7 Unforgettable Experiences In Marrakech
It´s a long time ago when I visited Marrakech the first time. Back then it was almost the last stop of a two weeks road trip through Morocco. After long driving hours, nights in the desert, being with locals in their homes and villages (my big advantage at that time was, that my boyfriend in those days was Moroccan himself), I was back in a big city with all kinds of amenities. I still remember that the entire trip was magical and my boyfriend and I had already some unforgettable experiences in Marrakech and Morocco in general.
But, we only had two days and couldn´t explore too much.
That´s why I was so excited to be back in that awesome city for a whole week this time and discover the city!
There are quite a lot of things to do while you´re here in Marrakech. Some you can do but a few you have to do otherwise you can´t say that you´ve been here. So continue reading and find out which unforgettable experiences you can have in Marrakech!
Resources & Recommendations
- FREEBIE – The ultimate travel checklist so that you never forget anything when you plan your next trip!
- Momondo* – Find the best prices on flights.
- Booking.com*/ Airbnb – Find the best accommodations. You´ll get a discount on your first booking through Airbnb of 25€/ 30$ if you use this code: pbecker105
- GetYourGuide*– Find exclusive and unique sightseeing tours in Marrakech!
- Best Free Travel Apps – Find useful apps for your travels!
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Experiences And Things To Do In Marrakech
I won´t lie to you. Not all the things are magical in Marrakech. A couple of them are quite annoying and, at least for me, pretty stressful. But in the end, they are also kind of unforgettable! No worries, I´ll tell you about those things as well.
But first things first, the following list shows seven things and experiences you can´t miss while visiting Marrakech.
1. Take A Stroll Through The Souk
First of all; take a stroll through the Souk of the Medina. It is part of the old and walled city where you can find all the bazaars, shops, and markets. You´ll find all kinds of goods, like herbs and spices, lamps, wicker works, natural cosmetics, traditional Moroccan clothes, and much more.
Have a walk through the Souk and have a look at all those goods, and maybe trying your luck with haggling with the shop owners about the prices. It is a must-do in every Moroccan city, but especially in Marrakech, it is a fun and unforgettable experience.
But be prepared! As usual on such markets, and (*prejudice-mode on*: in every Arabian country, *prejudice-mode off*) the people try their best to catch your attention to look into their shops and sell you all kind of things. If you don´t want to deal with them at all, the best is to not pay attention to them at all. Unfortunately, it also makes it impossible to shop around in a more or less relaxed manner.
Tip: The Souks near Palace de la Bahia are a bit quieter and more relaxed than the one on the other side, at the Dar El Bacha Musée Des Confluences.
One more thing to be prepared for is the fact that these streets are not only for pedestrians. There are all kinds of transport vehicles around like bicycles, donkey carriages, and especially, mopeds. Mainly, the last ones are so annoying and stressful (at least for me). After walking through the souks, I always needed some quiet time to calm down again.
Bonus Tip: Stay whether on the right or left side but never in the middle of the street, and your life will be quite easier here in Marrakech!
2. Eat Traditional Moroccan Food
If you are in Marocco, of course, you need to taste traditional Moroccan food and dishes. The simplest way of getting some traditional food is when you stay in a riad. Most of them offer an additional lunch and dinner menu, and you usually can choose from a variety of modern interpreted dishes or traditional Moroccan ones!
The most popular ones are Tajine and Couscous in all variations; with lamb, chicken, or vegetarian! There is something for everyone´s taste! But also Harira, a light vegetable soup which I found perfect for lunch during the hot time of the day! Or a Bissara, a rich and hearty soup made from dried fava beans. Usually, it´s topped with fresh olive oil and a sprinkle of cumin.
Of course, fresh-squeezed orange juice a real thing everywhere in Morocco, as well as the Moroccan “Whiskey”; a green tea with mint leaves and a lot of sugar (the national drink of Morocco). I love that tea and could drink it all the time (what can I say, I´m a sugar junkie…). For more traditional food and dishes check out this article of the “Local Adventurer” with 21 Moroccan Foods You Must Try In Morocco!
Tips For Eating In Morocco
If you want to eat outside or on one of the markets be careful. The better restaurants are usually safe, but just in case, consider the following to prevent you from food-sickness:
- Don´t eat anything which isn´t pealed, which also means eating salad can be an issue, which might be considered well. Mainly in the markets, people usually use dirty water to wash the food. And you´ll never know if your stomach gets used to it.
