Column: Trip of a lifetime exploring gardens of the world

As we enter a new year many of us tend to reflect on our life and maybe some changes we can do to bring about a healthier and happier life.

About a month ago, we lost a dear friend suddenly. He was a happy, healthy 68 year old who was surrounded by a loving family. His heart just stopped.

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His parting has brought us to our knees. My husband and I have spent the past month putting in place plans should either one of us end up living a single life.

I am 68 years old. Hubby and I love to travel. Suddenly bucket list items started popping into our heads.

So folks, we are planning a trip to Morocco in 2019. We will be traveling to exotic places like Casablanca, Fez, Erfoud, the Atlas Mountains and Marrakesh.

One of the highlights of the trip is a visit to the Roman relics of Chellah and it gardens. The gardens are located in Rabat, the capital city of Morocco. The gardens are beautifully landscaped with hundreds of flowers that come into bloom in the spring, teasing visitors with an amazing variety of scents and incredible display of colours.

The gardens are located in the Citadel of Chellah that served as a home for people in the 12th century. It was later abandoned.

At the entrance to the gardens we will pass through a beautifully decorated door that was created by the Almohads, members of the Berber Muslim movement and dynasty that conquered the Spanish and North African empire in the 12th century.

Amongst the flowers you will see other attractions such as the ruins of a small mosque that was dedicated to Abou Youssef, a Palestinian militant who was assassinated by Israel over alleged involvement in the 1972 Munich massacre. Over the decades the Citadel of Challeh has also been used as the royal burial grounds where people such as Abou El Hassan,King of Morocco from 1961 until his death in 1999 and other leaders have been buried.

There are Roman ruins situated in the Challeh Gardens which can be explored quite easily. In the middle of the gardens there is a stone minaret which is one of the few Islamic artifacts found here.

This trip of a lifetime will certainly tick off many of the boxes including our love of gardens wherever we may travel.

So grab 2019 by the shoulders, give it a shake and see what adventures you should grab now and hold on to before our final sunset.

Happy New Year from all of us at the Richmond Garden Club. Visit us at richmondgardenclub.ca to find out upcoming events and for information about joining our dynamic Club.

Lynda Pasacreta is the current president of the Richmond Garden Club.

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