2016-09-28 Hotel Dar Rhizlane Marrakesh, Morocco

Breakfast by the pool
This morning Abdul picks us up at the hotel once again
Abdul takes us to a couple of popular shopping areas
We visited this government sponsored factory outlet that sold Moroccan wares including tables which we were interested in

On foot we continue towards the main square of Marrakesh
Place Jemaa el-Fna the famous Marrakesh square is now a World Heritage Site
During the day the square becomes a market selling medicinal plants, freshly squeezed orange juice, nuts and all types of confectionery
We visit the iconic “Cafe de France” which is very popular with tourists and locals
From the upstairs terrace of the Cafe de France you can have a birds eye view of Place Jemaa el-Fna
The square had a gruesome past however nowadays during the evening it almost has a carnival atmosphere. There are musicians, dancers, snake charmers, acrobats and fortune tellers who each draw a crowd of amazed onlookers!!
We can see the entrance to the main souk off the square from the cafe
After our coffees we parted ways with Abdul and went back to have another look through the souk nearby
This vendor sold every type of sweet Moroccan treats
Moroccan slippers in all colours and sizes!! You can’t leave Morocco without taking a few pairs home!!
After doing some shopping we decide to hire a petite taxi to take us to the famous Jardin Marjorelle
We head north west and again pass the iconic Koutoubia Mosque
20 minutes later we arrive at the Jardin Majorelle, a villa with superb gardens designed and built in 1923 by French painter Jacques Majorelle
The wonderful zellij tile work was also designed by the owner
In later years the the house was sold and then bought by Yves Saint-Laurent and Pierre Berge
They had the garden skillfully restored which to this day is quite amazing
There are over 1800 different species of cactus here in the gardens plus numerous other species of plants such as yuccas, bougainvillea, bamboo, laurel, geraniums, hibiscus and cypresses

In the amazing garden there are beautifully tiled and painted pools with elegant fountains
The display of unusual cacti is quite extraordinary
There are cacti grown here from all over the world

The house and features around the gardens which was built by Majorelle has always been painted in deep blue colours
Today visitors pose for photos with the amazing backdrop of the villa
The studio has been converted to a museum
There is also a shop selling some delightfully bright YSL items

After leaving the Majorelle Garden we decided to have an early dinner at L’Annexe Restaurant which we found on TripAdvisor
We order a nice Moroccan red from the town of Meknes
As the speciality of the restaurant was their grills and their fabulous beef, we both decided to order steaks which were served with 3 sauces
I ordered the beautifully tender eye fillet and Ric ordered a delicious scotch fillet!!
Once we finished our dinner we decided to catch a taxi and go back to the main square, Place Jemaa el-Fna
It was quite an amazing experience mingling with the thousands of people in the square here tonight
Hordes of people were standing around groups of performers, some musicians, some actors and also some dancers etc
…..there were even some fishing for soft drinks!!!
There was a special area where you could sit down and order food. The air here was full of smoke from grilling meat and fish and there was also a strong aroma of spices here too!!

With such a lovely evening we chose to go back to the hotel by horse and carriage which is very popular in the evenings
Our driver was a very friendly and enthusiastic guy who insisted on taking us on a much longer tour around some of the sites. Fortunately the detour did not cost us much extra!!
The security guard was on hand to get a photo of us as we arrived back at our hotel!!


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