Thursday, 18 April 2013

Marakesh Adventure

Peering through enormous wooden door ways, painted in cracking pastel hues from aqua to powder-purple, you can spot the most visually arresting interiors of your life. It's all down to the use of tiles, pattern and colour which line narrow spaces with so much depth that a corridor becomes some kind of sacred temple. 

Fifteen girls were staying at Riad Oiseaux Du Paradis for our beloved Chloe's hen do. We had the whole place to ourselves. Rocking up to a cool, narrow side street, a huge wooden door with a gold number '27' on the front was all we could make out of our new home. But stepping through was like entering into a new world. Cool and breezy, a central square housed the small pool (not recommended to swim in!)and moroccan interiors, breakfast table and lounge areas (cats and kitten galore stretching out in the mid-day lull and budgeries twittering away like they are locked in deep coversation) Two levels of balconies built up around the central square housed the individually designed rooms The design meant that everyone was facing into the centre. Riads are ridiculously sociable. Mornings were a constant stream of echoes and laughter wafting up and floating down from different rooms, all underneath the roof which was sadly covered but could have been left open so one could see the sky from the breakfast table. The roof was where we sunbathed and in the evenings sat down to drink all the Pink wine and gossip like washerwomen. 

The hustle and bustle of Marakesh is surprisingly intense. Maybe the memory of India has faded but Marakesh seemed tenfold in it's harassment on the senses. Peering down from the roof of Cafe De Francais in the main square, I could literally see Marakesh move and grow organically as the stalls and people multiplied and multiplied with the evening light approaching. 

It is a place of contradictions. A slap in the face for all your senses but like any where such as this, there is an order to the chaos and a certain way of approaching the contradictions. 

What We Did

Drank Moroccan Mint Tea at Place Ben Youssef and marveled at the beauty of the heavily tiled square.

Rode Camels in a very long line in the late afternoon and stopped at a small village for mint tea and pancakes where we found the most amazing straw hats made by a little old lady (which of course we bought and rode home in looking like cowboys, sitting backwards on our camels)

Spent two days lounging like lioness's and perving on the the young and in love families and their children at two equally beautiful hotels, La Maison Des Oliviers and Les Deux Tours. The first was my favourite. Like a pink palace with beautifully landscaped gardens and a cool lavender scented spa (where we got oily massages and felt like Queens) Rooms here are just 69 euros a night for a double and the hotel is 4*. I would highly recommend for anyone looking for a pure sun-break. Marakesh is cheap, flights are cheap and the hotels are unfathomably reasonable. I must also say that the service is really brilliant.

Wondered round the Souks and bought pure argon oil which may be good for my skin but smells like camel poo! Still I will use it regardless. With beauty comes pain.

Got grazed elbows by free falling down the water slides at Oasira  Water Park but it didn't matter as the rides gave us a high like no other and teamed with fizzy drinks, pizza and chips managed to cure our hangovers.

All of us will remember Marakesh forever as 5 days of laughter, bartering, rich tapestry, gleaming tiles and sweet mint tea. TAKE ME BACK.

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