How To Spend 48 Hours In Marrakech, Morocco
Are you headed to Marrakech soon? Last fall I was there for 2 days before we went and explored more of Morocco. I wanted to share our itinerary as it’s a perfect weekend guide to the city. I am sure we could have squeezed more things in but alas this is what we did and I know in my heart I will return to Marrakech.
FOR MORE HELPFUL POSTS AND LINKS
- For more travel tips and other destination guides
- How to see Morocco in 2 weeks without a guide
- Take a cooking class in Essaouira with Khadija’s Kuzina
- How To Spend 48 Hours In Essaouira
- My Moroccan Hammam experience plus tips for the first timer
- Taking the ferry from Spain to Morocco
- Where To Stay In Morocco
- A Sahara Desert Packing List
- To book with Europcar, the same rental car company we used in Morocco
- Use this link to book the best deals on your accommodations with Booking.com
- Use this link to research your flights and car rental
- Get a discount off your first stay with Air Bnb by using this link
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Marrakech Day 1
Check into our riad, Riad Nesma
- Settle into our room, get welcomed with some mint tea, explore the riad
- For more about this riad and other ones we stayed at in Morocco, click here.
Walk to Place Jemaa El Fna
- Place Jemaa El Fna is the center of the Medina in Marrakech. Here you can find vendors selling food and snacks. It is mellow in the day and at night it goes full on! Definitely go back at both times.
- I loved the juice stalls!! So cheap and fresh! I didn’t try any of the food at the stalls but I would recommend doing some research on it.
So chill in the day!
The Koutoubia Mosque is the biggest mosque in Marrakech. It’s a bit close to Place Jemaa El Fna so I wandered over there to shoot a photo.
Shopping (of course!)
Shopping was a huge activity during our stay in Marrakech. My sister in law bought other things for the home but my main focus was on getting a carpet/blanket, caftans, and slippers.
Cafe Des Espices is part of the group of eateries that includes Nomad and Le Jardin. While we didn’t have time for Le Jardin, we did get to go to Nomad (see below). I don’t remember what we ordered but the food on the menu was a mix of Moroccan and international specialties so everyone in my group was happy!
The view from the top of Cafe Des Espices is great
I broke off and separated from my brother and sister in law. They kept shopping and I wanted to just explore and shoot photos. I got lost in the Medina and stumbled across the Marrakech Museum. Definitely worth the small entry fee.
> After wandering around, I headed back to our riad to chill out before dinner.
I had done a lot of research prior to arriving in Morocco and one of the restaurants that had rave reviews was Nomad. I emailed them quite far in advance and made a reservation for the three of us. We got seated on the roof and so we got to hear the call to prayer and some of the sun setting.
The funny thing was while I was in Marrakech I ate predominantly vegetarian. I think it’s because I had been in Spain for weeks and not eating many vegetables and a lot of jamon. It was refreshing and delicious!
This dish with lentils, tomatoes, beets, and goat cheese was amazing
Everything was delicious
Walk around Place Jemaa El Fna
After dinner, we headed back towards Place Jemaa El Fna since it is on the way back to our riad. At night the vibe is so different and it is soooo alive. Vendors are selling juice and food. The snake charmers are out. Entertainers are playing drums and singing. If you do watch the snake charmers and film them, be warned they will ask for a tip.
Marrakech Day 2
Breakfast at Riad Nesma
Most riads will have a complimentary breakfast included with your stay. You don’t get to order anything but food will come and it’s mostly pastries with coffee/tea and juice.
Bahia Palace was once a palace and is now more of a museum and garden. It was just around the corner from Riad Nesma so I headed here quickly to take some photos. Even though it’s popular and there were many tourists visiting, I found moments of solitude throughout.
Jewish Quarter or mellah
Not far from our riad was the Jewish Quarter or mellah so after visiting the Bahia Palace, my brother, sister in law and I wandered around and shopped of course. I ended up finding a shop where I bought caftans and babouche slippers.
While walking around the Jewish quarter we stumbled across this synagogue. You can pay a small entry fee to enter.
Right before the entrance to the mellah we found a little plaza with shops and restaurants and cafes. Among them was Kozybar. I found some reviews online and we decided to give it a go. I was on my non-meat kick so I ordered a trio of salads. My brother ordered a grilled plate.
You will hear the call to prayer several times a day while you are in Morocco
After exploring the mellah and then dropping our things off at our riad, we took a taxi to Jardin Majorelle. A visit here is a must. It’s a botanical garden which was bought by Yves Saint Laurent and his partner in the 80s and also now houses the Islamic Art Museum of Marrakech.
We found this little cafe called Zwin Zwin Cafe near our riad. It is super cute and has 3 floors and a rooftop terrace. We sat on the top and it was a bit windy but we all enjoyed the food, music, and vibe. My brother and I actually arrived the night before my sister in law and came here and they were playing 90s hip hop. I was in heaven. The menu was a mix of Moroccan and international dishes so again we ordered a mix of everything.
A dish I can’t remember anymore (sorry!) But I did order a caramel apple pastilla but the photo was too dark.
Place Jemaa El Fna
We came back here again to people watch after dinner since it was en route back to our riad. We ordered juices and just wandered around. For a shot from above, head to Cafe Glacier’s balcony. You will have to buy something to eat or drink but it’s worth it IMO.
Breakfast at the riad before we packed up and headed for our next destination. :( 2 days is definitely not enough for me but for some, it is just enough. I love the hustle and bustle of bigger cities so Marrakech was amazing. I have a bunch of friends who were not fans but I always feel like you won’t know how you feel about a place unless you go there yourself!