday that connect in Terceira. On the SATA website, on the left side click "flights", then click "schedules" and it will show all weekly options. If you have a specific day, just do a regular booking to see your options. I did for October 15 and the cost is €236.00...ridiculous!

I searched on www.bookryanair.com and the nonstop flight on the 15th or 16th departing Porto at 15:20 and arriving Ponta Delgada at 16:40 is $38.36! They offer a Business Plus fare for $93.17 including the baggage allowance and other perks... Ryanair is notorious for other fees like check-in, just read all the rules and regulations beforehand.

I would not wait to book this Ryanair flight if you have a definite date.

Posted by
9 posts

Thank you again, Carl. I discovered that there didn't seem to be any non stop flights on Saturdays, so that's what I was doing wrong.

Posted by
9 posts

Hi Carl, 'thought you'd like to know that we booked our flights on Ryanair from Porto to Ponta Delgado, that very inexpensive fare you mentioned. Now I am working on other flights to and from Canada. My friend booked us into the Hotel do Colegio in Ponta Delgado for a week.

Posted by
409 posts

Good job with the Ryanair flight! I looked at the hotel, I like the free parking, and you are in walking distance for everything in Ponta Delgada. The photos of the hotel look beautiful. Checking possible dates on Kayak (September 28 depart Toronto to Lisbon and October 21 depart Ponta Delgada to Toronto I found a price of $475.00 flying on SATA) but you will have to insert your exact dates for a precise cost. Sometimes leaving a day earlier or later can save hundreds!!! Be sure to check SATA luggage allowances as well as they offer 3 different ticket options, depending on how much you are packing. It also depends which site you use to book as to the cost and luggage allowance, I tend to book directly at the SATA site, but if it is much cheaper on another site I would use it. It might also be a good idea to edit your post title since you have changed your destination, and others may be able to offer some help. Have a great weekend!