Planning to travel to Morocco and wondering what to do in Marrakech? Look no further! We picked up these awesome 10 activities for you to try! They’re really worth your time there. Get ready for a sightseeing tour, a hammam bath, fun nightlife, cooking courses, and interesting excursions; this list has something for everyone! 🙂
Have you booked your accommodation in Marrakech yet? Here are a few good addresses to try out before we get into our list.
Where To Stay In Marrakech
If you want to book a hotel that is conveniently located near Marrakech’s most interesting attractions, you will have to choose one that is close to the Medina. In Arabic, “medina” simply means “city” and here refers to the old city of Marrakech.
If you’re on a budget, you can book at Backpackers Grapevine Hostel. Its location is convenient and its prices really cheap (as cheap as $5 per night in dormitories)! If you are a backpack traveler, this is the place you’re looking for! 🙂
If you’re not traveling alone and are looking for more comfortable accommodation, you can book at the 2Ciels boutique hotel. It is in the district of Gueliz which is right next to the Medina and offers charming rooms and a nice swimming pool. It does not have a lot of rooms so be sure to book early.
If you’re looking for a more authentic experience accommodation-wise, a riad is what you need. You will be surrounded by an enjoyable Moroccan atmosphere and will learn more about local traditions. To help you choose, we have selected 7 great riads in Marrakech and listed them in this blog post: Best Riads in Marrakech. The magical Dar Assiya is one of our favorites by the way!
If you have booked your hotel, let’s see what you can do and all the fun you can have in Marrakech!
The Best Things To Do In Marrakech
- Visit Jemaa El Fna Square
- Shop at the souk of the Medina
- Visit the Majorelle garden
- Discover the Koutoubia Mosque
- Visit the Bahia Palace
- Explore Ourika Valley
- Go on a palm grove tour
- Relax in a hammam
- Go to the city’s trendy clubs
- Learn how to cook a Moroccan tajine
1. Visit Jemaa El Fna Square
Exact location: https://goo.gl/maps/VFirZ5WzbrwXEU5q6
Jemaa El Fna Square is undoubtedly the most known and most visited place in the city of Marrakech. It is a public square located south of the medina and named after a mosque that was never built. Back in the 17th century, the sultan ordered the construction of Jemaa El Hna (literally the mosque of tranquility). But that same year, a plague epidemic decimates the population and the mosque square ends up taking the name of Jemaa El Fna (the mosque of the dead).
The Jemaa El Fna Square is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the liveliest places in Marrakech, during the day or the night. Snake charmers, fortune tellers and many other aspects of Moroccan folklore will keep you busy there.
2. Shop at the souk of the Medina
Exact location: https://goo.gl/maps/G9ZG1PZ7BKn
If you’re looking to buy souvenirs or to dive into the city’s lively atmosphere, there are souks everywhere in the Medina and especially next to Jemaa El Fna. Get yourself some of the handmade products sold in the Medina. From teapots to pretty lanterns, djellabas, and babouches, everything you need is in there!
If you decide to buy something, you’d better be good at haggling. It’s the country’s national sport! 🙂 The art of negotiation is not a gift granted to everyone, that’s why we’re dedicating a future blog post to that!
3. Visit the Majorelle Garden
Exact location: https://goo.gl/maps/G9ZG1PZ7BKn
Entrance fee: 70 dirhams ($7) to visit the garden and 30 dirhams ($3) to visit the museum
Opening hours: 8 AM to 5:3 PM
The Majorelle Garden is a colorful place that will transport you to a sublime universe! The contrast between the omnipresent ocher colors in Marrakech and this beautiful blue garden (also called Blue Majorelle) is striking. The Majorelle garden never fails to impress; it’s like an oasis in the middle of a desert.
The garden was created by the French painter Jacques Majorelle who was passionate about botany and had planted it with hundreds of cacti, banana trees, lotus, palm trees, and many other plants. The garden is really beautiful and after the death of the painter, the whole property was bought by Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé.
