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Ait-Ben-Haddou: Guide for Morocco’s famous Ksar

Ait-Ben-Haddou: Guide for Morocco’s famous Ksar

Ait-Ben-Haddou in Morocco is a beautiful mudbrick ksar located in the southeast of the country and has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987. The small village was built around 1000 years ago and was then an important point along the caravan route. Today, Ait-Ben-Haddou is one of the most interesting places to visit in Morocco and the most attractive stop for round trips across the country. Due to its unique architecture and incredibly magical ambience, the Kasbah Ait-Ben-Haddou has become a film set for many famous movies. For example, Game of Thrones, Gladiator and Lawrence of Arabia were filmed here. Yes, this pretty place is really impressive and so every Morocco traveler should have seen the country’s biggest Kasbah. But what to do in Ait-Ben-Haddou, what are the highlights and the best attractions?

This blog post is a complete guide for Ait-Ben-Haddou in Morocco. Here, we show you the most beautiful impressions and pictures of the Kasbah. In addition, there is plenty information and tips about getting there, best accommodation and the most beautiful viewpoints on the mud city.

How to get to Ait-Ben-Haddou from Marrakech

Ait-Ben-Haddou is about 180 kilometers southeast of Marrakech and can be reached either by rental car or on a guided tour. Actually, the journey from Marrakech to Ait-Ben-Haddou is fantastically beautiful. Your trip will lead over the High Atlas and past the Tizi n Tichka Pass. You will enjoy grandiose landscapes, a unique mountain world and finally reach the beautiful south of Morocco. If you love taking pictures, then you should allow yourself enough time to drive over this panoramic mountain road.

Passing the High Atlas Mountain

Starting from Marrakech you go to the direction of Ouarzazate and then to Ait-Ben-Haddou. Here is the way the goal, cause this road is just amazingly beautiful. After Marrakech the landscapes begin to change quickly, and you will be surprised by the rich green colors. After some time, the road begins to rise and you pass the first quaint mountain villages of the Atlas Mountains.

Tip: Make sure you take a break in the café at Tiz Imguer! From there you have a great view of the red rocky mountains and the wide valley. With a little luck you can see some meerkats here.

Further, the road will take you up to the Atlas mountains and finally you will get to the Tizi n Tichka Pass. Many amazing photo opportunities and viewpoints can be found right next to the road. One more reason why we loved to travel on our own with the car through Morocco. Once at the top you can admire the High Atlas with its breathtaking white peaks. This zigzag road goes up to 2260 meters. If you’re interested in minerals, then you’re definitely at the right place. Because the Atlas Street is known for its stone sellers.

After Tizi n Tichka Pass, as the mountain descends, the landscape changes dramatically again. Dry hills, rocky rock formations and ancient kasbahs are the heralds of the Sahara. The area around Ait-Ben-Haddou is already very dry and suddenly, as if from nowhere you can already spot the first camels.

What to do in Ait-Ben-Haddou

Taking A walk is the perfect thing to do for exploring the beautiful mud city Ait-Ben-Haddou. As you cross the river, you’ll get an idea of ​​this spectacular city. Walking inside the huge Kasbah, you have the opportunity to explore some of the old houses from the inside. The entrance fee of these small museums often costs only 1 Euro and gives an exclusive insight into the life of earlier times.

On the way to the top of the village Ait-Ben-Haddou you will find plenty of souvenir shops, some restaurants and really lovely cafes. Some of these are really popular spots for Instagram shots. In former days, this fortified town was huge, and it’s hard to believe that 2,500 people lived here until 50 years ago. Once at the top, you will be rewarded with an incredible view over the barren desert landscape. This is in our opinion the best part of the tour. You can see all over the valley along the village, the many beautiful clay buildings, rocky lunar landscapes to the white peaks of the Atlas Mountains. One can imagine the Berber life 1000 years ago.

Famous movies

No wonder this magical place has become that famous. Because Ait-Ben-Haddou served as a movie set of many Hollywood strips. Here are a few of the films filmed there: Gladiator, Game of Thrones, Asterix and Obelix, Aladdin, Prince of Persia, The Mummie, The Hills Have Eyes II, Babel, Alexander, Laurence of Arabia and many more.

Best views of Ait-Ben-Haddou

The entire panorama of this village is just amazingly beautiful and the colors of the city change depending on the time of day. Ait-Ben-Haddou offers wonderful photo opportunities at morning-lights and not only professional photographers can look forward to taking unique pictures here.

Tip: The best views of Ait-Ben-Haddou are from one of the many rooftop hotels and accommodations around the desert city.

Admission and Opening hours

The entrance to Ait-Ben-Haddou is completely free. A small admission fee is only for visiting certain private museums. There are no official opening times, so you can visit the town on any time. But especially nice are exploration tours in the late afternoon or early morning, when most of the tourists are gone.

How long should I stay in Ait-Ben-Haddou?

If you have enough time, we recommend staying one or two nights in Ait-Ben-Haddou. When the day’s guests leave, you can experience the desert city almost all to yourself. Otherwise you will also have the possibility to explore Ait-Ban-Haddou on a daytrip from Marrakech.

 

Trips from Marrakech to Ait-Ben-Haddou

Certainly, there is the possibility to join a guided tour from Marrakech to visit the mud town of Ait-Ben-Haddou. There are either day trips, but also multi-day tours with subsequent desert visit offered. Here are the most popular trips from Marrakech:

 

Hotels and Accommodations

There are really lovely places to stay at Ait-Ben-Haddou! We recommend that you choose a hotel directly in the mud city or an accommodation with a view of the beautiful Kasbah. Having breakfast in such an ambience is unbeatably beautiful. Here are our best hotel tips for Ait-Ben-Haddou:

  • Guest House Bagdad Café: The Guest House Bagdad Café is a great deal with a lovely pool and nice rooms. Located near the old town center of Ait Ben Haddou.
  • Paradise of Silence: The beautiful Paradise of Silence delights its guests with lovely rooms, a pool and really delicious cuisine!
  • Chez Brahim: As a cheap alternative we can recommend the Chez Brahim to you. The view from the roof terrace is incredible and surely one of the best in town.

 

Conclusion: Ait Ben Haddou is definitely worth a visit and should not be missed on any Morocco round trip. Not only is the place breathtakingly beautiful, also the drive from Marrakech to Ait-Ben-Haddou is spectacular and a true experience.


Find the best Accommodation in Ait Ben Haddou:

 Booking.com


Read more about traveling in Morocco:

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. Meaning that if you click on certain links, and then subsequently purchase a product, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.


 

Salzburg in Austria – Ultimate Travel Guide

Salzburg in Austria – Ultimate Travel Guide

Salzburg in Austria is definitely one of the most beautiful and fascinating cities in Europe! This city has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1977 and without a doubt, there are some amazing things to do in Salzburg: It is home to some of the most gorgeous architecture, historic buildings, attractions and beautiful views. The city of Salzburg is mostly famous because it’s the birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and it was the setting for the popular film “The Sound of Music”. Honestly, no trip to Austria is complete without checking out Salzburg! But what are the best places to visit in Salzburg, what are the most amazing attractions and must-dos for a perfect Salzburg itinerary?

In this blog article is a complete travel guide for visiting Salzburg in Austria. We present you the ultimate best thing to do, the most amazing places and attraction in town. Additionally, you will get plenty of travel info’s about unforgettable excursions, about getting there and best accommodations.

 

Best Things to do in Salzburg

There are lots of great things to do in Salzburg. Surely enough to spend 2 or better more days in this awesome city. Impressive palaces and old churches, beautiful parks, interesting museums, breath-taking viewpoints, delicious restaurants and classical music are just a few of the city’s main attractions. Here is a selection of the best places to visit on a trip to Salzburg in Austria

Salzburger Dom & DomQuartier

The Salzburger Dom (Salzburg Catherdral) is the absolute jaw-tropper of the historic townscape and one of the best attractions in Salzburg.  Without a doubt, the cathedral is Salzburg’s most important sacred building in the old town and the inside, as well as the outside, is worth a visit! On the cathedral square, the annual Christmas Market takes place in wintertime and in summer you will enjoy the famous Salzburg Festival.

Tip: Next to the cathedral is the DomQuartier, a complex of five museums. From the terrace you have a magnificent view of the baroque Salzburg and the cathedral square.

Getreidegasse

The Getreidegasse is Salzburg most famous shopping street and the bustling heart of the city. The beautiful old-fashioned iron guild signs above the pedestrian’s heads are especially eye-catching. Stop at Getreidegasse No. 9: It’s the place where Mozart was born 1756. Mozart Birthplace is nowadays a museum and a really popular place to visit in Salzburg.

Tip: During the daytime the Getreidegasse is quite busy and crowdy. Those who prefer quiet, should visit this marvelous street better in the early morning.

Mozart House (Mozart Birthplace)

Visiting the Mozart Birthplaces surely is the absolute highlight for all Mozart fans around the world. The museum is spread out over three floors and gives a great convey of Mozart’s past and childhood. Historic instruments such as the children’s violin, certificates, photos and letters can be admired on a tour through Mozart Birthplace Museum. Plan at least an hour for your visit, because there are many interesting things to discover!

Tip: Really brilliant and a real insider tip is the Next2Mozart Apartment. It is located right inside the famous Getreidegasse, just a few steps from Mozart’s birthplace and close to all the major attractions of Salzburg.

Kapuzinerberg

The Kapuzinerberg with its 640 meters offers some of the top views of Salzburg. The steep climp is a bit exhausting but at the end the panorama of Salzburgs old town and the fortress Hohensalzburg will reward you. For getting there you will have several possibilities: Ether you take the beautiful Imbergstiege stairway from Steingasse or another possibility is to start the walk to Kapuzinerberg from the Franziskustor Gate in Linzergasse. Visiting the Kapuzinerberg an marvel at the most amazing view is one of the best things to do in Salzburg.

