10 Things to Do in Marrakech
Marrakech is a lively city by definition. Its vitality and allure have never ceased to capture the interest of tourists throughout the years. This city is rich both in culture and history, something that offers visitors a lot to explore and learn. There are countless things that you can do to make most of your time in this city. Here I listed for you the top 10 things that you can do during your stay in Marrakech:
1. Go to Jamaa El-Fna square
As commonly known, Jamaa El-Fna square is indeed the beating heart of Marrakech. It is one of the major centers in the city where people cluster not only from the city but from all over the world. In this vast yard, you will see everything on the move: funky musicians, snake charmers, Henna tattoo artists, and an occasional Helqa (a sort of street theatre)… etc. There are a bunch of carts where you can grab a fresh orange juice and restaurants with a terrace, from which you can have a full view of the Jamaa El-Fna busy square.
2. Navigate the Souks of the Medina
If you are ready to navigate a labyrinth of wonders and discover the Moroccan Cultural heritage, the medina (the old city) is the place for you. The Souks (traditional markets) are distributed along narrow alleys. They comprise a great deal of traditional Moroccan crafts. There you can browse all different kinds of goods: rugs, leather items, spices, fabrics, jewelry, teapots, traditional attires… etc. It’s a perfect place to purchase a souvenir. Though, make sure to bring out your bargaining skills as the prices could get exaggerated for the tourists sometimes.
3. Visit Historical Monuments
As Marrakech speaks of great history, you will be amazed by how many are historical monuments that you can visit. All of which reflects the grandeur of the Moroccan architecture and culture altogether. The soaring Koutoubia Mosque is a major landmark in the city. It plays an important role in the city skyline as it towers all the rest of the buildings. Aesthetically appealing, Bahia Palace is a true manifestation of the beauty of the Moroccan art of urbanism. Badii Palace, Menara Gardens, the gates and ramparts that long protected the city are definitely worth the visit.
4. Try Moroccan Cuisine
The Moroccan gastronomy is characterized by its richness, tastiness, and diversity as it interacted with other cuisines (Mediterranean, Berber, Arabic, European, sub-Saharian…) throughout the years. First of all, there is the classic Moroccan tea with mint. It is a very special drink for Moroccans and is consumed on a daily basis. Then comes the main course dishes that make a great part of the Moroccan identity: Tajine (a stew with vegetable and poultry or meat), Couscous (durum wheat with vegetables, olive oil, and meat), Pastilla or Bastila (a Moroccan pie prepared with chicken or seafood)…etc. Moroccan salad, Briouate, and Msemen are also a must-try.
5. Stay in a Riad
A Riad is a refined courtyard mansion. It is a traditional Moroccan house that is distinguished by its ravishing architecture. It is well centered on an exposed patio (a central dining room) where you can usually find trees, a fountain, or a swimming pool. The bedrooms, living rooms, and lounges are comprehensively allocated around the main patio. It is well decorated and furnished in a traditional yet exquisite way. It is said to portray the vision that Muslims have on paradise. The Riad is a recommendable accommodation place for tourists.
6. Go to El-Hammam
A Hammam is a traditional Moroccan public steam bath. Moroccans generally frequent it on a weekly basis and it should be found in every neighborhood. Moroccans go to the Hammam in order to scrub their skin and get a full-on deep shower. Not only does it exfoliate one’s skin and freshen it up with the help of the steam, but it is also a great place to relax and clear the mind.
7. Visit Majorelle Garden
Majorelle is a botanical garden that contains a wide collection of plants that reaches 300 species. It was established by Jacques Majorelle, a French painter in 1931. This garden is dyed in a beautiful deep shade of blue, which along with the plants’ vivacity and fragrance makes its finesse and charm its visitors. It is absolutely a great place to take photogenic pictures.
Opening Hours: every day from 8 am to 6 pm (or 5:30 pm)
Entry Price: 70 MAD
8. Go to the Museum
Before going out of Majorelle, you must visit the Yves Saint Laurent museum that is part of the Majorelle Garden Foundation. The museum contains an exhibition of Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé collection of Haute Couture works. Another great museum to visit is the Museum of Marrakech. It is situated next to the Ben Youssef Medersa. It comprises exhibitions of the Moroccan cultural legacy and occasionally hosts cultural activities.
To learn about the opening hours and the entry price, visit this website:
9. Visit Guéliz
Guéliz was built during the French protectorate over morocco. Being called the New Town in the 1930s, this neighborhood still reflects the modern side of Marrakech. In Guéliz neighborhoods, you’ll find many shopping malls in the European style, contemporary stores, and a lot of great deluxe or plain restaurants to grab food. Though it is less charming than the medina, it’s a great place to take a break from the intensity you may encounter elsewhere.
10. Have an adventure
Marrakech happens to be also a great starting point to initiate unforgettable trips. Marrakech is endowed with a magnificent scenic surrounding nature. Not too far from the city, you can go see Ozoud waterfalls, Atlas Mountains and the valley of Ourika, or go skiing in Oukaimden. Only 63 km from the Marrakech stands the highest peak in the Atlas Mountains and the climbers favorite: the mountain of Toubkal with an altitude that exceeds 4000m. Finally, you can set for one of the Sahara desert tours and enjoy a nice camel ride.