Dr. Joe Ratliff 12-Day Amazing Journey to Ghana & Morocco June 20 - July 2, 2022

USD $5,795.00
  • Duration: 13 Days
  • Location: Marrakech
  • Product code: Ratliff22

Questions? (800) 915-3527

Under the leadership of Dr. Joe Ratliff

I want to invite you to join me on this incredible journey to Ghana & Morocco in July 2022. This expedition will take you on an ancestral trail through black heritage. Revisit history as you visit in the same waters the ancestors took their last baths and tour the slave dungeons where they spent their final days before embarking on the new world. Pay homage to some prominent figures in Black History by visiting monuments and relics built in their memory. You will continue to Morocco and the city of Marrakesh, a former imperial city in western Morocco, The medina is a densely packed, walled medieval city dating to the Berber Empire, with mazelike alleys where thriving souks sell traditional textiles, pottery, and jewelry. You will finish your tour in the port city of Casablanca. I look forward to being with you and sharing this wonderful experience in these exotic places. You will find on this website all you need to plan and prepare for this trip of a lifetime. Sign up immediately as space is limited. 

Dr. Joe Ratliff

ITINERARY

June 20 - July 2, 2022

DAY 01: (JUN20) BEGINNING OF TOUR - Depart Houston for Casablanca, Morocco

DAY 02: (JUN21) CASABLANCA - Early morning arrival in Casablanca you will be greeted, assisted with your luggage, and taken to your hotel. A brief meeting with your tour Welcome lunch at the hotel. Enjoy the afternoon shopping and enjoy the amenities of the hotel. Dinner and overnight in Casablanca.

DAY 03: (JUN22) CASABLANCA/RABAT - Breakfast at hotel. This morning we explore Casablanca “The White City” you will go through the wide avenues and long stripes. Later walk through the narrow streets of the Medina. The tour features visits to United Square, Hassan II Mosque (with entrance), the Court House, the Medina, various souks, Habbous district, and Cornice Boulevard of Ain Diab. Afternoon excursion to Rabat City; also known as the "Imperial Garden City". Visit its main monuments, including Hassan Tower and Mausoleum. You will also see the ramparts and walls of the Mechouar which surround the Royal Palace (exterior visit) and stroll through the beautiful Andalusian Gardens. Then visit the landmark Kasbah of the Udayas, which in the 17th century most notably served as an important center of the Republic of Salé, an autonomous republic founded by Moorish corsairs expelled from Spain who turned to piracy. The republic lasted 44 years. Return back to Casablanca for dinner and overnight

DAY 04: (JUN23) CASABLANCA/MARRAKESH - Today you will travel to Marrakesh via the highway and be taken to your hotel.  In the afternoon you will have the pleasure to discover the old town of Marrakech “The Red City” with a private guide and lose yourself in the mazes of Moroccan colors and perfumes. This shopping paradise is also the opportunity for guests to discover the organization and way of life of a traditional Moroccan city and its inhabitants. Dinner and overnight in Marrakesh.

DAY 05: (JUN24) MARRAKESH/ATLAS MOUNTAINS - Breakfast at hotel. Today travel to The High Atlas chain is the highest mountain range in North Africa (Mount Toubkal reaches 4265 meters above sea level) and it provides an inexhaustible supply of water for a large number of the country's reservoirs. The High Atlas is a spine made up of a series of forbidding mountains, making access difficult, although there are passes (at altitudes of above 2000m) along three axes. The inaccessibility of the region means that the local population has been less affected by the modernization that is taking place elsewhere in Morocco, and, apart from those who live near one of the few main roads, most of the inhabitants of the region, speak only Berber. Lunch at a local restaurant. Return back to Marrakech for dinner and overnight.

DAY 06: (JUN25) MARRAKESH – Breakfast at hotel. You will have the pleasure to discover the “Red City” today. In the morning, explore Menara Garden, Koutoubia Mosque, Bahia Palace and explore the famous spice souk. This afternoon, you will be picked up by a horse-drawn carriage and taken to the beautiful Majorelle Gardens. The garden is a two and half acre botanical garden created by the French Orientalist artist Jacques Majorelle over almost forty years, starting in 1923, and features a Cubist villa designed by the French architect, Paul Sinoir in the 1930s. In the 1980s, the property was purchased by the fashion designers, Yves Saint-Laurent and Pierre Bergé who worked to restore it. Later enjoy the medina Or Jemaa Fna square. Evening transfer to a Moroccan restaurant for farewell Dinner with belly dance entertainment. Ride to Casablanca for Late night flight to Accra. 