Hohensalzburg Fortress

The Hohensalzburg Fortress is Salzburg landmark and a visit of this 900-year-old cliff-top fortress is one of the top tourist attractions in Salzburg and a must-visit! Located on top of the Mönchsberg, you can reach the fortress by a 20-minute walk or via the funicular railway starting from Festungsgasse (near Stieglkeller). The far-reaching views from the top are really amazing and also exploring the castle and visiting the castle museums is interesting too. Furthermore, Hohensalzburg Fortress is a popular venue for classical concerts in Salzburg.

Recommendation: Tickets for dinner experience at Salzburg Fortress with Mozart concert can be booked.

Alter Markt & Cafe Tomaselli

The Alter Markt in Salzburg is the old market of the town an. The square is really picturesque and nowadays this place thrills with an incredible ambience, with the pretty Florian fountain and the old town houses. If you visit Alter Markt, stop by the traditional coffeehouse Café Tomaselli which has been run for 150 years and enjoy your coffee from the rooftop terrace.

Tip: Looking for the original Mozartkugeln? Then you have to visit the Café-Konditorei Fürst (opposite to Tomaselli Café) to try the “Original Salzburg Mozartkugels”.

Mirabell Gardens & Palace

The Mirabell Gardens are wonderful to visit in spring and summertime when the colorful flowers are blooming. Additionally, it’s one of the famous shooting locations from the movie “The Sound of Music”. Built in 1606 the Mirabelle Palace is one of the most romantic locations in Salzburg. Maybe that’s why the Marble Hall does not only host concerts but is also used as a wedding location! This place is an highlight in town and should be high up on any itinerary to Salzburg!

Mozartplatz & Residence Square

The Residence Square with its unique fountain, the Residenzbrunnen, is located in the heart of Salzburg´s old town. This place is a particularly splendid forecourt between the prince-archbishop residences and can hardly be missed due to its central location. Just around the corner you are going to find the Mozartplatz with the impressive bronze Mozart statue, another important attraction of Salzburg

Mönchsberg & Museum of Modern Art

Like the Hohensalzburg Fortress, the Museum of Modern Art in Salzburg is situated at the Mönchsberg. Up here, take in the far-reaching views across Salzburg old town’s roof-tops and the castle – Probably the most impressive photo motif of Salzburg. You can access the restaurant/cafe M32 as well as the viewpoint without paying an entrance fee. But also the Museum of Modern Art is very interesting: Here you can admire international art treasures from the 20th and 21st centuries.

Tip: For getting there take the lift from Salzburg’s old town straight to the entrance. Sportive ones take one of the walkways up the hill or another option would be the walkway from the Hohensalzburg Fortress.

Salzburg’s Cemeteries & Catacombs

Salzburg has a few beautiful and old cemeteries. The St. Peters cemetery has a unique setting just next to the cliffs of the Mönchsberg. Absolutely you should also visit the catacombs, which are hewn out of the rocks. Above all, the view over the cemetery and the historic buildings is worth the cheap entrance!

Also very interesting is the St. Sebastian cemetery, a real gem of the historic center. The old cemetery is the final resting place of some well-known personalities, such as Mozart’s father Leopold and his wife Constanze. The ancient tombs are exceedingly mystical and impressive.

Haus der Natur

Roaming through the museum “House of Nature”, visitors have the chance to discover the most fascinating aspects of Mother Nature. The exhibitions are interactive and there is so much fun connected with science for adults and children. With more than 7000 m² you should take enough time to visit the Haus der Natur.  Explore the underwater worlds in the aquarium, the outer space hallcolossal dinosaurs, take a journey into the human body and the interactive science center. Visiting The Haus der Natur is one of the best things to do in Salzburg and you should definitely put on your travel list.

Bridges of Salzburg

If you have some time left, you should definitely take a walk along the Salzach River. It is especially nice to stroll over the Mozart Bridge and across the Markatsteg, which is covered with countless colorful locks, and to enjoy the wonderful panorama on the river. Another beautiful bridge with a gorgeous view is the Müllnersteg. From there you can admire the city panorama including river and fortress.

Stieglkeller Brewery 

If you are up to visit a brewery topped with a marvelous view, then you have to go to Stieglkeller for a beer. The location is really cool, located below the Fortress of Hohensalzburg, you are going to have one of the best views of Salzburg. From the open seating gardens of the traditional brewery you will enjoy in addition to the beer and nice food a magnificent view of the old town of Salzburg.

Hellbrunn Palace & Trick Fountains

The Hellbrunn Palace is a palace like no other and for sure a top highlight of a Salzburg city trip. The palace with its yellow colors is amazingly beautiful and also its romantic park attracts visitors from all over the world. Unmissable is a visit of the nearby Trick fountains: mysterious grottos, water-powered figures and hidden water jets waiting to surprise you! Especially in summer, the “wet” surprises provide a welcome respite. A real insider tip for an unforgettable trip to Salzburg.

Read more about Hellbrunn: Hellbrunn – Trick Fountains, Palace and the Salzburg Zoo

Salzburg Zoo

The Salzburg Zoo is one of the most beautiful zoos in Austria. Located in a really unique and beautiful landscape, the zoo hosts a wide range of interesting animals. The zoo entrance is just a short walk from the Hellbrunn Palace and another top place to visit in Salzburg!

Leopoldskron Palace

The Leopoldskron Palace is situated just a short walk from the historic center of Salzburg. This fairytale castle is picturesque located next to an idyllic small lake.Built in 1736, the castle of its time was a meeting place for the cultural and art scene and is nowadays one of the most important attractions in Salzburg. It also served as the location for the world-famous movie “Sound of Music”. Today Schloss Leopoldskron is one of the most exclusive hotels in town and the ultimate place to stay for a very special trip to Salzburg.

Recommendation: 2 or 3 nights staying  at Schloss Leopoldskron including the Sound of Music tour can be booked here.

Salzburg Card (Salzburg Pass)

Getting yourself the Salzburg Card is a great way if you are planning to discover the attractions of Salzburg. Compared to other city-passes the Salzburg card is it really worth it: Free admission to the best tourist attractions, museums and to public transport makes it easy, cheap and convenient to explore the city. The Salzburg Card can be organized in advanced and is a great deal if you want to save money!

Tours in Salzburg

As you can see, the beautiful city of Salzburg offers a wide range of amazing sights and activities. If you are looking for a guided city tour, a boat trip, a typical Austrian cooking class or concert tickets, you will find on getyourguide an amazing choice of unforgettable activities. Click here for the best tours:

Things to do around Salzburg

As you can see, there are many wonderful attractions to admire in the old town. But also around Salzburg some lovely places and attractions await you. Here are our top tips for unique things to do around Salzburg:

  • Zell am See: Beautiful Zell am See is located in the south of Salzburg. It delights with a wonderful idyll of high mountains, glaciers, gorges and crystal-clear lakes. A great area for nature lovers and for active vacationers.
  • Krimml Waterfalls: The Krimml Waterfalls are another highlight in the area around Salzburg. The huge waterfalls are the largest in Europe and an excursion to it is highly recommended.
  • Wolfgangsee: The Wolfgangsee is probably one of the most beautiful places to visit around Salzburg. Especially recommended is a ride with the Schafbergbahn, a visit to the famous Weißen Rössl and a hike on the Postalm.
  • Hallstatt: The famous Hallstatt in Austria probably belongs to one of the most popular excursions from Salzburg. This place is one of the most beautiful in Austria and is a must on every trip.
  • Vienna: If you like combine your holiday in Salzburg with a trip to the Austrian capital Vienna. It takes about 3 hours from Salzburg to Vienna, and also there are many exciting things to discover.

How to get to Salzburg?

Good public connections make the journey to Salzburg uncomplicated. The city is ideally located between Vienna and Munich and can be easily reached by train or bus and long- distance buses. Salzburg also has its own airport, the second largest airport in Austria. But even from the larger airports such as Vienna or Munich, the city of Salzburg can be reached in 2 to 3 hours.

  • From Munich to Salzburg 1:30 hour by car or train
  • From Vienna to Salzburg 2:30 hour by car or train
  • From Grazto Salzburg 3 hours by car and 4 hours by train
  • From Hallstatt to Salzburg 1 hour by car and 2:30 hours by train

Tip: Cheap flights to Salzburg can be found online, for example on Skyscanner.

 

Where to stay in Salzburg

Salzburg offers a wide range of hotels. We stayed at the beautiful and stylish Berglandhotel situated in walking distance to Salzburg Old Town. The staff was amazing, providing us some of the best travel tips of Salzburg, best places for local food etc. Parking is also available!

Best accommodations in Salzburg:
  • Mönchsbergapartment: The apartment inside the Altstadt is a great choice for travelers interested in culture, history and atmosphere.
  • Hotel & Villa Auersperg: The small and elegant boutique Hotel & Villa Auersperg enjoys a quiet location in the heart of Salzburg and features a charming garden terrace, a spa area with a roof terrace
  • Hotel Stein: The lifestyle and design hotel offers guests a panoramic rooftop terrace with panoramic views of the city and its surroundings.

Conclusion: As you can see, we really loved our  city trip to Salzburg and we spent some wonderful days exploring the historic center. Two days in Salzburg is the perfect amount of time to hit the towns best places and tourist attractions. We were most impressed by the breath-taking views and the fact that for the small size you can easily spend 2 full  or better more days of sightseeing.


Find the best Hotels & Accommodations in Salzburg:


Booking.com


Read more about Austria:

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. Meaning that if you click on certain links, and then subsequently purchase a product, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.


10 Things to do in Lake Bled, Slovenia | A Travel Guide

10 Things to do in Lake Bled, Slovenia | A Travel Guide

The stunningly beautiful Lake Bled in Slovenia is one of the most beautiful and iconic landmarks of the country. We loved our holiday at this magical place: This outstanding natural scenery, the little Bled Island with its lovely church, the Bled Castle, the colorful boats and the breath-taking views. Because the Lake is so special, landscape photographers from all over the world flock to Lake Bled. No matter if summer or winter, a visit to Bled is just just like out of a fairy tale.

In this travel blog post we will show you the best things to do in Lake Bled. Certainly, we are going to tell you where are the best activities and excursions around Bled – inclusive insider travel tips, how to get there and the best places to stay.

