Explore myriad alleyways and side streets thronged with stalls, silversmith and tin workers, carpet bazaars and curio sellers…and discover the palaces and mosques of ancient Marrakech.
Then decamp to the beautiful beach at Essaouira with its warm Mediterranean Sea and scenic coastline. Again Morocco’s colourful past and its time-honoured traditions are revealed in this historic port with its mighty sea-facing defensive wall. Not to mention the town’s centuries-old medina, grand buildings and pretty white houses gathered round gated courtyards.
Fly to Marrakech where you’ll be met and escorted to your hotel.
Marrakech is an endlessly unfolding mystery with enchantments at every step along the way. A half day historical tour will reveal ancient landmarks like the 12th century Koutoubia Minaret, plus the huge courtyard, Saadian Tombs and sunken gardens of the 16th century El Badi Palace. You’ll be staying in the heart of the ancient medina, moments from the Royal Palace, so you’ll have boundless opportunity to wander through the tiny streets, past artisan workshops and tempting bazaars. You’ll be able to bargain for jewellery, carpets, frankincense, robes and souvenirs, as well as experiencing the bustle of the souk and the swirling life of Marrakech’s famous Jemaa el-Fnaa – reputedly the busiest square in Africa.
Stay: Three nights in a superior room at Les Jardin de la Medina.
Marrakech – Essaouira
Your day begins with a three hour drive through rugged but photogenic landscapes to Essaouira where you’ll be staying in a riad, close to Bab Marrakech in the medina.
This is your chance to explore this historic town that dates back to the 1st century BCE and has long been considered by the merchants of old to be one of the best anchorages along the Moroccan coast. Today its medina is still quaint and the bay has warm, protected waters and broad expanse of fine sand. Or you may simply wind down and indulge yourself in the luxuries of your hotel, with its acclaimed French and Moroccan restaurant, its hammam and oil massages, cinema, library, billiard room and – most importantly – its roof terrace swimming pool with sun decks and views across the medina.
Stay: Two nights in a classical room at L’Heure Bleue.
Essaouira – Home
On your last day you’ll be driven to Marrakech in time to meet your connecting flight home.