Marrakech

Djemaa el Fna in the evening

Marrakech (مراكش), also known as Marrakesh, is one of the imperial cities of Morocco.

Understand

The name Marrakech originates from the Amazigh (Berber) words mur (n) akush, which means "go and stop" which was said a long years ago to visitors and camels on the traffic. It is the third largest city in Morocco after Casablanca and Rabat, and lies near the foothills of the snow capped Atlas Mountains and a few hours away from the foot of the Sahara Desert. Its location and contrasting landscape has made it an enviable destination in Morocco.

The city is divided into two distinct parts: the Medina, the historical city, and the new European modern district called Gueliz or Ville Nouvelle. The Medina is full of intertwining narrow passageways and local shops full of character; it also contains the large square Jeema el fna, where many hotels are located and tourists, locals and vendors congregate. In contrast, Gueliz plays host to modern restaurants, fast food chains and big brand stores.

Donkey working in Marrakech

Marrakech is the main tourist destination in Morocco and thus, unfortunately, also a place where many Moroccans try to become rich fast by ripping off tourists. This mentality is so widespread that even Moroccans are now ripped off whenever possible so that they call the city "Marrakech, Arnakech" - which rhymes in Arabic and translates to "Marrakech, Mafia". See the Scam section for more information.

For further information, you may also visit the   Marrakech Tourist Information (at a small square at the intersection of Avenue Mohammed V and Rue de Yugoslavie).

Get in

By plane

  Marrakech-Menara Airport (IATA: RAK),  +212 4444 7910. Marrakech has an international airport with direct scheduled flights from many major European centres, including flights operated by a number of low cost carriers. Connections via Casablanca (45 min flight) are also possible.

From inside the country, you can take Royal Air Morocco, with flights from Agadir, Casablanca (daily), Fez (daily), Ouarzazate, Al Hoceima, and Tangier.

Money exchange and ATMs in the airport

Terminal 1 has at least two money changing outlets in the arrivals hall and three ATMs. There is one money changer in departures, but there are no ATMs airside. Terminal 2 had ATMs, but (as of March 2012) is currently being re-built from the ground up. On ATMs, check for the Maestro, Cirrus or Plus logos to be sure that the machine accepts foreign credit cards. Beware as some of the ATMs work only in French. If your card is taken at the ATM, tell airport security and they can help you get it back.

Airport transfers

The airport is about 9km (6 miles) south-west of the city center (medina), and 6.6km from the Jamaâ El-Fna square.

The No 19 Airport express bus is Dh 30 for a single trip or Dh 50 for round trip (if the return trip is within 2 weeks of initial purchase). It serves all the major hotels and is a great way to go from the airport to the hotels. You can easily find its departure stop, to the left of the road immediately outside of the Arrivals Hall at terminal 2, after the taxis. The bus leaves the airport every half an hour between 7AM and 9:30PM. The bus has no particular stops except Jeema El Fna and can stop anywhere on the route. The driver has a small map to hand out and you can tell the driver your hotel you are heading to. You can also catch No 11 city bus which runs from M'Hamid district to the long distance bus station at Bab Doukkala, stopping also at Jeema El Fna. It stops on Avenue Gnassa - main road near airport, 500 meters from terminal. This is an option only for people without large, heavy luggage, but it is the cheapest one - the bus costs Dh 3.50

The airport is about a 10-15 min ride by "petit taxi" from the city center. Petit taxis are hatchbacks that go to destinations within the city and charge a lower price than the larger "grand taxis," which go between cities. If you leave from the airport by petit taxi, make sure to agree on the price beforehand, or—better yet—have the driver use his meter (a taxi ride to Ville Nouvelle or to the Medina from the airport should be Dh 40-70, more at night). The taxis directly outside the terminal are controlled by an organized gang which demands much higher prices than the official prices which are posted there. They will try to get prices as high as Dh 200 for a ride to the city, and as they are all in on the scam, it is impossible to bargain a lower price from a different driver. Sometimes they try to get you locked inside the vehicle before they reveal the price and will always demand agreement to the exorbitant fare up front. Complaints to the airport police will get you nowhere as they are complicit and will do nothing. Arriving passengers should avoid the stand outside the terminal completely. Walk to the parking lot across from the terminal and there you can find a more honest driver and negotiate a reasonable rate. If you walk out of the airport to the main road, you can hail a taxi and pay only the metered price.

