5 Helpful Tips When Exploring Marrakech
If you’re seeking a unique and intriguing holiday destination that’s free of all subtlety and possesses an atmosphere unlike any other, the beautifully ancient Moroccan city of Marrakech could the perfect choice for you. There’s so much to witness and plenty to explore, with stunning views, glorious food and the friendliest of locals all contributing to a wonderful North African holiday experience.
Despite the fact that so many people regularly visit the majestic city of Marrakech every year, it’s important to remember that the utmost respect comes from adhering to the various traditional and cultural aspects of the city. There’s also a plethora of useful tips for you to take on board prior to travelling that will help make your experience all the more splendid.
Spend All the Dirham You Have Before Leaving– You won’t be able to exchange any of the Dirham (Moroccan currency) that you have before you head home as it is a closed currency, so you should try and organize your spending so that you use up all the money you’ve taken out at the start of the trip. If you find that you’ve got some Dirham left over, use it to purchase some of the many wonderful stall goods on show in the streets of Marrakech. There are plenty of stunningly exotic items to purchase that you can take home for decorative purposes, such as rugs and leather goods.
Catch a Cab – The medina area is quite small but almost always busy, so it helps to catch a cab to and from your chosen destinations. The streets can get quite hectic at times, so it helps to escape the blistering heat and potentially claustrophobic environment with the help of a highly efficient cab service. Cabs are much more affordable than you might think, so you don’t have to restrict yourself to walking or other types of public transport. Cabs also give you the chance to sit back and take in the unique atmosphere associated with the medina.
Appropriate Dress – There’s a beautifully traditional feel about Marrakech that is further contributed to by popular Moroccan culture. Morocco is a devoutly Muslim country, with the religion strictly observed in many parts of the city. In order to respect the cultural and religious values of Marrakech, we advise anyone visiting to adhere to certain clothing requirements. This means most men should wear t-shirts and light trousers rather than shorts and vests, while women should look to cover their shoulders and wear skirts or shorts that cover the knees. While there’s not likely to be any consequences, it’s certainly more respectful to appreciate and be sensitive to cultures other than our own.
Ignore Street Signs – It’s a funny tip to start with but in truth, there’s absolutely no point following the various street signs you’ll come across throughout the city. Even someone with the keenest sense of direction will struggle to recall where their street and stall-venturing began, so you’ll enjoy yourself a whole lot more if you simply let the hustle and bustle of the busy streets take you on a unique journey. So rather than rely on signs to get you from one place to another, get help from a tour guide or perhaps even use the knowledge of the friendly locals.
Choose Peaceful Accommodation – Marrakech is a city that always seems to be on the move, much like London or New York for instance. However, those of us from colder climates may struggle to find any relaxation in the sweltering heat commonly associated with Morocco, particularly in the summer. It’s advisable that you seek a peaceful accommodation that takes you away from the hectic streets of Marrakech so that you have the perfect place to reflect on your day and recover your strength for the following day. Try and choose accommodation that presents itself as being calm, relaxed and well away from the busy streets.
Article contributed by : Mike James – Content Editor for Riad el Zohar (www.elzohar.com)