A guide to things to do in Marrakech

Marrakech holidays hold adventure, beauty and history for all. You can wander around the markets of the old city where vendors entice you with their authentic products or step into a traditional hammam for a bit of pampering. Djemaa el-Fna square is where storytellers and cabaret acts gather for nightly shows attracting tourists and locals alike. End the journey by immersing yourself in the tranquillity of Jardin Majorelle botanical gardens, providing a break from all the excitement.

Top things to do in Marrakech

Stroll through the souks

The souks of Morocco has to be one of the biggest appeals of heading here on holiday, from the vibrant smells of the spices being sold to the eye-popping colours of the textiles, not to mention the twinkling lights and lanterns all around, these markets will be like no other you’ve ever visited. 

This swirling network of streets all look the same, and it’s a wondrous experience to get lost in, marvelling at all they have to offer. You won’t be able to resist picking up a few purchases, whether it be new spices to sample back home with or a new rug for your office! And if you love a bargain, then you’ve come to the right place – bartering for the best price is all part of the experience here.

Watch the street entertainers in Jamaa el-Fna

Many of the roads that tangle around the Medina eventually lead to the must-see main square, Jamaa el-Fna. During the day you’ll be spellbound by the snake charmers and acrobat artists, while keen water and orange juice sellers smash brass cups together trying to attract customers.

As night sets in, smoky barbecued kebabs fill the night air and the street performers get going. Large crowds descend to watch Chleuh belly dancing, Berber jam sessions, carnival shows and even magicians. You can also enjoy the Halqa street theatre performing in the centre of the square – an ancient tradition that dates back some 1000 years. Given the convergence of such diverse acts and art-forms, this square has been given the UNESCO label ‘Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity’.

Things to do with kids in Marrakech

Explore the Islamic learning centre, Ben Youssef Medersa

This Islamic school attached to the Ben Youssef Mosque is home to some of the most beautiful art and architecture in Marrakesh and is a great place to take the family for a fun-filled, educational day. It’s a remarkable structure that was originally built in the 14th century. However this building, which used to be North Africa’s largest Islamic centre, was nearly entirely rebuilt by Andalusian artists under the Saadian rulers in the 16th century.

It’s distinctive because of its architecture, which incorporates a central arcaded courtyard overlooked by student dorms that once housed up to 900 students. Intricately carved wooden doorways, gorgeous stuccowork, cream-coloured Italian carrara marble floors and colourful mosaic tiles on the walls aid in the stunning overall appearance of the buildings, so if you’re planning holidays in Marrakech, this is one of the best things to do with kids.

Dune buggy experience

If your kids are teenagers, one of the best things to do in Marrakech to keep them entertained is definitely the dune buggy experience. You’ll get kitted out with helmets and goggles before heading off into the desert where you’ll follow your tour guide up and down, and round and round. The views of the countryside and traditional villages will be unmatched – it’s a fun adventure for all the family.

Similarly, you can hire quad bikes too for a slightly different experience, but kids will need to be 16 years or older to drive one themselves. The desert is such a sight to see, there’s a variety of ways to explore it, whether on foot, by camel, sandboarding or on wheels.

Things to do as a couple in Marrakech

Eat and drink your way through Marrakech

One of the best ways to discover a new destination is just through the food – and who better to do it with than your partner? Marrakech isn’t short of amazing places to eat and drink, with a superb array of both traditional and fusion restaurants with dishes to get your taste buds tingling. 

As you walk around you’ll spot restaurant signs and menus tempting you in, and the good thing about the architecture in Morocco is that all buildings have flat roofs – meaning they’re perfect for rooftop bars! There’s an abundance of rooftop cafes overlooking Jemaa el Fnaa square, so you can treat yourselves to delicious food and drink – with a view. It’s the perfect people-watching spot! Make sure to try the delicious mint tea on offer, and if you want to try some of the local dishes, then a tasty tagine or the couscous is a great way to sample some flavour. 

As an added note, alcohol is forbidden outside of bars in Marrakech, with it being an Islamic city. Some bars and restaurants won’t serve alcohol at all, so make sure to ask before you sit down if you’re fancying a tipple. Although, it may surprise you that there is a modern nightlife scene with everything from traditional street performers to cabaret acts in booming nightclubs.

Visit the Blue House

Jardin Majorelle, known to tourists as ‘the Blue House of Marrakech’ is one of the biggest attractions in the region and an absolute must-see! The deep-blue shade of the house has become synonymous with Morocco itself, and was invented by the original owner of the house and gardens, Jaques Majorelle, who aptly named the colour ‘Majorelle Blue’. 

If you want to feel like you’ve stepped foot into a tropical oasis, then this is definitely the place to go – not only will you feel like you’re in divine surroundings, but you’ll leave with some seriously insta-worthy pics, too. The gardens boast gorgeous green plants from all over the world, and stand out in contrast to the bright blues and yellows of the house. For a new profile pic to stand out from the crowd, this house is the perfect backdrop!

Things to do for free in Marrakech

Marvel at the Medina

If you didn’t know already, the Medina in Marrakech is the name of the old mediaeval part of the city, and is one of the most magical places to visit during your time in Morocco. For a real authentic experience of Morocco, this is the place to be!

Wander through the maze of narrow streets and feel transported back in time, admiring the captivating colours of the walls and buildings around you. You’ll find all your senses are on an adventure as you soak up the enchanting smells of various foods and spices, and hear the sounds of the call to prayer echoing through the streets.

In the heart of this part of town is the famous Jamaa el Fnaa square – an absolute must-visit during your time in Marrakech! You’ll be amazed by the sights and sounds of snake charmers, flute players, dancers, and oh-so-tasty street food stalls selling everything from authentic African snacks to fresh fruit juices.