A unique experience in a unique Arabian Place: Marrakech!
First day, we choose to begin our journey from its emblematic place: La Mamounia Hotel. We had a relaxing-spa experience, indoor pool and massage. And though La Mamounia Hotel is a five-star palatial hotel, the price is very affordable (a meal included). However, it's safe to make a reservation some months before visiting. Photos below demonstrate the luxurious place itself.
Next day, we visited a place I knew I'd love: Yves-Saint Laurent Museum. The tour was amazing, I learnt a lot about aspects of the designer's life, themes of his inspiration and I had the chance to see a nice exhibition of his garments and accessories, jewelry, etc. (some of them were the prototypes!). Then, we visited Le Jardin Majorelle. It's a botanical garden, next to the museum, with rare species of pants. Of course, it was one the favorites places for the artist to spend some time there, and the color blue is dominant.
Arriving at our hotel, L'Oriental Medina Riad & Spa, we decided to spend a relaxing afternoon there. Let me describe to you this amazing hotel: The hotel is really beautiful, it's like an oasis in the desert! Really peaceful and relaxing, plus it's very clean, it has very good facilities, nice rooms and very good traditional cuisine (Moroccan dishes, nice breakfast). The staff was really kind and friendly! They helped us with every information we needed, they arranged a driver for us everyday, gave us some very good tips, they guided us and booked us a trip to Atlas mountain.
The easy trekking up to the Atlas mountain was one of the most exciting adventures of my life! We got to speak with the residents of the Moroccan villages, know more about their traditional culture and have one of the most delicious meals up on the terrace of a country house. Earlier that morning, we had a camel ride-experience. Scaring at first, then I made friends with my male camel, named Scooby!, and the ride got easier. He was calm and nice.
Next day, we decided to visit the famous Bahia Palace (Palais Bahia), its name means "brilliance" and it really is. A masterpiece of architecture. Last but not least, we went to the famous market of Medina Marrakech, knows as the "souks". Hundreds of small stores and outdoor retailers. Fun fact, as a shopaholic, I did bought only some souvenirs. I think that this marketplace is so chaotic and stressful, that you don't want to buy many products at the end, just some traditional ones. It's fun to bargain with the retailers though (Foivos loved this game!).
The only thing I would suggest to visitors is to arrange with the hotel their transfer from the airport with a professional driver, a few days before arriving to Marrakech. It's much safer and very well organised. Otherwise, they may get lost inside the Medina trying to find the hotel, because every street is similar to the other. Plus the situation with the taxi drivers at the airport is chaotic and they don't speak English very well, nor they're willing to help.
All in all, travelling to Marrakech is a very unique experience; its strange Arabic-African culture will make you feel uncomfortable at first, the neighborhoods are dangerous sometimes and the people there do want to exploit you, distract money for giving you information, etc. So read well before visiting! (As you may've noticed in my photos, modest appearance is a must for both women and men! And another advice, don't carry precious belongings while strolling around on the streets, like big purses, wallets, cameras, etc.). However, you will meet some very friendly people there, you'll visit amazing places and you'll taste nice African food. Text me for any info you may need. Until the next travel, #staytuned! :)