8. Marrakech Full-Day Guided Tour with Lunch
Experience the souks and sights of Marrakech on a full-day sightseeing tour with lunch, and learn the “Red City’s” impressive history along the way.
You will visit the Koutoubia, one of the most beautiful mosques in the western Muslim world. Marvel at its 225-foot-tall minaret before going to the 14th-century Ben Youssef Medersa, the largest Koranic university in the Maghreb. Continue to the Dar Si Saïd Museum in an Alaouite-style palace of the 19th century. See traditional crafts from southern Morocco, including carpets, costumes and weapons.
Next, visit the lovely gardens of El Bahia Palace. Except for the apartments of the sultan's favorite concubine, the council chamber, and the wonderful marble courtyard, the palace is closed to the public. Admire the decorative Saâdian Tombs, built for Sultan Ahmed el Mansour. Continue to Menara Gardens in the foothills of the Atlas Mountains, and wander among the olive trees surrounding the central lake. Get panoramic views of the snow-capped peaks in the background.
Enter the intricate maze of streets that house Marrakech’s souks. Discover different quarters established by craftsmen according to a structured system, including basketwork, dried fruit, spices, Berber carpets, and more. Of particular note is Rue du Souk Smarine, which leads to Place Rahba Kedima, site of the former slave market.
Sample traditional Moroccan cuisine in a beautiful setting for lunch, before going to Djemaa El Fna, the vast central square that is the traditional meeting place for peasants and merchants from the Sous region, High Atlas mountains and south Morocco. Alive with fruit and spice traders in the morning, in the afternoon it’s the turn of Gnaoua dancers (descended from Guinean slaves), who come to play music, tell stories, charm snakes and more.