If you are heading to the airport from the city, grand taxis are a very cheap option. Instead of taking a taxi heading for the airport however, you should take one with the direction M'Hamid and ask to be dropped of at the airport exit on its route, from which it is only a 200-300 metre walk to the terminal. This option costs only Dh 5 per person, although you should make sure you agree on the price before you get in. Unfortunately, it is not possible to use this method from the airport to the city.

If you are traveling from the airport to somewhere further afield (such as Essaouira), your hotel or guest house may be able to arrange a grand taxi to pick you up at the airport and charge a fixed price for the journey. Grands taxis are generally more expensive than petit taxis, but more comfortable especially when you have luggage. It also avoids hassle, as it is not always easy to haggle with a taxi driver after staggering off a long plane ride half-asleep.

Many hotels and riads offer a shuttle service for about €15. The advantage is that you avoid the hassle, and they will lead you all the way to you lodging, even if the car cannot drive there. However you might have to wait a while for all your fellow passengers to get out of the airport.

Several international rental car companies are based at the airport as well.

If you do not have too much luggage then it is possible to walk from the airport to the Medina even though it would take you from an hour and half to two hours. There is a footpath alongside the road all the way and the minaret of the Koutoubia mosque provides an excellent landmark to head towards. If you have enough time you can break the trip with a visit to the Menara gardens, which are between the airport and the city.

By train

Marrakech train station

The train station is in the recently developed Guéliz district at Avenue Hassan II, ☎ +212 447768. For train times and schedules, check out the Moroccan Railway website.

Trains from Casablanca (2nd class Dh84/ 1st class Dh150, 3 hours), Rabat and Tangier connect with most domestic rail destinations in the country, with Marrakech as the southernmost stop. Trains run regularly between Marrakech and Casablanca (including the International Airport). They arrive around every two hours and regularly from other destinations like Rabat. Every day there are 8 direct 7 hour trains to Fez via Casablanca Voyageurs station and another two direct connections to Tangier.

From Tangier it's about a 10-hour journey. You can travel either by day train or night train. During the daytime, you will need to change trains for a connection halfway through the journey creating a welcome break for about 30 mins. The night trains which leaves for Marrakech from Tangier travels straight through to Marrakech without the need for a connection. The night trains do have sleeper cars on board, though you will need to pay extra for these if you want a bed (around Dh 350). If you're planning to go cheap and take the night train on the regular seats in second class (and planning to sleep...), you'll be interrupted by movement of te passengers and a few times by the ticket conductors throughout the night. It's a great way to travel but don't plan on sleeping on the train, especially if you are travelling alone.

There is currently no train line further south than Marrakech in Morocco; if you want to head south, to the desert, Atlas Mountains, Agadir or Essaouira on the coast, you'll have to get a bus, rental car or grand taxi.

Moroccan trains do not have restaurant cars. A snack trolley makes the rounds with sandwiches, soft drinks and coffee, but bringing some food for the journey isn't a bad idea. Stops in Casablanca and Rabat usually are long enough to grab a bite in the station en route.

Some taxi drivers will offer there services in the train station or just in front of it - they usually don't use their meter and ask for at least MAD50 to Jeema el Fna. Ignore them and hail one on the main road. The metered fair to Jeema el Fna is about MAD12, if you want to avoid any discussions just offer MAD20 upfront and take the first taxi that accepts this offer.

By bus

There are many long distance bus companies operating within Morocco which serve Marrakech and other cities.

The recommended bus companies for tourists are CTM, Pullman du sud and Supratours. Other companies do exist, though these three companies are usually your safest options.

Most ALSA (local destination bus company) and private bus lines depart and arrive at the long distance bus station (gare routière) near Bab Doukkala, a 20 min walk (Dh 15 - 20 by petit taxi) from Djemaa El-Fna. Supratours and Eurolines buses operate from here. It's the place to take the buses from the small companies, that go directly to small destinations.

The long distance bus station, CTM and private bus companies travel to destinations such as Agadir, Safi, Casablanca, El Jadida, Essaouira, Fez, Meknes, Ouarzazate, Rabat, and Taroudant. Taxi touts will often gather in the bus station to convince you that a bus to your destination is 'full' and to steer you into a grand taxi, and will attempt to sell you goods as your taxi is prepared. This can be difficult if there is nobody manning the ticket desks, and the best option is to walk out of the station to the coaches - a ticket can usually be purchased from a conductor on board. For trips to Meknes (6h, ~120 Dh) be advised, that while seemingly shorter on the map, the mountain route via Beni Millal takes at least 2 hours more than on the highway via Rabat and Casa, going there by train (6½h, 174 Dh) is the most comfortable option, although busses might be slightly quicker.

