Take your family to see the sights of the great Red City
Marrakech is only four hours’ direct flight from the UK, which means an exotic excursion is almost on your doorstep.
The city has played a pivotal role in Morocco’s history, and its handsome rusty-colour buildings have given it the nickname of the Red City. Its medina is home to winding souks where bartering is king, while further afield, museums and modern shopping centres promise superb days out.
The low season for Marrakech, when prices have dropped but temperatures are still nice and high, falls between November and March, giving you plenty of scope to make the most of the city’s sights. A sense of community sets the atmosphere of the city, making Marrakech a superb family holiday destination, because the people are multicultural, multilingual and always happy to meet new faces.
Best family activities in Marrakech
However your time is spent in Marrakech, there’s going to be plenty of fun for every member of your happy troupe. You’ll find toys, clothes, handbags, traditional crafts and plenty of good food in the various stalls woven into the medina district, where the tradition of bargain hunting is as strong today as it has been for centuries. A trip to see the street performers of Jemaa el-Fnaa also comes highly recommended, where jugglers, singers and animal performers make every afternoon and evening a bustle of colour and fun. Kids are guaranteed a good time here.
If you’re looking to improve your family’s knowledge of Moroccan culture, there’s a sight to see at every turn. The mosaics, arches and architecture of Ben Youssef Medersa, the gorgeous coloured tiles of El Badi Palace and the museums of both local and international art and history across Marrakech make for a trip bound to inspire. You can also take a horse and buggy tour of the city for a different perspective.
Other popular family holidays
If it’s Morocco’s coast rather than its cities that speak to you and your family, make a beeline for sumptuous Agadir, where you’ll find sublime shores lapped by the Mediterranean Sea. Directly north are those fabulous European family holiday mainstays, namely Portugal and Spain. Of course, the classic brilliance of Marrakech offers a much more exotic twist on your family holiday, as you’ll see in our travel guide. To give you an even greater headstart, we’ve also gathered the city’s best family holiday hotels for you below.
Agadir | Algarve | Hurghada | Tunisia | Turkey
This hotel feels larger-than-life while managing to remain cosy and laid-back. It’s tucked in a broad garden space and features a massive pool at its centre. The children get their own pool too, as well as a playground, and the kids’ clubs are smartly divided between age brackets to make sure they’re entertained appropriately. With their fun assured, the grown-ups can head for the lounge bar, the gym, the spa or the massage table, and once the family’s reunited in the evening, you’ll be ready for some live music and a filling meal. For days out, a free shuttle bus can drive the whole crew into the medina for some cultural fun and excellent bartering opportunities.
This stylish hotel combines charm and class, all within a welcoming atmosphere that’s ideal for families looking for a touch of luxury with a load of hospitality. Free shuttle bus connections get you to and from the city centre free from fuss. Sports and beauty salon treatments are also abundant, and the hotel boasts its own hammam, for a uniquely Moroccan approach to rejuvenation and skincare. Meanwhile, a large pool, paddling pool and playground keep the kids busy while three bars serve up adults-only beverages that can be enjoyed from the poolside sunbeds. Don’t forget to visit the tortoises – the whole family will love trying to spot the dinosaur-like creatures in the gardens.
Few things can make sure the kids are on side for your hotel selection more than a waterpark built into the hotel you’re staying at. A colourful castle presides over the park, with waterslides swirling from its barricades. On land, plenty of fitness and sports activities are available from rock climbing to darts to a fitness centre. There’s also a football pitch, and of course a less lively pool if waterslides aren’t your style. Meanwhile, you’ve got every opportunity to unwind, whether it’s over the sizzling meals of the steakhouse or honing your backhand on one of six tennis courts.