Things to do in Lake Bled

The whole scenery of Lake Bled in Slovenia is unbelievably beautiful and so there are some great spots to discover. A boat trip on the lake, visiting the castle on the steep cliff or hiking to the many breathtaking viewpoints are just a few of the amazing things to do in Bled. Here are the most beautiful attractions and places to visit in and around Lake Bled:

Visiting the Bled Castle

The Bled Castle is located on a cliff, 130 meters above the Lake Bled. Hike up the castle hill and get rewarded by one of the most beautiful views of the lake and the tiny Bled Island. We really loved that place, best you take a coffee and enjoy the scenery from the castle terrace. Hiking up to the picturesque castle end enjoying the marvelous views are for sure one of the absolute best things to do in Bled and shouldn`t be missed on any trip to Lake Bled.

Entrance fee: Euro 9,- p.p. | Opening Hours: 8:00 am – 8:00 pm

Taking a walk or cycling around Lake Bled

The best thing to do in Lake Bled: Relax and enjoy the splendid views. There is a circular trail around the lake, with lots of nice places to take a break and watch the colorful traditional Pletna boats driving towards the picturesque island. If you love hiking, you should also walk to the viewpoints Ojstrica and Mala Osojnica, but more about later. Along the lake there are always cozy benches, nice cafes to stop and of course to enjoy a unique atmosphere. The distance around the lake is 6 kilometres.

Tip: Combine the walk on Lake Bled with a leisurely coffee break and treat yourself to an original Bled cream slice. A must do when visiting Bled!

Visiting Bled Island & the Church

The landmark of Bled is the pretty church island called Blejski Otok, or mostly just named as Bled Island. There you will find the Church of the Assumption, a baroque church from the 17th century. But before you have to climb 99 stone steps. The Bleder tradition is that the groom carries the bride up all these steps! If you feel like getting higher then you should also visit the bell tower and enjoys a scenic view of Lake Bled. In any case, don`t forget to ring the bell, the wish bell of Bled. According to a legend it’s said that ringing this bell and will makes a wish come true.

Tip: In the restaurant “Poticnica” on the island you can taste Potica, a traditional Slovenian cake!

Boat tour and boat rental at Lake Bled 

A boat trip on Lake Bled is a real holiday highlight and therefore you should not miss this beautiful experience. On a trip with the traditional wooden boats, the so called Plentna boats, you have the opportunity to visit the island and the lovely church. The price for the boat trip is 14, – Euro for the ride and 6, – Euro for the entrance to the island.

Tip: What we even loved more: Another possibility for getting around on the lake Bled is by rowboat. We recommend to rent the rowboat at the Pension Pletna boat rental (15,- per hour) . Rowing the Lake Bled can be really romantic and it is one of the best things to do in Bled.

Best viewpoints and views of Lake Bled

Around the lake there are a variety of magnificent viewpoints. In addition to the already described overlook at the Bled Castle, you will find some other good views to Lake Bled. One of the best is the viewpoint at Café Belvedere. This place is definitely worth a visit, because here you can enjoy the views with a delicious traditional Bled cream cake.

If you love hiking, you should head to the Ojstrica Viewpoint and Mala Osojnica Viewpoint (on the circular route no. 6). From here you have a fantastic view and probably the most famous view of Lake Bled.

Hike to Mala Osojnica Viewpoint

The most beautiful view of Lake Bled is definitely from the Mala Osojnica Viewpoint. The panorama of the lake, the church and the mountain views here are really overwhelming. For the hike to the popular vantage point, you should plan around 30 – 40 minutes walking time. We recommend good shoes, because the way is quite steep, and you have to climb at the end 80 metal steps. Who has a certain basic fitness, should not miss this highlight in Bled!

Tip: The hike to the Ojstrica is a bit shorter. You will reach this lookout in about 20 minutes walk.

 

Things to do around Lake Bled

The range of activities and excursions around Lake Bled is overwhelming. Not far from Lake Bled is another natural jewel of the region, the beautiful Lake Bohinj. Especially scenic is the old church, which is idyllically situated on the edge of the lake. Those who would like to visit a gorge during their visit to Bled, should take a hike through the Vintgar gorge. Another recommended excursion is to the Pericnik waterfall inside the Triglav National Park.

Bohinj & Savica Waterfall

If you are already on holiday at Lake Bled, we recommend a trip to Lake Bohinj 27 km away. If you like, take the gondola up to the bird (the local mountain), or take a hike to the Savica waterfall.

Vintgar Gorge

If you are staying more days in Bled you shouldn’t miss to visit the Vintgar Gorge, which is just about 4 km north-west of Bled. Nevertheless, the rapid river beneath, the vertical cliff walls and the waterfalls, the gorge with its only 1,6 km is easy to walk. At the furthest end of the gorge is the spectacular Sum Waterfall, the largest river waterfall in Slovenia, which has a 13 meter trop. In summer time this tourist attraction can be quite busy, try to be there in the morning. Visiting the Vintgar Gorge is a lovely refreshment in summertime and also on rainy days the gorge is worth a visit.

Pericnik waterfall

If you love visiting waterfalls – The Pericnik waterfall in the Triglav National Park is a must! It’s amazing to feel this immense power when you walk underneath the falls.  With its 52 m it’s the highest waterfall in Slovenia and surely one of the most photogenic! From the parking it’s just a short walk up to the Pericnik waterfall – it takes just around 10 minute walk.

Swimming in Lake Bled

Some of you might ask yourself, if you can swim in Lake Bled. Definitaly yes, you will find a few places for swimming around the lake! The Castle beach area is the only designated outdoor bathing area by lake Bled. The location is just amazing: Situated just next to the magnificent castle rock.  Another area for swimming is the Velika Zaka Bathing area, which is also a populare place for bathing and swimming in Lake Bled.

How to get there

  • By car: Taking the A2 motorway from Ljubljana takes around 40 minutes to Bled. If you come from Germany or Austria, it’s best to drive via the Karawankentunnel to Bled. From there, there are still 20 minutes drive to Lake Bled.
  • By train: Lesce train station is approximately 4.5 kilometers away from Bled and connected to Ljubljana. From the train station take a taxi or the bus to the lake.
  • By plane: The nearest international airport is located in Ljubljana, 36 km from Bled. Cheap flights can be found online, for example on flight portals such as Skyscanner.

 

Where to stay in Lake Bled

Around and in Bled are a variety of hotels, apartments and other accommodation to stay. We have put together here our top recommendations for amazing accommodations in Bled. Perfect for a wonderful holiday at the lake:

  • Prestige Hotel with Lake View: For a very special stay in Bled we can highly recommend the Grand Hotel Toplice, one of the best hotels right on Lake Bled. This old prestige hotel amazes with a beautiful view of Lake Bled, a wonderful pool and the sauna area. At good weather, the hotel’s own beach has open!
  • B&B: Guesthouse Marko is perfectly located just 600 meters from Lake Bled. The rooms are very clean and the communal lounge is really coazy.
  • Apartments: The apartment house Bernard is recommended right next to Lake Bled. These apartments offer top facilities and are perfect for families with children.

Conclusion: Bled is one of the best holiday destinations in Slovenia which we highly recommend to anyone who is visiting this awesome travel country. Now you have the perfect overview about the best things to do at Lake Bled and you are ready to go. Enjoy your visit to Bled!


Find the best Accommodation at Lake Bled:

Booking.com


Read more about Slovenia:

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. Meaning that if you click on certain links, and then subsequently purchase a product, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.


 

Thailand Island Hopping: Krabi to Ko Lipe (Route & Tips)

Thailand Island Hopping: Krabi to Ko Lipe (Route & Tips)

 

Hauntingly beautiful islands, crystal clear turquoise waters and world class white powder sandy beaches: The West Coast of Thailand is an amazing travel destination and travellers and backpackers from all over the world flock to see the world’s best beaches. There are more than 300 islands waiting for you to be explored and so it makes sense to visit some of the most beautiful ones by island hopping. No matter if you are up for luxury travel or if you prefer to travel the islands on a budget – your trip will be an amazing und unforgettable experience. This article is all about an epic Thailand Island Hopping Tour from Krabi to Koh Lipe, an ultimate travel guide about visiting some of the best islands of South Thailand.

Further, at the end of the travel blog, there you will find useful tips about the best travel time, prices and how to get from one island to another.

You want to do explore the Andaman Sea but you are not sure where to go? Looking for a perfect Route in South Thailand? Here is our Thailand Island Hopping itinerary starting from Krabi to Koh Lipe:

Best Thailand Island Hopping Route

 

Krabi

For our first stop of our itinerary we chose Krabi, one of the most beautiful provinces in Thailand. Krabi Town does not have beaches, but the night market, the nearby Tiger Cave Temple and the Emerald Pool are definitely worth a visit. Additionally, the town is a famous starting point for island hopping tours to the stunning Islands in South Thailand. If you also plan to spend a night or more in Krabi town, then you should check out the Hello House. This guest house is a small, very centrally located property just near the night market. Here you can expect simple and clean rooms for a great value.

More about Krabi: 20 Best things to do in Krabi

Railay Beach

Although Railay Beach is not an island, but the peninsula is separated from the mainland by a deep jungle and can only be reached by long-tail boat from Krabi. So this might be the first place for you to get a real island feeling. With its limestone cliffs, the turquoise clear water and the famous Phra Nang Cave, Railay Beach is a real tropical paradise, not just for sun lovers but also for climbers. And if you walk around the peninsula. you will definitely see some monkeys too! In addition, there are many small offshore islands to explore, which you can reach by a short trip on the longtail boat (the 4 Island Tour). Resorts and bungalows are available in every price range, but due to its popularity they are quickly sold out!

Tip: The Bhu Nga Thani Resort and Spa is a really good hotel recommendation for Railay. It is located very romantic right by the sea and the modern pool area is an absolute highlight.

Koh Jum (Koh Pu)

This lovely island Koh Jum is still one of the absolute insider tips for backpacking and individual travellers. This island is located on the west coast of Thailand and it is still really tranquil, the locals are extremely hospitable, and the beaches are wonderful for swimming. If you like it very quiet and you enjoy being part of local life, then you should definitely put Koh Jum on your Thailand Island Hopping list. Here you will find still the typical beach huts and bungalows right on the sea! Quite lovely here are for example the Cocobar & Bungalow directly at the best beach location.

