Welcome to Marrakech, home of the unique and the unexpected. A vibrant, colourful and magically chaotic city, exploring Marrakech is like stepping into another world. Marrakech features two distinct districts; the historic Medina and the Geuliz or Ville Nouvelle; a modern region similar to a European city. Marrakech offers a summer getaway like you may expect in more popular places such as Egypt, but it does have a unique feel as well as sharing a few similar traits.

Forget your bucket and spade, beach towel and magazines and be sure to pack your sense of adventure and spontaneity instead.

A traditional Souk in Marrakech. Photo by damiandude from Flickr

A traditional Souk in Marrakech. Photo by damiandude from Flickr

 

Experience Marrakech

The Medina quarter of Marrakech features thousands of narrow, winding passageways and is home to some of the most exhilarating markets in the world. As you wander through the bustling streets, don’t be surprised to stumble across wayward donkey carts, potion touting apothecaries and genuine snake charmers. Think Egypt before the developments and you will get the idea!

Rich with history

Marrakech is decorated with outstanding architecture and a number of historical monuments. One particularly famed landmark is the Koutoubia Mosque with its imposing minaret that cuts a striking view across the Moroccan skyline. Non-Muslim tourists are not permitted within the Mosque but are free to explore its beautifully tended gardens. Other notable landmarks include the Palaces of El Badi and El Bahia and the breathtaking Menara gardens featuring the Saadian pavilion.

Good barter

The principal shopping attraction in the Medina is the traditional souk, or open air market. The complex system of stalls and shops offer up an incredible range of colourful and exotic goods. Bartering is still very much a traditional part of market life in Morocco, so expect to bargain for your souvenirs. Start at around one third of the asking price and enjoy the experience of getting a great deal.

When you’ve taken in the madness and story-book quality of the markets in the Medina, head over to Gueliz, a modern district of the city. Here you will find chic restaurants, contemporary shops and familiar fast food chains. Gueliz has a cosmopolitan atmosphere and is an extremely popular tourist destination.