Morocco

Morocco translates to ‘a place the sun sets; the west’ after its location on the Atlantic and Mediterranean corner of Africa. With sweeping deserts, soaring mountains and ancient places  such as Fez, Morocco is one of the oldest cities in the world. Marrakesh, a former imperial city in western Morocco, is home to mosques, palaces and gardens with a Medina dating back to times of the Berbers. Its mix of Arabic, Berber and European cultural influences can be seen everywhere from the foods to the styles of its Riads. The bustling modern metropolis of Casablanca contrast with the more peaceful capital city Rabat and the unique Marrakesh and its souk-filled medina.

Journey through Marrakech a city of a thousand perfumes and colours to recount the history of merchant traders of times gone by. The medieval walls with maze-like alleys houses thriving souks selling traditional textiles, pottery and jewellery. Discover secret treasures as you unravel the winding alleyways with colourful displays of spices and perfumes, fabric and artisan leather goods in the many souks.  

The Medina’s thirteenth century walls house the most ostentatious and opulent of treasures and beyond the walls are refinements and sophistication with Riads providing abundant accommodation, cuisine and unparalleled service. 

Things to see and do 

  • Explore Marrakesh Medina
  • Ancient Portuguese city of El Jadida, 
  • Sidi Bouzid cliffs
  • The famous pottery of Safi 
  • The Bedouza cape lighthouse
  • The Boulaouane Castle rounded by its famous vines – which produces Bouloaune Gris wine 
  • Small fishing harbour and picturesque market 
  • The first Royal Beach 
  • Salt plane and flamingo reserve
  • Bahia Palace – Kings Medina 
  • Koutoubia 
  • Dejemma  El Fna

Essaouira 

With perfect year round weather, Essaouira a port city is located on the Atlantic coast, 173km north of Agadir, 176 km west of Marrakesh and 360km south of Casablanca. Essaouira meaning well designed in is the epitome of Moroccan history with its well preserved Medina is a UNESCO listed heritage site and is reflects the nations melting pot attracting people from all over the world.  It  boasts a historical charm that can be seen in the contrasts between the ochre pink ramparts and the blue shutters that adorn the white houses of the Medina (old town).

Its medina is protected by 18th-century seafront ramparts called the Skala de la Kasbah, which were designed by European engineers. Old brass cannons line the walls, and there are ocean views. Strong “Alizée” trade winds make the city’s crescent beach popular for surfing, windsurfing and kitesurfing.

Things to see and do 

  • Wander the Medina with it pretty blue doors 
  • Visit the Museum of Sidi Mohamed ben Abdullah 
  • Visit the Medina home to many small arts and crafts businesses, notably cabinet making and ‘thuya’ wood carving  (using roots of the Tetraclinis tree), both of which have been practised in Essaouira for centuries.
  • Tagart beach with sand dunes

Agadir 

Agadir, a city located along Morocco’s southern Atlantic coast in the foothills of the Atlas Mountains, boasts over 10km of sandy beach.  With a large crescent beach and seaside promenade lined with cafes, restaurants and bars the bay of Agadir and the nearby Bay of Taghazout are among the most beautiful bays in Africa. The high walls o the hilltop kasbah which was destroyed in a 1960 earthquake, are the only remaining parts of the original structure of a fort built to defend the port from attack where you can delight in panoramic views of the across the city of Agadir and the Atlantic coastline below. 

Things to see and do 

  • Visit the Kasbah 
  • See Nile  crocodiles at the Croci Park
  • Buy Berber made jewellery
  • Visit the Souks for souvenirs bargains
  • Play golf at one of its many golf courses

Atlas Mountains 

Ourika Valley lies at the foot of the Atlas Mountains with restaurants dotted along the banks of the river.  Ascend the mountain and witness life for the local peoples as restauranteurs, vendors selling their wares of silver, dates and more reliant on passing trades from tourists. Stop at the Ourika Garden Mountain Villa for lunch and enjoy the spectacular views from the villas prominent position.  At the end of the Anti Atlas mountain is Tiznit ringed by impressivefortifications that are actually quite young, only built in the 19th century. Inside the walls, the old town is a labyrinth of dawdling lanes, with plenty of souks selling Tiznit’s traditional jewelry, as well as other handicrafts. 

Things to see and do 

  • Trekking / hiking in the Atlas Mountains
  • Join local villagers in rose perfume making
  • Stay at one of the mountain Kasbahs and enjoy musical local entertainment dancing and singing
  • Tiznit’s weekly market day (Thursday)