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This would be my second trip to Marrakech. Even though I did not find Rick in Casablanca, I did have a couple great dinners at Rick’s Cafe, but it was time to get to Marrakech to join a friend to see Marrakech, and then go for a tour into the Sahara Desert. This would also be my last train ride in Morocco having started in Tangier in the north and finishing in the southern part of the country at Marrakech.
The fare from Gare Voyageurs, Casablanca Gare de Marrakech was DH$ 140 Dirhams (about $16.00) for a first class ticket, and normally take 3 hours and fifteen minutes to complete. It is worth noting that there are two big trans stations in Casablanca, Gare Casa Port and Gare Casa Voyageurs. I arrived in Casablanca at Gare Casa Port near the harbor district, and would be leaving from Gare Casa Voyageurs in the central downtown area.
For those that might be flying into Casablanca with Marrakech as their final destination, it is quite easy to catch a train at the Mohammed V International Airport to Gare Casa Voyageurs, and then transfer to a train to Marrakech.
Maps showing the last segment of my train ride north to south in Morocco, the route and the route between Casablanca and Marrakech are shown below.
Gare de Casa Voyaguers is located centrally in downtown Casablanca. If you do not speak Arabic, you can easily get a taxi to the train station by showing a taxi driver a piece of paper with “Gare de Casa Voyaguers” written on it. A map showing the place Gare de Casa Voyaguers, and pictures of the station are shown below.
Trains run from Gare de Casa Voyageurs to Gare de Marrakech every two hours from 04:50 AM to 10:50 PM everyday. One should consult the official ONCF (Office National des Chemins de Fer du Maroc) web schedules for travel between Casablanca and Marrakech. A link to the ONCF web site is provided at the end of this blog post.
Tickets are purchased inside the station. After purchasing a ticket, you proceed outside to catch the train. Once a ticket has been obtained, you proceed outside to the boarding area.
I know that some of you may think I have my noise in the heavens when I talk about riding in first class. My response to that would be that $16.00 for a three-hour and fifteen train ride would be a bargain in the US, and this way I also get a comfortable air-conditioned seat. A second class ticket was $10.50 US. So if you want to save $5.50 for the ride to Marrakech, I will see you when we get to Marrakech.
From Casablanca to Marrakech one could easily get the feeling they were riding in the Central Valley of California. There is a lot of agriculture with a lot of the farms being olive orchards. I think the best way of seeing what the land looks like is to see the aerial view in the map below. As can be seen a large portion of the route through the dessert.
In front of the station, I asked for a cab to my hotel. The taxi driver spoke some English, and took me the short distance to the hotel. He was friendly, and his English was passable. Like I did in Casablanca, I got his cell phone number, and used him at other times during my stay in Marrakech..
Information about fares and schedules for trains in Morocco can be found at: