Charming Marrakech

Gail O Donohue on 01 April 2012
My flight to Marrakech had an early start but all went according to plan and I managed to get a little snooze on the way so that I could take in all the wonders on arrival, which I am so pleased that I did! I arrived in Marrakech 3hrs later, lovely warm sunshine, blue skies, it was perfect. What an amazing exotic city, Marrakech is a maze of streets. I visited the El Bahia Palace, the only Palace open to the public, it was so interesting, sadly it is in need of more restoration but it is a gem.

I wondered round the Souk, with the many market stalls and traders, wonderful spices and herbs in abundance, the aromas were amazing. Of course a visit to Marrakech wouldn’t be the same if I didn’t try my hand at bartering. So the Souk was where I tried it. I bartered for all of my goods. All a little exhausting in the heat; but great fun. It was a shopper’s paradise, wonderful light fittings, handmade dyed silk scarves, and you absolutely must buy a Fez, after much bartering we paid 20 dirham for ours.

I’d also recommend a visit to the local Hammam, or a Henna Tattoo before watching the snake charmers and listening to the story tellers, that’s a whole other world. Beware though, Marrakech has very busy roads. I did my Ab Fab role play crossing the road, horses, bikes, motor cycles, cars, donkeys, buses, you name it, it was worse than the M25 in rush hour, 3 steps forward 4 back, not sure how many attempts it took but I am pleased to say that eventually I managed to cross the road, Phew!

The Riad’s are within the city walls and are small hotels, with mazes of rooms and corridor’s, courtyard areas in the middle, flowers in abundance. I visited a number of Riad’s and all had so much charm, whether it be for romance, views or the gardens they were all stunning.

When it came to my hotel I stayed at the 5* Riad Sultana, the rooms here are all very different. I stayed in the Hippo Suite Wow!! It was superb and rested on 2 floors which overlooked the courtyard with the pool. There was a lovely terrace area on the roof where breakfast is served. The views were wonderful! There was even a stork’s nest close by so that I could view over the eggs and bacon, I was very impressed.

Marrakech is a marvel it is so different to anything I have experienced before. Not one single word could describe it as it has so many different charms about it. It’s busy and bustling, noisy, exotic, charming, cultural and not forgetting that it is fabulous for food. There are so many wonderful restaurants. I could talk about Marrakech for hours and I was only there for 4 days but if I was to round up on Marrakech I personally would say absolute musts, are, to try the local food, go to the Atlas Mountains, try the herbal tea and visit the famous Mosque and Museums. For just a 3 hour flight away, you can see and experience another world and not forgetting that you can pick up and add that must have fridge magnet to your collection!