Here more about this beautiful island, the most beautiful beaches and the best places to stay: Koh Jum (Koh Pu): A Paradise Island Guide

 

Koh Lanta

The island of Koh Lanta has always been inspiring and is definitely a place we could imagine staying longer. Ko Lanta is best explored with a scooter that you can borrow at every corner of the island. Just hire a scooter and explore the island! You will find plenty of relaxing beaches to stay and enjoy some fresh coconut. Beautiful quiet beaches are everywhere along the island until reaching the end of the national park. If you are looking for a really nice resort, we recommend taking a look at the lovely and reasonably priced Lanta Casa Blanca!

Here is our ultimate Guide for Koh Lanta.

Koh Ngai (Ko Hai)

Koh Ngai is an island where you just want to get lost. The white sandy beach is just beautiful, and the island is so relaxing – there are just a handful of resorts on it – no streets, no tuk tuks, no shops – nothing to do, just relax and enjoy! Backpackers can stay in a fantastic budget tent village located directly at the beach. Also you will find on this island some luxury hotels with pool. Really recommended here is the Thanya Beach Resort, which amazes with gorgeous bungalows, pool and excellent location at the most beautiful beach on the island. This dreamy island was definitely one of our top highlights while island-hopping from Krabi to Koh Lipe!

More about the island of Koh Ngai can be found here: Koh Ngai – The Paradise Island Travel Guide

Koh Mook

Koh Mook is an island that shouldn`t be missed on any island route through South Thailand. First of all, the island offers the most famous attraction in the region, the Emerald Cave. On the other hand, the Island has two incredibly beautiful beaches, the Sivalai Beach and Charlie Beach. If you are up for traveling luxury, you can spoil yourself at the Sivalai Beach Resort, a dream hotel at the tip of the Sivalai Beach. For Backpackers we can recommend the Mook Montra, which have a really lovely bungalows on the beach. More about Koh Mook: Koh Mook (Koh Muk) – A Guide to Paradise

Koh Kradan

What an amazing islet! Turquoise blue waters and fine white beach – for sure one of the best islands to relax on. Also those who like to snorkel will be more than happy on Koh Kradan. At the offshore reef you have the opportunity to explore a colourful underwater world. Koh Kradan has only a handful accommodations, which are recommended to be reserved in advance. Especially recommended is the fantastic The Reef Resort, which has a house reef for snorkeling! If you do not that have much time, you can visit Koh Kradan with a trip by longtail boat from the neighbouring islands of Koh Mook or Koh Ngai.

More about this beautiful island can be found here:  Koh Kradan – A Travel Guide to Paradise!

Koh Bulon

With a postcard idyll at its best, Koh Bulon is probably one of the most beautiful islands in Thailand and was also an absolute highlight on our island-hopping route. This island is an absolute insider tip! Many miss this paradise on their way to Koh Lipe. Too bad, they have missed something special. It’s such a paradise for beach lovers- the water is so clear, you can see fish swarms swimming around you. And on the land, there are even lizard’s strolling around! Koh Bulon quickly became our favourite island in South Thailand and we highly recommend staying on this awesome island. If you want to read more about the heavenly beautiful island Koh Bulon, check out the article: Koh Bulon Lae travel guide: Thailand`s island paradise

Koh Lipe

Last stop on our island-hopping route is the famous island of Koh Lipe. The island has beautiful white sandy beaches and intact coral reefs, which attracts tens of thousands of tourists from all over the world each year. Despite the tourist crowds, you should definitely see this island gem once. Especially if you love diving and snorkelling you get your money’s worth! From there you can amazing snorkelling trips to visit colourful coral reefs, clown fish und huge morays. Koh Lipe was our last stop of our Thailand Island hopping trip – from there you can continue your journey to Malaysia – Langkawi. But it’s also possible to return by speedboat to Pak Bara Pier (Satun) on the mainland and then by minibus to Krabi. More about Koh Lipe you will find here: Koh Lipe – Ultimate Thailand Island Experience

Tip: A unique stay guarantees the Ten Moons Lipe Resort, which is a really popular place to stay and therefore often fully booked.

Best travel time for Island Hopping in Thailand

The best travel time for island hopping at the west coast of southern Thailand is from November to mid-April. During this time, the rainy season should be over, but it can rain occasionally from time to time. In the rainy season, like in Mai, July, August and September you have to expect limited ferry connections and lots of hotels and restaurants will be closed! On the other hand, you will find some amazingly cheap hotel deals.

How to get from one island to the other

On each of the island described above you will find hotels and agencies that will be more than happy to organize your onward transport. If you want to organize your transport ticket in advanced you should use 12go.asia. You usually travel between the islands by speed boat, ferry or longtail boat. Comparing the prices before booking is always a good idea, because there are a variety of providers and variants.

Powered by 12Go Asia system

 

Thailand Island Hopping Tips:

Duration: For a complete tour we suggested to plan at least 3 weeks, better even 4 weeks’ time. If you only have 2 weeks for island hopping, then just think about which island in the south of Thailand you really want to see and skip some other islands. For one week of island hopping we would suggest visiting the islands Koh Mook, Koh Ngai and Koh Kradan.

Cost: Prices for Island Hopping can be very various depending if you are traveling on a budget or if you prefer luxury travel. Plan for your trip as a backpacker a budget with a minimum of 30 euros per day. Of course, for luxury also in Thailand there are no price limits. Generally, the food in Thailand is quite cheap. For local dishes such as Phat Thai, Green Curry or Fried Rice you can count on about 1.00-3.00 Euro per dish. Simple beach huts are available from around 500 baht.

Where to stay: Generally, you will find on each island mentioned above a selection of different accommodation in every price range. The prices vary depending on the season and you often get cheap bargains in the low season. Higher prices will be charged around Christmas time and holidays. Best to compare the hotel ratings and rates on booking.com.

Rent scooters : Exploring an island by scooter is an fantastic way to see all of the amazing beaches and small villages. We did that on Koh Lanta and Koh Jum and it was a great adventure.

 


Find the Best Accommodation in South Thailand:

 
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Read more about Thailands Paradise Islands:

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2 Weeks in Morocco: A perfect Road Trip Itinerary

2 Weeks in Morocco: A perfect Road Trip Itinerary

 

Morocco – a really varied land with incredible things to see and lots of fantastic experience to make. This country impressed us a lot and still after 10 years of traveling together, it was an intense adventure there. Take some time for this country to see it and to feel it. “In Europe you have the watches, in Africa we have time” – make sure that you know: The clocks tick differently there! 2 weeks in Morocco is the perfect amount of time to hit the country’s best places like Morocco’s desert, the huge Oasis, the impressive mountainous region, oriental towns and the Atlantic Ocean. Certainly, we recommend to visit Morocco on a road trip – the people are always very helpful and the country is still very safe.

All in all, this self-drive road trip itinerary will help you planning a road trip to Morocco and to make sure that you make the best of your 2 weeks in Morocco. Additionally, you will get much useful information about how to travel on a budget, the best trip route and what are the best things to do in Morocco.

Road Trip in Morocco: Self-drive and self-organized – let’s check out the 2 Weeks in Morocco itinerary:

 

Marrakech

Day 1-2 First stop at our road trip through Morocco! We checked into our beautiful riad and enjoyed the first traditional moroccan mint tea – really delicious. From the first minute we felt welcome and comfortable. We had 2 days to explore the city, perfect to see all the interesting places like the most famous Djemaa el Fna, the Medina and the Medersa Ben Youssef. Read more about Marrakech:  Sightseeing Marrakesh & our top travel tips

The Riad Irene is an amazing choice if you want to stay in a beautiful Riad in the middle of the old town.

Ait Ben Haddou & High Atlas Mountain Road

Day 3  Crossing the High Atlas mountain was one of the most beautiful road trip adventures we have ever been. We took the road through the Tizi n’Tichka, a mountain pass with 2.260 m. The route from Marrakesh to Ait Ben Haddou is stunning, you will find plenty of photo spots on your way. Bye the way, if you’re planning to go trekking in Morocco, the Atlas Mountain will be a fantastic choice for you!

After 185 km drive, we had arrived at Ait Ben Haddou – a must see in Morocco by the way. Ait Ben Haddou is a traditional mud brick city and it is on the UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE List.  The most wonderful view for sunset and early morning lights you are going to have from the Riad Chez Brahim.

Ait-Ben-Haddou is an ultimate highlight of this country and should not be missed on any Morocco itinerary!

The road of a thousand Kasbahs & Rose Valley

Day 4 We left Ait Ben Haddou early in the morning and we took the road of a thousand Kasbahs – What a gorgeous landscape! Fresh oasis all over and this picturesque old Kasbahs – totally you should visit the Kasbah Taourit and the Kasbah Amridil! In the late afternoon we arrived at the Rose Valley (125 km) – a place where we could imagine to stay even longer next time! Our little hotel Dar Timitar was just wonderful – with an outstanding view high above the Rose Valley. The sunset with view all over the huge oasis was one of our travel highlights in Morocco.

Dades Valley & Dades Gorge

Day 5  (115 km) The next day we explored the Dades Gorge with it’s dramatic landscapes like the Monkey Fingers at the beginning of the gorge und the winding road to the top of the gorge – where there’s a coffee place –Tisdrine – with a great view! Our tip: If you have some time you should drive the road for around 15 km further on – the landscapes are amazing there.  For the night we had an unforgettable stay at a lovely berber riad. The host family was lovely – they made us a great evening with traditional local berber songs and learning their berber language.

Todra Gorge – Tinghir

Day 6 Tinghir (75 km)) is a beautiful immense oasis, you come face to face with pure nature and picturesque landscapes. Take some stops at the road to the gorge – where you will have some great views to the beautiful oasis.  Outstanding is also the Todra Gorge which has probably one of the most impressive canyons in the world. For the night we stayed in a lovely hotel on the road to the canyon in Kasbah Restaurant Amazir. A beautiful and calm place with pool and nice location just next to the river.

