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Souq of Marrakesh

Listed under Shopping in Marrakech, Morocco.

  • Photo of Souq of Marrakesh
  • Photo of Souq of Marrakesh
  • Photo of Souq of Marrakesh
Photo of Souq of Marrakesh
Photo by flickr user MsAnthea
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The narrow streets of the Suuq of Marrakesh are filled with creative vendors offering all sorts of products- everything from dried fruit and fresh-squeezed orange juice to carpets, medicines and silks. There's always so much to see here- from the diversity of the products to the diversity of the people, the vibrant colors, various shapes and unusual sounds- plus, the delicious, cultural food- it won't be a disappointing experience!

Although you may find the souks overcrowded at times, the large groups of people trying to find the perfect keepsake only add to the experience. It's well worth your time to explore the labyrinth of stalls in search of jewelery, textiles, love potions, or even a donkey- whether you intend to buy something or not. And don't forget to bargain your way to a lower price.

Bazaar Chichoua has some great carpets and for jewelry, check out Place Vendome. Other things to look out for are handmade copper and silverware, silk or cotton garments, wooden articles and jewelery, which can all be found in Ministero del Gusto. Rue de la Liberté is dotted with some totally fabulous and chic boutiques. Most importantly, just stop and take in the sights, sounds, and smells of the Suuq of Marrakesh!

Shop for: silk, carpets, eclectic mementos

Cafe Stop: Cafe France

Written by  Mary Kate Alfieri.

Other expert and press reviews

“On The Road: Souks and the city in Morocco”

By Sara Chare for The Independent First Published: Saturday, 14 February 2009 I love shopping, so Marrakech is paradise on earth for people like me. Whether it's the boutiques in La Ville Nouvelle or the shops in the souks, I'm there. Popping through t… Read more...

Written by press. Continue reading on independent.co.uk

“Medina of Marrakesh”

'Founded in 1070–72 by the Almoravids, Marrakesh remained a political, economic and cultural centre for a long period. Its influence was felt throughout the western Muslim world, from North Africa to Andalusia. It has several impressive monuments dating… Read more...

Written by press. UNESCO

Comments, reviews and questions by other travellers

As well as seeing the sights, one of your days in Marrakech should be spent exploring the souks and markets. One of the easiest ways to do that is to hire a guide for a full or half day and have them help you explore the souks you're most interested in – heading out from the tourist tat of the centre. Souq des Bijoutiers is the jewellers souk, Souq Sebbaghine is the dyer's souk, Souq Smata is where the famous slippers are made, Souq Hadadine is the Blacksmith's souk, Souq el-Kebir is the leather souk and Criée Berbère is the carpet souk.

If shopping is one of your reasons for choosing Marrakech explore the districts of Guéliz and Hivernage, near the old city walls, where there are boutique jewellery and clothing shops – you don't have to haggle as much here, this is the upmarket area.

This sprawling market is covered overhead by reeds allowing it to be a cool place to wander even at midday…but we wished we’d packed a compass. At times the souks seem as complicated and maze-like as the intricate stone carvings, and this can definitely set off a hot sweat as you attempt to read a map and dodge the children offering to take you the “right” way for a tip. However, after gaining some confidence (and a bottle of water) we were ready to squeeze the souks for all they were worth: we explored the cave-like shops bursting with silver and jewels, the range of babouches from classic yellow leather to a mock Burberry design, an array of spices, and a slightly disturbing stall selling tortoises stacked like bricks and baby Peregrine falcons. Worn out from haggling on teapots and lanterns, we’d hoped to eat dinner at the renowned food stalls used by locals and (fearless) tourists alike, located in the main square: Jemaa el Fna. But something about the out-of-date English phrases from the nineties used by the waiters urging us to enjoy their kebabs/soups/snails/sheep’s brains, combined with our realization that we were not so fearless, led us to one of the cafes that frame the square with large terraces on which to view the chaos (and not be part of it for a change). After a hearty beef tajine and a big pot of sugary mint tea we descended back into the square, this time staying clear of the electric lights and white smoke of the food stalls, and headed instead towards the mysterious clusters of people in the dark. Behind these round walls of people, acrobats climbed one another, dancers pranced, musicians played and storytellers captivated with dramatic expressions strengthened by the chiaroscuro sourced from a single light bulb.

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