Marrakesh, Morocco Travel Guide
Marrakesh is well known around the world as the pink city of Morocco. It is one of the most beautiful cities found in Northern African region as well. Hence, a lot of tourists from around the world tend to visit Marrakesh throughout the year. It provides them with the opportunity to experience the breathtaking views, explore the unique architecture and have a great shopping experience.
When to Visit MARRAKESH
The months in between March and May is identified as the best time of the year available for all guests to visit Marrakesh. In addition, the months in between September to November can also be recommended for the tourists to enjoy a hassle free stay. That’s because these months fall into the shoulder seasons. We went in late September/early October and the weather was absolutely perfect.
How to Reach mARRAKESH
If you are an international traveler, you will need to come to the Medina Airport to arrive in Marrakech. You can easily find airport transfer services online before arriving to avoid any hassle at the airport and they can take you to Marrakech from the airport. You will be able to get a taxi for around 30USD if you opt for this route make sure you arrange and confirm the price with the driver before. In addition, it is possible to use the public transportation options, the bus. However, they will take relatively more time, when compared to the airport taxis or transfers.
Getting Around MARRAKESH
It’s pretty easy for all the tourists to get around in Marrakesh by a taxi or by foot. Walking in Marrakesh can get a little maze like so we recommend using a local map or download Google Maps to phone and use it offline. Travelers are encouraged not to ask for directions from the locals in Marrakesh. That’s because they will show the directions and ask for money in return. Therefore, all guests should politely decline all the locals who approach to offer assistance. Also, beware of people saying the place you are going is closed and trying to lure you elsewhere. We got this a few times and we weren’t sure what their motive was but it probably wasn’t good.
MARRAKESH travel tips
It has been identified that a lot of tourists who visit Marrakesh tend to become victims of tourist traps. Therefore, you will need to take appropriate steps to make sure that you don’t become a victim of tourist traps like that. In order to ensure that, you need to be aware of individuals who will try to put different items, such as jewelry and snakes on you. Also, when in crowded areas beware of pickpockets.
Marrakesh is an ideal destination for bargaining. All the prices that you are quoted with can be neogtiated. Therefore, the tourists are strongly encouraged to bargain as much as possible. Then it is possible to make sure that you are not overspending your money during the stay in Marrakesh. Also, bargaining and haggling is part of the culture so it seemed like it was expected.
Tap water that can be found in Marrakesh is not drinkable. You are always encouraged to take bottled water along with you. You can easily purchase bottled water from the local shops. They are readily available as well. Be careful purchasing water on the streets though as there have been cases of them rebottling used bottles with tap water and then heating the cap to reseal it.
When you are in Marrakesh, you are not encouraged to ask for directions from the locals. That’s because the locals would ask for money after they provide help to you. Some of them will voluntarily approach you to provide assistance. You must politely reject them.
Try staying in a riad instead of a hotel or resort. To get a unique and a more authentic experience stay at a riad. Riads are traditional Moroccan houses and most have an open garden in the center. Most of these riads will have a full kitchen and menu as well so you can order a home cooked meal at anytime.
Don’t rent a car. It’s an absolute mad house driving in the city and there is nowhere to park. The roads are also very narrow.
Wear a good pair of shoes. You will spend a lot of time walking through the cobbled stone streets so good footwear is key to not twist an ankle and reduce you feet from aching after a long day of walking on the uneven stoned streets.
Try the local cuisine. There are so many unique flavors and spices in Marrakesh and Morocco that you won’t find anywhere else in the world. If you want something safe just start out with a Tajine and go from there!
Typical Costs in marrakesh
Price Range for Hotels
Marrakech is not an expensive city. It is possible for the guests to enjoy their stay in Marrakech without spending a fortune. For a decent riad it will cost around $100USD to $170 a night. For a hostel you are looking at $5-10USD.
Cost of Meals
For example, you will only have to spend around 50 Moroccan Dirhams to enjoy a meal at one of the inexpensive restaurants. If you go for a three course meal, you will have to spend around 200 Moroccan Dirhams. If you are trying to save money try some of the delicious street foods as they are cheap and good.
Top Places to Visit in marrakesh
Medina Souks are one of the most popular tourist attractions that can be found in Marrakesh. The narrow alleyways deliver a unique experience to all the guests, along with vibrant sounds, scents and colors. Plenty of shopping opportunities are also provided for the guests who visit Medina Souks.
Jemaa el-Fnaa is a large square, which is located near the entry to Medina. It is a diverse hub of snake charmers, fortune tellers, storytellers, musicians and bric a brac stalls. You will be able to get a clear picture of Morocco by visiting Jemaa el-Fnaa. You can find a large number of cafes in the region as well.
Koutoubia Mosque is another popular landmark found in Marrakech. This landmark is 70m high and it can be seen from every corner of the town. This mosque has got a rich history as well. You will be impressed by the unique architecture that you can discover in here.
Medersa Ben Youssef
Medersa Ben Youssef is a historical landmark, which was constructed back in 1500s. It is the biggest theological college in the country. It was the home to more than 900 students back in the day. You will be able to witness how they learned during the visit to Medersa Ben Youssef. The Medersa Ben Youssef has been designed according to Islamic architecture style as well.
The Saadian Tombs
The Saadian Tombs is a burial ground, which belongs to the 16th Century. You can find the tomb of Al-Mansour, who is one of the ancient rulers of the country. In addition to his tomb, the tombs of his family members and soldiers are also found in Saadian Tombs.
One of the most popular and most iconic gardens in the city. Which is why you will likely encounter a ton of tourists here. It opens at 8am so try to be there upon opening to avoid huge lines. It hosts plants from 5 continents and features a beautiful blue art deco house on the property.
The Bahia Palace is considered one of the masterpieces of Moroccan architecture and one of the major monuments of the country’s cultural heritage. It’s a massive palace designed with great detail and the architecture is stunning.