Pro Tips: Marrakech

Pro Tips: Marrakech

Africa, Marrakesh, Morocco
Friday, April 03, 2015

The keys to a successful trip to Marrakech!

DO spend your first day walking the medina… with a map on your iPhone! The medina is a crazy labyrinth, so it’s best to have a reference to make it back to your hostel/riad!

DON’T accept directions from savvy looking kids… unless you’re willing to pay.

DO have an open mind, and ladies, get your bearings. Ignore the catcalling and just enjoy the experience. They’re calling out to you because you look like a tourist and that’s basically it. Not much more to it.

DO drink some orange juice in the big square aka Place Jeema El Fnaa. Just take a random pick from the 15 almost identical juice stands in the square and enjoy some fresh squeezed juice for 4 dirham, or about 40 cents American. Some stalls add sugar, others claim not to, but really after trying juice from five different vendors, they all seemed to add sugar, haha.

DO check out the bid square at night! There are an endless amount of stalls ready to dish out some delicious tajine, coucous, grilled vegetables, and all kinds of meats. To be honest, they all almoooost offer the same dishes at the same price so just pick one that looks like it’ll suit your fancy or has space for your party. There are some special stalls that sell snail on the perimeter, but I can’t say I tried it out myself… Haha.

DON’T shop in the souk on the first day! Just walk through and take a look for things you might be interested in buying after you’ve worked on your bartering chops.

DO engage the shopkeeper when and if you’re ready to buy something and prepare for a bartering war! If you’re not down for an extended bartering session, you can take it easy and pay close to their initial price but….

DON’T pay more than 50% of the original price the shopkeeper has offered you. Trusted sources have told me you should only pay 25% of what their first asking price, but you’ve got to be a Berber to get to that low of a price.

DO seek out rooftops! Get a break from the busy streets and enjoy a meal or coffee while enjoying an advantageous view of the city. Cafe de France is a typical spot for a coffee right in the big square.

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