Ait Ben Haddou is a fortress, built on a hill to defend the city from marauders. In Moorish Spain they were called Alcazabas, and can be seen all over Andalucía. In Morocco they are called Kasbahs.
Ait Ben Haddou is situated near the town of Quarzazate, on the road between Marrakesh and the Sahara. It makes a nice stopover to break up the long journey.
For anyone interested in movie locations (anyone who reads regularly will know I’m fascinated by them) this place has been the setting for many movies. Gladiators with Russell Crowe was filmed here (our guide was proud to tell us how he had been an extra in this movie as a child), The living daylights was filmed here and The Mummy too, along with many, many others. It has been the setting for many a biblical epic and apparently it is also in the bafflingly-popular Game of Thrones (never watched it so can’t tell you which bit).
Nearby Atlas Film Studios stand as a testament to the popularity of the area for filming. You can go in the studios and have a look around, but on the day I went they were shut, for some undisclosed reason.