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Saturday, 8 March 2014 12:00 AM

The Week 8 March 2014

Getting The Flavour Of – Morocco’s Characterful Capital

It lacks the grand historic sights of Marrakech or Fez, but Rabat – Morocco’s capital – is “fun” nonetheless, says Annabelle Thorpe in The Times. Though less touristy than the other two, it has some “elegant” riads and hotels, and its 400-year-old, “white-and-teal” medina (walled city) is small but atmospheric, with plenty of spice shops, “ramshackle” cafes and “gleaming” jewellery stores among the crowds of “women sifting through T-shirts and men haggling over fake Converse trainers”.

Other sights include a “picturesque” 12th century Kasbah overlooking the city’s wide, sandy beach, and the Chellah, a 15th centure necropolis encompassing the remains of the Roman city of Sala Colonia – often quite empty save for a colony of storks.

Naturally Morocco has a three-night break.

What we at Naturally Morocco add on reading Anabelle's article

What now makes this short break are direct flights from Stansted to Rabat, so transfer times in Morocco are minimal.  We offer excellent riads in Rabat’s medina or in the quieter medina of Sale – just across the water.

Rabat is often by-passed by tourists for the better known other cities in Morocco, but that is part of its charm. You can stay in excellent accommodation, wander an ancient medina and kasbah and experience authentic modern life in Morocco, which is a vast leap from the lives many of us have in the western world. Sit at a cafe on a sunny afternoon, have a pot of mint tea and watch the world go past (with very few tourists in the crowd).

Rabat is linked by a very good train network to Marrakech to the south east and to Meknes & Fez to the north east, hence it can easily be fitted into an interesting 2-centre week’s holiday.