It's classed as a European destination, but once you arrive, you'll see that Morocco is African through and through.
From soaking away your cares in a hammam to filling your suitcase with cheap pottery, rugs and bags and drinking mint tea on shop terraces, Morocco is a destination that suits groups of friends and family, or couples seeking a romantic break. It's exciting, mysterious, and unlike any other part of Europe which you may have visited before - and you'll struggle to find enough time do do everything you'd like to tick off your list.
We've compiled a list of five things you must do while you're in Morocco.
- Get lost in a souk: Sharpen your bargaining skills in Marrakesh’s labyrinthine souk. Each type of trade has its specific area (carpet sellers are grouped with carpet sellers and so forth), so if you get lost it’s easy to find your bearings. Watch local craftsmen at work and grab a bargain to boot.
- People-watch at Djemaa el-Fna (Place of the Dead): This square is the gathering point for all Marrakesh by day and by night, and has been the stage for street theatre (Halqa) for over a thousand years. Snake charmers jostle with acrobats and belly dancers, and the barbeque fires are lit at night. Escape the crowds and observe from one of the rooftop cafés which line the edges of the square.
- Hit the beach: If you’re looking for a traditional 'sun and fun' break, then try Agadir for family-friendly modern hotels, with bars and eateries geared towards European holidaymakers. For a more authentic Moroccan experience, try the old port of Essaouira, which was once a pirates’ hideaway and comes complete with rampart fortifications and a traditional souk to explore.
- Head off for adventure: Escape to the Atlas mountains on a guided tour, where you might find yourself spending an evening sipping mint tea with a Berber family, discovering a 12th century mosque, donkey trekking in the hillsides or exploring the impressive Ait Benhaddou Kasbah ( if it seems familiar, it's because it's the backdrop to the films Lawrence of Arabia and Gladiator).
- Treat yourself to a pamper session: Hammam are traditional public bathhouses, where, for a few pounds, you can be steamed, scrubbed and pummelled until your skin is peachy fresh and you feel thoroughly invigorated. However, if this seems a bit rough and ready, you can try a more modern spa treatment incorporating the traditional oils, scrubs and steam rooms, but at a more gentle pace.
Travel Insurance Tip: Did you know that we class Morocco as a 'European' destination? It's only a hop over the sea from Spain, after all! So, it's just the same price to buy cover for your trip to mysterious, magical Marrakesh as it is to cover a trip to Torremolinos. Get your policy sorted here.
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