One of the most memorable trips I’ve ever been on was to the Sahara Desert in Morocco. Travelling from Marrakech, we went on a 3 day tour that took a small group of us through the High Atlas Mountains, the Draa River Valley to visit a bunch of interesting traditional Berber villages and towns, and to the Merzouga desert, where we stayed overnight.
There’s a bunch of places to book tours from Marrakech, but we decided to book ours online through Viatour, which is owned by TripAdvisor (I’m not sponsored by them in any way). Since scams were plentiful in Morrocco if you don’t do your research, we thought it was easiest to book directly from a reputable company.
I’m usually not the one to go on tours, since I like exploring places on my own and in my own pace, but Morocco felt like a country that you can easily get lost in if you’re not a local. Some rent a car and drive into the desert themselves, but Moroccan roads can be confusing especially with everything in a foreign language.
Plus, you really have to be prepared for the unexpected!
Morocco is definitely one of the most adventurous places I’ve been to. After so much travelling within Europe for the past few years, I knew I was ready to move on. While Morocco is really only a three hour Ryanair flight away, arriving in the country makes you feel like you’re in an exotic country that’s much further away than it really is. It was my first trip to Africa, and exactly as how I imagined my first trip to Africa would be – unforgettable. (I’m already dreaming about our next trip to South Africa!)
Me and Yann went to Morocco in May (I can’t believe it’s already August! Time really flies when you move across continents!), which was still a bit too hot for my liking but it was bearable. We woke up early in the morning to explore until lunch, then spent the afternoons hiding from the sweltering heat (it was 40 degrees everyday) in cafes drinking mint tea or at the cool, tranquilness of our riad until the evening, when the weather was more agreeable and there a lot more exploring to be done.
We went for a week, and I dreamt about camels almost every night after our trip. During our week there, we went to Marrakech, did a 3 day Sahara desert tour, Fez and chefchaouen, which is a lot already, but in a country as diverse as Morocco, you can easily spend weeks there exploring the countryside, mountains, desert, rugged coastline, and all the ancient medina cities.
We first flew into Marrakech, which is the first largest city in the country. Its name originates from Berber, which means “Land of God.” People say that Marrakech is a city of moments, and it’s really true – there’s so much to take in, from the beautiful Islamic architecture of the Bahia Palace, to discovering all the hidden alleyways of the medina, to hearing the call to prayer as you’re enjoying a dinner and mint tea at Cafe ZaZa.
Gibraltar (“Gib” as locals call it) is a hidden gem that often gets overlooked by travellers and is undoubtedly one of the most interesting countries I’ve ever been to.
With only about 30,000 residents, it’s the smallest member of UEFA. As a British Overseas Territory located at the tip of Spain and the Mediterranean Sea, it’s rightfully nicknamed, “little Britain in the sun.”
I wondered how British the little country could possibly be, considering that it’s surrounded by Spain, but once there, it’s impossible to not feel like you’re in little Britain at the sight of all the officers in British helmets, red telephone booths, fish and chips restaurants and English pubs line its cobblestone streets.
As one of Britain’s last remaining colonies, it is quinessintelly British…with a twist.
In the midst of the unfortunate result of the Brexit election, one positive thing that came out of it is that with the weaker pound, now is the perfect time to travel to Britain! The UK is no doubt a popular destination among travelers from across the globe.In fact, overseas visitors even reached 36.1 million last 2015 according to data published by Visit Britain.
For budget minded travelers who plan to visit the country this summer, here are some recommendations for your vacation:
King’s Lynn and West Norfolk
The seaside town of Hunstanton has picturesque coastlines and a charming Victorian ambience. King’s Lynn, on the other hand, is brimming with old maritime buildings perfect for learning about local history and culture.