The ancient ‘Pink City’ is the perfect starting place to explore Morocco’s history and culture, here are our top 5 reasons to visit Marrakech.
Marrakech will leave you breathless with it’s beauty, excitement and adventure. With an UNESCO World Heritage historic centre Palaces, beautiful gardens and the most amazing souk to explore, there are plenty of things to see – start with these top 5 reasons to visit Marrakech.
1. Watch the spectacle
If you like to see the spectacle of street theatre – known as ‘halqa’ in Morocco – then Marrakech’s main square – Djemma El Fna is the most amazing place to pull up a chair and watch the world pass by. Have a mint tea (standard Moroccan tradition) and join the others relaxing in the shade and watching the scene before you unfold. Street entertainers, snake charmers, colourful costumes and traditional dress. And in the evening the incredible smell of all those grills wafting meat and fish aromas in the air. If you’re here in the evening then you must try some of the street food, and of course in the daytime don’t miss out on the delicious freshly squeezed orange juice! Ahh!
2. Visit Marrakech’s Palaces and Saadian Tombs
In the UNESCO World Heritage historic centre of Marrakech you can trace its rich history and former glory through the grandeur of its beautifully crafted Palaces and the famous Saadian Tombs. The 16th century Royal Palace, Badi Palace and Bahia Palace and Saadian Tombs are testament to Marrakech’s important historic past. Opposite are the ancient city’s walls are the 16th Century Saadian Tombs, containing the graves of soldiers and a mausoleum for the Dynastic royalty or Marrakech. The shiny marble building has beautiful mosaics inside, especially in the famous sultan’s grandson’s room.
The Bahia Palace is the most awesome with fine decoration and retaining its majesty and former glory. Look out for the intricate decoration.The Badi Palace was once the seat of power in the city, but now only the impressive gardens and courtyards remain, and a terrace with a view over the Atlas Mountains. The rest of the palace is in ruins. The Royal Palace can only be seen from the exterior but is still impressive from the outside, to the south of the Medina.
There is no experience quite like shopping in the Souks in Marrakech.The 11th Century Medina is the oldest Berber market in Morocco and although it seems like it’s full of tourists it’s still very much the heart and soul for locals too. The Medina is actually a few different markets, or souks, that create a labyrinth of streets around the Main Square. It’s well worth exploring for the colourful sights and sounds, whether you’re planning to bring home tajine pots or lamps, it’s great to just see.
There are plenty of ceramics, spices, perfumes, teas, hand crafted gifts and furniture, wooden crafts, kitchenware, carpets, lamps and tea tables. All the things you could want for a holiday souvenir! Be prepared to say ‘no’ and to bargain hard – it’s all part of the experience. You may even end up with some mint tea and new friends at the end of it!
The intensity of the Medina and souks can be offset when visiting these places of tranquility, and they’re great to enjoy the shade and quiet under that hot Moroccan sun! The Jardin Majorelle was a private home in the 1920’s for French Artists but now is an open garden with pools, cactus gardens, and some rare plant species. It’s also painted blue with striking yellow features – a great space to relax. La Mamounia Gardens were the former palace and gardens was established in the 18th century by the crown prince Mamoun. Now a 20 acre park, there are trees over 100 years old in the traditionally styled garden.
Marrakech is famous for its traditional Moroccan Hammams, or spas, which you can find all over town. The perfect way to unwind after a hard day shopping in the Medina, there are traditional spas with massages and treatments or more modern ones that have more western versions. If you would like to experience the traditional Arab Bath then the most famous hammam is the Hamman of the Rose. There are spas at various prices, including a great value spa at Equity Point Hostel.
Stay at Equity Point Hostel Marrakech
Centrally located in the heart of the busy Medina, our hostel is a peaceful former palace, converted into a boutique hostel space with private rooms, chill out areas, and a swimming pool to relax by. We also have a stunning roof top terrace with views of the Atlas mountains and a great spot to watch the sunset or enjoy dinner. Book your bed here
We hope you enjoyed our top 5 reasons to visit Marrakech!