CTM operates a brand new bus station "Gare Voyageurs" one block south from the Supratour station next to the train station. It's better to take the buses there, because you can buy the tickets in advance. Besides, the CTM's offices there are better and there's no people trying to push you to their bus company. The office and station on Zerktouni street does not exist anymore. CTM has also an office at the long distance bus station (see above) if you just want to buy your tickets in advance or check the schedule.

A taxi ride from the CTM station to the main square is, if metered, about MAD12. The taxis waiting in front of the station are operated by a gang of dishonest drivers who will charge up to MAD100. One can just ignore their pushy boss and loudly offer MAD20 - usually someone will accept or walk 50 meters up or down the road and hail in taxi.

Get around

Once in the medina, everything can be seen on foot, though you'll be doing a lot of walking. Many tourist destinations are signposted by brown, red or green signs affixed to posts or to buildings. Bear in mind that many of these signs don't take the direct route, and some seem to deliberately send tourists via various markets or other places money may be spent.

The signs used on buildings

For exploring more of the city, buses and petits taxis are plentiful.

By bus

Alsa run the city buses and have maps, fares and a frequency guide on their web page.

Almost all buses stop at Djemaa El-Fna and Place Youssef Ben Tachfine and fares range from MAD2-5 depending on the distance. Important municipal bus lines are:

Bus No 19 leaves Djemaa el-Fna every half an hour, starting at 6:15AM in the morning until 9:15PM. The trip to the airport takes about 25 minutes.

There is an open-topped City Sightseeing bus that will take you around the outskirts of the city, with commentary provided via headphones (supplied with your ticket) in any of 8 different languages. The best place to catch it is from the coach stops by Square de Foucauld. Tickets cost Dh 145 each and are valid for 24 hours from the time of issue, no matter how many times you get on or off. You can get a 48-hour ticket for very little extra and as there are two distinct tours, this can be a good deal. Check the timetable carefully, as the buses can stop running earlier than you might think.

By caleche

An alternative and romantic way to travel is by caleche, a small horse-drawn carriage. They can be hired at Square de Foucauld (the small park to the south of Djemaa El-Fna). It's wise to agree on a price before setting off. As a guide price, you should pay around DH 80 per hour, per carriage.

By taxi

You should always ask to use the meter (compteur in French); otherwise, you are just contributing to a culture of ripping off people. However, in the vast majority of cases, the drivers will refuse to take you if you insist on using the meter. Even locals often have troubles with drivers in Marrakesh, that's how it is. Even if you use the meter, the driver may try and charge extra for bags, or be lacking change in order to get a larger fare.

Your only option to completely avoid this is using the buses which serve most destinations of interest (see above). If you accept that you have to pay a small penalty fee for being a tourist, offer 50% more than the metered ride would cost upfront (see below).

For petit taxi, the maximum number of passengers is three (plus the driver), i.e. one fare applies to a single person, or a group two or three people.

For grand taxis (regular Mercedes taxis) there are no meters. Typically the set rate from Marrakech Airport to the Medina or Jemaa el fna (Main square) is Dh 150. There also appears to be no limit to the amount of people they'll attempt to squeeze in! Outside of the airport if you are a group of more than three, the maximum for a Petit Taxi, then do negotiate you fee before you enter the grand taxi.

See

Koutoubia Mosque

There is much to see and do in Marrakech. An entire day can be dedicated to wandering around all the different souks, seeking out the best bargains. The city also offers several historical and architectural sites as well as some interesting museums.

Wonderful detailed walls in the Dar Si Said Museum
Sadian Tombs
Jewish cemetery in Marrakech
Metal craft area
Majorelle Gardens
Ben Youssef Madrasa
Courtyard in Bahia Palace, Marrakech
El Badi Palace
Menara

Do

Shop lamps at Djemaa El-Fna

The Medina

The old, historic district of the city.

The main square in the Medina is Djemaa El-Fna. It is surrounded by endless labyrinths of souks (bazaars) and alley ways covering all of the Medina. Djemma El-Fna is a must as there is always something to see there day and night whether it be snake charmers, acrobats, sooth-sayers,or the musicians and food stalls. At night the square really comes to life as people navigate toward the exotic aromas and the entertaining sights. As the evening darkens, the hustle & bustle of activity rages on. The exotic music appears louder and more hypnotic.

