Just a short-haul flight from Europe and yet worlds away, Morocco oozes exoticism and intrigue. Bustling cities hallmarked by Moorish architecture meet the orange sand dunes of the Sahara Desert and gorgeous stretches of sandy beach, with a good sprinkling of quirky characters to encounter along the way. It’s an intoxicating place that’s on every hip traveller’s bucket list.
The heady scent of rose-infused oils, spices and tagines stewing in outdoor ovens fills the air. It’s distinctly Moroccan and beckons you to explore. The snake-charmers, storytellers and street food stalls of Djemma El Fna in Marrakech must be experienced to be believed, but the scene can be surveyed from the comfort of a rooftop restaurant with a refreshing glass of mint tea if you prefer. A similar experience can be had in the Imperial City of Fès, which is perhaps a bit more traditional and its cobblestoned medieval streets and historic buildings on every corner will transport you back in time. Or, hire a guide (so that you don’t get lost) and meander the labyrinthine souks to shop for handcrafted leather bags, rugs and slippers that are hard to resist.
For a complete contrast, head into the Atlas Mountains where green valleys lead to fascinating Berber villages. Enjoy the welcome cool and sense of pure escapism, the waterfalls and natural springs, the lakes and forest of the elegant ‘spa town’ of Ifrane that has been likened to Switzerland.
But, if you’re looking for an adventure, take a guided mule trek, a walk in Toubkal National Park, or a serene hot-air balloon trip complete with a champagne breakfast for spectacular vistas. Ouarzazate, a relative newcomer to the tourist trail, is also a great place for an adventure. Known as the gateway to the Sahara desert, the area offers opportunities for hikes around oases to picnics in the shade of gorges beside the river beds, and even trips into the sand dunes.
If you wish to spend some time on the beach, Agadir is a great choice and an exfoliating Moroccan hamman spa treatment is the perfect way to prime your skin for a beautiful tan.
Tempted by what you’ve read? Need a few more ideas about where to go, what to see and how to go about it? Contact us – we’re always happy to help you choose your dream stay.