Marrakech: Bahia Palace & Djemaa-el-F'na
CAS-100 | Casablanca, Morocco (for Marrakech) |
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Tour at a Glance
You will visit:
- El Bahia Palace & Djemaa-el-F'na
You will see:
Approx. 12 hours
Board your motorcoach for a scenic drive along Highroad across the Chaouia and Ben Guerir plains to the huge, palm-surrounded oasis that harbors Marrakech.
The southern Moroccan city of Marrakech was founded in 1070 and was considered an important political and cultural center in the western Muslim world. Now, this captivating city is the most popular destination in all of Morocco. With its lively people, colorful marketplaces, impressive monuments, and religious sites, Marrakech is a feast for the eyes and the senses.
Begin your tour with a photo opportunity at the spectacular Koutoubia Minaret, the largest mosque in Marakesh. Its towering, 203-foot tall minaret is one of the oldest in the world and richly decorated in interlacing floral and geometric patterns. Interestingly, there are four orbs on the top of the tower, instead of the traditional three. Legend has it that the fourth was a gift from the wife of the Saadian ruler Yacoub el Mansour, as penance for breaking her fast during Ramadan.
When you enter the grounds of the Bahia Place you'll know why the name means "Palace of the Beautiful." Built for Ahmed Ibn Moussa (or Ba Ahmed) between 1894 and 1900, it is lavishly designed and decorated. A guided tour through the unique floor plan winds through charming courtyards, fragrant gardens, opulent reception halls and an assortment of the 160 different rooms. View the intricate wall and ceiling mosaics, tile work, and other architectural decorations, and learn the fascinating history contained within the palace walls.
Your day includes a traditional Moroccan lunch, complete with wine and local delicacies, served at a preeminent restaurant. While you are enjoying your meal, local performers will treat you to a lively folkloric show.
Refreshed, you'll stroll through the old walled town of Medina and visit the open-air markets known as souks. These large trading venues brim with the most extraordinary array of goods you'll find anywhere in Morocco. Walk through narrow alleyways past colorful stalls and lively merchants. You'll find a dizzying number of exotic products and will quickly learn the local art of bargaining to reach the best price.
Continue on to the city's most energetic spot, ironically called Djemaa-el-F'na, which means "Assembly of the Dead." This large, open square is home to snake charmers, street performers, soothsayers and spice vendors. You'll feel as if you've stepped right out of the pages of the Arabian Nights!
At the completion of your exciting day, enjoy a scenic drive back to port.
The drive between Casablanca and Marrakech is approximately 3 1/2 to 4 hours each way, with a restroom stop en route.
Shopping will take place in a designated store where the guide will recieve a commission; time on own to shop is limited.
The King of Morocco occasionally makes unannounced appearances in Marrakech. When the King is in residence, the Bahia Palace will be closed to the public, and on these occasions, it will not be visited on this tour.
12 years & under only