Merzouga – Sahara Desert Morocco

Day 7-10 The 270 km from Tinghir to Merzouga had been quite long, but the landscapes is becoming more and more impressiv the closer you get there. We had an amazing time with the guys from the Berber Camp visiting the Erg Chebbi on the back of a camel and camping in the middle of the desert was just perfect!  If you fancy to buy some original berber clothes, you should visit the center of Merzouga town. Visiting the Sahara Desert in Morocco was our favorite experience and a highlight of our Morocco itinerary!

Road from Merzouga to Fez

Day 9 The way is the goal (470 km) – the road to Fez is quite long – but anyway you will have a lot of great photo spots on your road trip. Consider staying a night in Zaida if you can`t drive that long. The Monkeyforest next to Azrou was quite cool – where we had the possibility to feed monkeys. You can also do a stopover in Ifran, Morocco’s „Little Switzerland“ located in the  Middle Atlas Mountains.
When you do your road trip by car, make sure you are staying outside of the medina.

Fez

Day 10  Yes what can I say – either you love it or you hate it. But all the visitors agree on one thing– this city is unique. Take your time to explore Fez. The medina is huge and so you can wander around for hours without getting bored. Visiting the Tanneries of Fez is a very special expirience. But be aware: it`s smelling strongly and some people even getting sick.

If you come to Fez by rental car and in case you need a parking lot outside of the medina, we recommend to book the Riad PassifloraOtherwise you should choose one of the amazing Riads inside of the Medina.

Note: The shop owners of the tanneries can be annoying,  you can try to tip them first, so normally they won’t bother you anymore and you can do you photography without disturbing.

Rabat & Casablanca

Day 11-12  (270 km) Rabat and Casablanca are totally underrated and lots of tourists missing out on seeing this amazing cities. Half day for Rabat and a half day for Casablanca are enough to see the best sights! And honestly the the Hassan II Mosque is a must see – but to drive in Casablanca is very adventurous too. Don`t miss the beautiful seafront of Casablanca. For the night we stayed in  a Mohammedia in a fantastic valued Hotel.

The Atlantic Coast of Morocco

Day 12-13  (400 km) We really loved the Atlantic! The coast road is spoiled with beautiful wild beaches and impressing cliffs. One night we stayed in El Jadida, at the Les Cyprès and one more in Oualidia, a small village with the most beautiful beach for swimming and also very recommended to do a boat trip for birdwatching.

Essouira

Day 13-14 Essouira also known as “the jewel of the Atlantic” – for us the perfect getaway to relax after the long journey. The windy beach is known for kitesurfing, windsurfing, camel ride and long beach walks. The city itself is lovely, with a souk – of course, witch nice little cafes and plenty of good restaurants. Also the fish market in the morning is also worth a visit! For the night we stayed at the Atlas Essaouira & Spa.

Essaouira was one of our favorite spots on our Morocco itinerary. Check out the ulitimate Essaouira Guide for more infos.

Day 14 (200 km) On the road back to Marrakesh, if you are lucky you can see the tree goats. This was our last stop of our driving itinerary. The last days, we made some more pics and did our final shopping.

Remember, make sure you planning enough time for your Morocco itinerary! We always do that and that’s so important if you want to have a great time. For Morocco the wisdom is: “The way is the goal” – and it’s so true – the best photo spots we found have just been next to the road. 2 weeks or even more are the perfect amount of time to explore the country.

  • Flights to Marrakech arrive at Menara Airport and we can recommend to book your ticket at Skyscanner.
  • No, two weeks in Morocco are not too long! You will be surprised about the many amazing things to see and to do in Morocco. Better you plan road trip around Morocco a bit longer…
  • If you don`t have enough time to do a 2 weeks Morocco itinerary by your own, than you still have the possibility to book some exciting guided Morocco Tours and Activities.

If you have more time than two weeks, you can also visit Chefchaouen (the blue city), Tafroute, Ouzoud waterfall,  the Legzira Beach, Taghazout and Taroudante.

 

Driving in Morocco

If you are planning a road trip in Morocco and you would like to do lots of sightseeing we recommend to explore the country by car. Anyhow, with your own car you are going to be much more flexible then traveling with a tours bus. At least 2 weeks or better more should be planned for visiting all the wonderful places and sights. Definitely, you should rent your car in advanced and compare the prices! Don`t forget to book a car insurance.

 

Thanks for reading our Morocco itinerary!

 


Read more about traveling in Morocco:

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. Meaning that if you click on certain links, and then subsequently purchase a product, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.


 

3 days in Vienna Itinerary: Travel and Sightseeing Guide

3 days in Vienna Itinerary: Travel and Sightseeing Guide

Visiting Vienna in 3 days is a fantastic option to explore the exciting city and all the amazing sights. In that amount of time you can visit all the best parts of the city including the main sights and top attractions. For sure, you will love this old new city, the vibrant life and the delicious Austrian food. There is so much to see and to do and definitely, this 3-day itinerary will give you a great overview of the must-see sights and the travel highlights. Vienna is an incredible beautiful city and three days can be enough time to see the capital of Austria.

In this blog article we are going to share our ultimate 3 days itinerary for an unforgettable trip to Vienna and additionally we show you what to see and what to do while staying in this wonderful austrian city.

Here is our suggestion for a 3-day itinerary in Vienna:

 

Vienna itinerary, DAY 1

Start your Vienna trip with exploring the beautiful Belvedere Palace and the magnificent baroque gardens. At first walk from the Upper Belvedere down to the Lower Belvedere and enjoy the outstanding beautiful scenery. We really loved the flower gardens and the reflecting pool in front of the palace. Even though the Belvedere is one of Vienna’s most impressive palaces, at morning time you will have all the area nearly to yourself. In case you are a fan of art you definitely should consider a visit of the Belvedere museums too: A permanent exhibition at the Upper Belvedere displays among others the world-famous Klimt´s Kiss.

At early lunch time we recommend a visit to Vienna’s most popular market, the Naschmarkt which is just a short walk from Karlsplatz. Make a stop at the St. Charles Church, an eye-catching religious building with a magnificent blue cupula. Not just in summer, but also in winter the Karlsplatz is really worth a visit at this time a traditional Christmas market is taking place in front of the church.

Without a doubt the Naschmarkt is one of the coolest places to have lunch in Vienna and a popular meeting point for young and old. In generally, the market has around 120 market stands and restaurants, selling exotic products and delicacies from all over the world.

The Ringstrasse is a 5,3 km long road that circles Vienna’s city centre. On that street, you are going to pass some of the most remarkable and breath-taking buildings of the town. The most noteworthy sights are the Parliament, the City Hall, the Imperial Palace (Hofburg) and the BurgtheaterA lovely option is to tour the Ringstrasse on the tourist Ring Tram or you can also catch the public city tram (Nr.1 & Nr. 2).

If you have some time left we recommend a visit inside the glorious Burgtheater. You can visit this theatre without seeing a performance by taking a guided tour (daily 15:00). There you will learn a lot about the fascinating history of the Burgtheater and you will get a look behind the scenes. On top you are going to see the breath-taking beautiful grand staircase and the famous ceiling paintings by Gustav Klimt.

For the evening we round of our first day of sight-seeing with a visit to Vienna’s amusement park the Prater. Why not dine out at the Schweizerhaus restaurant for tasting its famous Schweizerhaus Stelze or a traditional Wiener Schnitzel?! It is famous for serving the best Schnitzel in Vienna! For entering the Wiener Prater you won`t have to pay any entrance fee, you just have to pay for the attractions you would like to ride. Even if you are not that kind of adrenal junkie you will love exploring the nostalgic Prater with its unique atmosphere. Recommended is a ride with the Giant Ferries Wheel which is Vienna’s landmark.

Vienna itinerary, DAY 2

A trip to Vienna won’t be complete without visiting one of the numerous museums. Actually, we loved visiting the Museum of Natural History. The huge museum exhibits over 30 million objects and we had been fascinating by the dimension. Also, the Art History museum located at the opposite is well worth seeing. Absolutely interesting is the MuseumsQuartier, spreading over 90,000m2 encompassing 60 cultural institutions.

If you are around also take the chance to look inside the Palace of Justice! Step inside and you will find yourself in one of the most impressive locations you will find in Vienna. The grand staircase dominates the huge hall and the imposing interior will take your breath away! Most of the people don`t know that the building is open for the public and the entrance is for free. Furthermore from the roof-top Cafè you will have an amazing view.

After spending the morning inside a museum, you should hit off to see the world-famous Lipizzaner horses. Best you cross the picturesque square Michaelaplatz to buy tickets for the Spanish riding school. Just take a rest at the baroque square and watch the traditional Vienna Fiaker passing by. Visiting the white Lipizzaner show was just lovely. It was so interesting to watch the horsemanship accompanied by classical music. Good to know: This noble horse and the traditional stallions can be seen for free, just peep in at Reitschulgasse 2.

Another must do in Vienna is a visiting an original Viennese coffee house. You are going to find plenty of them inside Vienna’s Old town. All along, the Viennese coffee house is a typical institution of Vienna that plays an important role in Viennese culture. Have a break, enjoy a delicious “Melange” coffee and soak in this elegant and very specific atmosphere.

Later, we recommend to have a look inside the Austrian National Library, the State Hall. The imposing baroque hall impressed us a lot! More than 200.000 tomes are exhibited and four picturesque Venetian baroque globes grace the ancient library.

Most surprising for us was the visit inside the Imperial Crypt also named the Capuchin Cryp. That place contains the bodies of the Habsburg rulers: 149 Habsburgs, including 12 emperors as well as 19 empresses and queens, have their final resting inside the crypt. Popular examples are Franz Joseph I., Empress Elisabeth and Crown Prince Rudolf and visitors can observe their magnificent free-standing tombs.

Don`t leave the town without window shopping at the Graben, the Kohlmarkt and the Kärntnerstraße, Viennas most exclusive shopping streets! Even if you don`t likes shopping, walking down the Graben street towards the St. Stephen´s Cathedral. With its beautiful architecture like the Peterskirche the short walk is really pleasureable.

St. Stephen´s Cathedral is one of the main attractions of Vienna and the inside as well as the outside are worth a visit. But also recommendable is the view from the top of the Cathedral. You are going to have the best view of Vienna at the northern tower (Pummerin).