- Don´t eat raw meat! In general, if it´s cooked well done, it´s safe!
- Don´t drink water from anywhere than out of a bottle! Also in your riad, hotel, or hostel, it´s good to brush your teeth with, but don´t swallow or drink it!
- No ice in your drinks! Although it´s tempting to have a cooling ice cube in your freshly squeezed orange juice, avoid having it in your drinks! You´ll never know of which kind of water it´s made!
3. Have A Hammam
What would be a visit to an Arabian Country without having Hammam treatment? Of course, there might be some differences between a hammam for locals or one for tourists. However, it should be on your list!
I went to the Aphais Spa, while my stay in Marrakech and I loved it! It was my first experience going to a Hammam and didn´t know what to expect. And yes, it was quite an experience and I´m so happy that I had it!
A hammam is an Arabian body treatment involving steam and cleansing black soap. A staff member takes care that you and your body get treated. So close your eyes, relax, and follow the instructions of the staff. That´s all! Afterward, you´ll feel like reborn, and your skin is soft like the one of a baby!
There are a few other Spas in the Medina, like the Hammam De La Rose, Les Bains de Marrakech Morocco, or Hammam Marrakech – Les Bains d` Azahara. All with great recommendations!
4. Stay In A Riad
A visit to Marrakech is not complete without staying in a Riad.
During my stay in Marrakech, I had the chance to get a room in two different riads. First I booked with Riad Sofia* an then at Monriad*, because then I met all the other weirdos from DNKation! Both are great, with pretty and immaculate rooms, a pool, and awesome rooftops!
It´s maybe not the cheapest possibility to stay in the city, at least, about other accommodations in Marrakech. But it´s worth every cent!
5. What About A Day Trip?
When you have enough time, like a week or more, you might think about seeing other places than Marrakech only. So what about a day trip then? Most popular trip destinations are:
Ourika Valley*; climb through a Berber village, over mountains, to spectacular waterfalls! You have several levels of the falls. As higher you climb as better are the views and fewer the people!
Essaouira*; a coastal town about three hours west from Marrakech! Are you interested in learning kite-surfing? That is the place to be for taking some lessons!
More possible day trips are the Cascade D´Ouzud or Ouzud Waterfalls*, Agafay Desert*, Imlil*, Ait Benhaddou, and Ouarzazate, also known as the Hollywood of Morocco as many movies like Gladiator, or 300 were filmed there.
Or my favorite; a trip to the desert of Merzouga*, which usually is a three-day trip.
There are several options for how you can book those trips, whether via a tour agency in Marrakech, your riad or hotel, or you do it all by yourself. All is possible. The most convenient one is probably clicking on the links above and book it right away online!
6. Of Course, Sightseeing
Of course, when visiting Marrakech, a little bit of sightseeing is a must-do as well! From the Palace de la Bahia, and Dar El Bacha Musée Des Confluences., the newest attraction; the Secret Garden, or Le Jardin Majorelle, and the Yves Saint Laurent Museum!
Be careful when you visit the big square Jamaa El Fna*! Diving in to the happenings of the giant square is one of the must-have experiences in Marrakech that giant market! Afterward, you might love it, or hate, but at least you´ll be impressed by its largeness, lively, and vibrant spectacle! Attention, when taking pictures, especially, of the snakes, as they expect money for it!
7. Explore Marrakech’s Rooftops
Away from the busy streets of the Souks with breathtaking views of Marrakech, and stunning sunsets, you´ll find a little bit of piece on the many rooftops of Marrakech. Almost every restaurant and riad has seating possibilities at the roof! Perfect for escaping the Souks for a little while or find delicious food! An unforgettable experience in Marrakech!
As many of the restaurants offer free WiFi, it´s also good for a work session. Just bring your laptop and call it your office for a couple of hours! With a cool drink, a hot Moroccan Tea and a light Harissa Soup, it´s like you´re in a different world!
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What are your experiences in Marrakech or Morocco? For me, it was an unforgettable experience not only in Marrakech and I would love to return once again! Have you been there? Do you want to visit? Tell me more about your memories or plans in the comments!