The Medina is also the place to stay in a Riad, a Moroccan house with an internal courtyard. Most windows are inward facing towards the central atrium. This design of property suits Islamic tradition as there is no obvious wealth statement being made externally, no windows to peer through. Entering a Riad is like discovering an Aladdin's Cave in comparison to its non-descript exterior. They are great places to stay and offer an intimate and relaxing retreat.

Directly south of the Djemaa El-Fna is Rue Bab Agnaou. A five-min walk takes you straight to the famous Bab Agnaou entrance to the Kasbah district of the Medina. The Bab Agnaou entrance, through the ramparts, is by far the most impressive entrance of all medina rampart entrances.

The Kasbah, in comparison to the Derbs (streets) surrounding the Djemaa El-Fna, portrays a calmer, less abrasive atmosphere. It is home to the Royal Palace, also the former El - Badi Palace and the Saadian Tombs. This naturally creates better security, cleaner streets and a hint of being a special place within the medina. The Kasbah has its own little bazaars (Souikas), food stalls, restaurants, hotels and riads for travellers to enjoy.

Hammams

Desert trekking

Understand that Marrakesh in not in the desert and that you will spend several hours to get to the desert and that day tours are therefore pretty stressful. If you have the time, spend at least one night in the desert or in a town close to your desert trekking destination.

Buy

Spices at a Marrakech market.

Along with the major souk (Arabic for 'market') adjacent to the Djemaa El-Fna, there are a plethora of smaller souks throughout the city where any number of products can be had. In any of them, you generally need to bargain. Keep an eye out for a wide array of hand-crafted candle-holding lanterns, as well as spectacular displays of local spices.

Most shops sell the same handful of items. But if you wander a little off from El Fna, you can find small workshops with real craftsmen making handmade goods. You then get to talk to craftmen that the item you bought. If you buy shoes or clothes that can also make alterations for you. And there a few places that make uniquie products, that you will not see anywhere else.

Argan oil, produced only in Morocco, is used in Moroccan cooking and beauty treatments. If you enjoy its unique nutty flavor, be sure to pick some up in the souks. It will cost you about Dh 70 per 100 ml at local supermarket for cooking oil or Dh 200 for genuine cosmetic oil.

Argan oil production at Herboriste De Marrakech

Marrakech is home to a large tanning industry, and leather goods of high quality can be bought here cheaply. Check out camel leather items especially - jackets, round poufs, and handbags.

For the shoes always check they have no paper inside the plate (sole in French) because it is very common, do not be fooled by demonstration of how they bend the shoe and turns back to the position try it yourself by feeling and hearing how the paper bends. For poor quality one you should not pay more than Dh 40 and for a good one no more than Dh 90, shop around and learn the difference between the quality.

Also of interest would be items made of the local cactus silk, which is really rayon, a natural fiber made of plant cellulose and produced in Morocco. Rayon holds the chemical dyes well which accounts for the vibrant range of true colors (natural dyes cannot produce a "true" color). On offer are scarves, handbags, tablecloths, bedspreads and throws in stunning colors. Some merchants try to charge a premium price for this "cactus silk". Check well because there are many fakes and sellers will usually tell you any lie to get you pay a high price.

Be sure to wander round the potters' souk, and look for brightly colored platters and bowls, as well as tagines in all sizes

Lovely cashmere shawls can also be had for less than a fiver with a little bargaining.

Plate maker in medina of Marrakech

If you cannot stand the bargaining, there are two government run shops where you can buy handicrafts at fixed prices. Look for boutique d'artisans. One is near Djemaa El-Fna while the other one is in the ville nouvelle.

An option to explore the souks in a more tranquil way is to go during the Friday prayer. Although some shops will be closed, most stay open and are significantly less crowded than at other times.

The Apple and Samsung smartphones being sold on Jeema el fna are Chinese-built fakes; they work fine but employ less storage and cheaper components than the originals. Bargain accordingly.

Fruit and nut sale booths at Jemaa El Fnaa, Marrakech

Prices

As a guide for prices, maximum and generous prices you should pay.

Do not bid for a price that you are not willing to pay.

Even hostel prices can be haggled.

Remember, sellers are just the middle man, they do not produce it, except maybe for some kinds of lamps, and they pay very little to the people who actually make it. Please also never pay in advance. And never let anyone write you an invoice. It is a bad idea and in most of the cases you will never see your goods or money back.

Eat


For more upscale eateries (and especially for non-Moroccan cuisine) you generally must go outside the Medina to Ville Nouvelle.

