Architectural Gems and Botanical Gardens of Morocco
Discover Morocco’s breathtaking hidden jewels …
The majestic architecture of the kingdom of Morocco is one of the reasons Morocco is one of the leading tourist destinations across the globe. Each region of the country has preserved its charm and signature architectural style – from medinas, immense minarets and epic kasbahs to monumental doors, authentic riads and gorgeous botanical gardens.
Our partner, Amazing Morocco, tells us about their favourite, colourful and mesmerising hidden gems:
Kasbahs are majestic citadels that are mostly located in Morocco. Once upon a time, they were the main residence of the tribe’s leader or the chief of the region. There are many gorgeous kasbahs in Morocco but these are our top three:
Kasbah Ait Benhadou
A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987, Aït Benhaddou Kasbah (pictured above) was once a major stop along the caravan route between Marrakech and the Sahara. It might look familiar to you as many films were shot here such as Lawrence of Arabia, Jesus of Nazareth, Prince of Persia, Game of Thrones and Gladiator.
Kasbah Des Oudaias
The Kasbah des Oudayas in Rabat is a city within a city. Located on the heights of the south shore of the estuary of Rabat, this building is one of a kind with its blue and white walls. Its name comes from the tribe of the Oudayas whose mission was to watch over the city.
Kasbah des Caids was built in the 16th century in the small village of Tamnougalt in the oasis valley Draa. In its day, Tamnougalt was strategically positioned on the spice route to Marrakech, making it a vibrant trading centre.
Riads are the most authentic yet luxurious types of Moroccan accommodation. If you’re planning a trip to Morocco, we highly suggest booking a stay in a traditional riad. These gorgeous guesthouses, often run by locals, are usually located inside medinas, offering a more authentic experience than a stay in a chain hotel. They often feature a giant patio with a fountain in the centre, a private garden and typically a pool either in the patio or on the rooftop.
Some of the most well-known riads are Riad BE Marrakech, Riad Yasmine, Riad Fes Relais & Chateaux, Riad Mimouna Essaouira and Riad El Fenn.
Gardens of Marrakech
Le Jardin Secret
Today the green spaces of Le Jardin Secret (pictured above) are divided into an exotic garden and an Islamic garden. The exotic garden is filled with plants from all over the world, recalling the experimental aspect of the great gardens of Marrakech. Closely linked to the riad structures, this type of garden is an oasis of peace, where you can allow yourself to indulge in your idleness and contemplation, thanks to the shade of the trees and the intimacy of the enclosed space.
Universal artist André Heller’s opulent, two-hectare botanical staging is a magical place of sensuality, wonder, contemplation, joy, healing and inspiration. For people of all ages who want to experience the unforgettable.
The Jardin Majorelle (pictured below) in Marrakech is one of the most visited sites in Morocco. It took French painter Jacques Majorelle (1886-1962) forty years of passion and dedication to create this enchanting garden in the heart of the “Ochre City”. Refreshing, burbling streams and pools filled with water lilies and lotus flowers; and a building with Moorish charm and a hint of Art Deco: all of this make Jardin Majorelle one of its kind.
La Mamounia Gardens
700 orange trees, 5,000 rose bushes, 21 cactus species, 6 palm trees species and 200 olive trees – impressive numbers! Together they combine to create a myriad of colours, fragrances, shapes and textures. Lemon trees, jacarandas, bougainvillea, amaranth, agaves, prickly pear trees and more.
For more information about these gardens and architectural gems, please contact Amazing Morocco.