22 – 30 March 2022
Morocco is a country of contrasts: The buzz of the medina and exotic souks in Marrakech, hidden gardens that are oases of calm, long views to the mountains – and warm, hospitable people happy to share their history over a glass of mint tea.
Our first hotel is near Taroudant, south of the Atlas Mountains: Dar al Hossoun is a riad guest house with an amazing garden designed by Eric Ossart and Arnaud Maurières, well-known French garden architects and designers. We discover a good selection of private gardens nearby and visit the beautiful villa and estate of the late Chilean artist Claudio Bravo.
Hotel Le Beldi is traditional and welcoming. Situated in the countryside near Marrakech, it is surrounded by extensive gardens with views to the mountains. The gardens we visit offer a balance between intimate courtyards with vibrant plants, colourful tiles and water splashing in fountains and channels (seguia), and country gardens known as jnane (gardens of paradise) with an emphasis on orchards and decorative plantings of herbs. We also discover a number that have emerged recently such as Le Jardin Secret partly designed by Tom Stuart Smith. We add a fascinating day in the Atlas Mountains to complete the programme.
Our group is small with about fifteen participants. We use a minibus, as most travel is very local except on the transfer morning through the Atlas. The flights are with Easyjet and include pre-booked upfront seating
The climate in March is generally warm. However, it is advisable to be prepared for some cooler days. Extra layers may be needed in the mountains. Lightweight clothing is recommended, with a waterproof jacket in case of a shower and good shoes/trainers for the mountain walk. Smart casual for the evening.
Meals included are shown as B (breakfast), L (lunch) and D (dinner). Often guests meet for drinks before dinner (optional).
Wi-Fi is available in each hotel though intermittent in Taroudant.
Good walking ability for Marrakech gardens and the medina. The walk in the mountains requires a reasonable level of fitness, although mules are provided for those who prefer to ride.