Marrakech things to Do

Koutoubia Mosque

Koutoubia Mosque, Marrakech, Morocco

The Koutoubia Mosque, situated near the Djemaa el Fna square in Marrakesh, is a landmark and the largest mosque in Marrakech. Built in the Hispano-Moresque period, the Koutoubia Mosque is claimed to be the beautiful and proportioned mosque on the planet. The Koutoubia Mosque was performed under the reign of the Almohad dynasty Khalifa Yaqub al-Mansur (1184-1199) and has been utilized as a model to the Giralda of Seville afterward for the Hassan Tower in Rabat.

The ideal time to visit Jemaa el Fna square and the Koutoubia Mosque is around 3 o’clock when important activities begin, here you walk across the narrow roads with colorful souvenir shops.

There’s an additional gorgeous mosque in the center of old medina named Ben Youssef Mosque. A lot of individuals often inquire if a day will be sufficient to discover everything this town has to offer. The answer is really depending on what interests you because there are a whole lot of amazing things that you can do in this town, like taking a day excursion to the Valley Ourika at the High Atlas, so a day or two may not be sufficient to explore all the famous areas, in any case when you have just one day to spend, it’s wise that you select all of the nearer appeals from the Medina such as the Museum of Marrakech, Djemaa el Fna, Bahia Palace, Koutoubia Mosque, Majorelle Garden, Saadian tombs, Menara gardens etc..

Majorelle Garden Marrakech

Majorelle Gardens Marrakech Morocco

It’s among the most beautiful and magnificent spots in this red city. To get to this meticulously constructed botanical garden you have to pass Marrakesh’s medina full of acres of olive groves and palms. The Majorelle Garden was created by the French artist Jacques Majorelle in 1924. He studied in the École des Beaux-Arts in Nancy in 1901 and later in 1919 he moved to Marrakesh, Morocco to recuperate from heart issues. He built the garden in those years with a striking color of blue that he often used which now bears his name; Majorelle Blue. Jacques Majorelle returned back to France in 1962 and died in a car accident later that year. Despite the fact that Morocco is no more under the French protectorate, this initially French creation is among the most treasured places in Morocco. Although the Majorelle Garden has been known in Morocco for years, it became famous abroad when the owner of the former Majorelle Garden, fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent, exhibited it at the Chelsea Flower Show in London in 1997.  As this time, several have journeyed to Morocco just to observe that the Majorelle Garden.

The garden was open to the public since 1947. Since 1980 the garden was in the hands of Yves Saint-Laurent and Pierre Bergé. After the death of Yves Saint Laurent in 2008, his ashes were scattered in the Majorelle garden.

Marrakech Cultural Tour

Marrakech has unique Souqs, the craftsmen have been performing their wonders for centuries in the Medina (old city). Most of the shops at the medina are open between 10 am and 7 pm daily except on Friday afternoon. In Ville Nouvelle (new town) the opening hours of the stores, where they handle fixes prices,  will be normally from 9.30 am to 6 pm or 7 pm from Monday to Saturday.

The ideal way to discover this historic city is by simply booking a cultural tour on your first day. We utilized DMA, Icho was our guide during our visit. He’s been a guide for over a decade with a massive knowledge.

During our walking tour, Icho shared both the historical and cultural background and in addition showed us a large number of sites such as mosques, hammam’s, bakery, pottery, etc. along with the common sights like Ben Youssef Madrasa.

Apart from the significant sights which you could easily walk into, one noteworthy landmark is Jardin Majorelle that is situated outside the medina. This is the home of the legendary fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent. This was the first time we used the taxicab in Morocco. We negotiated the ride out of Jemaa el-Fna to Jardin Majorelle for 50 dirhams for a single way.

Jardin Majorelle is painted in stunning cobalt blue color with a garden and museum and a little accessory store. There was a very long line for tickets which took approximately 45 minutes, but it had been worth the wait particularly since we already decided to walk there. The admission to the museum and garden was 100 dirhams per person. You have the choice to bypass the museum and save 30 dirhams, but it is well worth checking the artifacts out as you’re already there.

Another noteworthy attraction is the Bahia Palace together with the huge gardens and remarkable architecture. The entrance is 10 dirhams per person. Useful tip is to visit the palace a few hours before closing time to beat the crowds.

Finally, our tour leads us to the Koutoubia Mosque. The Koutoubia mosque was built in the twelfth century under the reign of Ya’qub al-Mansur and is today the largest mosque in the city. The building stands 69 meters above the surrounding city. Non-Muslims are not allowed inside because the mosque is still used for worship but we could enjoy its stunning architecture from the outside

When we had more time we would have liked to learn more about the new areas of the city. However, with such limited period, begin with a cultural tour to familiarize yourself with the most thing to do in the medina.

morocco-crafts

Morocco Souvenirs

Morocco is known for its stunning cultural heritage and craft traditions, out of Berber rugs to colorful silk embroidery. Here is what souvenirs you have to bring home if you are planning to go to Morocco.

