Marrakech is justly renowned for the colourful animation of its feudal main square, Jemaa el Fna, and never ending labyrinth of its souks. But there’s plenty more to the city and its surroundings to attract the tourist visitor. So here are our suggestions for the top 7 alternative attractions in and around Marrakech.
* Get high in Marrakech. African Sky has been operating for 21 years now and its hot air balloons are perhaps the best way to admire the city and High Atlas landscapes. One can book direct on +212 524 43 28 43 or via Les Borjs de la Kasbah.
* For the ‘kids’. Ludiparc is a recreational haven for youngsters with a series of indoor and outdoor water features. Over 55 species of birds can also be found here, some flying free. Pedal boats and playgrounds make this a ‘must visit’ if you have children with you. The best bit? Adults go free!
* On Yer Bike. Rentbee, just 10 minutes from the Medina, will rent you electric bikes from 100 MAD each. A sense of freedom will enhance the experience of visiting the city (although with Marrakech traffic it’s not an option for the faint-hearted!) You can book with Rentbee on +212 5 24 43 90 17.
* Moroccan Museum of Arts and Crafts . Maison Tiskiwin is a museum set up by Bert Flint, a Dutch anthropologist and art historian settled in Marrakech. His remarkable collection comprises countless examples of Moroccan art, carpets, musical instruments, sculptures, jewellery, pottery, furniture and other traditional Moroccan artefacts of all kinds. You can find the Tiskiwin at 8, rue de la Bahia, Riads Zitoun, Marrakech.
* Horse riding and much more. ‘Maroc Loisirs’ provides a wealth of activities for a rewarding day out just 11 km from Marrakech centre. Activities include horse riding, quad biking, camel riding and buggy treks. There is also a small restaurant and pool.
* Cook up a storm. Les Borjs de la Kasbah offers a range of cookery courses for residents and non-residents. Learn how to cook the perfect tagine or the best sweet milky couscous (sefta) with the help of one or more of the hotel’s skilled cooks. For authentic Moroccan cookery courses in Marrakech just click on the link.
* Ouzoud Falls. A welcome contrast to the frenetic atmosphere of Marrakech is the excursion to the Ouzoud Falls, one of the best waterfalls in North Africa. Take a ‘grand taxi’ from Marrakech; it’s close to a three hour drive but the trip through the countryside and the beauty of the mountainous location of the falls more than justifies the effort.