The Imperial City of Marrakesh

A Journey to the Orient 

Published: 26 October 2022, 12:00

With its exotic flair, magnificent palaces and picturesque gardens, Marrakesh is considered the most beautiful of the four Moroccan imperial cities. The pulsating heart of the city is Jemaa el-Fnaa, the square of jesters and snake charmers. The huge market square is home to music, dancing, drumming and eating until late into the night – in short, it is the stage for an endlessly colourful spectacle. 

Numbers, data, facts

  • Time difference: - one hour
  • Population: approx. one million 
  • Official language: Arabic and Berber 
  • Currency: Dirham (DH)

Jemaa el-Fnaa is a good starting point to explore the city. You can reach the maze of alleyways of the souks in the historic old town, or medina, directly from here. On the edge of the square stands one of the largest and most beautiful mosques in Morocco – the Kutubiyya. Other highlights include the old Islamic school Ben Youssef Madrasa, the Bahia Palace and the picturesque Majorelle Garden. Marrakesh also scores points thanks to its pretty rooftop terraces from which you have a magnificent view of the Red City and the mountain ranges of the Atlas Mountains.

Marrakesh highlights

Between the Atlantic and the Atlas: Excursions from Marrakes

Marrakesh is situated between the Atlas Mountains and the Atlantic Ocean. The “Pearl of the South” is an ideal starting point for interesting excursions or even a round trip in connection with the other three imperial cities of Fez, Meknès and Rabat. The beautiful Ourika Valley with its small traditional mountain villages is just an hour’s drive from Marrakesh. The Ouzoud Waterfalls could be another day trip. The Oued Ouzoud River plunges about 110 metres into the depths from the red rocks. The area, characterised by olive trees and gnarled trees, is great for hiking. Those who want to drive all the way to the Atlantic Ocean are recommended stopping in the artist town of Essaouira with its beautiful sandy beaches. 

Highlights around Marrakesh

Marrakesh from BER

Pictogram Info-i

Airport Marrakesch-Menara (RAK)

Five travel tips for...

1.     Immerse yourself in the swarms on Jemaa el-Fnaa square

2.     Admire the impressive minaret of the Kutubiyya Mosque

3.     Visit the imperial Bahia Palace and its gardens

4.     Get lost in the souks and shop for souvenirs

5.     Recharge your batteries in the beautiful Majorelle Garden

1.     Try snacks and dishes at the cookshops on Jemaa el-Fnaa

2.     Eat typical Moroccan street food in the souks

3.     Attend a traditional cooking class

4.     Eat the national dish tajine more than once (always something different)

5.     Bread lovers should buy batbout, meloui and harcha 

1.     Watch the snake charmers on Jemaa el-Fnaa

2.     Listen to the drummers at Café de France

3.     Ride a desert ship (camel) on the outskirts of the city

4.     Enjoy yourself on the giant slides at Oasiria water park

5.     Climb Africa’s largest high ropes course in the Terres d'Amanar nature reserve

Copyright title: © kasto / Adobe Stock 

The information published on this page is current as of the date of publication or update.