Morocco has had an extraordinarily diverse and fascinating range of cultural influences, including a combination of Arabic, African and European languages, cultures and religions. Its landscape is equally diverse, with various beautiful cities on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, an unspoilt rugged Atlantic coastline, the imposing Atlas Mountains and the vast Sahara Desert to the south. Although just an hour by ferry from Spain, Marrakech feels very unfamiliar and intriguing to Western visitors.
Morocco: what to see
Marrakech, once described by Winston Churchill as ‘simply the nicest place on Earth to spend an afternoon’, lends itself extremely well to short city breaks with its impressive ancient medina, world-renowned souks and a magical central square, Djemaa el Fna.
The more active and adventurous can find world-renowned walking in the Atlas Mountains and desert trips to the Sahara, both within easy reach of Marrakech. For the very intrepid, extended camel trekking and camping trips are available to both. Mount Toubkal, North Africa’s highest mountain, can be climbed over the course of a few days.
Fez is also a unique and beautiful city with incredible leather tanneries that embody the vibrant colour and culture of Morocco. Further north, towards the coastal port of Tangier, venture into the hills to discover beautiful traditional mountain villages, such as Chefchaouen.
The Atlantic coastline offers charming coastal towns such as Asilah and Essaouira, with the influence of a steady stream of French ex-pats clearly visible. Further south, the surfing mecca of Taghazout offers easy access to world class surf spots.