DAY 07: (JUN26) MOROCCO/GHANA Proceed to the Casablanca airport for your evening flight to Accra, Ghana. (AT518 CMN - ACC 110a - 440a) Upon arrival in Accra, Ghana you will be greeted, assisted with your luggage, and taken to your hotel. Overnight in Accra.  Arrive at 5 am in Accra.  Spend a day of leisure and resting at your hotel in Accra.

DAY 08: (JUN27) ACCRA/VILLAGE NAMING CEREMONY This morning enjoy a scenic drive to a charming village located on the lower course of the Volta River. We will have a Ghanaian (African) Culinary session particularly to go through the preparation of the Ghana Jollof... Please NOT Nigeria Jollof. You know, Jollof is rice cooked in tomatoes, onions, pepper sauce with fish, chicken, or beef. There's a rivalry between Ghana and Nigeria about whose Jollof is better made and tasty. It’s going to be fun. After lunch, experience a traditional naming ceremony, a cornerstone of Ghanaian cultural heritage. During the naming ceremony, you will be captivated by the customary drumming and dancing and bestowed with a traditional African name as you are welcomed into the local community by the chiefs and townspeople. Watch a pottery-making demonstration where you will learn more about the main occupation of the women in the village. Dinner and overnight in Accra. Lunch provided.

DAY 09: (JUN28) ACCRA CITY TOUR - JAMES TOWN WALKING TOUR Begin the day by meandering through the administrative and economic districts of Accra, the capital of Ghana, on a sightseeing tour of the city. This 137-year old city has a unique blend of colonial and modern architecture summarizing her distinct history. Visit the W.E.B. Dubois Centre for Pan African Culture, Independence Arch in Black Star Square, and Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park. Use your bargaining skills to shop for artifacts from Ghana and West Africa as you peruse the open-air market at the Arts Centre. End the day with a visit to the vibrant neighborhood of James Town comprised of the Tabom people, the Afro-Brazillian descendants of former slaves who returned to Africa after the abolition of slavery in Brazil. About seventy Afro-Brazilians of seven different families arrived in South Ghana and Accra in the old port region of  James Town in 1836. See Brazil House, the former home of the Tabom people that has been transformed into a museum honoring their history. Dinner and overnight in Accra. Lunch provided.

DAY 10: (JUN29) ELMINA CASTLE & ELMINA FISHING VILLAGE WALKING TOUR Depart for Cape Coast to embark on a poignant tour of Elmina Castle, also known as St. George’s Castle, built by the Portuguese in 1482. Designated as an official UNESCO World Heritage Site, Elmina Castle is an important symbol of the traumatic history of the Trans–Atlantic slave. While exploring the castle, learn how the legacy of the slave trade has shaped Africans and the African Diaspora for generations. View the colorful harbor nestled below Elmina Castle, full of pirogues preparing to go to sea. Take advantage of one of West Africa’s greatest photo opportunities. Next, visit Cape Coast Castle, built by the Swedes in 1653 as a trading post and later taken over by the British and used to imprison slaves before their journey across the Atlantic. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is a somber memorial to the millions of Africans who were victims of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade. The castle also houses the West African Historical Museum established by the Smithsonian Institute in collaboration with the Ghanaian Government in 1994. Return to Accra for dinner and overnight. Lunch Provided

DAY 11: (JUN30) ACCRA Take a ride on the spectacular Akuapim mountain range and have a panoramic view of the city of Accra. We will make a brief stop for pictures, and then continue to the Aburi Botanical Gardens - this eco-paradise created in 1890 is home to a variety of tropical and sub-tropical plants and trees. The oldest tree on the grounds is older than 155 years old, which has survived through the British Colonial Era. You will have lunch on the grounds of the gardens. After lunch, you will visit the Tema Cocoa Processing Company later in the day. Established in 1965, Tema Cocoa Processing Company is situated in the picturesque port city of Tema on the Greenwich Meridian (Longitude 0°). The company produces a variety of products using premium Ghana cocoa beans, as well as semi-finished commodities used in the production of chocolate and other cocoa-based food products. Dinner and overnight in Accra.

