Best things to do in Marrakech, Morocco
Marrakech is a city that moves to its own frantic beat, the days are warm and nights are lively. It is an amazing city which will fascinate even the most discerning traveler.
This beautiful thousand-year-old city is an exotic combination of the ancient and the modern world. It is associated with the amazing architecture of Medinas and labyrinthine alleyways on one hand and proudly flaunts the hippest underground bars and some of the best Mediterranean restaurants in the country on the other.
So what are the best things to do in Marrakech? Which are the top Marrakech attractions? A professional guide can help you unravel the mystic beauty of ‘The Red City’ and take you to the must-see Marrakech attractions where you can discover both the traditional charms of the medina and the modern side of the city. If you wish to experience and enjoy the charms of both these worlds, continue reading this article.
Top 8 things to do in Marrakech Morocco
- Visit the Medina of Marrakech
The Medina is one of the top Marrakech attractions and it is on every traveler’s top things to do in Marrakech list. The Medina is located in the historic city center which is a UNESCO World Heritage site. For centuries, the royal families resided here, making it the chief political and economic hub in the country.
It was the center for international trade, bringing in people from various cultures and races, making it culturally rich and beautiful. You can take a stroll through the 11th-century labyrinth of alleyways, to experience the rich history of Marrakech. Medina is open 24 hours for visitors and has no entry fees.
Other attractions worth visiting within the city center are the Bahia Palace and Koutoubia Mosque. Travelers insist on visiting Medina in the night, as you can enjoy the popular food delicacies and shop for traditional merchandise at the stalls located in the bustling Jemaa El Fna.
- Visit Ben Youssef Madrassa
If you love exploring ancient architecture, a visit to the Ben Youssef Madrassa should be on your list of things to do in Marrakech. The amazing Ben Youssef Madrassa is a well preserved 14th-century former Islamic school. Its beautiful architecture is a mesmerizing representation of the ancient Moroccan architecture.
The courtyard is 15 meters wide and 20 meters long covered with open-air galleries on the east and west. These open-air galleries are defined by solid walls that completely enclose the courtyard and separate it from the inner corridor and students’ rooms surrounding it.
You can wander around the large courtyard and view the ornate tiles of the Madrassa. A trip inside the ornate building will show you the tiny rooms which used to house over 900 students at one point in time. The place has been designed skillfully, and a visit to the rooms will show you how well planned and designed the Madrassa is.
- Have a glimpse of old Marrakech at the Maison de la Photography
The close proximity of Morocco to Europe and the advent of budget airlines have made it a top choice for European travelers in recent years.
Maison de la Photographie displays the work of early photographers who captured the Moroccan way of life. This small building houses some of the best street photographs and portraits ranging back 150 years.
The photos showcase the traditions of Morocco, the people, and their lives and how things have changed over the last century. You can also visit their cozy rooftop café and sip on a cup of refreshing mint tea as you enjoy the breathtaking views of the town.
- Visit to the Majorelle Garden (Jardin Majorelle)
Majorelle Garden is a beautiful green garden crafted and designed by French painter Jacques Majorelle who lived in Marrakech from 1923 to 1961. In 1962 the gardens were purchased by popular fashion designer Yves Saint and were made public only in 2008 after his death.
The gardens are sheltered by thick bamboo, palm and cactus groves. Coldwater streams trickle through the gardens and fill the pond which is house to some of the most beautiful water lilies.
The garden boasts of an amazing blue water fountain, an art gallery, a gift shop, a bookstore, and a café, making it a must-visit Marrakech attraction during your stay in Morocco.
Adjacent to the garden lies the Berber Museum, visitors can buy a combined entry ticket to the garden and museum, to save on the individual ticket prices. The opening hours of the gardens vary for each month, depending on the seasons and the time of sunset.
- Have a Hammam
When the hustle-bustle of shopping and walking through the Jem El Fna takes your toll, you can take refuge in one of the city’s famous Hammams. If you do not know what a hammam actually is, anciently Hammams were places of a public bath.
Today in modern Marrakech you can enjoy a hot steam bath and massage at their famous Hammams spread across the city. As a first-timer, you may get intimidated by the openness of the baths and the requirement to remove your clothes.
However do not worry, the professional attendants will help you be at ease and give you the best hot steam bath and massage you would have ever experienced. Undoubtedly it should be on your list of top things to do in Marrakech.
- Find peace at the tranquil Saadian tombs
The Saadian tombs are the final resting place of Saadian Sultan Ahmed al Mansour ed-Dhabi and his ancestors and family members. The Saadians were the members of an Arab dynasty who are allegedly descendants of the prophet Muhammad. It is Marrakech’s only Saadian site, which was not plundered and destroyed by Sultan Moulay Ismail in the 18th century.
The place is serene and peaceful; you can wander around the mausoleums and admire the intricate mosaic tiling and gold gliding on Italian marble. The architecture is splendid and the place is surrounded by abundant orange trees and landscaped gardens.
- Explore the Desert
You may spend your Moroccan vacation by wandering around admiring the historic architectures and structures however; no Moroccan vacation is complete without exploring the great Moroccan deserts. Tour operators can offer you all-terrain drives; camel rides or hikes to the desert region.
The best and the traditional way to experience the Moroccan desert is on camelback. The experience of riding a camel through the palm groves of Marrakech into the desert can become the highlight of your trip.
The Bouikzin & Ikhiyam caves In Imdeghass Valley, Ourika Valley, the Atlas Mountains, Ouzoud Falls, and the Ksar of Ait-Ben-Haddou are just some of the famous local places which you can see and visit during your desert tour.
- Stay in a beautiful Riad
Marrakech boasts of some of the most beautiful resorts in Morocco; but if you wish to experience the traditional Moroccan life, you can opt to stay in a beautiful Riad within the walls of the medina.
The Riads are unique and aesthetically designed. They are peaceful and calming, allowing you to unwind and relax as you enjoy the beauty of the place.
We are a passionate tour operator and destination Management Company offering a varied range of Moroccan tours that can be customized to meet our client’s needs. Contact us or call us at +12028486666 to get more details about our Morocco tour packages and bookings.