As few of the main sights are located along the Ringstrasse, for example, the Opera house and the Burggarten. Take a break at the wonderful Palmenhouse at Burggarten and enjoy the picturesque scenery. As soon as the sun goes down head of to see the Opera house:  At night the Opera is stunningly lit and looks drop-dead gorgeous!

Vienna itinerary, DAY 3

After breakfast, set off to Schönbrunn Palace! Because it’s Austria’s most visited tourist attraction you should be there early. That’s why at morning time you will find a calm and peaceful location. Take a stroll along the magnificent Schönbrunn Gardens and inhale the grand imperial atmosphere. Also you shouldn’t miss to walk up to the Gloriette and get rewarded with one of Vienna’s most breathtaking views. Take some time to explore the Schönbrunn Palace. We had been surprised about all the picturesque smaller gardens, fountains and statues.

There’s even a Palmenhaus and the world’s oldest zoo, the Schönbrunn Zoo to explore. The entire area is part of the imperial summer residence and is even listed as an UNESCO world heritage site. The palaces itself is enormous, with a total of 1,441 rooms. Certain parts of the castle and exhibitions can be visited.

If you are interested in outstanding architecture you should definitely go and see the popular Hundertwasserhouse. This architectural masterpiece was designed by Friedensreich Hundertwasser and constructed between 1983 – 1985. You have to know that The Hundertwasserhouse can only be viewed from outside but the exterior façade draws attention to itself and gives a fantastic foto motif.

Our tip: Hundertwasser also transferred the incinerator at Spittelau in something extraordinary!

Vienna Tours

Looking for a Vienna City Tour? Here are some really special tours:

Where to stay in Vienna?

For our latest city trip to Vienna we had been guests at the hotel Altstadt Vienna. It’s located in Vienna’s hippest and fashionable 7.th district “Neubau” in Spittelberg also named as Boboville. In fact the hotel is a venerable traditional Viennese patrician house that offers around 60 hotel rooms. All of the rooms are held in a unique design, each of them is different and so inspiring. Different designers and architects created the interior of this unique boutique hotel and we really loved our stay in the beautiful Lilli Hollein Suite.

For prices or more informations ->  Click here 

Everything felt so much like home and even better. There are so many nice touches like free afternoon tea and sweets-buffet, outstanding breakfast, free homemade ice-tea for hotel guests to the helpfulness of the staff and free newspapers and magazines galore. Also unique was having the excellent breakfast inside the lovely salon area: An incredible delicious  buffet with different kind of  cheeses, hearty breads and rolls with all kinds of spreads, healthy cereal, smoked salmon, smoothies, Viennese coffee, high quality tea and even prosecco – in the background classical music – a great way to start the day!

On top the hotel is conveniently located just a short walk from the subway and tram. Museumsquartier, Natural History Museum & Art History Museum, Rathaus and Burgtheater are all in walking distance and great restaurants and bars are just around the hotels corner.

For prices or more informations ->  Click here 

And that’s it for our guide to spending 3 days in Vienna – if you would like to read more about Vienna, check out -> 15 Top Things To Do In Vienna

Tip: Flight tickets to Vienna can be easily found at Skyscanner or Kiwi. If you like to learn more about traveling in Central Europe, you should check out “the epic central europe itinerary“.


Find the best accommodation in Vienna:

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More about Austria:

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. Meaning that if you click on certain links, and then subsequently purchase a product, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Transparency: For this stay we were invited by Hotel Altstadt Vienna. As usual, our opinion remains unaffected.


Malaysia Backpacking: Itinerary for a Trip in Malaysia

Malaysia Backpacking: Itinerary for a Trip in Malaysia

This Malaysia Backpacking itinerary will be a great source if you consider this amazing country for your next trip. We will show you the best places to visit in Malaysia, give you a Malaysia itinerary and surely some general travel tips for your next backpacking trip!

Why should you visit Malaysia for backpacking?

Malaysia is a fantastic travel country, with lots of great things to explore and to do.

  • There are not only the most beautiful landscapes and great islands with some fab beaches, but also modern cities, deep jungles and some huge mountains.
  • Malaysia belongs to the easiest countries for backpacking in South East Asia and many backpackers travel through this country! Transport, either bus or flights are easy to organize and there are plenty of budget accommodations to find.
  • The prices in Malaysia for food, transport and accommodations are cheap and comparable with Thailand. On top of that, comfortable buses and low-cost air connections makes it easy to travel through Malaysia

So, don’t wait, let’s explore Malaysia by backpacking: Here is our ultimate Malaysia itinerary for an unforgettable backpacking trip:

Langkawi

This fantastic island was our first destination when we arrived in Malaysia. We came directly from Thailand, where we had a great time on our Thailand Island hopping tour. Langkawi is not far from the border of Thailand and easy to reach by ferry. Because of its status of a „duty free“ island, the prices at the island are incredible cheap. But this should not be the main reason to visit Langkawi – there are plenty of amazing sights and beaches. The best must see thing is to take a ride with the SkyCab, a cable car that takes you up to the Mt. Machincang. From there you have to visit the SkyBridge – definitely for those who have no fear of heights!

Additionally we recommend renting a scooter and explore the island by yourself. It’s safe to drive around and the island is not that big. We also visited the scary crocodile show in the Crocodile Adventureland Langkawi – Jalan Datai, the Telaga Tujuh Waterfalls and the Underwater World Langkawi which was also nice to visit. Next time we will definitely stay longer, to see more of the great spots of Langkawi!

The Pantai Cenang beach area is the best place to stay for travelers and backpackers. There you are going to find motorbike rentals, shops, restaurants, a beautiful beach and certainly some budget guesthouse options.

Penang & George Town

Penang was so cool! We had such an exciting stay there – sometimes you are not sure if you are still in Malaysia, in China or in Europe. George Town, the capital, of Penang, has a unique multicultural history and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The city is full of historic buildings, starting from churches, and British colonial monuments to Chinese shop houses and temples. Backpackers love the food culture in Penang, especially in George Town you can explore the best food scene in Malaysia.

George Town has a huge backpacker scene where you can find plenty of recommended budget accommodations. Bye the way, here is a fantastic guide for backpacking in Penang!

The Blue Mansion – Cheong Fat Tze is a must see if you are visiting George Town and the most popular tourist attraction!

Really worth a visit is the colorful Kek Lok Si Temple near George Town which is home to more than 10.000 Buddha statues!
It’s also an impressive adventure to visit the Snake Temple – 12 km from George Town. Inside of the temple it was so tranquil, the air was filled with holy smoke and the snakes seemed to be asleep – luckily!

 

Cameron Highlands

The Cameron Highlands is a popular destination for Malaysia visitors who want to escape some days from the hot climate. Above all, the stunning hill station is a perfect place for hiking! There a plenty of hiking trails, we had been up to the Gungung Brinchang and inside the moosy forest. Easily you can stay there a few days, it’s so relaxing there. For exploring the area and the beautiful green tea plantation it is best to hire a motor scooter. It was fun driving around and to stop wherever we found a great place for taking pics and drinking tea. Just near to each tea plantage are cute tea-shops where we tried some delicious black teas. Additionally you can visit plenty of tourist attractions like butterfly farm, strawberry farm, Cactus Valley and Honey Bee Farm. Visiting the Cameron Highlands was a highlight of our Malaysia itinerary and should be high up on any bucket list.

For the night we stayed in Tanah Rata, in this little town there are plenty of backpacker accommodations, tour operators and it’s a perfect starting point for exploring the Cameron Highlands area. Moreover, there are lots of delicious Indian restaurants.

Kuala Lumpur

Kuala Lumpur is one of the most popular destinations for backpackers in South East Asia and such a great city to visit! The Petronas Twin Towers with its 452 m are just breath taking and the must-see in this town. You should go there in the evening, then the towers are alight, and they look even more majestic! If you love shopping you have to go inside the towers, there are plenty of different shops and restaurants inside. Additionally we visited the Aquarium in this huge complex. We didn’t go up to the towers but we visited the nearby Menara KL Tower with 421 m. From there you will get the most fantastic view of the town and trough the Petronas Twin Towers. Even though the Petronal Twin Towers are the main attraction in Kuala Lumpur, there a plenty of other sights to visit.

Another must see it’s the Merdeka Square with the tallest flagpole in the world, Jamek Mosque the Masjid Negara Mosque and the Planetarium Negara. Also cool is the Bird Park in Kuala Lumpur, a giant garden full of different Asian birds flying around freely. You can admire the colorful parrots, there are flamingos and even hornbills.

We stayed in China town, a vibrant backpacker district in Kuala Lumpur. There a plenty of backpacker guest houses and it’s located very centrally with walking distance to many sights. Additionally you will have a wide range of shops, tasty restaurants and food stalls. If you want to read more about KL, check out the Kuala Lumpur Itinerary.

Batu Caves

Just around 15 km north of Kuala Lumpur are the spectacular Batu Caves. Visiting the most important Hindu temple outside of India was just an incredible experience – we had been to India before – but still we were amazed. There is a 15m tall version of the Hindu God Hanuman just at the entrance of the cave. Full of adrenalin we walked up the 272 stairs to enter the caves. That was quite fun cause lots of monkeys where waiting for us. The Batu Caves are unbelievable huge – just feel free to walk around and take pics – but don’t forget you have to be dress properly before entering the holy caves!

 Tioman Islands

Malaysia has, like Thailand, plenty of islands to explore. We were in Tioman, but just for one night because sand flees disturbed our stay. Although Tioman is really beautiful we had to leave the island on the next day to avoid some more nasty bites – Luckily we had been spoiled with great beaches and islands on our Thailand Island Hopping trip so it was okay for us to leave earlier.

Because of the better budget options, backpackers prefer to stay at Salang and Air Batang.

 

Taman Negara National Park

If you guys not have enough time to flight to Borneo but you would love to visit the jungle you should definitely visit the Taman Negara National Park. The place is a paradise for nature lovers and it’s well known for the deep jungle trails, camping and rafting tours. Rainforest tours and excursions can be booked in may agencies and hostels in advanced.