Guéliz

Splurge

How to eat (well) in the Djemaa El-Fna

Djemaa El-Fna in full swing

Each night in the Djemaa El-Fna rows of street stalls are set up under giant white tents. The huts targeting tourists serve similar fare and have menus printed in French, Arabic and usually English. Everyone has tajine, couscous, brochette and some variety of soups. Some have specialities like offal, egg sandwiches or special tajines. Be aware that most restaurants employ rather insistent "greeters," who are very aggressive in trying to customers for their stall. The line 'we already ate' seems to work well to get them to stop.

If you want to eat well in Marrakech, do what the locals do and eat at the food stalls in the square. It is a common misconception that these stalls are only here for the tourists. Actually, they have been in existence long before Marrakech became a tourist destination. All of the stalls can be regarded as perfectly safe to eat at. They are strictly licensed and controlled by the government, especially now as it is a popular destination for tourists. The locals eat at the cheaper stalls that don't employ greeters and serve the more interesting food: snails, sheep head, lentils and beans...

Some tips:

Drink

Street vendors offer fresh orange juice (jus d'Orange) by the glass for Dh 4. Try it with a dash of salt like the locals, but be wary of vendors who try and water the juice down with tap water. Also, pay attention when you buy as they offer 2 types of orange...the blood orange juice costs Dh 10 per glass and a misunderstanding on what you want to drink could occur.

Confirm the price of your orange juice and pay for it before you drink. Unscrupulous vendors will sometimes try to charge you Dh 10 for a Dh 4 glass of jus d'Orange, so don't accept your drink until you've paid the correct amount.

Be wary also, that they do not always clean the glasses very well so it is possible to get an upset stomach from the juice.

There is a very limited selection of places selling alcohol in the Medina.

Outside the Medina.

Sleep

Marrakech has an amazing choice of places to stay ranging from tented camps outside Marrakech to cheap hostels and hotels that can be charming or seedy to luxurious kasbahs in luxurious gardens or the traditional riad (garden courtyard) hotels. Wherever you choose ( or can afford) to stay it really is a must to visit one of the riad hotels to see this amazing style of architecture. Most riad managers will be happy to show you around provided that they are not too busy and in some riads you can even book a lunch or dinner without being a resident provided that the riad is not privately rented. For example, see Riad Cinnamon, Riad Laksiba and Riad Papillon. There are three main zones to sleep: Medina, Guéliz (also known as Ville Nouvelle), and the surroundings of the city. The Medina has the highest concentration of very cheap hotels and riads (small palaces), while Guéliz is much more quiet and most of the hotels are mid price (including showers in the room, breakfast service), but going to the medina from the Guéliz by taxi costs about Dh 10-15 and can take a long time at busy periods (evenings and weekends).

The surroundings have all the huge tourist hotels, the ones that usually come with what the travel agencies offer. They can be further away from the medina and the rest of the city, but have big swimming pools, restaurants, and many services.

Dars

The Medina is packed with Riads and Dars (old grand houses converted into hotels and inns). Traditionally, riads should have gardens; with smaller dars having open courtyards. However the term riad is now used loosely to describe any house with an internal open-air center. These are wonderful places to stay to get a feel for life in Marrakech.

Riads

The Cooling effect of a Riad's courtyard is no accident. Design: A water feature at the base of a Riad courtyard serves two purposes. Firstly, the obvious focal point but more importantly, the courtyards open-air aperture channels warm air entering into the Riad which in turn passes over the water feature, cools down, thus assisting in the convection of heat to exit back through the Riad's open-air aperture. This style of natural air-conditioning has been prevalent in Morocco for millennia and is remarkably successful.

The Medina is packed with Riads and Dars (old grand houses converted into hotels and inns). Riads should have gardens; with smaller Dars having open courtyards. However the term Riad is used very loosely today to describe a house with an internal open-air centre. These are wonderful places to stay to get a feel for life in Marrakech.

If you arrive by car, ask the hosts to help you find your way from the parking lot, especially if you never experienced orientation in a real medina before. Here are a sample of some of the riads (in alphabetical order) where you can experience Marrakech's unique style of living:

A Riad Courtyard

Discount hotels

The budget conscious will have more luck in the streets and alleyways south of Djemaa El-Fna, which are packed with discount hotels offering singles from Dh 50. Derb Sidi Bouloukat is a good place to look, a quiet but safe alleyway packed with traditional-style hotels just a min from Djemaa El-Fna. Its entrance is easy to find, just a few steps away from Djemaa El-Fna. Take Riad Zatoune (unmarked) which starts right of the Moroccan Red Crescent (with your back towards the Koutoubia) and it's the first alley on the right (marked in Arabic only). On your way in Riad Zitoune you will also come across the public hammam (Dh 10, left entrance for women, right entrance for men, the soap, glove and small bucket can be bought at many shops across the street) and a small restaurant serving bissara and mint tea for less than Dh 5.

