Marrakech’s mix of cosmopolitan culture and centuries-old tradition has captured the imaginations of travellers for centuries. Dive into snaking souks, filled with magical carpets and time-honoured trinkets, and then emerge in the sunlight in Djemaa el-Fna. This central square plays host to snake charmers and henna painters by day. But by night it’s filled with light and steaming food stalls. Carts roll up and sell everything from fresh orange juice to tiny tagines.
Medinas, minarets and mesmerising entertainers – for charming days and enchanting nights.
Things to do
There are enough mysterious sites and captivating landmarks to fill a city break in Marrakech many times over. You could spend time at the opulent Palais Dar Si Said. Or admire the mosaic covered walls of the 16th-century Ali ben Youssef Medersa and Mosque. The towering minaret of the Koutoubia Mosque dates back to the 11th century, and is at the top of many travellers’ sightseeing lists. Or, to escape the hustle and bustle, step into the Jardin Majorelle and sit in the exquisite gardens once owned by Yves Saint Laurent.
Marrakech does spa retreats like nowhere else on earth. Visit a steamy public hammam for a taste of this Moroccan institution – and an invigorating full body scrub. Or for something a little more exclusive, head to a luxury hotel where ancient treatments are given a modern twist.
FOOD & DRINK
You could feast on course after course of fine dining fare on the rooftop of a riad. Or pick up sizzling kebabs at one of the stalls packed into the square at night. Nibble honey-soaked filo pastries with a cup of mint tea and watch the world go by in the medina. But don’t leave without sampling a tagine or two. These fragrant dishes are often flavoured with saffron and preserved lemons.
Hop into a calèches to travel in timeless style. These elegant horse-drawn carriages are a romantic way to see the sights of Marrakech.
Top Tip from SLH