Podcast conversation with Hicham Mhammedi Alaoui
Hicham and I take you on a tour of Morocco – from the beautiful beaches to the vast deserts to the souks of Marrakech and Fez. Hicham starts us off with a bit of a Morocco 101 and explains what a riad, medina, casbah, and souk are.
We talked about our favorite hotels, some of which are:
- Palais Amani
- Dar Ahlam
- Villa des Orangers
- La Mamounia
- Royal Monsour
- Palais Ronsard
- Kasbah Tamadot (Richard Branson’s – I love all of his hotels!)
And the new hotels – Nobu and CR7. CR7 is Christiano Ronaldo’s (formerly of Real Madrid)
We went over many fun and adventurous experiences you can have like:
- A photoshoot in the beautiful blue city of Chefchaouen
- Visiting an embroidery cooperative
- Visiting the Roman ruins in Volubilis
- Culinary experiences – tasting tours, tajine cooking classes, and wine tasting
- Visiting the Fes leather tanneries and learning what they use to dye the leather
- Hiking the Atlas Mountains
- Stargazing and seeing magical sunsets and sunrises
- Camel rides
- Visiting Ksar Ait Benhaddou – where Game of Thrones and Gladiator were filmed
- Treasure hunts in the Medina
- Jewish heritage
- Visiting an Argan oil cooperative and the tree goats that contribute to the process
- Visiting Essouira souks
- Luxuriating in a Hammam and spa
- Horseback riding in Essouira
And over the top experiences like helicoptering or hot air ballooning over the desert or exclusive access to Yves St Lauret’s home and garden.
We didn’t get to everything I wanted to cover. For a small country, it’s packed full of adventures to be had.
A few extra insider tips:
- If you go to dinner on your own or take a taxi, bring the business card from your hotel, so it’s easy to find your way back.
- A guide is essential in Morocco, especially in the cities.
- Greet people with “Salaam aleikoum” – a friendly Moroccan greeting.
- L’ibzar has one of the best tajines in Marrakech, including mrouzia (lamb tajine with almonds).
- Hotel La Maison Arabe is one of the most celebrated restaurants within the Medina walls of Marrakech. Located within the hotel of the same name, one of the dining venues is in the pool courtyard. It serves a mix of Moroccan and continental fare, features live musical entertainment nightly, impeccable service, and the highest quality of culinary skill. Reservations are a must.