Popular options with backpackers include:

In the little streets between rue Bab Agnaou and rue Riad Zitoune (where the Smara, the Essaouira, and the Imouzzer are) there are a lot of other small hostels. It is difficult to get lost as they are surrounded by these two big streets and Djemaa El-Fna. It could be a good idea to arrive during the day (best in the morning) and wander around comparing many hostels in a short time.

Hostels

Guéliz (also known as Ville Nouvelle)

Stay safe

Marrakech is a generally safe city, with a solid police presence. However, staying alert about your surroundings and taking general safety precautions is always a good idea like everywhere. Here are some tips:

Emergency phone numbers

Hospitals

Drinking water

The tap water in Marrakech is suitable for bathing. While locals drink it with no problems, visitors often find it hard to digest. To be safe, opt for bottled mineral water, available at the numerous marketplace kiosks and food stalls. Make sure that the cap seal has not been broken, since vendors have been known to save money by refilling plastic bottles from the tap. At restaurants, ask for your drinks without ice, which are usually made with tap water.

Scams

If you look like a tourist, then it is common for people to offer to help with directions or even lead you to what you are looking for. Although not apparent at first, these people expect to be paid and will often lead you round in circles to increase the amount. Also, people may say that the place you are looking for is closed, but they will take you somewhere else that's better. This is almost always a lie. The best people to ask for directions are people behind a counter, as they cannot lead you because they don't want to leave their stall. If you are seriously lost, getting someone to lead you back is an option, but you should always agree on a price upfront (MAD10 to MAD20 are reasonable).

Moroccans are not permitted to be guides for foreigners without a license. Usually Police officers (under cover) are patrolling to catch Moroccans who are bothering tourists or try to make some money.

There are often people in Djemaa El-Fna offering henna tattoos, which are popular with locals and tourists alike. But among the many genuine traders are one or two scam artists. They appear very charming and trustworthy while you choose a design, but will then cleverly divert your attention. Before you know it, you have the beginnings of a rather poor henna tattoo. Even if you do not want a design, be sure to keep your hands away from them as they will grab your hand and begin a design anyway. The scam artist later demands massive payments, in whatever currency you have (dirhams or not). After emptying your pockets, if they consider you can afford more, they will demand that you visit a nearby ATM. Always agree on a firm price before work starts. If you can't do this, insist that the operator stops immediately - then go to another (hopefully more reliable) operator to get your design completed. If they say it is free before they start or while they are doing it, they will always ask for a price later on. If this happens to you, you can walk away without paying; however, they will harass you for a little before giving up and moving on to another tourist. Also, there have been stories of these scam artists using henna mixed with dangerous chemicals, such as PPD (this is sometimes done to make the tattoos appear black), which can cause skin damage or severe allergic reactions.

Some tourists encounter an elderly lady offering henna in the main square - she welcomes you to her stall, and then fetches her friends (who arrive, usually, on motor bikes) and will provide you with very appealing tattoos - however, beware - they will not agree a price upfront and will ask for huge amounts - e.g. a 50Dh tattoo will be 450Dh - or they will promise you free tattoos and then charge equally large amounts. When you dispute the amount they will scream at you - so be calm, pay them what you think it is worth, and walk away. If they try to stop you then create attention - however, do not use physical violence as these artists work in gangs and before you know it you'll be surrounded by other con-artists.

Most Moroccans are tourist-friendly and are not aggressive, so sometimes making a fuss in public can generate unwanted attention for a scam artist and shame them into backing off.

Embassies

Be sure to report any crime to both the local police and your embassy.

Most other foreign embassies and consulates in Morocco are in Rabat, with a few more in Casablanca.

Cope

There are many dry cleaning shops inside and outside of the Medina. It takes only one day to clean and will cost from Dh10-30 per piece. If you stay at hotel, you can hand out your dirty clothes to a housekeeper. Usually they wash it by hand. They do not have a price list and usually say "up to you". You should not pay more than Dh 50-100 per plastic bag.

Go next

Ourika Valley
Cascade d'Ouzoud waterfalls

Marrakech can make a good base for exploring the High Atlas or for organizing one to four day Sahara treks. The following are towns in the High Atlas that can be seen as part of a day trip:

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Thursday, March 31, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.