Helen goes to Morocco Day 32 – Marrakesh

Day 32, a few days later in getting up because of the combination of starting a new job and a weekend full of activities. Day 32, a another fantastic day. I’ll be honest, I thoroughly enjoyed our few days in Marrakesh. Yes, there were times when I did just want to chillax at the riad or linger in a cafe but that was not surprising after the pace of the last month! However, I could easily have sent a lot more time in Marrakesh, I barely scratched the surface on the list of places that I still wanted to see. Next time….

This morning, we were off to Le Jardin Secret, which was just round the round two corners from our riad and one of the factors that resulted in me picking this riad.

We all headed off to the garden and wow. It was just a magical place of botanical, engineering and design discovery. I have recently had the book “Paradise Gardens: the world’s most beautiful Islamic gardens” by Monty Don & Derry Moore out of the library and it was interesting seeing how much the plantings at Le Jardin Secret have grown since the photos for the book were taken and how some elements of the design have changed. Aunty Margaret & I spent 3.5 hours there as we took a leisurely morning tea looking into the garden. Mum had returned to the riad to work on a work proposal she needed to get submitted.

We opted to include the tower tour in our entry tickets and I am very glad that we did. Not so much for the views but just to be able to take in the detail and beauty of the tower construction. The views were pretty good as well :D. I am reluctant to write paragraphs and paragraphs of text about the gardens but instead you are going to have a good collection of photos down below and the strong suggestion that if you ever find your self in Marrakesh and only have time to visit one garden out of Le Jardin Secret and the Majorelle, I would say visit Le Jardin Secret.

I adored Le Jardin Secret and I with a few tweaks for the Australian environment, I would quite happily have a smaller version in my back yard. If I do ever have a large enough garden space, I do have ideas for a Charbagh or paradise garden of my own that is full of Australian natives with a few exotics D:

One of the sentences from my journal on this day is as follows: ” I am constantly in awe of how this part of the world conquered water.” This video animation provides a good guide to how water is mastered in this garden. This below video provides a good overview of the restoration/renovation of the garden.

Margaret & I had arranged to meet Mum & Brahim at the cafe that we had had lunch at a few days ago so that we would give him a present he had found – a field guide to Moroccan flora. After a late lunch, we headed off to the braid and trim store that we had spied on our walk through the souks on Day 30 as well as to show Mum a local second hand dress shop that we had walked pass on the way to lunch.

The braid/trim shop was an amazing visual and textural delight to explore. We had a good chat to the shop owner and Mum & I both acquired some trimmings. It was just amazing, I’ve marked it with a pin and I I know I will return to visit it when I next find myself in the souk in Marrakesh!

We then had a leisurely walk back to the riad, where we had again arranged to have dinner in house tonight. I spent some time up on the roof terrace enjoying the sunset and the sounds of the city. It was just a delight 😀

After dinner, Mum & I walked down to Jemaa el-Fnaa to absorb it in all of its night time craziness. There were people everywhere, tourists and locals. There were vendors of everything imaginable that might pique the interest of the night time crowd and there were font of house staff at the various little cafe stalls that were doing a marvellous job of selling their food and their stall as the best as you walked past.

And that is Day 32. Tomorrow, we are heading out of city on a wee adventure 😀

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