6 best things to do in Marrakech

When visiting Marrakech for the first time, it really is an overwhelming experience because of its sensory overload. Everywhere you go, you find a combination of vibrant colors, loud noises, aromatic smells and flavors and amazing sights. There is so much to discover in this vibrant city, below we share our personal highlights and 6 best things to do when visiting Marrakech!

1. Visit the Yves Saint Laurent Museum

The best things to do in Marrakech: Yves Saint Laurent Museum

We were most excited to see the YSL Museum and the Jardin Majorelle. We bought a combined ticket for both, which was around € 30 for the two of us (note: Kelvin could benefit the student rate).

The YSL museum is right next to the Jardin Majorelle and was without doubt our favorite thing to do in Marrakech. Even though the museum is rather small, it really is a must-do if you are into design and fashion. If you don’t want to queue for a ticket, we recommend to start at the YSL Museum and to buy a combined ticket here. The YSL Museum is far less crowded, and when going to the Jardin Majorelle you can skip the queue. A win-win situation! As with every tourist attraction, the earlier you come, the better your chances at being the first in line.

When entering the museum, you are immediately immersed in the classic, elegant style of Yves Saint Laurent. The first thing you see right in front of you is the logo, which is by the way the perfect spot to take some pictures!

The museum itself is all about the colorful inspiration he gained in Marrakech. Inside you can find various fabrics, sketches, photographs and even clothes Yves Saint Laurent designed and manufactured. We really loved the luxury clothes that were displayed. Everything was literally so beautiful, we couldn’t get enough of all these beautiful fabrics that were used! You can also watch a fashion show playing in the auditorium of the museum.

The YSL museum is a place where art, architecture, and fashion come together. It is really interesting and informative to get a glimpse into his life, career and history. That’s why we were so sad it ended so soon, the museum really is quite small unfortunately.

2. Stroll through Jardin Majorelle

The best things to do in Marrakech: Jardin Majorelle

Our next stop was the Jardin Majorelle, the most Instagrammable hotspot of Marrakech. Even though it is really overcrowded most of the time, it still is an enchanting colorful garden to visit and one of the best things to do when visiting Marrakech!

The French artist Jacques Majorelle created this place. In the middle of the garden you can find an artistic, vibrant blue house (Le Musée Berbère/The Berber Museum), surrounded by a lot of greenery like bamboos, palm trees and cacti. Walking here truly feels like a tropical oasis. You can also find a little gallery here, that has some things that get switched between the YSL museum and the gallery. As for The Berber Museum: although it is really small, it had a lot to offer! Expect a “Berber 101” experience when entering, you really get to learn a lot about the Berber culture (think clothes, language, traditions…). Do not sleep on this museum!

3. Admire Bahia Palace

Bahia Palace

If you want to experience some impressive architecture, you really should visit Bahia Palace. This palace with 150 (!) rooms, is a masterpiece of Moroccan architecture with colorful tilework, painted ceilings, beautiful stain glass windows and sunny courtyards. It was built in the 19th century and housed various Moroccan royals. The Bahia Palace really is impressive and worth a visit. Be sure to arrive early in the morning, as it gets really busy, really fast. Multiple guides, excursions and school trips take place here, which was really fun!

4. Stroll along Jamaa El Fnaa

Jamaa El Fnaa

No visit to Marrakech is complete without walking through the famous Jamaa El Fnaa square. This place is the heart of Marrakech and an experience like no other. At this fascinating place you can find a countless number of stalls with spices, fresh juices and street food. Make sure to try the fresh ginger lemon juice with some sugar, it really is delicious and cheap! We ordered multiple ginger juices during our time in Marrakech, and they were all so yummy! You can also find snake charmers, monkeys, entertainers and henna artists. Jamaa El Fnaa is lively and crowded day and night. By night, the square comes to life with music, dancers, and artists. Beware of pickpockets and scammers! Every 10 seconds someone spoke to us, so if that is not your thing, stay clear of this place (and maybe Marrakech in general).

5. Explore the souks

Explore the souks

The souks (markets) are like a maze spread all over the city. Here you can find literally everything: from food to silverware to leather goods and even interior stuff! If we may share a tip: get ready to bargain. This is part of the culture, otherwise you will pay too much anyway. Consider in advance what seems to you a reasonable price and do not go above this price.

Little anecdote: We really wanted some small pottery, and thought € 10 would be a fair price for 3 pieces. When the salesman approached us and noticed our interest, the bargaining commenced. His first price was € 35 (!) for 3 small pots, to which we immediately said no. We were ready to leave, when he shouted his second offer which was € 20 all of a sudden. We noticed he dropped his price almost in half in 30 seconds, so decided to bargain a little bit. After going back and forth and faking to run away, we settled for € 12. This was a 66% discount for 5 minutes of bargaining! The vendor was happy, we were happy and we continued our shopping so don’t be afraid to haggle. There are plenty of stalls, if one stall doesn’t accept your price another surely will!

Our favorite was the souk at the spice square, the smells of the spices were incredible and you could find some lovely straw bags here. It’s easy to get lost in the souks because of the narrow streets that all look the same, especially at night. Be sure to download the app on your phone, because locals will often tell you that certain streets are “closed”. Do not fall for this, afterwards they will ask for money because they have guided you. Download and follow the directions of the app, if you can’t pass somewhere (it does happen very rarely) the app will suggest a new route.

6. Pool day at La Villa Kosy

Pool day at La Villa Kosy

If you really want to escape the hustle and bustle of the medina, we recommend planning a pool day. We discovered Marrakech Best Of on Instagram, where you can book some day trips, pool days, hammams and so much more (not sponsored).

We went for a pool day at La Villa Kosy, including a three-course menu. It was so quiet and beautiful here, we really loved it! The water was not super warm (which makes sense since we were here in November and the pool wasn’t heated), but it was still the perfect place to end our city trip in complete relaxation. The food wasn’t great, but for the price of around € 20 per person, we couldn’t complain. We also ordered some cocktails here at an extra charge, these were really tasty and contained a lot of alcohol!

We think during summer it should be even more rewarding here, but we think it will also probably be a lot more busy so both times have their pros and cons. On Marrakech Best Of you can find a lot of amazing things to do for different budgets, if you do not know where to start in Marrakech we recommend that you take a look here (as well as reading our blog, of course).

Where to stay in Marrakech

More helpful Morocco posts:

Our favorite restaurants in Marrakech
Discover paradise in Marrakech: Bliss Riad

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