A Quick Guide To Morocco
I did some research for my upcoming trip to Morocco and here is a quick guide to Morocco. Morocco is a country of dizzying diversity. Here you’ll find epic mountain ranges, ancient cities, sweeping deserts – and warm hospitality. From Saharan dunes to the peaks of the High Atlas, Morocco could have been tailor-made for travelers.
Photo credit: Elvin
1. STOP: Atlas Mountains, Ourika Valley
Ourika Valley is one of the most beautiful and best-preserved valleys in Morocco. A little over 50 km south of Marrakesh you will find a perfect city’s escape. The region is without a doubt an amazing tourist destination for people who seek a Moroccan adventure, relaxation, and meditation. The Ourika Valley has a wealth of sights from the Ourika Valley itself, beautiful river, to Berber villages and waterfalls.
Photo credit: boutiquesouk.com (Saad Alami)
STAY: Kasbah Bab Ourika
The Kasbah Bab Ourika stands exceptionally beautiful landscape in the Atlas Mountains, only 35 minutes from Marrakech international airport. On its hilltop, at the apex of the Ourika Valley, it looks down to the river, green fields and groves of olives, oranges and lemons, and up to the dazzling snowy mountain peaks. With 360 degree panoramic views, Kasbah Bab Ourika receives warm sunlight all day, ending in spectacular sunsets. You can relax in individually decorated rooms with its own terraces or unwind by the secluded swimming pool. Above all the Kasbah offers peace and relaxation in spectacular surroundings, a memorable escape from the hustle and bustle of Marrakechh.
2. STOP: Marrakech, Medina
Marrakech is Morocco’s most memorable experience. Founded almost 1000 years ago on the edge of the Sahara, this southern market town grew to become one of the worlds greatest cities and a UNESCO heritage site. You’ll find yourself telling jokes with snake charmers, dining outdoors in the Jemaa el-Fna, hankering after the latest henna tattoos and getting a hands-on scrub down in the local hammam. Marrakech has it all: history, romance, and atmosphere. The architecture is amazing, the gardens gorgeous and the shopping an ethnic extravaganza. There’s enough history here to keep traditionalists happy, but not so much as to be exhausting.
Photo credit: Markus Wollenberger
STAY: Riad Kniza
Dating from the 18th century, Riad Kniza is a small, luxury in the heart of the old Médina of Marrakech, completely restored by Haj Mohamed Bouskri using traditional materials and artisans to recreate an authentic Moroccan experience as in days gone by. Riad Kniza, with its eleven tastefully decorated rooms and suites, is an excellent point of departure from which to explore the city. It is conveniently located within only a few minutes’ walk from the famous Jemaa l’ Fna square, the wonderful souks and the most important monuments and cultural treasures of this imperial city, and a short distance from the Gueliz, the modern quarter of Marrakech.
Photo credit: Riad Kniza
STAY: Riad Farnatchi
Riad Farnatchi has 10 luxury suites of varying styles. All suites have handmade beds, Egyptian cotton sheets, air conditioning, central heating, satellite tv, Bose iPod docks, wifi and stunning interiors. Farnatchi spa is a beautifully designed day spa in the historic heart of the Marrakech medina with stunning private marble hammams.Riad Farnatchi has two beautiful candlelit dining rooms, two sitting rooms, and a roof garden, complete with sun loungers, dining tables, and even a barbeque. The new restaurant Le Trou Au Mur brings a breath of fresh air to the Marrakech restaurant scene. Chic, relaxed, intimate and comfortable but, above all, totally serious about food.
Photo credit: Riad Farnatchi
3. STOP: Bab Atlas, Palmeraie
The Palmeraie is a large oasis-like area of palms and old olive trees, with wonderful views of the snowcapped Atlas Mountains, the highest range in North Africa. It’s a wonderfully tranquil and relaxing location yet the excitements of Marrakech is only 20 mins away by car. The Palmeraie offers many relaxing activities, from horse-riding through the groves to a fantastic 18-hole golf course.
STAY: Les 5 Djellabas
“Feeling good or the art of hospitality” could be the motto of Les Cinq Djellabas. Here, everything is set for your enjoyment: friendliness, warm and sincere welcome, beautiful surroundings and excellent comfort. Ten African eco-lodges are spread over a beautiful one-hectare garden offering two types of accommodation, suite or deluxe suite. Light and serenity are the keywords to a pure natural style holiday at the hotel Les Cinq Djellabas. The hotel is located near the golf courses in the area of Bab Atlas Marrakech, in the Palmeraie, not far from the old Medina and facing the incredible Atlas snow-capped mountains.
Photo credit: Les 5 Djellabas
4. STOP: Sahara Desert, Erg Chebbi
The Erg Chebbi dunes at Merzouga are indisputably one of the greatest sights of Morocco. A sea of soft, warm, apricot-toned sands, breathtaking sunsets and beautiful landscape of the Erg Chebbi desert are definitely one of Morocco’s most enchanting natural wonders.
STAY: Merzouga Luxury Desert Camp
The private luxury camp is designed for those who would like to relax under the stars in the majestic Sahara desert. It offers spacious luxury tents with a sense of comfort and prestige. Merzouga desert camp is located in the middle of the big dunes of the Erg Chebbi desert and offers a spectacular nomadic experience with camel ride, sand walks, quad biking and traditional Moroccan cuisine. It is the perfect getaway for honeymooners, individuals and small groups seeking uncompromising privacy and solitude. It is simply an exciting voyage, as one travels through a myriad of landscapes from the frenetic activity of Marrakech to the calm and open vistas of the desert.
Photo credit: Merzouga Luxury Desert Camp
5. STOP: Essaouira (day trip)
About 160 kilometers and approximately a three-hour drive from Marrakech is a small seaside town called Essaouira. Here you will find a traditional port, breathtaking beach, and magnificent medina where you can buy local craft work. You can stroll along the historic ramparts, get lost in small alleys and step back in time while observing the life in this cute village.
Photo credit: Mr Seb
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