may be known as the garden city, with some of the leading attractions
being the gardens scattered throughout the red city. But it’s no wonder given that the traditional riads
within the medina often featured beautifully manicured gardens and fountains at their core, a tradition that remains today. A symbol of paradise, the gardens of Marrakech are perfect oases in the midst of the hustle and bustle. We share our six favourite gardens to visit in and around Marrakech.
Nestled behind high walls, these sprawling gardens may just be the highlight of La Mamounia, Marrakech’s Grande Dame. Soaring palm trees, low lying cactus, jacaranda trees that provide pops of colour in May, and even olive trees fill the surroundings. If staying at La Mamounia, it’s worth it to spend the money for a garden view. For travellers staying off-site, drinks at the Italian restaurant under the soaring palms, or coffee at the pavilion where orange and citrus trees are perfectly aligned, provide a great opportunity to witness the iconic gardens.
The gardens are open daily, unless there is a private event at the hotel which is common during high season in Marrakech.
Avenue Bab Jdid، Marrakesh 40040, Morocco +212 5243-88600
La Mamounia Gardens © Mandy Sinclair
Museum, Botanical Garden
Perhaps the most iconic gardens in Marrakech, the Majorelle Gardens receive busloads of visitors each day who flock to the former home and current resting place of Yves Saint Laurent. Originally owned by painter Jacques Majorelle, the gardens were abandoned before Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé purchased the land and revitalized the gardens. Today, visitors can walk among the plants from five continents and admire the art-deco Majorelle blue home while listening to the splashing fountains. The gardens are open daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Rue Yves Saint Laurent، Marrakesh 40090, Morocco +212 5243-13047
Majorelle Gardens © Mandy Sinclair
Located 27 kilometres from Marrakech and accessible via a free shuttle bus, Anima Gardens aims to ‘be described as one of the most beautiful and imaginative gardens in the world shortly after its soft opening’. Designed by André Heller, the two-hectare garden acts as an art gallery featuring painting and photography exhibitions as well as one-of-a-kind installations from around the world. The gardens are open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the winter and 6 p.m. in the summer months.
Andre Heller Garden
Anima Gardens © ANIMA/Liewehr
Parc El Harti Gardens
Stepping inside the Harti Gardens in the heart of Gueliz, it’s hard to believe that you are just steps from one of the most bustling plazas in the heart of Marrakech. Children run free, men and women wander freely while gardeners maintain the well-manicured scenery featuring palm trees and citrus trees, which provide the perfect aroma in Spring. The gardens are free and open to the public from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Place 16 Novembre, Marrakech, Morocco
Located about 30 minutes from Marrakech, a visit to Nectarome Gardens provides a sensory experience. Upon arrival, guests are invited to enjoy a tisane under a pergola, birds flying between the various trees and shrubs can be heard, while sipping a tea of choice (guests have the choice of ordering from a range of teas including those to help with sleep patterns and even digestive problems). Post tea, wander through the aromatic gardens where rosemary bushes provide a revitalising stimulant and the beautiful lavender and verbena gardens shimmer in the morning sunshine, the Atlas Mountains even hover in the background. Herbs including sage, thyme, marjoram and citronella are distilled on-site for their range of beauty products including body washes, soaps and lotions. The gardens are open daily from 9:30 a.m. and the entrance fee is 20 dhs per person and includes a welcome tea.
Tnine ourika, Ourika 40000, Morocco +212 5244-82149
Nectarome Gardens © Mandy Sinclair
Le Jardin Secret
Privately owned, Le Jardin Secret on Rue Mouassine in the heart of the Marrakech medina is a fine example of Islamic gardens and their cultural importance. Standing on the rooftop terrace or from the watchtower, visitors can witness first hand the strict geometric rules applied to the quadripartite Islamic gardens. After all, a garden is an oasis, a metaphor for paradise, and it must follow the Koranic description of paradise. The home was previously occupied by Al-Hajj Muhammad Loukrissi who lived in the residence with his three wives and many children until his death in 1934. Following his death, the building fell into a state of despair until the garden was purchased with renovations beginning in 2008. The gardens are open daily from 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
184 Rue Mouassine, Marrakesh, Morocco +212 5243-90040
The Secret Garden © Mandy Sinclair