Day 12: (JUL01) DAY OF LEISURE/RETURN TO USA This morning, we visit The Centre for Plant Medicine Research (CPMR) is an institution for research into herbal medicine in Mampong Akuapem, in the Eastern Region of Ghana. Enjoy the afternoon to rest, relax and shop before your journey back to the USA. In the evening, transfer to Accra Airport for your return flight with your heart full of memories from the unforgettable experiences of your heritage tour. Depart at 11:30P

DAY 13: (JUL02) USA Arrive in Houston late morning.

NOTE: Schedule is subject to change due to various factors and your tour guide’s discretion.


PRICING:

  • $5,795 per person based on double occupancy.
  • Single room supplement $995
  • $500 per person with registration to secure space.
  • 50% of the total amount is due on or before February 22, 2022
  • Balance due on or before April 22, 2022

FLIGHT SCHEDULE

  • AC 8948  20JUN  IAH-YUL   1225 1709
  • AC  72     20JUN  YUL-CMN 1910 0715
  • UA 997    01JUL   ACC-IAD   2330 0620
  • UA 1193  02JUL   IAD-IAH    1311 1528

* Flight times, flight numbers, equipment, gates, and seats are subject to change. For the most current information check the airline website.


INCLUDED:

AIR: Includes roundtrip from departure city in the USA and return. Flights are subject to airline schedules and may change without notice. Upgrades can be requested after booking and are subject to availability from the airline. Seat selections are available only at check-in for most group bookings.

GROUND/TRANSFERS: Group will be met by a Signature Tours representative and transferred to the hotel. Land only passengers responsible for transportation to and from the airport/hotel.

HOTELS: Superior First Class hotels throughout. Priced on the basis of two persons sharing a room with a private bath and shower.

SINGLE SUPPLEMENT: A limited number of single rooms are available at additional supplement prices. Signature Tours and/or the group leader will make every attempt to pair single participants requesting a roommate. However, the single supplement fee will be charged for each person occupying a single room, whether by choice or circumstances.

MEALS: Breakfast and dinner daily. Lunch is provided most days as noted in the itinerary. Other days, the cost is typically between $15 and $20 per lunch.

SIGHTSEEING: As and wherever indicated on the itinerary, including the services of English-speaking guides as well as entrance fees to all places of interest listed in your itinerary.

PORTERAGE: Fees and charges for the porterage of one piece of baggage per person not to exceed 50lbs, in connection with all transfers and at airports throughout the entire itinerary are included. In addition to one checked bag, each traveler is also allowed one personal item such as a purse, briefcase, book bag, or small backpack. See carrier website for airline-specific baggage restrictions and requirements.

SERVICE CHARGES AND TAXES: Service charges as required by hotel management and taxes as imposed by national and/or local governments and/or governments and/or administrations (wherever these are normally added to the bill.) on the date of this brochure are included.

OTHER: Tips, taxes, and airport taxes ARE INCLUDED in the selling price. 

NOT INCLUDED: Excess baggage fees, passport fees, visa fees, items of a personal nature such as in-room service, laundry, etc., soft drinks, beverages that are not on the regular table menu. Any service not indicated in the itinerary and/or the above list of included features.

PASSPORTS: Passports must be valid and not expire at least six months or more from the return home date. If applicable, enter "RENEWING" or "APPLIED FOR" when completing registration.

HEALTH REQUIREMENTS: Vaccine and testing requirements are established by the destination country and/or transfer country. These policies are not set by Signature Tours or our subsidiaries. Signature Tours will make every effort to inform tour participants of health requirements, including vaccinations and testing for their respective destinations. However, participants are responsible for complying with current health requirements for their respective tour destinations. Health requirement changes from destination countries before, during, or after the registration process do not affect Signature Tours cancellation policy.

CANCELLATION POLICY: The $500 per person deposit is nonrefundable. Other payments exceeding the $500 per person are refundable in full up to sixty days prior to departure. After this date, refunds for unused accommodations and services will be limited to the amount received from and/or credited by all carriers, sightseeing operators, and hotels.

TRAVEL INSURANCE: Travel Insurance is not included in the purchase price. For your convenience, we offer travel insurance through Travelex Insurance Services. For more information and rates, please review the product flyer. For questions regarding benefits or coverages, please contact Travelex Insurance Services at 844-240-8392 and reference plan number GCPB-0521. Click Here to enroll in the plan.

* Travelex Insurance Services, Inc CA Agency License #0D10209. Travel Insurance is underwritten by Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Company, NAIC #22276. V94 

Signature Tours
PO Box 956817 Duluth, GA 30095
phone: (800) 915-3527 email: info@signaturetours.com