The Guide To Marrakech

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The riads

Morocco’s former capital city is loved by tourists and locals alike for its imperial history and its luxury resorts. Marrakech is one of the world’s must-see destinations. Why? It offers the best of everything – history, landscapes, food, beautiful weather… What’s not to love? It provides the authentic Moroccan experience you have been seeking. To clarify, it’s more than photos on Instagram! It has so much culture just waiting to be discovered.

Marrakech is known as the “red city” thanks to its red walls that enclose the old medina. Above all, expect jaw-dropping gardens, beautiful palaces and the hustle and bustle of the city’s main square. Its lively atmosphere will keep you busy throughout your travels. Its mix of modernity and authenticity will make it an unforgettable trip!

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If you want a dreamy location without a hefty price tag, Marrakech certainly has plenty to offer. Its local and traditional accommodation is idyllic, and you can stay at one of their many riads, which were once private homes for generations of Morrocans. These were sometimes even palaces for wealthier families. In addition, a riad will come with a central courtyard and garden.

You’ll be enchanted by the bright light flooding from above. Also, if you’re lucky, you may even get a swimming pool to take in the North African weather! The windows are facing the central courtyard, and there are very few outer windows.

Prices vary for your stay according to the size, the number of people and also the facilities. However, secret gardens and hammams may raise prices. Either way, you will fall in love with North African architecture, and the decadent surroundings. 

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The food

La Sultana
If you’re planning to live luxuriously, then La Sultana is the best riad for you. It has a beautiful outside pool surrounded by palm trees, and even has its own spa! You won’t get enough of the typical Moroccan furnishings and the stunning marble bathrooms. Above all, the decor is simply divine – you won’t want to ever go home!

Riad Azzar
Riad Azzar is situated in the heart of Medina and is very close to various tourist attractions – it’s ideal for your first trip! It has its own restaurant, an outdoor pool and a garden, you’ll have everything you can possibly need in one place. Though in a hotspot, you enter the riad and you are overcome with a sense of calm and serenity – just what you need for your vacation!

Riad Kasbah
This is another riad situated in the heart of Medina, and the view is spectacular! On the lower floor, you can find a stunning outdoor pool, and above, you can see the rooftop patio. Even at breakfast, you can admire your surroundings and the eye-catching Atlas Mountains while taking in the first few sunrays.

Riad Melhoun & Spa
Get the best of both worlds – stay at a riad that also is a spa! Just a short walk from El Bahia Palace, this riad is really something else! As well as a pool in the central courtyard, you can try the riad’s on-site hammam and live the luxurious lifestyle at the spa. The rooms are just as magical thanks to their extravagant furnishings…

Riad Elegancia
At Riad Elegancia, you can find authentic Moroccan furnishings and a decor that will take your breath away. It has 11 different rooms, all beautifully decorated, and if you go into the basement, you can enjoy its hammam and spa. You’ll be able to unwind in this beautiful location!

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Marrakech is a foodie’s haven! From luxurious restaurants to street food, get a taste for Morocco’s exquisite cuisine. You can enjoy Morocco’s traditional cuisine such as tajine and couscous which are quite the sensation to your taste buds! It is often overlooked for other international cuisines, so make the most of the occasion to taste authentic Moroccan food during your stay. Eat traditionally by eating when and where the locals eat. You know you’re getting great value for money and that you’re eating authentic Moroccan food.

Alternatively, you can eat at their luxury restaurants. The fanciest restaurants aren’t necessarily foolproof – be sure to use Trip Advisor to check out comments… Sometimes just because it is flashy, it doesn’t mean that the taste or the conditions are better than the street food! Feeling a bit apprehensive about the delicacies? We recommend you opt for vegetarian options to start off with, which are as equally as tasty!

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Its landscapes

  • Tajines
    One of the most well-known Moroccan dishes. It is a delicious dish in a special clay pot and is ideal for meat-eaters or vegetarians, as the options are endless. It is served hot and it sometimes comes with bread and olives – comfort food at its best!
  • Harira soup
    A hearty starter of a thick soup with lentils, beans and some meat. If you’ve worked up an appetite by wandering the streets of Marrakech, then this will be the perfect way to start your meal!
  • Pastries
    Moroccans have some tasty sweet treats in store for you! Check out their bakeries for some delicious and sugary comfort food that will leave you full and satisfied!
  • Tajines
    One of the most well-known Moroccan dishes. It is a delicious dish in a special clay pot and is ideal for meat-eaters or vegetarians, as the options are endless. It is served hot and it sometimes comes with bread and olives – comfort food at its best!
  • Harira soup
    A hearty starter of a thick soup with lentils, beans and some meat. If you’ve worked up an appetite by wandering the streets of Marrakech, then this will be the perfect way to start your meal!
  • Pastries
    Moroccans have some tasty sweet treats in store for you! Check out their bakeries for some delicious and sugary comfort food that will leave you full and satisfied!
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    As well as the ancient and red architecture of Marrakech and its surroundings, you can also visit outside the city walls and its countryside. There is so much to see in Marrakech – one trip may not be enough to see every part of the city.

