Morocco, a Golfing Odyssey
An initial of disbelief, swiftly followed by real pleasure, is the frequent response of the first-time visitor to the remarkable Kingdom of Morocco. Just 15 km from Spain, across the Strait of Gibraltar, three hours by air from the UK, this dazzling country thrillingly has escaped the creeping similarity that threatens to standardise identity in so many parts of the modern world.
Morocco, known to the Arabs as Maghreb el Aqsa, the farthest land of the setting sun, though welcoming the latest technical innovations, has spanned the centuries and, almost miraculously, preserved the colourful traditions, costumes and crafts of a past that many believed had vanished for ever.
Then one recalls that this is the land of the veiled Moorish warriors who crossed the Mediterranean and invaded Andalusia, dominating much of Spain for 800 years, creating a great civilisation that revolutionised medicine, mathematics and philosophy.
That reverence for beauty that led them to create the ethereal magnificence of the Aihambra in Granada, the Great Mosque of Cordoba and Giralda of Seville is now in action again as they call on the world’s top designers to produce these sporting masterpieces, boldly using the earth itself as their palate, from shorelands to forest, from the Atlas Mountains to the desert.