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Top things to do in Marrakech

Marrakesh is skilled at putting up a show. Its dizzying sights and noises continue to fascinate, dazzle, and frazzle people as they did for almost a thousand years. Particularly in the medina of Marrakech, the meaning of "Bustle" is completely altered.


One of the top shopping cities in the world, Marrakesh is the place to go if you want to add some North African spices to your pantry or a Moroccan flair to your home. Have you prepared a map? It's probably not much use to you in this situation. Imagine the souqs of the medina as a retail mall that is filled with businesses, lodging options, museums, and historical places yet is organized like a maze from the middle ages.


The finest things to do in Marrakesh are listed here.


The Djemaa El Fna


If the entire planet is a stage, the big finale is Djemaa El Fna. The plaza moves to its own distinctive melody every night as soon as smoke from the restaurant grills starts to billow into the air. Amazigh musicians compete for attention as Gnaoua troupes bang their drums in opposition to reedy snake charmer flutes. Food booth salespeople and henna artists also shout over the music. It is a vibrant remix of Djemaa El Fna's mesmerizing chorus.




Master the Marrakesh medina maze


Becoming a master of the looping derbs (alleyways) of the Marrakesh medina takes a lifetime to learn. But there's no harm in trying. Strike out from Djemaa El Fna and plunge yourself into the medina melee to navigate donkey carts and bicycles amid the crowds on the cobblestones. When the main souqs get too claustrophobic, dive into the alley offshoots and follow the high walls, washed in pink tones, past grand dilapidated gates and brass-knocker decorated doors, through low tunnels and stuccoed archways to wherever they may lead.




Maison de la Photographie


A view of Morocco that has been consigned to history is presented through the private collections on exhibit at Maison de la Photographie. It is the creation of Marrakchi Hamid Mergani and Parisian Patrick Menac'h, who combined their love for old photographs of Morocco by starting this collection. Round-eyed servants, tattooed Atlas Mountain women, aristocratic Fez-based Arabs, djellaba-clad wanderers, and aristocratic Fez-based Arabs all peer out from the walls. The scenes that depict Marrakesh landmarks are the most fascinating of all; for example, the 1920s image of Djemaa El Fna as an Amazigh market offers a subtly colored window into the past.





Jardin Majorelle - Garden of Eden


Jacques Majorelle created the Jardin Majorelle, which was later cultivated with the help of French fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent, as a respite from the monuments and dust of the medina. Stroll through candy-colored walkways that wind through bamboo groves and cactus gardens while walking beneath the verdant canopy. Fashionistas stand in front of the stunning Musée Berbère, which is located inside the electric-blue art deco studio where Majorelle once painted. Here, eye-catching displays of jewelry and artifacts depict the diverse culture of the Amazigh people of Morocco.



Sample Moroccan cuisine


Global foodies have been enticed by Moroccan cuisine for years, and Marrakesh offers the most varied dining scene in the nation. Both diffa (feast) blowouts in palace restaurants and alleyway booths where caramelized tajines bubble on gas stoves offer the robust, savory-sweet flavors of authentic Marrakshi food.


To observe where the Moroccan culinary scene is going, sign up for a cooking class with local dadas (chefs), wander the souqs carrying bags of fat green olives and honey-soaked Moroccan pastries, or book a table at a rooftop restaurant.



Bahia Palace


Inside Bahia Palace, prime piece of medina real estate, Marrakshi artisans really went to town in a furious frenzy of zellige (colorful geometric mosaic tilework), carved plasterwork and zouak (painted wood) detailing.


Crane your neck to soak up the statement ceilings, swirling with intricate and delicately colored motifs and designs, in the palace salons where pashas (high-ranking officials) once posed. Leave the bustle and throb of the medina behind to hide out amid lush, shaded inner courtyards and stroll through the extravagantly marbled grand court.




Saadian Tombs


It is clear that Sultan Ahmed Al Mansour's language was not particularly modest. Al Mansour built the most opulent final resting place in town at the Saadian Tombs' Chamber of 12 Pillars, where the deceased were guarded by mountains of marble and stucco with gold edges.


The massive tombs of Al Mansour and his retinue were sealed off from the outside world by an envious Sultan Moulay Ismail who sought to keep previous governing empires out of sight and mind. They were only rediscovered in 1917, when fame and glory were once again theirs.




Le Jardin Secret


Le Jardin Secret, a magnificent Islamic garden smack dab in the center of the medina, has Yves Saint Laurent's cactus gardens in Gueliz in serious competition. Despite the riad's more than 400-year-old foundations, the owners have concentrated on preserving the garden and its original medieval khettara (underground irrigation system) rather than renovating the interior.


Exhibits skillfully describe the significance of water and vegetation in Islamic culture using CGI and modeling. Pavilions and lounging places are divided by water canals and fig and pomegranate trees beneath its ramparts.



Yves Saint Laurent Museum


Yves Saint Laurent, a French fashion designer, fell in love with Morocco during his first trip there in the 1960s. When his companion Pierre Berge passed away in 2017, Jardin Majorelle turned became his second home, and the appropriately audacious Musée Yves Saint Laurent opened next door as a tribute to YSL's life and work.


Also, it pays tribute to the nation that inspired his creativity. A tech-enhanced biographical permanent exhibition of the designer's sketches, clothes, and accessories is housed inside the contemporary terracotta giant that is inspired by traditional riad architecture and Islamic colors.




Hammams


Hammams are the quintessential Moroccan experience. After a day of dusty sightseeing exploits, a good scrubbing leaves you squeaky clean, fresh and invigorated to take on the medina again. At its simplest, a hammam is a steam bath, sometimes called a "Turkish bath," where you wash yourself down, sweat out the dirt of the day and then scrub. They're great for local interaction, and some offer tourist-friendly services, but the do-it-yourself public hammam experience might be a tad intimidating for newcomers. Luckily, the city’s flourishing private hammam scene provides a refined and relaxing experience.

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