Marrakech: TOP 15 things to see and do

Marrakech: TOP 15 things to see and do

Marrakech: TOP 15 things to see and do

Marrakech: TOP 15 things to see and do: How to make the most of your trip to Marrakech? Discover the best places to visit in Marrakech in 2, 3, 4, 5 or even 7 days. But also unusual activities to do in Marrakech with the family, when it’s raining, photo spots, Instagrammable places or even secret spots. These include the Palmeraie, the Ouzoud waterfall and the Agafay desert.

Top 10 things to do in Marrakech 🤩

5 places to visit around Marrakech, outside the city 🏔

Organizing your stay whether you’re staying for the weekend or the week 📔

Family activities in Marrakech 👨‍👩‍👧‍👦

If it rains on one of the 4 days in Marrakech 🌦

Evening outings in Marrakech 💫

Summary of free places to visit 👍

1. TOP 10 places to visit and things to do in Marrakech.

What are the must-sees on a trip to Marrakech?


Bahia Palace

Majorelle Garden

Jemaa El Fna Square

Koutoubia Mosque


Palm grove

Saadian tombs

Medersa Ben Youssef

Other places

Things to avoid in Marrakech

Hidden, secret and unusual places in Marrakech

1.1 Walking tour of Marrakech’s Medina

The Medina is the old quarter, the historic center of Marrakech. The Medina is made up of dozens of small streets in all directions, a veritable labyrinth. It’s great to visit the Medina on foot when you come to Marrakech, as it’s very typical. Marrakech’s medina is over 1,000 years old. It’s not always obvious from the outside, but there are many riads in the Medina, some of the most beautiful (La Maison Arabe, for example). See which areas to stay in and which to avoid here.

There are many souks in the Medina, which we’ll talk about later in this blog post.

Visiting Marrakech’s Medina on foot is a free activity, but it’s easy to get lost. There are, of course, guided tours in French. For example, this guided tour in French.

1.2 The Bahia Palace

The Palais de la Bahia is a magnificent palace to visit in Marrakech. It’s fairly recent, having been completed in 1900. It’s an Islamic-style palace.

Good to know! The Moroccan currency is the dirham. Visa and Master Card are accepted in Morocco. However, bank charges can be high. But paying without bank charges is possible! Find out more in our article

1.3 The Jardin Majorelle

The Jardin Majorelle is a splendid botanical garden located north of Marrakech’s Medina. A French painter, Jacques Majorelle, originally settled here and created the garden. In the 1980s, Yves Saint Laurent bought the garden and renovated it. When he died in 2008, his ashes were scattered in the Jardin Majorelle.

It takes at least 1 hour to visit Marrakech’s Jardin Majorelle. But as it’s a very pleasant place to be, you may find yourself sitting on a bench contemplating the garden.

For fans of couturier YSL, there’s also a dedicated museum: the Musée Yves Saint Laurent de Marrakech. There’s also a themed guided tour of the couturier that takes in the Jardin Majorelle and the Musée Yves Saint Laurent.

1.4 Jemaâ El Fna Square: a must-see in the early evening

Place Jemaa El Fna is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s a cultural landmark because it has long been a place of spectacle and entertainment. A visit to Jemaa El Fna square in the evening is guaranteed to see dozens of artists: musicians, snake charmers, monkeys and painters.

It’s a very original activity to do on your trip to Marrakech. The square is teeming with activity, and it’s magnificent. It’s also easy to eat in the square, on a terrace, but this is something to be avoided, as there can be nasty surprises.

1.5 The Koutoubia Mosque

The Koutoubia Mosque and its minaret are a must-see symbol of Marrakech. It’s a very old mosque, dating back to 1196.

It is not possible to visit the interior of the mosque. It’s an active place of worship, reserved for the practicing faithful. In fact, it’s not uncommon for worshippers to sit outside the mosque for prayers.

A must-see on your trip to Marrakech

1.6 The souks of Marrakech

A visit to the souks in Marrakech is a must, as they’re so closely associated with the city that they’re a must. On the other hand, you need to know how to bargain to get a good deal, but then, it’s a bit of a game to overpay when you come to visit Marrakech.

Marrakech’s souks are themed. Each souk has its own specialty, and there’s no one souk in Marrakech that’s better than another, depending on what you’re looking for.

Semarrine Souk: spices of all kinds: cumin, saffron, pepper, turmeric, etc.

Souk Cheratin: leather goods, i.e. belts, bags, slippers, etc.

Sebbaghine Souk: the dyers’ souk.

Souk Seffarine: the copper souk

Zrabi Souk: the carpet souk

Souk Chouari: the souk of basket makers and woodworkers

1.7 The Marrakech palm grove

The Palmeraie is a slightly off-center area about 5km north of Marrakech. A Palmeraie is an area where palm trees grow! Historically, it’s a particularly important place, dating back to the origins of Marrakech, at the same time as the Medina. The Palmeraie was planted almost 1000 years ago, and irrigated by qanats. It provided Marrakech with dates, oil, wine and wood.

