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Experience in Marrakesh, Morocco by Laura

What is it like to live in Marrakesh? Would you recommend it? What is the city like?

Why should you visit Marrakesh?

The city of Marrakesh is one of the most important cities in Morocco. Located in the south of the country, Marrakesh is a place where tastes, cultures and colours are all mixed together.

Marrakesh is a city of contrasts, of surprises. If you have never left Europe, visiting Morocco could be an incredible experience for you. You will never forget the way Marrakesh will make you feel in particular, because it'll be nothing like anything you'll have felt in your own city.

If you have indeed been to a country like Morocco before, Marrakesh is a a city you should visit all the same. It's full of surprises, emotions and experiences for you to share with the people there.

Although it may not seem like it at first, if you're going to feel at home anywhere, you'll feel at home in Marrakech. The most open, hospitable and warm people that I have ever known are the people of Marrakesh, without a doubt. You'll feel welcomed by the people in Marrakesh straight away. If they're got one thing straight in Marrakesh, it's that they have to take care of tourists as much as they care, even maybe they go too far sometime (but we'll talk about that later! ), and honestly to be treated like royalty is amazing.

Experience in Marrakesh, Morocco by Laura


What is the student lifestyle like in Marrakesh?

It's perfect, www.sahara-Morocco-tours.com organise trips throughout Morocco. They have drives in a Raid 4x4 in the Moroccan desert, Ocean Atlas trips, the roads through the south of Morocco or your trips, excursions and visits to Morocco... "Live an unforgettable adventure in Morocco". There's a trip to the Moroccan desert on New Year's Eve, Christmas and Easter in Morocco, 4x4 Raid Morocco Excursions from Marrakesh and Fez Imperial Morocco: Rabat, Meknes, Fez, Marrakesh and Ouarzazate, in southern Morocco.

How much does it cost to live in Marrakesh?

Marrakesh isn't an expensive city, although it's getting more and more popular with tourists. The most expensive part of the trip will be the plane ticket, which can be around €200- €300 for those coming from Spain (some airlines fly directly to Marrakesh without you having to change at another airport).

But I can't say that I think of Marrakesh as an inexpensive place. In reality, although it may not seem like it, you have to look quite hard to find restaurants and other places like that which are well priced, just like in any other city. And it's because Marrakesh is becoming a very big tourist destination, and so the prices are going up.

Experience in Marrakesh, Morocco by Laura


Was is difficult for you to find accommodation in Marrakesh?

Before you look for accommodation, it helps to be aware that you can look for somewhere to live in two very different areas of Marrakesh: in Medina, which is the heart of old Marrakesh, or in the well-known Hivernage area, which is the newest part of the city.

Accommodation in Medina: the Riads of Marrakesh

Accommodation in Medina, from our point of view, is the best way to live in the city. You won't find conventional hotels in Medina, like you would find in big cities all over the world.

What is fashionable in the Medina of Marrakech is known as Riads which are old palaces and private residences that once belonged to sultans, aristocrats and noble families. The hotels are located in the center of the city, and have now been renovated and transformed into beautiful bed and breakfasts, or guest houses, reflecting the architecture and style of the Moroccans.

These riads, for us, are like an oasis in the desert: from the bustling and energetic streets of Marrakesh, you pass through the door of one of these riads to take in the peace and harmony of the place, they have fountains, a small Moroccan style pool, plants, a terrace and some beautiful rooms decorated with exquisite care.

What's more, the service you get in the riads is like nothing else, they're often places with very few rooms and the service is very personal. They will serve you a typical Moroccan breakfast outdoors. If you want, you can also enjoy their dinners with dishes that are customary of their cuisine. There is a range of prices of riads, it all depends on your budget.

Experience in Marrakesh, Morocco by Laura


What is the food like there? What are some of your favourite dishes?

When it comes to food, you have a lot of option in Marrakesh, although it may not seem like it. You can go and eat in local restaurants, which are frequented by the people of Marrakesh; you can eat in the more "touristy" restaurants, where they serve pizza, pasta and other delicious things. And, if you prefer, you can also eat amongst the hubbub of the Jemaa el-Fnaa square, where there are various snack bars where you can get tasty food at a good price.

Our advice for you: the typical food there is Tagine.

What places would you recommend visiting in Marrakesh?

Marrakesh isn't a very big city. So, you'll need four or five days to see the whole thing and, while doing so, enjoy a bit of free time to take in the essence of the city.

I'll give you some details about the most special places to see in Marrakesh:

  • La plaza Jemaa el Fna
  • Jemaa el Fna is much more than a simple square: it's a place where all day and almost all night, the people of Marrakesh come to chat, eat, meet up, show their skills and to sell their goods.

    The magic invoked byt this place is like no other place in Marrakesh. In Jemaa el Fna, they will try to sell you things that you couldn't have imagined and have never seen before, they'll want to charge you for a photo with a monkey, they predict your future. You will feel like a spectator and you'll get to meet other people and chat, you can eat Moroccan food there among the crowds in the square.

    In Jemaa el Fna, everyone is anonymous in the crowd, and so the complicity in the crowd is incredible. Don't miss out on going here, you'll want to go back every night for sure, even if only to observe and walk among the people

    Mosquée Koutoubia

    The Mosquée Koutoubia is the most important mosque in Marrakesh. Its minaret is 65 metres high and dominates the city skyline. Every dome of Moroccan mosques was modelled after the Koutoubia dome. You can only admire the mosque's exterior, since entry is forbidden to those who are not of the Muslim faith.

  • Medersa Ben Youssef
  • It is the biggest and most important madrasa in Morocco. It was built in the 15th century to accommodate the students of the nearby Ben Youssef mosque.

    You'll be able to visit the cells of these students, but what stands out the most from this place is the charming inside patio, a place of incredible peace.

  • Tombeaux Saadiens
  • In the Saadian Tombs, you'll find the mausoleums of the Saadi royal bloodline. The most beautiful one is the tomb of Ahmed el-Mansour. The enclosure was built in the 16th century. It's visited by a lot of groups, so the best time to visit is in the afternoon.

  • Koubba El Baraodiyn
  • It's a pavillion for ablutions built in the 12th century. It looks simple from the outside, but inside it's built with delicate lines and the dome is particularly beautiful.

    Experience in Marrakesh, Morocco by Laura


    And to eat? Can you recommend some good restaurants in Marrakesh?

    Le 6, Cafe Arabe and La Plaza.

    Where would you recommend to go on a night out in Marrakesh?

    Comptoir, Jad Mahal, Afric Chic, Monte Cristo, le Pacha...

    Is there any other advice that you could give to students going to Marrakesh in the future?

    They should travel and study in Marrakesh.

    Experience in Marrakesh, Morocco by Laura


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