If a spirit of adventure courses through your veins, then your choice of holiday destination is likely to shadow this trait. Not for you the tame, tried and tested territories of Dorset or Benidorm – you crave something different.
Those casting about for ideas where to take off on an adrenalin fuelled odyssey should look no further than Morocco.
With its easy to reach location on the tip of North Africa, you will find many short haul airline carriers able to fly you to Morocco. It may sound like a far off and distant land, but it really isn’t – look on a map and you’ll see it sitting just below Spain.
So what activities for the seasoned travelling adventurer can Morocco offer? It is difficult to know where to start, because there is definitely plenty of choice. Flying in to Marrakech makes a lot of sense as it places you close to where much of the action takes place. The nearby Atlas Mountains are a playground for adventure seekers and make a good place to start. Oh yes, for adventure holidays in Morocco the backdrop of wild terrain and magnificent landscapes certainly ramps up the adrenalin levels.
Morocco actually boasts four mountain ranges, and where there are mountains you will find deep, lush valleys too, full of waterfalls. Rock climbers should test their skills at Todra Gore, a challenging climb not for the faint hearted. If trekking and exploring is more to your taste, head out on the Tacheddirt-Imlil route for a close up view of the country’s rich flora and fauna. Mountain biking fans will find some great routes to test their nerve and skills amongst stunning surroundings. Organised excursions with air conditioned 4×4 vehicles can take you to the desert where sand boarding on gigantic dunes, camel rides and quad biking can be experienced. Push the sensation of being out in the wide desert that much further by camping over night under the stars in a nomad camp. Some tour providers can arrange visits to traditional Berber settlements where the welcome is always warm and the mint tea at its sweetest.
If you like a bit more liquid with your adventure holidays in Morocco, try white water rafting in the rainier months when the rivers are well fed. Alternatively, simply head to the coast for a huge selection of beach-based fun. The long and beautiful Atlantic coastline is a magnet for water sports enthusiasts who come from all over the globe. Whatever type of surfing you fancy, they’ve got it in Morocco. Southern coastal towns such as Agadir and Essaouira are generous with the water sports as well as having great facilities and accommodation. Wind surfing, kite surfing or just simple surfing, can all be enjoyed in the lively waters of the Atlantic. You could even channel your inner-pirate in Essaouira, famous in historic times as a port frequented by ships flying under the skull and crossbones flag.
After the physical challenges of the wide open, why not test your courage in the buzzing cities of Morocco? Sip cocktails in film-famous Casablanca, barter in the chaotic souks of the ‘red city’ Marrakech or discover the cultural highlights of the capital, Rabat.
Shopping for souvenirs is well worth trying in the souks and bazaars, usually found in the ancient parts of town. Haggling is expected, so ignore the prices you are quoted at first, and use your negotiating skills to reach a lower figure. Products such as Argan Oil and Henna are widely available at competitive prices, as are attractive textiles and ceramics such as the traditional Tagine pots and distinctive Berber jewellery.
Those whose adventurous streaks extend to culinary risk-taking should sample the street food in and around the souks for a real taste of Morocco. The cuisine is an exciting fusion of African, Arabic, Spanish and French flavours and if you acquire a taste for it, remember to stock up on the local spices from the markets before you leave.
Those on the hunt for an adventure holiday combined with a healthy dash of culture and spice should visit Morocco. This exotic destination that may seem like a million miles away, is closer than you think. With reliable sunshine, plenty of action and tons of choice, Morocco is an adventure with your name on it.