Since then, the Palmeraie has lost some of its splendor. Reforestation efforts are underway. Several hotel clubs have set up in the area.

It is still possible to visit the Marrakech Palmeraie by camel. It may be very touristy, but it’s a great activity to do on your trip to Marrakech.

La Palmeraie is also a great place to find an all-inclusive club hotel for rest and relaxation. For example, the Tikida Garden hotel is both All Inclusive and Adults Only.

1.8 The Saadian tombs

The Saadian dynasty ruled Marrakech for 135 years in the 16th and 17th centuries. There are many relics of this era to visit in Marrakech, and the Saadian tombs are the most interesting.

Very well preserved and richly decorated. A visit is highly recommended.

In this part of town, Riad La Sultana Marrakech is an exceptional place to stay.

1.9 Medersa Ben Youssef

The Medersa Ben Youssef is a beautiful Koranic school to visit in Marrakech. It’s also a building that dates back to the Saadian era. Unlike a mosque, the medersa is open to the public.

1.10 Other places to visit in Marrakech

The Menara. This is an olive garden with a large pool. It’s located just outside the city, past the Hivernage district. It’s a pleasant, relaxing spot.

The Marrakech Museum. A museum dedicated to the city’s history.

Bab Ksiba, Bab Agnaou, Bab Er-Robb. These are the gates leading into the Kasbah.

Palais El Badii. This is the palace where the Marrakech Laughter Festival takes place. It’s also a great photo spot in Marrakech. There are mostly ruins to see here.

1.11 Things to avoid in Marrakech

Marrakech: TOP 15 things to see and do: Street and souk guides. There are often people who insist on guiding you through the streets of the medina and the various souks. They may ask for a lot of money or take you to dangerous places. As a general rule, it’s always better to go with a recognized guide, where you’ve had the chance to read some reviews, than with a stranger on the street.

Eat in Jemaa El-Fna Square. This is the most touristic place, so there are many small restaurants that are really not of good quality. So don’t go by chance, and check the reviews before you go.

1.12 Hidden, secret or unusual places in Marrakech

Le Jardin Secret. Right in the heart of the medina, this is a garden where you can take a break from the souks. It’s calm and cool, an oasis in the city. It’s one of the most Instagrammable places in Marrakech and a great photo spot.

Flying over the city in a hot-air balloon. Marrakech’s landscapes are a real change of scenery! And the view from a hot-air balloon is exceptional. It’s an unusual activity to do in Marrakech.

Listen to tales. On Monday and Thursday evenings, storytellers recite local legends at Café Clock (see café website).

Hammam. Hamman is a typical Moroccan activity, but one that tends to be forgotten when visiting Marrakech.

2. TOP 5 places to visit in and around Marrakech

There are many things to do in and around Marrakech, so here are our top 5 places to visit around the city.

Ouzoud waterfalls

Ourika Valley

Agafay desert

Merzouga desert


Visit the Ourika Valley or the Ouzoud Waterfalls. If you only want to do one of the two, the choice can be difficult. The Cascades d’Ouzoud are very pretty, but not really a visit: you go there, spend a few hours and come back. In the Ourika Valley, on the other hand, you’re always accompanied and discover several places and plantations. So it’s 2 very different activities.

Berber villages. Along the way, you’ll see several Berber villages around Marrakech. Not really a visit, but a curiosity along the way.

Free time. Most tours only cover the round trip and access to the site. They usually leave some free time on site, around 4 hours. It’s a good idea to come prepared, depending on what you want to do: swimming, walking, picnics.

Activities. There are a number of activities available at the Ouzoud Waterfalls:

Marrakech: TOP 15 things to see and do: Swimming: You can take a dip in the water at the foot of the Ouzoud cascades.

Boating: You can also take a small boat that takes you right to the foot of the waterfalls.

Hiking: You can take some of the paths around the Ouzoud waterfalls for a short hike and explore the area.

Monkeys: There are lots of monkeys living here, so you’re sure to come across some, especially if you go for a walk. It’s always very surprising.

Pic nic: You can have a picnic here, but you have to come equipped.

Restaurant: There are also several restaurants here

2.2 The Ourika Valley

The Ourika is a small river that flows through a valley in the High Atlas, just outside Marrakech. It’s about 40km away and takes about 1 hour to get there from Marrakech.

Excursions to the Ourika Valley are really all-day tours. You’ll visit the Ourika valley, visit Berber villages, and even eat in a traditional Berber house. It’s a truly rich day of sightseeing in the Atlas: see the rates for this superb excursion.

In the valley, there are several restaurants where you can eat with your feet in the river to cool off. Very original!

Other Atlas valleys. There are excursions to other Atlas valleys. For example, this excursion to the Asni valley includes a camel ride and a visit to Berber houses.