Artisanal Soaps

With herbs such as rosemary and lavender and ingredients such as argan oil locally developed in Marrakech, artisan soaps are a beautiful souvenir. Orange blossom water and even jasmine result in lovely soaps and sprays, although the adding of argan oil from a few soap manufacturers provide additional moisturizer.

Argan

It goes without saying that, if you are considering purchasing argan, Morocco is your place to get it done. To find the very best memorabilia from Morocco you need something that’s extra special. That’s argan! Argan is developed in the southern areas of the nation. There are two varieties of argan: decorative and culinary. You will have to define which one you are after. It’s only offered in bottles as oil, but you will also find a lot of goods which contains argan. Recall: argan is created only in Morocco!

Ceramics

There’s absolutely no doubt that you will see hundreds of different kinds of handmade antiques and antique ceramics throughout your trip in Morocco. Plates, cups, bowls, ornamental pieces,… The list continues on and on. If you are flying you can ask to get those things packed in bubble wrap.

Leather

The leather is made in substantially the exact same way as it has been for centuries. The famous tanning souks of the Medina are among the most photographed places in Morocco. Leather can be used for numerous items, from leather clothes and handbags into slippers and poufs. You’ll come across lots of unique attributes of leather made out of various kinds of skin such as camel, cow, sheep, and goat. The cost of these items is based on the sort of leather.

Spices

The taste of spices out of Morocco is far better than you will have the ability to detect in many markets in Europe. They also make an affordable and effortless present to transport.

You may purchase all kind of spices at any store selling dried merchandise. Avoid stores that look simply for tourists as you’re certain to be overpaid.

You might choose to wait till the end of your trip to buy spices so they are definitely fresh. Unless you are at some place which is specialized – such as saffron in Tafrouat.

Djellaba

A fashion popular for both men and women – at winter for both and in the summertime for girls – different styles and high quality of djellaba are readily available. Catch a vibrant women’s djellaba at one of the numerous stores in Souk Smarrine or visit one of those trendy boutiques to get a designer choice.

Berber baskets

Offered in all color combinations and dimensions, the baskets are very decorative.

Lanterns

A handmade antique lamp or lantern is a fantastic souvenir to take home. Lighter weight lanterns are the most economical but are usually made out of aluminum. You would not like to pack them in your bag since they will probably bend and if you do not have room to carry it yourself, paying to ship it home might not truly be well worth the value. Instead, invest in a more heavy duty fixture.

Olives

Morocco is a culinary paradise for olive-lovers, everybody knows that. You’ll find the pure fresh olive here. Olives with harissa and other spices are available as well. Whatever you wish you will find it here! Furthermore, the olives are ridiculously cheap. Just for around 15 Dh, you may have one kilo of olives.

Read more about the best souvenirs to buy in Morocco here

Marrakech points of interest

Marrakech, not like other cities, is a pearl in North Africa, founded in the 11th century. Its Medina has a unique history, which can only be explored in this superb town. Marrakech is one of the imperial cities of Morocco and offers a variety of opportunities for its visitors to enjoy their stay and create unforgettable memories. The accommodation includes today everything one can ask for, luxury hotels, comfortable apartments, camping sites and all types of sports for young and older people.

Marrakech points of interest

Tourism in Marrakech is the most rapidly growing industry. By virtue of its geographical location, its climate and its historical ancient Medina attracts each year a large number of visitors from all corners of the world. Thanks to the serious efforts of the Moroccan government, the visitors can easily access their most favorite destinations in the area.

Rabat is the capital of Morocco, but it seems less popular than Marrakech. Marrakech has more than 1.170.000 inhabitants and gives easy access to a number of tourist attractions like the waterfalls of Ouzoud and Ourika in the Atlas Mountains. Most tour operators start their activities in the morning from this city. The most famous destination amongst tourists is the big part of the south. It is often recommended to go for the Ourika valley, if you have few days to spend, here we will focus in a situation where you have only one day to spend in the area after a private Moroccan tour. If you’re someone who likes to go out, you can visit the most popular place, Jemaa el Fna. The square is easily accessible by car or bus. It is definitely a “must see”

The most amazing activities begin in the afternoon as the musicians, storytellers, snake charmers and theater artists take over the square. Here you can also enjoy a typical Moroccan lunch for a few dirhams. You can also visit the largest minaret in Marrakech, located about 4 minutes on foot at the right side of the Jemaa el Fna square. All nearby attractions such as the Majorelle GardensBahia Palace, the Museum of MarrakechSaadien gravesMenara gardens, etc. would be ideal to do it all just in one day.