Why you should take a short break in Marrakech

Set against the backdrop of the High Atlas, snow-capped until late April, historic Marrakech is the gateway to Morocco’s desert region and the Sahara, only a few hours’ drive further south.

Just a three hour flight from northern Europe, Marrakech is an ideal winter sun and short break destination. Here, African, Berber and Arab cultures come together in one exotic, bubbling melting pot.

Enclosed by the high rampart walls of its ancient medina, Marrakech has a rich historical heritage, major landmarks including beautiful ancient buildings and palaces, mosques and squares, well displayed by a number of fascinating museums.

The pulsating heart of traditional Marrakech, the Djemaa el Fna, comes to life at sunset when story tellers, musicians, snake charmers, fire-eaters and acrobats and, not least, scores of street food sellers, compete for the attention of hundreds of tourists and locals alike.

The souks are another unmissable Marrakech experience. Here, one can find just about every product imaginable – from spices and local delicacies (olives, dates and patisseries) to pottery, metal ornaments, jewellery, rugs and leather goods.

You may be offered a glass of mint tea, a traditional custom to accompany a little haggling for the goods on sale.

In sharp contrast to the frenetic activity of the Djemaa el Fna, a short walk away to the south of the medina, one reaches the fortified Kasbah, home to the Royal Palace and ornately decorated Tombeaux Saadiens, the resting place of an important royal dynasty.

Close by is the luxury boutique hotel in Marrakech, Les Borjs de la Kasbah.

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