2.3 The Agafay Desert

The Agafay Desert is very close to Marrakech. It takes 40 minutes to get there, or around 30km. This is a reg, not an erg. A reg is a rocky desert. An erg is a sandy desert.

There are plenty of particularly original or unusual activities to do in the desert on a trip to Marrakech.

Quad biking. You can rent a quad bike and go for a ride in the desert.

hamlet. A camel ride is bound to be memorable. You won’t get many chances, so you might as well take them. An activity to do on a trip to Marrakech

2.4 The Merzouga Desert

We’re pretty far from Marrakech, but we thought it’d be interesting to talk about it anyway. We’re on the other side of the Atlas Mountains, a 9-hour drive away. The Merzouga desert is an erg, a sandy desert, just like the Sahara.

Excursions lasting several days enable you to cross the Atlas and reach the Merzouga desert. It’s more like an adventure through the Atlas. If you have the time and inclination to discover this part of Morocco

2.5 Essaouira

Marrakech: TOP 15 things to see and do: Essaouira is a port city overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. It’s a 3-hour drive. It’s an opportunity to discover another, less touristy town in Morocco, and to see the ocean. Excursions are mostly guided all the way, with a midday meal that is often fresh fish.

3. Organizing your trip to Marrakech

How many days to visit Marrakech

Weekend in Marrakech, what to visit in 2 days

What to do in Marrakech in 3 days

4 days in Marrakech

Visiting Marrakech in 5 days

A week to visit Marrakech

How many days will it take to visit Marrakech?

You should allow 3 or 4 days for a leisurely visit to Marrakech, and have time to discover a site around Marrakech. This is the right amount of time to get to know the local way of life for the first time. You may come back several times if you’ve enjoyed your stay, and you may want to stay longer.

You can also come for just a weekend in Marrakech if you’re only planning to stay in the city.

Weekend in Marrakech: places to visit in 2 days

Marrakech: TOP 15 things to see and do: 2 days in Marrakech is pretty short, but you’ll still have plenty of time to discover life here. Here are the must-do activities in Marrakech and the places to visit in 2 days:

What to do in Marrakech on day 1?

Visit the Medina on foot

Stroll through the souks and do some original shopping

Take a break in the Secret Garden

Discover the Koutoubia Mosque

See the Medersa Ben Youssef

Spend the evening in Jemaa El Fna square

Alternately, go on a tour of the city’s core.

What to do in Marrakech on Day 2

Visit the Jardin Majorelle and perhaps the Yves Saint Laurent museum, if you’re interested.

Bahia Palace

El Badii Palace

The Saadian Tombs

Pass through the gates of the Kasbah (Bab Ksiba, Bab Agnou or other)

3 days in Marrakech: what to see and do

Marrakech: TOP 15 things to see and do: We’ll continue our weekend itinerary in Marrakech and add a 3rd day.

For the 3rd day in Marrakech, we’re going to stray a little way to see the Palmeraie! Great opportunity for a camel ride!

It’s also a good time on day 3 to take time out for a Hammam! IOn ideal relaxing activity after the Palmeraie.

What to do in Marrakech in 4 days

We’re going to continue the itinerary of the previous days in Marrakech and add a 4th day.

On this 4th day, it’ll be great to get out of the city and discover other places in and around Marrakech. You may want to get some fresh air from the hustle and bustle of the city.

You can get out of town and visit either the Ouzoud waterfalls, the Ourika valley or the Agafay desert. It’s really up to you which you prefer, because all 3 are very interesting for day 4.

A week in Marrakech

We’re resuming our 5-day Marrakech itinerary and adding a few more activities outside the city. This is your chance to see another site in the Marrakech area, one that you didn’t see on Day 4. I.e. the Ouzoud Waterfalls, the Ourika Valley or the Agafay Desert.

What to do in Marrakech as a family

Marrakech: TOP 15 things to see and do

Visiting Marrakech as a family takes on a whole new meaning. You’ll also need to plan activities to appeal to children and younger visitors.

Marrakech: TOP 15 things to see and do: Marrakech with a baby or toddler. With a child, visiting the medina and souks is more risky and difficult, as there are a lot of crowds and noise. Nevertheless, it’s still a must-see in Marrakech. It’s a good idea to take a guide to lead you through the narrow streets, so you don’t get annoyed when you’re lost.

We were visiting Marrakech with the children. With children, there are some very simple activities to fill them with wonder. For example, a camel ride in Marrakech’s Palmeraie is an almost guaranteed success. The same goes for the Ouzoud waterfalls, where you can meet monkeys. There are other places to see animals around Marrakech, such as La Perle des Oiseaux. This is a zoological refuge with around a hundred species. Allow 1h30 for the visit.

Activities for young people and teenagers in Marrakech. Visiting Marrakech with teenagers can be complicated. One activity they generally enjoy is the water park. There are several slides, and they’re great fun, even with children. Oasira Park seems to be the best water park around Marrakech.

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