Marrakech, the capital of Morocco, occupies a tiny corner of the second-largest continent. Despite its small size, the Red City packs a heady punch of colour, flavour and history – a feast for every sense.
At one time, Marrakech was the centre of trade for sub-Saharan Africa. Artisans still sell their wares in the Medina, a labyrinthine neighbourhood of alleyways and marketplaces. In Djemaa El Fna square, you'll find local entertainers and storytellers showing off their skills as people bargain for handwoven rugs, try on babouches and test out argan oil-based cosmetics.
A famous Marrakech sight is stalls piled high with spices like cumin, ginger and tumeric – bright flavours that make Moroccan cuisine pop. Sit down at a local restaurant for a taste of couscous or tagine – a type of slow-cooked stew – and a cup of mint tea.
With its palaces and mosques, Marrakech feels like an open-air museum. At Bahia Palace, you'll see intricate plasterwork and zouak ceilings. The Saadian Tombs – a burial place for sultans – features impressive archways and honeycomb muqarnas. Majorelle Garden provides a dose of calm with its tranquil courtyards and striking villa.
The beauty of Marrakech isn't just limited to what lies within its walls. Head a few hours outside the city, and you'll be in the Atlas Mountains, home to Berber villages and incredible natural sights like Ouzoud Falls. Elsewhere, you'll encounter sand as far as the eye can see. Camels provide a popular means of transport for navigating Morocco's barer landscapes.