We absolutely loved Marrakesh. It was my favorite city in Morocco. It is so trendy and colorful with the authenticity of the Fez medina but with the style of a metropolis. Marrakesh felt the most vacation-y of all of the cities we visited. It was glam. If you can only visit one city in Morroco, visit Marrakesh!
Funny Story: We were at Jemaa el Fnaa (the central plaza in the medina) when it started pouring rain and gusting wind (in the desert, who knew!?) We tucked into a cafe for some mint tea and shelter and watched chaos ensue. All of the vendors were trying to pack up everything in a hurry (seeing a snake charmer do this is pretty comical), umbrellas were flying, and the monkeys were going crazy screeching and running around!
Read about our entire Morocco trip here.
What to do in Marrakesh, Morocco
The shopping is fabulous is Marrakesh! I could wander through the medina and souks all day buying clothes, scarves, rose water, argan oil, spices, and more. I wanted so many home goods. Which is not ideal considering I am location independent most of the time! I will be making a return trip with several empty suitcases once we settle down. I did buy my sister a custom purse made out of a Berber rug, and I watched the man assemble it in his souk! That’s quality you can’t find elsewhere. I especially loved this health and beauty store, Biomedica. The ladies who worked there are so kind and gave me lots of free samples. Insider Tip: Don’t be afraid to haggle! I would start at half. The shop owners are rarely offended and more often impressed. They even called me strong like a “Berber woman!”
Hang around Jemaa el Fnaa
Jemaa el Fnaa is the main plaza in the medina and it is nuts! There are countless vendors selling orange juice, snails, and camel meat. (Don’t worry, we didn’t try the latter.) This is also where you get an Arabian Nights vibe with snake charmers and monkeys on chains. It’s like a weird carnival.
Visit a Hammam
We went to a more low key hammam in Fez and found the experience to be nice but a little odd. I mean getting aggressively washed by a stranger is a little out of most peoples comfort zone. But we love a good spa day and it is the local way so we decided to indulge a bit more. We went to Les Bains de Marrakech and had a full-on spa day. With a higher price point at about $80 a person, we did the full experience with a couple’s hammam, massage, and mud wrap. There’s a nice pool and relaxation room you can lounge by. Prepare to be pampered and indulged!
Visit El Badi Palace
There are lots of palaces in Marrakesh but we only chose one to visit. It was very cool and felt like we were stepping back into time. It was pretty much all ruins rather than an intact palace, but you can get an idea of what it was like during its prime.
Visit Jardin Majorelle
These beautiful gardens have a memorial of Yves Saint Laurent. We were slightly disappointed for the price. There were more cacti than flowers (I mean it is the desert!) and it was pretty small. Grant didn’t like it at all. Anytime there are hoards of people trying to get the perfect selfie he is annoyed! I thought it was nice to walk around the plants and fountains. It is worth a visit if you’re in the area.
Where to Eat and Drink in Marrakesh, Morocco
This was our favorite night in Marrakesh. They have food but it is more of a lounge. We ordered cocktails and shisha (hookah) and watched belly dancers balance candelabras on their heads! It is a very stylish place and the service was impeccable. The man in charge of keeping our shisha fresh was juggling hot coals!
Nomad is a very trendy rooftop restaurant with a twist on traditional Moroccan cuisine. It wasn’t the best food we’ve had but it was a great atmosphere. We ended up chatting with another American couple the entire dinner! Reservations recommended.
This rooftop coffee shop is adorable. Grab an iced coffee to cool down during a souk shopping spree.
This is the perfect spot for lunch in Marrakesh. Their menu is so fresh and it feels like a little oasis amidst the outside chaos.
We stopped here for a beer while waiting on our dinner reservation at Nomad. It was unexpectedly awesome! There was great live music and the decor was exotic yet cozy. We missed it, but they also have belly dancers.
We did a self-guided “street food tour” and tried anything and everything. It was so fun! Go for the snails!
Where to Stay in Marrakesh, Morocco
We loved our riad in Marrakesh. I found it on Airbnb. Our room was huge and it had a pool which was so nice for those extra hot days. The location was perfect too! Highly recommendable.
Haven’t tried out Airbnb yet? Click here to get a $40 travel credit.
Marrakesh is awesome! Shop until you drop, eat some yummy food, and pamper yourself in this desert dream town.
Want more information to plan your trip to Marrakesh? Check out the Morocco Lonely Planet here.
All the Feels for Marrakesh,
Ps. Check out our Morocco video below!