Stroll through the souks of the Medina and smell the fragrant spices and perfumes, gaze at the handmade rugs and glorious glassware, then haggle for a Moroccan teapot at the best price. Be sure to try on the elegantly intricate Baboosh shoes like a fashionista. Enjoy the cooler and calmer moments of the souks first thing in the morning, or embrace the chaos later in the day in this mesmerising place. Don’t fret about getting lost, it’s easy to manoeuvre about, with signs back to the main square. Or if you prefer European-style shops, head over to Guèliz and its boutiques selling high-fashion kaftans and tunics. Don’t miss a visit to the tannery, where you’ll be able to smell the leather before you see it.
Where to stay: Jardins de la Koutoubia – for the perfect spot near to the entrances of the souks. Relax at the sensational rooftop pool after a busy day of bartering.
Make a move to Palais Jadmahal for the fire-eaters, acrobats and belly dancers
Monuments to mountains
Explore the epic cultural highlights of this Moroccan city, from the deluxe Bahia Palace to the decorative Almoravid Koubba – Marrakech’s oldest building. Absorb the sacred architecture of the Koutoubia Mosque and hear the enchanting call to prayer. Listen to the storytellers and watch the snake charmers of Djemaa el-Fna square. Visit the beautiful Yves Saint Laurent Jardins Majorelle, or the mysteriously quiet ruins of El Badi Palace. Leave the charms of the city and venture to the awe-inspiring Atlas Mountains and learn about the Berber nomads. Sleep under the stars, ride camels across the desert and eat Moroccan food by campfire. Explore the Oued Ourika gorge, go to the Berber villages of Tahanaout and Imlil, or surf the coast of Essouria.
Where to stay: The Capaldi – for the beautiful location at the foothills of the Atlas Mountains. The traditional Moroccan bath, heated pool and wonderful Moroccan cuisine are perfect after a day of exploring.
The cuisine in Marrakech will surprise and seduce you. From delicious traditional tagines, barbecued meats and fish, to the more outlandish delicacies like sheep’s head. Wander through Djemaa el-Fna square and take in the aromas. Try a Moroccan chicken pastilla, a savoury pie sprinkled with almonds, cinnamon and sugar, followed by a mint tea. Explore this vibrant main square in the evening and see it light up with an assortment of colours, as well as hundreds of stalls to browse around. For a traditional and stylish Moroccan feast, dine at the superb Dar Essalam restaurant. With a selection of four dining rooms, witness striking furnishings and beautiful décor. Indulge in remarkable food, enjoy couscous, tantalising tagine, a selection of pastillas and a variety of traditional desserts.
Where to stay: Sofitel Marrakech lounge and spa – for the brilliant location within Hivernage, close to plenty of restaurants, food stands and bars, as well as its stunning views from balconies and outside pool area.
A mesmerising Medina
Everywhere you look, your eyes will glow with the wonders here.
Visit the Majorelle Gardens
Explore the beauty of this botanical garden and discover the history which lays here.
Relish the delicious dishes
Order and eat as much tagine as you can, the flavours and spices of the food is boast-worthy.
There is an enigma surrounding the nightlife vibe of Marrakech, understandably so as alcohol is prohibited around most places in Medina, yet a few places do sell cocktails and wine. Within Hivenage, experience the incredible Comptoir. Although this is a restaurant, there is a separate club-cross-cocktail bar and cool patio area for drinks and shisha. With its sensational interior design, glitzy belly dancers and electrifying atmosphere, Comptoir is the place to be. Or make a move to Palais Jadmahal for the fire-eaters, acrobats and belly dancers as you sip on drinks all night long. With a variety of Oriental shows, Russian shows and live music, you can immerse yourself in the spice of life at this dazzling venue.
Where to stay: Es Saadi Marrakech Resort – for its luxury oasis, serene pool and lounging area, as well as great location to the nearby nightclubs, bars and casino.
Have a Hammam
On your trip to Marrakech, trying a Hammam is an absolute must. This authentic Moroccan spa experience is a bathing and cleansing ritual. Enjoy the heat of a steam room to open all your pores, then have a full body scrub with a traditional kessa glove to remove dead skin. Then bathe in cold water to finish and feel a new lease of life. Choose from the communal spas and do as the locals do and strip down to your birthday suit. Or for a more secluded experience, choose from the smaller spas or choose to enjoy one at a hotel, followed by a massage. Take a Hammam at the beginning of your trip, to make the most of tanning time.
Where to stay: Les Jardins de la Medina – for the ravishing spa treatments, from traditional hammams to relaxing massages and luxurious feeling of exclusitivity at this boutique hotel.