Guetting To Marrakesh

Airlines

Marrakech is most easily accessible by air. The major airlines are national carrier, Royal Air Maroc and British Airways. Some of the budget carriers include Atlas Blue (Royal Air Maroc franchise), GB Airways (a British Airways franchise), EasyJet and Ryanair.

Air fares

Since budget airlines began services to the city, it has become remarkably cheap to travel there. Fares from London Gatwick, London Stansted and Luton airports start from as low as £1 one way plus taxes. It’s possible to get a return fare for under £100 if you book ahead.

Marrakech International Airport

The formerly modest airport is currently undergoing massive expansion in order to accommodate the vast number of flights to the city. Located just 4 km (2 miles) from the centre of town, the drive takes no more than six or seven minutes.

Airport taxis

Taxis gather in the car park outside the Arrivals terminal. Even though all taxis are metered, they are never actually switched on for the airport run.

By train

The colonial-era train station receives daily services from Rabat, Casablanca and Tangier. With time on your hands (and money to spare), you can take the Eurostar from London to Paris, and then the daily TGV service to Algeciras in Spain. From Algeciras it’s a ferry ride to Tangier.

By bus

The national bus company, CTM, running locally and out of town, is the best. Supratours runs buses between Marrakech and Essaouira.

Grands taxis

These shared taxis gather on Marché du Mellah and at the gare routière. They connect Marrakech with Casablanca, Fès and Essaouira. All the fares are fixed; just turn up and take a free seat.

Via sea from Spain

Ferry companies that provide sea links between Spain and north Morocco include the Spanish Transmediterrànea and Moroccan Comarit. The ride from Algeciras in Spain to Tangier takes around two hours. Málaga and Almería also have ferry links to Tangier.

Organised tours

Numerous companies offer Morocco packages and most include stays in Marrakech. Best of Morocco (www.moroccotravel. com) and Morocco Made to Measure (www. clmleisure.co.uk) are UKbased; Marrakesh Voyage (www.morocco-travelagency. com) is US-based; Yallah (www.yallahmor occo.com) is a reputable national operator.

The tunnel

In 2006, Lombardi Engineers (Swiss) were retained to build the ambitious tunnel connecting Spain and Morocco. The tunnel is expected to be completed by 2025.

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