Marrakech is a city that I had been wanting to visit for a long time and with such a short flight time from the UK (less than that of Cyprus, Turkey or even Greece), I decided to book a luxury city break. I travelled to Morocco for 3 nights, on of which was spent in the High Atlas Mountains. You can read about my stay here.
From our stay at the Kasbah Angour in the Atlas Mountains our transfer collected us from the hotel and took us into Marrakech in the early evening where we were staying at the superb Les Jardins de la Medina.
An Oasis in the City
Before I’d visited Morocco I had heard about riads, little sanctuaries hidden behind walls which intrigued me. Our taxi transfer stopped down a narrow street next to a heavy ornate door, we stepped through and found ourselves in a quaint lobby. We were greeted warmly by the receptionist, checked in and our bags were taken to our room. We wandered through the lobby into a stunning oasis – who would have thought this was all hidden behind that door.
The garden area was filled with tall, exotic trees, flowers, the sound of falling water and birdsong. For a moment I was speechless. After a welcoming serving of delicious dates, dried fruit and hot mint tea we were taken to our room. Our room was simply beautiful; white-walled, fresh and comfortable. As it was relatively late we enjoyed dinner at the hotel before heading back to our room to relax.
Latern in the gardens of Les Jardins de la Medina, Marrakech
Moroccan tea at breakfast before exploring Marrakech
Our Marrakech City Break Itinerary
The following day, as organised by the hotels helpful staff, a guide arrived for us at the hotel to take us around the souk. Our guide, Mustafa, spoke with the most faultless English and was extremely knowledgable about the area. Mustafa was a true pleasure to be around. With the wealth of things to see and places to visit on a Marrakech city break and with the souk a bit of a maze, having a guide was extremely useful to us.
We visited Ben Youssef Medersa and marvelled at the beauty of its courtyard. We then visited the tanneries, the leather market and wandered through the mesmerising souks viewing works of blacksmiths, potters and carpet makers. I will admit that this area of the souk was by far my favourite as the closer you get to the main square, the famous Djemaa el Fna it does become far more touristy.
Ben Youssef Medersa courtyard
Leather market in the Souk, Marrakech
That night we dined at a restaurant just off of Djemaa el Fna. The square itself was truly buzzing at night with snake charmers, monkeys, acrobats and all sorts. It was quite a visual spectacle, you hardly know which way to turn. After a wander around and after marvelling at all the sights and sounds, we headed back to the peaceful medina and back to our hotel.
Djemaa el Fna square at night
The next day it was unfortunately time to depart but with a strategically planned evening flight we were able to enjoy a morning massage at the hotel. Luckily we also still had time for a little more sightseeing so took a taxi to the sensational Majaorelle Gardens, owned by Yves St Laurent. These beautiful gardens were full of colour and the owner’s fabulous royal blue house. For those visiting Marrakech in a city-break, this is my number one place to visit.
Majaorelle Gardens, Marrakech
Yves St Laurent’s house, Majaorelle Gardens, Marrakech
I was sad to say goodbye to Marrakech and the Atlas Mountains, our 3 night short break was thoroughly enjoyable and I’m so glad I chose to visit this fascinating country. It has been suggested that it would be preferable to enjoy the tranquillity of the Atlas Mountains after a stay in the city, but whatever way you choose to do it you will not be disappointed. For those looking for serene, luxurious, comfortable accomodation with exceptional service Les Jardins de La Medina is a wonderful choice for a place to stay on a Marrakech city break.
Planning your own trip to Marrakech? Take a look at our post things to do in Marrakech: 5 unmissable experiences.