Generally, the better budget options can be found outside the park while inside you are going to find anything from luxury chalets to basic campsites.

Borneo in Malaysia – Sarawak & Sabah

 

All in all, for us, Borneo was just an incredible adventure and we can say it’s a real paradise for backpackers. Borneo is located on the other peninsula of Malaysia and cheap flights are offered amongst others from KL to both, Sarawak and Sabah. We were inside of deep jungles, we saw plenty of wildlife and we were on top of the highest mountain of South East Asia.

If you’d like to read more about backpacking in Borneo/Malaysia, check out – Borneo Backpacking Itinerary

 



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Czech Republic Road Trip Itinerary

Czech Republic road trip itinerary

 

The Czech Republic is a fantastic travel country, spoiled with culture, great architecture and amazing nature jewels. With around 2000 Castles, it is the most castle dense region in the world. The local food is more than delicious! You will feel like you’re in paradise if you are not a vegetarian. And do not miss the opportunity to try some of the world’s best beers! Our 12-day road trip through Czech Republic was an amazing experience and gave us the chance to see some of the best sights.

We had been to Praha years ago, but this summer we decided to explore some other parts of the Czech Republic. The Czech Republic road trip took us around 12 days, we visited some of the best places. So in this blog post we will share our Czech Republic itinerary with you and give you a useful overview if you are planning a trip there.

At the end of this Czech Republic road trip itinerary you will find useful insider tips for visiting the Czech Republic!

Let´s explore the Czech Republic! Here is our Czech Republic Itinerary for a perfect road trip:

 

Cesky Krumlov

Day 1-2: Cesky Krumlov is one of the most beautiful small towns in Europe. Though most people just visit it for a day trip, we spent 3 days in this beautiful village and we didn`t get bored. The Historic Center is a UNESCO World Heritage Center, with beautiful bright colored buildings, which give you great photo motives.  From the Cesky Krumlov Castle you will have a brilliant view to the town below and also the view from the tower of the Castle is breath-taking. If you like art, you should absolutely visit the Egon Schiele Art Centrum. The best goulash and beer we had in the Eggenberg Brewery – the stuff is a bit grumpy there but the food is delicious. We recommend to stay the night in the Hotel Myln, located just next to the river – sure you will love the view!

Hluboka Castle

Day 3: Visiting Hluboka Castle is like visiting a fairy tale and it’s known as one of the most beautiful castles in Czech Republic. The locals call it the Czech Neuschwanstein Castle! You should be there in the early morning to avoid the crowds. Actually, visiting the Hluboka Castle was a highlight at the Czech Republic road trip! Located  only 170 metres from the Hluboka Castle is the Hotel Stekl, which is one of the best places to stay in this area.

Heading to the Marianske Lazne, we came around to the Temelin nuclear power station – that was quite scary for us. In Austria we do not have any of them – and this one is one of the oldest and most unsecure in Europe. It looks giant with its 155 m high cooling towers.

Marianske Lazne – Marienbad

Day 3-5: The Marianske Lazne town offers lovely parks and elegant, historical buildings. You shouldn’t miss the “singing fountain” next to the beautiful yellow baroque Colonnades. The different composition of the town’s numerous springs makes it the perfect place to treat a wide variety of ailments.

We loved our stay in the Danubius Hotels – the renovated old hotel was a hotspot of the aristocracy, so bathing in Roman style baths with its original red pillars from 1896 was a great experience! If you want to see the Roman baths you have to book a room in one of the Danubius Hotels in Marianske Lazne. They are all connected with a tunnel and you can use all the amenities.

Karlovy Vary – Karslbad

Day 5-6: The main reason people are visiting this picturesque spa village is because of the healing hot drinking water. You will see plenty of people strolling around with a little cup with water in their hand. The water is for free, you can buy one of the pretty drinking cups and try it!
It’s beautiful to wander around the promenade, take some pics and eat some sweet typical Karlovy Vary wafers. For a special city view: There is a great photo spot next to villa Lützow. The lovely town has plenty of amazing historical buildings and hotels. Our favorite choice is the Hotel Ontario, which looks back upon a 150 year-long tradition!

Bohemian Switzerland National Park

Day 7: With incredible sandstone rocks like the Pravcicka brana, the Bohemian Switzerland is a must see in the Czech Republic. The main starting point for hiking is Hrensko – but don’t stay there for the night – it’s too crowded there. Our recommendation: Go with the car inside the park and stay in Mezna. It’s a quiet and an idyllic place, in the early morning you can even see deer. Mezna is perfectly next to the hiking round trail – so it’s a fantastic starting point too. Be aware that the Pravcicka brana opens at 10:00, it was not fun standing in front of closed doors because we had been too early. We would recommend to go there in the late afternoon, to avoid the crowds and to have the best light for taking pics.

The roundtrip takes around 5 hours where you will pass the Edmunds Gorge with a boat. If you fancy to see more, you can extend your hike and visit the Wild Gorge. For the night we stayed at Penzion Na Vyhlídce, a lovely accommodation and great startig point for the walking trails.

We had some time left, so we did a half day excursion to Germany to visit the famous Bastei Bridge.

Bohemian Paradise – Cesky Raj

Day  8-9: Hiking in Cesky Ray was just amazing. Dramatic rock formations located in deep shady forests– doped with the fairy tale castle Hrubá Skála. This castle, which is nowadays a hotel, was also our starting point for the hiking trail – there is a great roundtrip that takes about 3 hours when you’re walking. At best, you take a map in front of the castle! The Mariánská vyhlídka viewpoint features a fantastic view to Hruba Skala. You will find it on the yellow path. Another great viewpoint is the Vyhlídka na Kapelu –from where you can see a group of rocks called “Kapela”.

Prague

Day 10-12: It was our second time in Prague and again it was a fantastic stay. Honestly, Prague is one of our favorite cities in Europe –a mix of culture, vibrant lifestyle and good food. Don`t miss the Prague Castle, the Charles Bridge and the Old Town Square with its Astronomical Clock. Tons of tourists pass the popular Charles Bridge every day – but just a few are going up to the Charles Bridge Tower. From there you will have an outstanding city view.

If you have some time left, you could also visit the Karlstejn Castle, 30 km from Prague. It’s a special looking Gothic Castle and with its blue roofs –  it looks like out of a Disney Movie.


 

Czech Republic Insider Tips

  • Where to eat: The best goulash you will get in the Eggenberg Brewery in Cesky Krumlov
  • Flights to Czech Republic: We can recommend to check Skyscanner for cheap flights.
  • What to drink: Beer that’s for sure – Czech Republic is famous for its beer production
  • Where to stay: Myln Hotel in Cesky Krumlov, The Danubios Hotel in Marianske Lazne, The Vienna House in Karlsbad
  • Souvenirs: Take some typical Czech Wafels from Mariankse Lazne or Karlovy Vary back home – in Prague you pay the triple price more for them
  • Bohemian Switzerland: It’s just next to Germany, so it would be possible to visit Leipzig and the Bastei Brigde.
  • Opening hours: The opening hours tend to be later than usual sometimes, so check them out before. Like the Pravcicka Brana have opening timings from 10:00-18:00.
  • Bohemian Paradise: The area is huge and there a lots of hiking trails – if you want to see the rock formations you have to go the Hubra Skala. In front of the castle you can buy a map.
  • Tours: Amazing day Tours from Prague to Bohemian Paradise and to Bohemian Switzerland NP can be booked at Prague Active.
  • Prague: The best view you will get from the Charles Bridge towers!



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Top things to do in Istria – travel highlights

One week in Istria/Croatia – top things to do in Istria

We love Istria! Each year we try to visit this amazing peninsula in Croatia.  It’s not too far from our hometown, just a 5-hour drive, so we are lucky to have this jewel just around the corner. Istria is easy to navigate, you can rent a car or take your own car like we did – anyway you need a car to visit all the great places.  We recommend Croatia in June – the weather is wonderful at this time – not too hot for visiting all the lovely places but warm enough to do some sunbathing and swimming at some of the most beautiful beaches.

We stayed in an apartment in Banjole, not far away from Pula – with a gorgeous view to the sea and it was a great starting point for all our excursions.

Let’s explore the best sights! Here is our list of the best things to do in Istria:

 

Top things to do in Istria

Istrian Riviera

Porec

Walking around the sea front of the peninsula Porec is pretty nice. There is the cute old town on one side and the deep blue Mediterranean Sea on the other side.  Perfect to wander around, have some delicious coffee and inhale the relaxed atmosphere.

Pula

Did you know that Pula has one of the most complete Roman Amphitheater in the world? And the best thing is, it’s not touristy at all there. You will easily get a parking spot in Pula, even in front of the arena. Pula is a student city – so there are plenty of young people around and the vibe is amazing. You will find lots of budget restaurants and bars, and additionally you get spoiled with the ancient roman culture, like a Forum, the Arch of Sergii and the Temple of August.

Although Pula is the largest city in Istria, the nature is not far away. Like the Kamenjak National Park, which is just 15 minutes from the city center by car.

Rovinj

Rovinj is one of the top highlights of Croatia. It has a really picturesque old town, with colorful houses and a photogenic seafront. It is for sure one of the most beautiful coastal towns in Istria and not without reason has it become a great tourist destination. Since it’s quite busy there, we recommend to go to Rovinj for a half day trip. The most stunning views you find at the top of the hill where the Cathedral of St.Euphernia is located and the view from the harbor is also breathtaking, especially when it becomes evening. We loved Rovinj because it’s perfect for wandering around. You will find cute shops, tasty restaurants and funky coffee shops in each tiny street.

Cap Kamenjak NP – Premantura

The Kamenjak National Park with its gorgeous nature is our number one place for Istria and we highly recommend a visit. You could just stay a week in this area with bathing on a different beach every day. The park is accessible by car, so for us it was perfect to explore all the nature jewels. We also found some great cliffs for cliff jumping!

Numerous bays and some of the best beaches of Croatia are waiting for you to explore.