For the record, after the death of Yves Saint Laurent in 2008, his ashes were scattered in the garden as a symbolic gesture. In 2011, a museum of Berber art is also built there and is definitely worth a visit!
4. Discover the Koutoubia Mosque
Exact location: https://goo.gl/maps/pgBjkHpjtho
The Koutoubia Mosque (literally the mosque of booksellers) is the most important religious building in the city of Marrakech. Built in the 12th century, it has a beautiful minaret that is 69 meters high and painted a pink color that blends beautifully into the decor.
The 3 balls at the top represent the 3 big mosques in Islam, located respectively in Mecca, Medina, and Jerusalem. This mosque was built during the reign of the Almohad dynasty and stands out for its simple and minimalist architecture.
5. Visit the Bahia Palace
Exact location: https://goo.gl/maps/Nm1sPfjCVCS2
Entrance fee: 10 dirhams ($1)
Opening hours: 9 AM to 4:30 PM
Unlike the Koutoubia Mosque, which unfortunately cannot be visited if you’re not Muslim, the Bahia Palace is open to the public. The palace was built in the 19th century and is an architectural masterpiece. It has the rectangular shape of a riad with a fountain in the center and rooms all around it.
You can visit the rooms of the palace including the harem where vizier Abu Bou Ahmed’s 4 wives and 24 concubines lived.
6. Explore Ourika Valley
Exact location: https://goo.gl/maps/NoX1qJJqgUA2
Booking: Ourika Valley
How about some fresh air in Ourika Valley? Located on the Atlas Mountains, the Ourika is a very beautiful region about 40 km southeast of Marrakech. We recommend a day trip in Ourika Valley for a guaranteed change of scenery and to discover a different side of Morocco: its countryside!
You will enjoy fabulous natural landscapes and learn more about Berber culture by visiting the many villages on the mountainside.
You can also visit cooperatives that produce argan oil, which is a bit like a local treasure. This tour of Ourika Valley is a great experience and should be on your to-do list if you’re visiting Marrakech.
7. Go On A Palm Grove Tour
Booking: Palm Grove Tour
If you’re looking for another nice trip outside the city, go to the palm grove of Marrakech! It’ll take you about half a day to complete the tour. You’ll be picked you up at your hotel and tour the palm grove on camelback, like a nomad! You can also go on a nice quad bike tour.
8. Relax in a hammam
Booking: Hammam Marrakech
Want to take a break from all these adventures? I’m sure you could use some rest! How about a hammam to relax and enjoy the heat of the moment? 😉 This also includes a one-hour massage with argan oil. How amazing is that?
If you are still hesitating, check out these hammam health benefits!
9. Go to the city’s trendy clubs
If you love parties, you won’t get bored in Marrakech. The clubs of the city are world-famous and the best DJs play there regularly. There is the very famous Theatro (video above) and the VIP Room which is also nice. Some of our favorite bars include the So Lounge (Sofitel hotel) and the Pearl for its rooftop.
10. Learn to cook a Moroccan Tajine
Booking: Moroccan cuisine course
This blog post wouldn’t be complete without a note on the famous Moroccan cuisine, more specifically its delicious tajine. For those of you who do not know what tajine is, it’s a traditional Berber dish originally referring to the terracotta dish where food is cooked.
There are several types of tajines but they are mostly made of vegetables, meat (chicken or lamb) and spices. Tajine is a dish you eat with your family or relatives, usually using your fingers (with bread).
Make sure to taste tajine dishes during your stay in Marrakech and while you’re at it, why not learn to cook it so you can make it at home? 🙂
Mouthwatering, isn’t it? This was our selection of the 10 most interesting things to do in Marrakech, friends! I hope it will help you organize your trip. If you have questions or comments, please leave them down below.
See you around for more tips to plan more trips to Africa!