Marrakesh Guide

We had an extra bank holiday this month in England for the King’s coronation. So of course I took this opportunity to fly out to Morocco for 5 days. Keep reading for my personal Marrakesh guide.

Language Spoken: Arabic is the official language. However, most Moroccans are also fluent in French. Many people can also speak Spanish, Italian, and English.

Official Religion: Islam

Currency: Moroccan Dirham (MAD). This is a closed currency so it’s difficult to find it outside Morocco. You can convert your currency at the airport on arrival. Some taxis, hotels, restaurants, and shops will let you pay in Euros but it’s better to have the local currency.

Where is Marrakesh?

Marrakesh is a city in the North African country of Morocco. This city is located in South West region of the country, roughly 3 hours away from the Atlantic Ocean. Marrakesh is named “the red city” because of its pretty peach architecture.

What is Marrakesh famous for?

Be ready to shop til you drop! This city is quite famous for its souks (markets) located in the old town. You can buy so many beautiful things including clothes, tajine pots, cups, lamps, spices, and more! I am surprised that my luggage wasn’t over the limit. Marrakesh is also famous for its riads, which are traditional Moroccan houses with “palace style” architecture. Many have been converted into guest houses and rooms are rented to tourists. I stayed at Riad Laly, which was perfectly located in the centre of the Medina (old town).

How long should you spend in Marrakesh?

1 week is enough to spend in Marrakesh if you want to enjoy the city at a relaxed pace. You can see the highlights of the city in 2-3 days, spend 1 day in the Atlas mountains and do a day trip to the seaside town of Essaouira. Spring and Autumn are the best time of year to visit Marrakesh. I went to Marrakesh this month (May) and the temperature was between 30-38 degrees Celsius the whole trip. For me, this was too hot! but I’m sure it would be perfect for most people.

How to travel around Marrakesh

By foot-Marrakesh is easy to navigate. Most popular attractions are located in the medina which is very easy to navigate on foot (Bahia Palace, the souks, Koutoubia Mosque, Djema El Fna).

By taxi- There are a few attractions that are out of this area and you can take a taxi. But remember to haggle as they will not hesitate to quote you double or triple the price. I asked the host of my riad for quotes on what it should cost before taking taxis.

By Bus- There are many buses in Marrakesh and tickets cost around 5MAD (0.50 cents). You can pay on the bus with cash. Buses are not the best choice for tourists because they are crowded, and there are no announcements for each stop.

Tip: taxis from the airport to the city centre will try to charge you 250-300 MAD (£25-30) This journey shouldn’t cost you more than 100 MAD (£10). I would consider taking the L19 Airport Express bus on your way back to the airport when you leave. This costs 30MAD (£3) and the journey is very simple. There are various stops in the city centre.

Where to stay in Marrakesh

marrakesh morocco

Medina-If you are looking for a traditional feel then it’s better to stay in the Medina. This is where I stayed and it was very close to many attractions. It’s full of Riads (traditional Moroccan guest houses). This is ideal for first-time travellers, and easy to navigate on foot.

Gueliz- If you are looking to drink alcohol or incorporate nightlife into your trip then Gueliz is a better area to stay in. This area is the “new town” and has bars, nightclubs, and Western hotel chains.

Top Attractions

marrakesh morocco

Jemaa el-Fnaa- This square is full of restaurants, fresh fruit juice stalls, and street performers.

Souk Semmarine- The biggest shopping market in the city. Sellers will quote very high prices so don’t forget to haggle.

Bahia Palace- Beautiful palace from the nineteenth century.

Jardin Majorelle- A botanical garden designed by a French artist (Jacques Majorelle).

Koutoubia Mosque- This is the biggest Mosque in the city and it’s 70 metres tall.

Yves Saint Laurent Museum- Located next to the Jardin Majorelle and tells the history of this famous designer.

Saadian Tombs- These tombs contain the bodies of 60 important people from the Saadi dynasty.

Ben Youssef Madrassa- This historic landmark was the largest Islamic school in Morocco.

Le Jardin Secret– A beautiful riad garden.

Top Things to Eat

marrakesh morocco

Mint tea– This is poured from a height which is interesting to watch. I attempted it myself and it’s easier than it looks!

Tagine– Slow-cooked meat or vegetable stew (cooked in a special pot)

Chicken Pastilla– I have never tasted anything that compares. It looks like a dessert…but it’s a pie with both sweet and savoury ingredients. The one I ate was filled with spiced chicken and flaked almond nuts.

Cous cous– It looks like tiny rice, but it’s actually grains of rolled semolina wheat. This dish is served with a meat or vegetable stew.

Tangia– Tangia is a meat dish that involves slow-cooking red meat overnight in a clay pot that looks like an urn. Traditionally

Harira Soup– A thick soup made with lentils, lamb, chickpeas, and tomatoes.

Zaalouk– Aubergine and tomato salad/dip served with bread.

I hope this Marrakesh guide is useful for your trip planning. I had a nice time but would not say that it’s the best city in Morocco (based on my own experience and conversations with other travellers). Many people recommended Fez and Chefchaouen, so I’m sure I’ll be flying back to Morocco within the next year.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Leave a Reply


error: Content is protected !!