A visit to Morocco is like taking a journey back in time – it’s everything you imagine it to be and so much more. It is a country of startling contrasts due to the legacies left behind by its past rulers and inhabitants. Immerse yourself in a truly captivating city filled with intriguing souks, vibrant squares and superb architecture, plus experience stunning natural wonders.
Day 1: Welcome to Marrakesh! On arrival, you will transfer to the four-star superior Hotel Opera Plaza where you will stay for the next five nights. Set in its own private landscaped grounds shaded by glossy-leaved palm trees, this luxury hotel is ideally located, allowing easy access to the sights of the old city.
Day 2: This morning, enjoy a sightseeing tour of Marrakesh, Morocco’s most vibrant city. With classic, French colonial buildings and boulevards surrounded by remarkably preserved medieval walls, the city is so perfect it could be, and often is used as a film set. You’ll have an opportunity to shop at the famous souks (covered markets).
Next, visit the Saadian tombs, one of the world’s finest examples of Moorish architecture, where classic archways are covered in gold leaf and stucco work. Also experience the Bahia Palace, which when built was acclaimed as the world’s most beautiful palace, famed for its 50 marble columns.
At dusk, after dinner in the hotel, visit the Jemaa el-Fnaa square, a showcase for traditional Moroccan life. Experience a fantastic spectacle of musicians, dancers, fortune-tellers and snake charmers in an exhilarating kaleidoscope of color.
Day 3: Continue your tour of marvellous Marrakesh today. The city boasts a wealth of wonderful gardens, some vast with olive groves and lakes, providing a haven of peace and tranquillity away from the hustle and bustle of the city. One of the prettiest parks is the Jardin Majorelle: an amazing display of bamboo, bougainvillaea and cacti, formerly owned by Yves Saint-Laurent.
Day 4: Your day begins with a comfortable drive to the delightful coastal town of Essaouira. Within its walls are a maze of tranquil squares and perfectly preserved streets, lined by whitewashed houses and pavement cafes. Stroll through the markets here, where the stalls groan under the weight of colourful fresh fruit and vegetables. Or simply wander along the harbour, bustling with a hive of activity and where fishermen repair their nets as they have done for centuries.
Day 5: Forming an ever-present backdrop and adding to Marrakesh’s wondrous setting are the soaring, snow-capped Atlas Mountains. This morning, take an hour and a half drive into the stunning foothills before you return to Marrakesh for your last afternoon in the city. The countryside evolves from saffron-coloured fields to steeper, wooded slopes, slashed by dramatic river-filled gorges.
Day 6: Transfer to the airport for your return flight.