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    The souks

    Discover the sand dunes of Merzouga, in southeastern Morocco, near the border of Algeria. Here, you can enjoy an hour’s camel ride to Kasbah, or get a 4×4, before traveling to your desert camp. You can enjoy the views under the stars while tucking into some delicious local cuisine. To sum up, it is quite the adventure and avid backpackers are bound to enjoy the experience!

    Tafraout painted rocks are also an incredible sight to behold. Belgian artist Jean Verame created an amazing art installation in 1984 by painting stones in pink and blue for a unique take on the Moroccan landscape. He sought the help of 20 local firemen to bring the artwork together, and therefore it has become the pulse of Tafraout life. They can be admired from the road, truly transforming the traditional desert views.

    Back in the city of Marrakech, you can wander around the beautiful Bahia Palace, which is one of the biggest landscapes in the city. It is an architectural masterpiece thanks to its beautiful interior and attention to detail. It is also an extravagant landmark to visit, and you can marvel at the plasterwork and marquetry throughout its 8000 square meters. You can tour around the Petit and Grand Riads, and the epic Cour d’Honneur, of which the floor is made of Italian Carrara marble. It is truly spectacular and well worth the stop!

    Jardin Majorelle is the perfect destination for fashion lovers far and wide. Legendary fashion designer, Yves Saint Laurent, chose the garden and villa with his companion, Pierre Bergé, back in 1966. The garden’s main feature is a fountain and pools of water lilies, creating quite the atmospheric backdrop for your next visit to Marrakech. The art deco style villa is vibrant and striking, and it truly stands out against the Moroccan landscape.

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    The souks are a strong part of Marrakech’s identity, and just have to be visited upon your travels. They date back to the medieval period and play an important part in the city’s history., They give you the perfect occasion to get acquainted with local artisans and traders.

    Each souk has its own speciality, so learn about them before choosing your souks. As a result, you can discover all the local handicrafts and talents of the city of Marrakech. Each souk’s most valuable items are in the heart of the souk with less expensive items spread around.

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    Which souks should I visit?

    • Souk Ableuh
      This is a small souk with plenty of energy! You can visit traders selling lemons, chilis and pickles. It is known as the herbs and spices souk – perfect for bringing home your own taste of Morocco.
    • Souk Semmarine
      This is the most popular souk amongst tourists. Upon arrival, you’ll find pastry sellers as well as colorful pottery that will make great souvenirs if you can bring them home! You can also find leather goods, shoes and jewelry if you want to bring authentic goods back with you.
    • Souk Chouari
      This is the souk for woodwork and basketry – highly-skilled artisans create all sorts of products for you to decorate your home with. You can expect handmade chess boards, jewelry boxes and coffee tables.
    • Souk Haddadine
      The Souk Haddadine is the blacksmith’s souk, and it is an amazing sight! You can see Aladdin-like lanterns hanging in all the shops as you wander around the souk. They work hard to create everyday items such as coat hangers, lanterns, locks and keys using traditional materials.
  • Souk Ableuh
    This is a small souk with plenty of energy! You can visit traders selling lemons, chilis and pickles. It is known as the herbs and spices souk – perfect for bringing home your own taste of Morocco.
  • Souk Semmarine
    This is the most popular souk amongst tourists. Upon arrival, you’ll find pastry sellers as well as colorful pottery that will make great souvenirs if you can bring them home! You can also find leather goods, shoes and jewelry if you want to bring authentic goods back with you.
  • Souk Chouari
    This is the souk for woodwork and basketry – highly-skilled artisans create all sorts of products for you to decorate your home with. You can expect handmade chess boards, jewelry boxes and coffee tables.
  • Souk Haddadine
    The Souk Haddadine is the blacksmith’s souk, and it is an amazing sight! You can see Aladdin-like lanterns hanging in all the shops as you wander around the souk. They work hard to create everyday items such as coat hangers, lanterns, locks and keys using traditional materials.
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