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Cultural Adventures in Marrakech

Highlights

Marrakech

The Almoravid leader, Abu-Bakr Ibn-Umar decided Aghmat was becoming overcrowded and chose to build a new capital. He decided to build it in the plains near the Tansift river. He chose the site of Marrakech, because it was in neutral territory between two tribes who were vying for the honor of hosting the new capital. Marrakesh is the third largest city in Morocco after Casablanca and Rabat. For centuries Marrakesh has been known for its 'seven saints.' When sufism was at the height of its popularity, during the reign of Moulay Ismail, the festival of the 'seven saints' was founded by Abu Ali al-Hassan al-Yusi at the request of the sultan. The tombs of several renowned figures were moved to Marrakesh to attract pilgrims in the same way Essaouira did at that time with its Regrega festivals. Until a few decades ago, Morocco was known as the Kingdom of Marrakesh a word derived from the Berber word Murakush.

Marrakesh has the largest traditional souk (market) market in Morocco. Djemaa el Fna is one of the busiest squares in Africa and the world. The square is filled with acrobats, story-tellers, water sellers, dancers, and musicians. At night, the square turns into food stalls, becoming a huge open-air restaurant with fantastic food.

Like many North African and Middle Eastern cities, Marrakech comprises both an old fortified city called the Medina and an adjacent modern city called Gueliz.

In the Movies

Over the years the reputation of Marrakech and La Mamounia have attracted the attention of both French and American film makers. Eric Von Stroheim filmed "Alerte au Sud" in 1953. "Morocco" with Marlene Dietrich was filmed there, as was Hitchcock's "The Man Who Knew Too Much." In 1955 Charlie Chaplin was warmly welcomed to the hotel. Those who followed from the film world include Omar Sharif, Charles Aznavour, Joan Collins, Elliot Gould, Ted Danson, Whoopi Goldberg, Tony Curtis, Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, Christopher Lee, Charlton Heston and Sylvester Stalone..

Majorelle Garden

The Majorelle Garden is a botanical garden designed by the French Orientalist artist Jacques Majorelle in 1924, during the colonial period when Morocco was a protectorate of France. The special shade of bold cobalt blue which he used extensively in the garden and its buildings is named after him, bleu Majorelle. bThe garden has been open to the public since 1947. Since 1980 the garden has been owned by Yves Saint-Laurent and Pierre Berge. The garden also houses the Islamic Art Museum whose collection includes North African textiles from Saint-Laurent's personal collection as well as ceramics, jewelry, and paintings by Majorelle.

Ben Youssef Madrasa

The Ben Youssef Madrasa was an Islamic college in Marrakech named after sultan Ali ibn Yusuf (1106 - 1142), who expanded the city and its influence considerably. The college itself was founded during the period of the Marinid (14th century) by the Marinid sultan Abu al-Hassan and allied to the neighbouring Ben Yousssef Mosque. The building of the madrasa, as it is now, was re-constructed by the Saadian Sultan Abdallah al-Ghalib and finished in 1565. It is the largest Medrasa in Morocco. 130 student dormitory cells cluster around a courtyard richly carved in cedar, marble and stucco. The carvings consist entirely of inscriptions and geometric patterns. This madrasa was one of the largest theological colleges in North Africa and may have housed as many as 900 students. One of its best known teachers was Mohammed al-Ifrani (1670-1745).

 

Photo Tours

Marrakech Streets
Expect the unexpected

Join us for walking tour and wander through one of the most exciting and vibrant cities in North Africa with a British expat professional photographer.

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Trekking Tours

Toubkal
See the Atlas Mountains

"a mountain retreat with the best rooftop views in North Africa". Condé Nast Magazine.

Visit this Shangri La for a day or 2 and experience authentic Berber Hospitality

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Water Carryers
Folk Group
Menara Gardens
Katoubia
Palm Trees

Discover Marrakech

"It is the most lovely spot in the whole world." So said Winston S. Churchill to Franklin D. Roosevelt about Marrakech in 1943. The Prime Minister, who had persuaded the President to visit his favorite haunt after the Casablanca Conference, made this remark while they gazed at one of the beautiful sunsets for which the city is famous, the setting sun tinting the distant, snow-capped peaks of the Atlas Mountains velvet red.

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Discovery Tours

Scheduled & Private

Discover the multiple facets of Marrakech with a stroll in the labyrinth of the narrow streets of the Medina amongst its famous Souks. Immerse yourself in times of old with visits to the most beautiful palaces and monuments of Marrakech including Bahia Palace.

Ouarzazate

Full Day Excursions

Scheduled & Private Tours

Visit the beach and famous port of Essaouira or perhaps a day trip to Ouarzazate and visit the former residence of the last sultan of Atlas and medieval red-earth village. Perhaps a Camel Excursion?

Hotel Riad

Hotels & Riads

Medina and Palmeraie

Book online or ask us for our advice. This photo is the wonderful La Sultanas

Kasbah du Toubkal

Trekking

Half and Multi Day Tours

Hiking in the High Atlas is one of the best possible experiences in Morocco. Feasible exploration of stunning natural beauty, and of a rigidly individual world regardless of levels of fitness this area is accessible to all.

Spices

Cooking

Half Day Experiences

Being at the crossroads of many civilizations, the cuisine of Morocco has been influenced by the native Berber cuisine, the Middle Eastern cuisines brought by Arabs, the Arabic Andalusian cuisine brought by the Morisco, Turkish cuisine as well as the Jewish cuisine.

Streets

Photography

Half Day Tours

Its a once in a lifetime opportunity to discover the secret Marrakech with a professional British photographer and form trekking guide.

Balloon

Ballooning

Morning Flights Daily

I cannot properly describe the feeling, it has to be experienced to be believed. The only thing I can say, is that when one flies in a hot-air balloon one finally understands why birds sing.

Essaouira

Overland Packages

Overnight Stays

Private and scheduled car tours to the Imperial Cities or longer trips which include mountain and desert trekking on foot camel and mule.

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