Marrakech is a beautiful city full of so many hidden pathways to explore, beautiful architecture to admire and treasures and trinkets to discover, but it can also be quite daunting too.
When you first wander into the Marrakech medina the general hustle and bustle of everyday life and the maze of souks can be a little intimidating, especially in the evening.
Sometimes we felt as though we were leaving the safety of our peaceful hotels and Riads and wandering into the overwhelming unknown.
But don’t let this put you off, just make sure to book a guide through your hotel the first time you head in.
They will help you familiarise yourself with every inch of your beautiful surroundings so you feel more at ease the next time you visit solo.
Also, take a look at some of our top tips below to ensure a pleasant and fulfilling visit:
- Research any scams before you head there. We didn’t do this and got caught out by a couple, the locals will often tell you the market is closing, or that they know a shortcut to somewhere, or they have an amazing restaurant you need to visit that’s really cheap… this is just a few of the scams that will see you out of pocket. Just be polite, thank them and continue moving on.
- Be sure to download the app; map.me as this is the only GPS map that worked for us and really helped us go from A to B super easily, although don’t always have your phone in your hand on display as the locals will know you’re looking for somewhere and you’ll be more of a target
- Do haggle! This is a must in Marrakech and actually quite fun. The Moroccan people will often start really high and you can spend time bartering them down to a fair (and usually a bargain) price. Only do this when you actually want to buy something though, or you’ll risk upsetting them!
We don’t want to spend any more of this post putting you off visiting Marrakech, it really is an incredible and vibrant city and somewhere everyone must visit on their travels.
One of our favourite things to do in the day was to get lost in the labyrinth of souks.
There are so many wonderful souvenirs to collect on the way including; personalised wicker hats and handbags, fresh mint tea leaves, tasty honey glazed pastry sweets, authentic Moroccan tea pots and glasses, and traditional Berber rugs made locally in the Atlas Mountains, just to name a few.
You will most definitely get lost, but that’s the fun of it!
Make sure to also visit the spices market too where you’ll find an array of beautifully colourful and fragrant flavourings for homemade tagines.
This is situated in a central square to all of the souks and there’s some lovely cafes and restaurants here too.
We also loved spending an afternoon at Ben Youssef Madrasa, an old and beautiful Islamic college founded in the 14th century and known to be one of the largest colleges in North Africa housing as many as 900 students when it was open.
If you want to fully immerse yourself in the beautiful architecture of Marrakech then Ben Youssef Madrasa should definitely be top of your list.
The mosaic tiled walls are breath-taking and the intricate golden plastering on the walls makes your heart flutter.
Another fantastic place to explore, just outside of the medina, is the YSL Majorelle Gardens; a twelve-acre, artist’s landscape, botanical garden, where the ashes of Yves Saint Laurent were scattered by friends and family.
The emerald green cacti against the bold blue and yellow painted buildings is definitely something to admire here, and snap for Instagram too, of course!
It’s incredibly peaceful, a retreat away from the hustle and bustle of the medina, and there is also a lovely café to get some relief from the sun in.
Whilst the beginning of this post may have warned you off Marrakech a little we hope that by the time you got to the end your love affair for this unique and diverse city had restored faith.