A short 2 hours drive from Casablanca barrelling along at a legal 120km/hr on impeccable freeway is Marrakech. This tourist highlight of Morocco is set inland at the foot of the High Atlas Range and enjoys a cooler climate than other major cities. Historically the sights go back to the 12th century and culturally this place is a representative microcosm of Moroccan society. This is a “must do” for anyone visiting this country.
The heart of this town is the medina which is the walled original city dating back to the Berber empire some 1000 years ago. The red painted walls have been maintained and restored and still stand today as they would have in antiquity. Passing through one of the gates takes you into the maze like alleyways of the old town again stained ochre red. Nestled within the walls are emperors tombs, palaces and a superb souq (marketplace). Living history is all around and it is a sensory adventure to get lost in the myriad alleyways.
The Saadian emperor’s tombs date back to the 15th century
Badi Palace dates back to the 16th century
Koutoubia mosque dates back to the 12th century
Jarin Marjorelle was started by French pianter Jacques Marjorelle 100 years ago. It was bought and extended by fashion designer Yves St Laurent whose ashes have found their final resting place here
The Djemma El Fna is Africa’s largest square. By day it is an open space, at night it transforms into a massive outdoor eatery,