Discover the one of a kind exotic gardens in Morocco and enjoy a short visit to Rabat.
We depart the quayside for our guided drive to Sidi Bouknadel Exotic gardens. They are on the main road between Sale and Kenitra. They feature several acres of manicured greenery, especially vines, palms, and other tropical plants, with special sections like a Japanese garden, and a jungle with rope bridges.
In 1951, Marcel François, a French horticultural engineer acquired 4 hectares of flat and exposed land in Sale, Morocco. Ten years later he opened to the public his childhood dream, Sidi Bouknadel Exotic Gardens, a horticultural and artistic achievement, listed among the wonders of nature and now classified as a national cultural heritage site since 2003. The Sidi Bouknadal Gardens outside of Rabat are a composition of exuberant creativity and technical ability. Francois, traveled all over the world collecting plants as far away as China, South Asia, the Savannah, Congo, Japan, Brazil and Polynesia. He then set about duplicating these gardens at Sidi Bouknadal by incorporating landscape, habitat and climate in his plant compositions.
The gardens are divided into three areas: a reception area, horticultural production area and finally, by far the most impressive, the garden area. All through the garden there are secret passages, an aviary, waterfalls, swamps, pools, fountains, bridges and walkways to lead you through the various gardens.
From here, we re-board the coaches and continue to a local restaurant in Rabat to savor a delicious Moroccan lunch. After our break, we continue our guided drive into the city. Sitting on the Atlantic coastal plain Rabat is the capital city of Morocco. It is a modern city with wide boulevards, gardens and white buildings. A far cry from the hectic warrens of the other Imperial cities of Marrakech and Fes, but no less steeped in history with its origins going back to the 7th Century.
This enchanting city is home to many historic monuments and has some superbly preserved relics of its Moorish past. Our first stop is at the must-see Mausoleum of Mohammed V, which was completed in 1971 and contains the tombs of the late Moroccan king and his two sons. This is a spectacular site and is an architectural marvel, and monument to a great rule – truly a final resting place fit for a king. From here we transfer to the Kasbah Oudaya medina which will give you a good taste of what a traditional medina in Morocco is all about. We will stop to enjoy a Moroccan tea or before heading back to Casablanca and to your ship.
- 3 courses set menu lunch with 1 soft drink per person
The level is strenuous as it involves a lot of walking, climbing & steps. This program requires good physical condition. Guests are encouraged to wear flat, comfortable shoes, and to bring along hats and sun glasses for sightseeing.