The Moroccan metropolis is a plethora of colours, tastes, scents and of course sounds. Visiting the city will leave you with an infinity of impressions and regardless of where you move in the centre of Marrakech, you’re never short of new experiences. During your stay in this amazing city, sometimes you’ll need a space where you can just relax and enjoy the silence for a bit. Luckily there are numerous options for you to choose between, and below we have selected three things for you to do when you want a break from the hustle and bustle of the souks.
Maison de la Photographie
Situated just north of the main square of Jemaa el-Fna, the Maison de la Photographie offers a unique insight into the history and the diversity of not only the city but Morocco in general. Founded in 2009 it features photographs of Moroccan life and culture between 1870 and 1960 taken by both professionals and anonymous travellers. The museum is set in a beautiful and archetypical Moroccan house and will offer a tranquil escape away from the busy souks found nearby.
When you're in a place as impressive as Marrakech, where your eyes feast everywhere they turn, either on the colour, the hustle, the people or the food, it's a little hard to imagine how a city garden, though one commissioned by none other than Yves Saint Laurent himself, could be worth making the trip to.
Venturing out of the Marrakech Medina, find shade and tranquillity at the end of Rue Yves Saint Laurent, and of course, that gorgeous, vibrant majorelle blue. The garden is home to a notable cacti collection, various birds species native to North Africa and so much colour! Whether it's the chequered green-yellow tiles, the bright red paves, the cobalt blue of the museum house, the zen-inspiring green of the bamboo 'forest' or the odd plant pot, this place was definitely worth the journey out of the heart of the city.
Another soothing substitute for the bustling markets and the cacophonous crowds can be found in the south of the city, where the many souks centred around Jemaa el-Fna give way to the Kasbah. Here, you’ll find the old Jewish area of Mellah as well as numerous hammams, including Les Bains de Marrakech and the wonderfully styled La Mamounia, where you can pamper yourself with a great variety of therapeutic treatments. Wander around the old town that surrounds the Kasbah, experience the green parks and then discover the history of the city through the Mellah, which stands as a testament to the centuries of prosperous co-existence in the city between its Jewish and Muslim communities.
Staying in Marrakech enables you to easily explore the further reaches of Morocco and as such get to experience anything from the majestic Atlas Mountains and the vast desert landscapes to the spectacular waves crashing against the country’s impressive coastline. Your options from Marrakech include a visit the ancient fortified city of Aït Benhaddou, a UNESCO Heritage Site, which has been used in numerous films and TV-shows, including The Man Who Would Be King, Gladiator and Game of Thrones. You can also embark on a mule-trek in the Atlas Mountains where you can experience Berber traditions and culture. Or why not try an excursion to the scenic, coastal town of Essaouira, where you can go for a dip in the Atlantic or just enjoy the sea breeze from the city’s colonial fortifications.