Marrakech, also known as the red city of Morocco is the perfect place for a short break or even a weeks holiday. It is close enough that travelling just for a long weekend is perfect, especially if you only have a few days holiday to use. We booked a long weekend trip at the beginning of December to catch some last rays of sunshine and it was the perfect break before Christmas. Here are some of the top things I suggest to do while in Marrakech:
1. Go shopping and bartering in the souks
Get yourself completely lost down the small windy alley ways and take in all the shops, the noise and smell. Shopping in the souks is an experience in itself and you can buy anything from bags, shoes, lamps, jewellery, rugs, spices, clothes, scarfs, sunglasses, teapots, toys plus a million and one other things. When you find something you like the seller will usually start off quite high with the price, I was advised by locals that they are usually willing to go to about 40% of what they start at so remember to haggle, its all apart of the experience. One thing I will say is make sure to keep your bag and belongings safe as like everywhere there is pickpocketing and watch out for the mopeds speeding.
2. Have dinner and watch the sunset in one of the rooftop restaurants in Jemaa el-Fnaa square
We did this the day we did our Souks shopping as Jemaa el-Fnaa square is one of the main entrance squares leading into the souks. We ourselves visited Cafe De France and had a half decent meal while watching the sun set over the busy square.
3. Visit The Majorelle Gardens (Jardin de Majorelle)
The Majorelle Garden is a two and half acre botanical garden and landscape garden. Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé discovered the gardens in 1966 and later bought it in 1980 to save it from being demolished and becoming a hotel project. The garden includes plenty of exotic trees and plants as well as many different species of birds. The Yves Saint Laurent Memorial is also located here.
4. Visit Bahia Palace
The palace of Bahia is a nineteenth century palace which is a major monument of the country’s cultural heritage located in the heart of Marrakech. It is one of the masterpieces of architecture and one of the most popular places of tourism in Morocco. The palace and gardens are gorgeous and I would definitely suggest visiting if you have a couple of hours free.
5. Ride a camel in the Palm Grove
This isn’t something I did myself but I have seen it is very popular. There is options to have a camel ride during sunset which is meant to be lovely and by what I have seen it costs around £12 – £18.
6. Go for a traditional Moroccan meal
Luckily for us our hotel actually had an onsite Moroccan restaurant but I have had a look online and there are loads around, we are in Morocco after all! We was served beef Tagine, Couscous and mixed vegetables, I forgot to take a picture of my food as I started scoffing it down when it came to the table (bad blogger I know) but it was great and the decor of the place was stunning! This gave us a feel for what the locals eat as our all inclusive hotel was very westernised.
7. Have a pool day and relax in the sun
If you have opted to stay in a Riad then I would definitely recommend this. The weather in Morocco is warm most of the year round and in the summer months the heat can become unbearable if you are in it all day. A lot of the big hotels offer day pool passes where you can use all of the on site facilities plus get a 2 course meal and a drink for around £20-£30.
8. Atlas mountain hot air balloon ride
Again this isn’t something I did myself but if you have the spare time and money I have heard it is fabbb! I actually wish I booked the hot air balloon ride myself when I was there instead its an excuse to go back 🙂
Have you visited Marrakech before? What were your favourite things to do? Let me know in the comments below!