The changing face of Marrakech.

Known as the ‘Ville Rouge’ (the rose-red city), Marrakech’s magical qualities have long drawn the cool, non–conventional rich and famous. Hang out to the Rolling Stones, Leonard Cohen and Jimmy Hendrix in the 60s, Yves Saint Laurent also bought the Jardin Majorelle at this time, adding part of his private collection of paintings to the Museum of Islamic Art at its centre.

When visiting Marrakech, start by getting lost in the Medina, an amazing combination of souks, where you haggle over everything from leather, clothes and carpets to spices and Moorish lanterns, and Mosques and riads. At its edge lies the Ben Youssef Mosque, the Medersa religious school and the Museum of Marrakech, where you can learn about the town’s history.

Must-sees include Marrakech’s tallest building, the omnipresent 12th century Koutoubia Mosque, the Bahia Palace on the edge of the Jewish Quarter and the Ville Nouvelle, the former French quarter. On the outskirts of town cool down at the Oasiria aquapark or if golf is your thing, the Palmeraie has a world class golf course. And for those who want some pampering in a Hammam, you don’t have to look very far: all the international hotels have stunning spa facilities. Enjoy!

Easy Jet (www.easyjet.com) flies to Marrakech from London Gatwick, and Ryanair (www.ryanair.com) from Bristol, East Midlands, Edinburgh and London’s Luton and Stansted airports. Flight time is three hours.

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