Best for budding cooks: Essaouira
The laid-back beach town of Essaouira is the perfect spot to learn how to prepare a tasty Moroccan tagine, a flavoursome stew slow cooked in a conical-shaped dish also called a tagine, cleverly designed to seal in the spicy fragrances.
Take a four-hour workshop in authentic yet sleek L’Atelier Madada ( in the lofty grounds of boutique hotel Madada Mogador. Suss out how to make the perfect cup of mint tea, laced with lashings of sugar, a vital part of Moroccan culture served after every meal.
After cooking the richly-flavoured tagine and indulging in the fruits of your labour, enjoy a tour of the hippy town’s fish and spice souk (market), chock full of olive mountains, highly patterned tagine dishes, caged chickens and suspicious looking medicines – herbal Viagra anyone?
Much of what’s on offer is not for the faint-hearted: think blood-smeared decapitated rams’ heads. Escape the gore  by retreating to one of the market’s small spice shops, stocked with an array of glass jars filled with heady spices, henna dyes and sweet smelling perfume sticks, such as gazelle musk, taken from behind the animal’s ear. 

Best for aspiring surfers: Agadir
A 25-minute drive north of Agadir, Taghazout is a mecca for surfers as it boasts an enormous stretch of coastline and 330 days of sunshine a year with temperatures rarely dropping below a toasty 20 degrees. 
Surf spots aren’t as swamped as those in Europe and the US, and the warm water and consistent waves makes for a pleasant ride. Whether you’re a novice or a super-star surfer, Taghazout has a break for you.
Hash Point is known as the lazy man’s spot because it’s an easy right-hander that breaks near the shore, ideal for those who loathe paddling, while the Super Wedge offers small fun waves.
Stay at surf camp Taghazout villa, set on the water’s edge at Hash Point, which offers surf guiding. See for the full low-down.

Best for film buffs: Ouarzazate
Famously known as the Hollywood of Morocco, Ouarzazate is home to the Moroccan Film Studios where epic films, such as The Jewel Of The Nile, Cleopatra, Lawrence Of Arabia and some scenes for Star Wars were shot in its desert-like landscape. Visitors can go on a guided tour of the film sets. Also meriting exploration is the fortified city of Ait Benhaddou, an 11th century UNESCO-protected kasbah which provided the backdrop for Russell Crowe’s swashbuckling Gladiator movie.
The well-preserved town marks the start of the road of a thousand Kasbahs, known as one of the world’s oldest trading routes. It’s freckled with ancient Kasbahs with buildings built from mud and straw, while olive and date palmeries break up the dry desert landscape, along with small markets selling prickly pears and watermelons.
And although Sex And The City 2 was set in Abu Dhabi, much of the film was shot in Marrakech’s Mandarin Oriental Jhan Rahma Hotel.

Best for people watching: Djemaa el Fna, Marrakech
Djemaa el Fna is the pulsing heart of Marrakech, a big square that’s chock-a-block with snake charmers, leashed monkeys (which will somehow find their way on to your back) and storytellers. 
At night, the square is filled with plumes of cooking smoke infused with sizzling aromas from the open-air food market made up of pop-up stalls with gas fires, where cooks are dressed from head to toe in white, and cheery waiters will vie for your custom with promises of  “Asda price” tucker. Eating here is a no frills-affair – you will sit on plastic benches, but the food is delicious and the prices are low. Food ranges from brochettes (meat skewers), salads and couscous to fish and snails. Agree a price up-front to avoid getting ripped off. 

Best for maze-like medinas: Fés el-Jdid
In many Moroccan cities, the French colonial authorities established well-ordered ‘new cities’ a few kilometres out from their chaotic traditional hearts. And, while many of the best hotels and restaurants are to be found in Fés el-Jdid (the new city), the most interesting part of Fés for tourists is to be found in the old walled medina of Fés el-Bali.
Most visitors to the old city start off at the main entrance of Bab Bou Jeloud before descending into the wonderfully atmospheric market via either the Talaa Kebira (big slope) or Talaa Seghira (little slope). If you don’t already have a guide, at this stage you will almost certainly be inundated with offers. It’s difficult not to become a little defensive in Morocco when you are constantly being approached by touts, hawkers and ‘guides’, but it is worth considering hooking up with a decent official guide as they will lead you to places that you might otherwise only stumble upon via serendipity.
Buried deep within the dark tangle of narrow alleyways lies such attractions as the Kairaouine Mosque, the Bou Inania and Al-Attairne Medressas (theological colleges), and the pungent leather tanneries.



When to go: Spring and autumn is the best time to visit, as summer can be scorching. 
Getting there: Fly to Marrakech with Ryanair or easyJet. 
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Morocco on a Shoestring
This budget trip offers an amazing insight in to Morocco’s historic cities, with bustling medinas and fantastic historic sites to see, and a wonderful chance to experience local Moroccan cuisine
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Discover two of the most vibrant cities in this fabulous country on this must-do mini 5 day exploration. Discover the rich & colourful history and culture alongside the modern day buzz of the souks, markets & streets. The perfect way to see Morocco!
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North Morocco Adventures
PImmerse yourself in the exotic colours and cultures that define Morocco. From the imperial cities of Meknes and Rabat to the whitewashed town of Chefchaouen, the rich history and traditions of this ancient land await. Discover the medieval city of Fes, explore the spice markets of Marrakech and travel to the Roman ruins of Volubilis – this northbound tour lets you soak up the extravagant sights and revel in the hidden delights.
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Exotic Morocco
An ideal tour combining history and culture. Begin your Exotic Tour in the amazing city of Marrakesh. Enjoy a remarkable day in the Moroccan Desert including an entire day of trekking on a camel. Pass through the traditional village of M’Hamid and stay in sedentary tents portraying the authentic local life of the Saharas. Visit nomad families living in hand-woven, goat haired tents and have dinner under the stars among the biggest sand dunes, the ‘ocean without water’. Pass palm groves and Berb.