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Marrakech, A Complete Guide to Morocco's Economic Center

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The Complete Guide to Morocco's Economic Center, including historical background, best places to visit, local Cooking Classes food, Best Souvenirs to buy, weather, inspiring Morocco vacation ideas, and more.



Hidden Secrets of Marrakech's History


1)  The city was founded back in 1062 by Abu Bakr ibn Umar, who was the second cousin of King Yusuf ibn Tashfin.  

2)  It serves as the best trading hub, where entrepreneurs explore beautiful products and services in their markets

3)  Marrakesh was mainly inhabited by Berber farmers from Neolithic times.

3)  The town began as a trading community center for Maghreb and Sub-Sahara.


With time, Marrakesh grew enormous, establishing itself as a cultural and religious center. The Marrakesh aesthetic beauty came as a result of the collaboration of Andalusian and designs from Sahara and West Africa. Probably, that's why its beauty stands out from the rest.


Read also: Jemaa el Fanaa, Marrakech old city Marketplace



All you need to know About Marrakech


To Muslims, Marrakesh is one of the most magnificent citadels due to the influence of Ali ibn Yusuf, Tashfin's son.

In the 16th century, the city became the capital of the Kingdom, during the regime of Saadian sultans Abu Abdallah al-Qaim and Ahmad al -Mansure.


  • Area: 230 km², Forth Largest city in Morocco
  • Elevation: 466 m
  • Founded by‎: ‎Abu Bakr ibn Umar
  • Weather: Moderate all over the year
  • Local time: (GMT+1 )
  • Population: 928,850 (2014)
  • Prefecture: Marrakesh



What is the meaning of Marrakech?


The name means debated, the origin of the name is from the Berber words amur akush, which means "Land of God".



Where is Marrakech Located?


Located on the west of the Atlas Mountains 580 km southwest of Tangier, right on the edge of the World’s largest Desert, Sahara Desert. Marrakech considered the fourth largest city in Morocco.



When Marrakech was founded?


The city was founded back in 1062 by Abu Bakr ibn Umar, who was the second cousin of King Yusuf ibn Tashfin.  



When had Marrakech been the capital of Morocco?


In the 16th century, the city became the kingdom capital, this was during the reign of Saadian sultans Abu Abdallah al-Qaim and Ahmad al -Mansure.


After independence, Marrakesh served as a thrilling tourist attraction destination. In the 1960s and early 1970s, the city became the best location for numerous western rock stars doubling the number of tourists visiting Morocco. In 1994 the World Trade Organization was established by the signing of the Marrakesh Agreement. 


In the 21 century, the city is now blossoming with elegance and beauty, the number of world-class hotels offering excellent services has increased tremendously, with the number of tourists visiting the location estimated to increase by up to 20 million by 2020. 



What is the best time to visit Marrakech, Morocco?


The best time to visit Morocco is in spring between (March-May) or in fall between (September to October)


Read Also: A Complete Guide to Accommodation in Morocco



Must Go places and attractions in Marrakech



1)  Jemaa el-Fnaa, where snake charmers hypnotizing snakes

As one of the famous squares in Africa, Jemaa el-Fnaa is the world's famous square, the UNESCO World heritage since 1985. Generally, the name of Jemaa el Fnaa means an assembly of trespassers.


Historically, the square was used by leaders to frighten the public to remain to rule. In the present world, this square is one of the best locations for tourists. Here, you will come across magicians, herb sellers, dentists, Pickpockets, and not forgetting the well know snake charmers. 


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2)  City Wall and Gates


Built by Almoravids in the 12 century, the city walls and gates served as protective fortifications. The walls were made of red clay and chalk, thus the name red city. It stands up to 19feet high having 20 gates and 200 towers.

The palace gate is also extraordinary, and its corner pieces are made with floral decorations, framed by three panels which are marked with an inscription from the Quran.


There are several gates with distinct features, which you will come across in this beautiful city. These include Bab Agnaou, Bab Aghmat, Bab Berrima, and finally the Bab el Khemis. 



3)  The Menara Gardens, a home of the Jacques Majorelle

At the gates of the Atlas Mountains, you will find the Menara gardens, built around 1130 by Abd al-Mu' min. The garden gets its name from Menzel, which is a small green pyramid roof.


The pavilion is surrounded by orchards and olive groves supplied with water from nearby lakes. 

The Majorelle Garden is a beautiful and attractive garden featuring a steel erected memory of its designer Yves Saint Laurent and the incredible Museum of Islamic art that is housed by a blue building. 


South of Medina is a beautiful garden built in the 12th century. The Agdal Garden covers over 350 acres with citrus, pomegranate, cypress trees, and apricot trees as the primary vegetation.


Behind the Koutoubia Mosque is a beautiful garden known as the Koutoubia garden. The garden is mainly covered with orange and palm trees. 



4)  Palaces, history, and ruined castles

Palaces, mansion, and lavish residents in the city are a symbol of historical wealth. The main palaces you should visit while in Marrakesh are the Royal Palace, Bahia Palace and not forgetting, the El Badi Palace. 


These palaces have an excellent history to tell with fascinating facts, which you can only find inside them. But some castles are ruined; a great example is the El Badi Palace, which is only left with the outer walls. However, it serves as a beautiful location for Marrakech Folklore Festival. 



5)  The Koutoubia Mosque, Marrakech's largest mosque


The Koutoubia Mosque, the largest mosque in Marrakesh. Built-in the 12th century, The mosque is also known by several other names, such as Jami ‘al-Kutubiyah and the Booksellers’ Mosque.


The Almohads started on the building of the Koutoubia in 1150, and it took them 40 years to complete. With its simplicity of design, highly sophisticated decoration and perfectly balanced proportions, it is regarded as one of the Maghreb’s most beautiful monuments



6)  The Ouzoud Falls


Nestled in the High Atlas Mountains, the Ouzoud Falls is one of the most magnificent and impressive waterfalls in Morocco and the second tallest waterfall in Africa. 



Read Also: Best Places to Visit in Marrakech



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Read Also: Best Souvenirs to Buy in Morocco