The countryside of Istria

Istria is famous for its coast but there are lots of cute villages in the interior to visit. There are beautiful small hill towns like Motovun, with just 500 residents. It’s beautifully located at the top of a hill and it’s a really pretty photo motive too. Bale is also worth a visit – the lonely planet calls it “one of Istria’s best-kept secrets” – and we liked it too!  If you are a fan of adrenalin you should visit Pazin – there is a spectacular zip-line which crosses an impressive canyon. Additionally there is a beautiful secret waterfall, located a bit outside of Pazin. In Labin you will find a typical Croatian old town – wonderful to take some nice shots and just a few minutes away from Rabac – which has a nice beach and various hotels to stay at.

Bale

Bale is also worth a visit – the lonely planet calls it “one of Istria’s best-kept secrets” – and we liked it too!

Limski Fjord – Lim FJord

Located north of Rovinj the Lim Fjord is one of the most beautiful nature spots of the Istrian peninsula. From the observation platform you will have a fantastic view!

Motovun

There are beautiful small hill towns like Motovun, with just 500 residents. It’s beautifully located at the top of a hill and it’s a really pretty photo motive too.

Labin & Rabac

In Labin you will find a typical Croatian old town – wonderful to take some nice shots and just a few minutes away from Rabac – which has a nice beach and various hotels to stay at.

Zarecki Krov Waterfall & Pazin

If you are a fan of adrenalin you should visit Pazin – there is a spectacular zip-line which crosses an impressive canyon. The village is cute and there is also nice castle to visit.

Just near Pazin,  there is a hidden nature juwel – the Zarecki Krov Waterfall.


PlacesOfJuma – Insider Tips Istria

  • Where to eat: Pizzaria Nepton in Pula, serves some good pizza and their meat plates are delicious
  • Best sunset: Visit Rovinj for sunset – there are a few seafront bars with great sunset view
  • Where to stay: Apartment with view
  • Markets: visit the local fish market in Pula
  • Parking in Pula is easy, best you take one in front of the Colosseum
  • Fun: visit the Safari bar inside the Premantura Parc!
  • Car rental: for moderate prices check out skyscanner.com/carhire
  • Flights:  you will find some great deals @skyscanner.com



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Marrakech in 3 days: Itinerary and Tips for Marrakech

Marrakech in 3 days: Itinerary and Tips for Marrakech

Marrakech, also known as Morocco’s red city, is the fourth biggest city of the country and one of the top cities to visit in Morocco. No matter if you are going there for a city trip or as a part of a Morocco road trip – the vibrant old town of Marrakech (Medina) will enchant you, that’s for sure. Enjoy the unique flair of the famous Djemaa el Fna square and watch the snake charmers’, acrobats’ and drummers’ show. Drink delicious mint tea inside the oriental Medina and explore Marrakech`s Old Town which is fully packed with history and culture. Don`t mind getting lost, there is a surprise around each corner. 3 Days in Marrakech is the perfect amount of time to explore all the best sights and places of this magical destination.

In this itinerary for Marrakesh you are going to read more about the most amazing things to see and the best sights that shouldn`t be missed. On top, we are going to provide you with some useful tips and hotel recommendations for your next city trip to Marrakech. Follow the itinerary to get the most out of your stay!

So let`s explore Marrakech! Here is our itinerary for 3 days in Marrakech.

 

Day 1 in Marrakech

The Medina – Old town Marrakech

The ancient walled old town named Medina is a narrow labyrinthine of alleys and oriental souks. Beneath each corner there is something interesting to see – so don`t mind getting lost. The medina is really mysterious, a bit noisy, with lots of hustle and bustle and so wonderful colorful and exotic. Full with history and culture, strolling around in is like stepping back in time and also many of the top sights of Marrakech are located inside the Medina. Getting lost inside the medina is the best start to explore the city.

El Badi Palace

Our first stop was the El-Badi Palast, an ancient ruined palace built at the end of the sixteenth century. We walked through the vast courtyard with its huge pools and the sunken gardens, where orange trees were blooming. Our Tip: When you climb up the ruined ramparts of the palace, you will get the most wonderful view of the medina on the one side and on the other side of the palace with the Atlas Mountain in the background.

Place des Ferblantiers

On your Way to El-Badi Palace and Bahia Palace you are likely to cross this place. There are some great shops selling traditional Moroccan hand crafts, souvenirs and aromatic spices. There is not too much hassle and we were amazed by all the beautiful Moroccan lamps!

Bahia Palace

Not getting enough of exploring Marrakesh best sights, we went to the famous Bahia-Palace. The palace means „The Beautiful“ – and it’s truly an architectural beauty! For sure you will love the stunning mosaics and fascinating history about the palace of a former Grand Vizier. The Bahia Palace should not be missed – it’s a main attraction of Marrakesh.

Djemaa el Fna & the Snake Charmers

Visiting the Djemaa el Fna was quite an adventure! At daytime it’s the home of the Snake Charmers, Water Sellers, Story Tellers, and Henna Makers – at night the food stalls open and you will smell the delicious Moroccan cuisine.
It’s best to watch the goings-on at the sunset from one of the terrace cafes while enjoying a mint tea.

 

An amazing viewpoint you will find at the Le Grand Balcon Cafe Glacier!

Day 2 in Marrakech

Jardin Majorelle – Majorelle Garden

The next day we left the medina to visit the Jardin Majorelle, but even though we arrived earlier, there were lots of people who were waiting to see the gardens. No wonder, it’s the most visited site in Morocco.
The Garden is just beautiful, a little oasis in the middle of the chaotic city. 300 different exotic plants, pretty fountains, cobalt blue colored bridges and buildings- this lovely place offers some fantastic photo motifs! Visiting the Majorelle Garden was our highlight of all the 3 days in Marrakesh!

Souks of Marrakech

The souks of Marrakesh are also located inside of the medina. We wandered around for a while just watching the ongoing spectacle, even if you are not up to buying something, it’s a great experience: The mixture of the smell of spices with the fume of the motorbikes, the butcher selling his meat next to the pottery stall, the shouts of the shop holders – donkey wagons on the buzzling tiny streets.

Our Tip: Try to bargain and never take the first price. You can bargain up to 1/3 of the first price!

Koutoubia Mosque

Nearby the Souks and just next to Djemaa el Fna, you will find the Koutoubia Mosque- Marrakesh largest Mosque. This eye-catching building, the minaret is built about 70 meters from the ground, is surrounded by a beautiful huge garden area. The mosque is closed for Non-Muslims, but can be visited with guided tours.

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Day 3 in Marrakech

 

Medersa Ben Youssef & Dar Bellarj

The last day of our stay in Marrakech, we got up early again to make the most of the day. First, we visited the Medersa Ben Youssef, a historic Islamic school. This magnificent building with its stuccowork and wood carving is a must see in Marrakesh. Take your time to explore this masterpiece! We stayed there quite a long time to enjoy the incredible architecture and the stuccowork. Our tip for photographers: for good shots, it’s better to come early in the morning.

Menara Gardens

After some refreshing orange juice, we went to see the Menara Gardens. It’s a lovely place to see. We rounded the big pool and watched the locals enjoying their day. Some children jumped into the water, some guys played guitar and families were having picnicks. It was really relaxing and different from the hectic city life in the old town of Marrakesh. Entrance to the gardens is free but it’s located a bit outside so you have to go by taxi.

New Town

Actually, the new city of Marrakech is really cool and modern and a contrast to the old city. It’s very new and modern with plenty of shops like H&M, Zara, Starbuck and McDonalds there. Our Tip: Get some delicious ice-cream from the famous 16 Cafe – it’s known to serve the best desserts in town!


 

What to eat/drink in Marrakech

We loved to eat Moroccan food, the tajines are delicious. Tajine is a traditional meal, named after the special pot in which it is cooked. Try the kefta tajine (meatballs in an egg and tomato sauce) and the lemon tajine (chicken, olives and citrus fruits). And what to drink: Mint tea! Green tea, blended with fresh mint and plenty of sugar. And freshly squeezed orange juice – it’s best in Morocco!

Where to stay in Marrakech

Riad Dar Fangui was actually a good choice for starting our Morocco trip. It’s located in the center, with a nice rooftop terrace, charming rooms and a budget price. After checking in, our host served us some delicious traditional mint tea – we immediately felt welcome. The terrace had a fantastic view to the roofs and the nearby Moulay El yazid Mosque, so we stayed there for a while just to relax.

NOTE: Fresh mint tea is the welcome drink in Morocco –and it’s a part of the Moroccan hospitality.

The Riad Irene is a real oasis in this chaotic city – it was so calm and peaceful. Actually it is our favorite hotel in Marrakesh. Incredibly, there’s a big banana tree growing from just inside this place! The rooms are just beautiful with lot of details and the rooftop terrace was really cozy. Pascal and Irene, the hosts, were just amazing, providing useful information and insider tips of Marrakesh to their guests. Every morning we were spoiled with a fantastic breakfast – with freshly squeezed orange juice, yoghurt, cake and delicious milk coffee.

 


PlacesOfJuma – Insider Tips Marrakesh

  • Where to stay in Marrakesh: Choose one of the typical Moroccan style riads – there is a wide range of different types in all price classes.
  • Negotiate prices: Try to bargain – never take the first price. You can bargain up to 1/3 of the first price! You should bargain in souks and with the taxi prices
  • Avoid Ramadan: most restaurants and lots of shops will be closed at daytime.
  • Best travel time Morocco: Spring and autumn are the most popular times to visit. The weather is the most pleasant at this time.
  • Best views of Marrekesh: Visit one of the rooftop cafes at the Djemaa el Fna!
  • Photography: Marrakech is a great place for photography – but at the Djemaa el Fna you have to pay for taking pics with the snake charmers or other artists.
  • European food: If you fancy eating some European food you should visit the New City of Marrakesh. There you can find pizza, ice-cream, burger and lots of different stores.
  • Shopping in Marrakesh: There are huge souks inside of the Medina, where you can buy spices and morocccan souvenir. The big shopping malls are located in the New City.
  • Parking Marrakech: There are no parking possibilities inside the Medina, so we picked up our rental car the next day and started with our Morocco round trip. (Read more > Morocco roadtrip)
  • ATP-Tournament Grand Prix Hassan II takes place each year in March – for more information you can visit the ATP-Homepage.

Read more about Morocco:

 


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