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Things NOT to do in Marrakesh

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A trip to Marrakesh is a sensory overload of exotic sights, sounds, smells and tastes. If you’re heading to this Moroccan hotspot, keep a few do’s and don’ts in mind to help minimize the inevitable overwhelm. Here are 10 things NOT to do in Marrakesh.

1. Don’t Get Taken by a Street Guide
You will be confronted by an assortment of friendly, helpful locals eager to escort you somewhere. However, the majority are opportunistic hustlers. It’s better to avoid engaging these street guides, as they can be persistent and intimidating.

2. Don’t Get Fleeced by a Taxi Driver
There are many drivers overcharging tourists with off-the-meter fees. You need to appear confident and savvy when you get in a taxi. You don’t want to seem rude or imply that you assume they’re distrustful, but if you’re too soft, this “taxi mafia” will fleece you.

3. Don’t Pay the First Price Offered
Merchants expect a negotiation, so brush up on your bargaining skills and have fun with it. Don’t be too penny-pinching about this game, though. Remember, the few extra dirhams probably mean more to the merchant than you.

4. Don’t Wear Babouche on a Busy Walking Day
One of the must-buy in the Marrakesh souks are the colorful traditional Moroccan slippers, called babouche. They take a few wears to stretch to your foot and become comfortable. So it’s not a good idea to wear a brand new pair on a heavy day.

5. Don’t Feed the Snake Charmers
You’ll find a snake wrapped around your neck and they’ll demand payment to remove it, or encourage you to take a picture. Once you take it, the fee demanded can be unreasonable. Try not to engage these snake charmers or be prepared for some aggressive sales tactics.

6. Don’t Shop Without Change
While there are ATMs around Marrakesh and credit cards are used at the finer hotels and restaurants, this is mostly a cash culture. Keep change on you, as one of the typical sales ploys with souk merchants and taxi drivers is the “sorry, I don’t have change” trick.

7. Don’t Forget You’re in a Muslim Country
It is essential to conduct yourself with respect to the host culture. No one is asking you to wear a headscarf or partake in Islamic rituals. Morocco is pretty moderate. However, it is wise to dress conservatively. Women, especially, should keep this in mind so as not to invite unwanted sexual harassment.

8. Don’t Leave the Immigration Paperwork to the Last Minute
Just be aware that you’ll have to fill out immigration forms both on arrival and departure. The paperwork is nothing complicated, but immigration queues can be long at this relatively small airport, so complete your paperwork in advance.

9. Don’t Forget to Learn a Little French or Arabic
Take the time to learn some key phrases in French or Arabic before arriving. Pleasantries go a long way in putting people at ease. Most will be impressed with any attempt you make in their language. So google some basics lbefore you go.

10. Don’t Let Your Guard Down
Wandering around the streets, squares and dizzying lanes take some guts, and you’ll want to have your wits about you at all times. The hustle and bustle of street life can be overwhelming to the uninitiated. It’s important to schedule in some down time each day to chill-out such as treating yourself to a hammam cleanse

Where do you want to know what not to do in next?
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GAS Football says:

Welcome to Morocco guys

Heba El says:

I am Moroccan but why should you say to people not to do that.

The Aristogamer says:

Morocco was my favourite trip ever but also my least favourite voyage ever. The Medina of Marrakesh is indeed a sensory overload and one of the most exciting and, at times, beautiful old towns I have ever experienced. But it´s also a pretty dangerous place. The local "fauna" is composed of some generally honest and nice vendors and hordes of chancers, scammers and harrassers that might take some time to get used to , as it might take sime time to learn how to even walk when mopeds , people and sometimes even cars are crowding the same narrow alleys . This seems to be the case for every Medina in Morocco, although it´s specially true for Marrakesh´, as it´s also the most popular ones.

Hospitality in the Riads, however, is second to none, and the gardens, museums , cafes and restaurants will make any explorer happy.

Good advice. Play dumb and politely avoid and decline any offer of "help" from street guides, taxi drivers and street sellers. The overwhelming majority are just scum scams.

Outside the medina, however, people are pretty normal like in any other country, and it´s a lot mroe chill but also a lot less exciting.

Most of the religiosity inside the Medina is also mostly for show. Many people there are simply foreign hatersm, racists against foreigners but also against rural people . And fiercely nationalists in a way it would attract a lot of negative press in other parts of the world. Basically it´s baby-india. Only with way more aggressive people.

However as I said, outside oldm towns people are way more normal. And if you go out into the countryside, I must say, some of the best people I have met in my life anywhere in the world live in the countryside and the mountains.

These people are clear of mind, their religiosity is pure and true and not just for show, and they are genouinely open minded and helpful and it´s much more rare to be harrassed or scammed there, unless in some "larger villages" which are popular with tourists and again attract the same Vermin from Marrakesh as the Medina.

It´s better if you speak good French and at least 30-50basic words of Moroccan language (which is a language deribed from Classic Arabic, but it´s not Arabic! Like Italian is not Latin).

I can´t wait to come back as soon as the curfew is lifted in my country! #corona2020

maqz malone says:

i've recently went on a holiday to morocco and can give some tips:

don't drink the water directly from the taps. it's not properly filtered and can cause you problems. get bottled water from the shops.

beggars, even kids, will approach you for money. don't give them any. it's likely a con to fleece you out. if you think that the person is actually genuine, you can give money. just use your better judgment.

never accept merchant prices that they set when you want to buy something in the market. haggle but be firm and assertive. with enough persuasion, you may get your price.

learn a few words and phrases in arabic and french. it can help you and they'll feel happy with you.

some places are cash only so make sure you have cash on your person.

when going to the market, if you're carrying a bag, wear it at the front. this can deter pickpockets.

never accept a street vendors excursion proposals. the fees can be somewhat extortionate.

you're not compelled to tip any of the workers.

you can smoke in the cafes and restaurants.

don't mess with the police or the soldiers that you'll see on the streets.

harddrive says:

11. don't wonder off the tour guide and get beheaded and raped by radical islamists.

kev2020 says:

Don't take pictures of people. They will ask for payment.

frank odea says:

Very useful as I'm going soon

Xavier Zoo says:

i am Moroccan and i agree with everything u said
i can add one more thing
don't take a drone with you , its not allowed here

Ahmed Mohamed says:

I went there the people is nice what you said is not true that's a bulshit

lark says:

why is the thumbnail a picture of a hipster?

Nadir Aderraz says:

i am moroccan and this is not true at all

Meryam says:

About the paper work it's valid anymore

Birdie Brietling says:

Is this true people?

Ayoub Rezki says:

Have you been there before?

Sam & Medhika says:

Nice video! We just dropped a video about what to know before you visit Marrakesh. Do check it out. Thanks 🙂

Seleena Alghatam says:

i am moroccon and i swear if y said something bad i was abt to say morocco is the prettiest and an amazing place in my opinion period bye

Y Al says:

Guys, don't forget that Marrakech is a city of everything with tradition, luxury, nightlife and adventure, you have the traditional Medina with the old souks, and then you have the modern side of Marrakech which makes up most of the city here you can escape from the busy Medina and eat at one of the many cafes and restaurants or go shopping in one of the malls, Marrakech is also known for its exuberant nightlife, Marrakech has some of the best clubs in the Arab world and even in the world, you also have the mountains and the beautiful landscapes of the outskirts of Marrakech, enjoy your stay in my country.

scanface says:

You only showed thé ancient part of the city,what about the modern one (wich makes up most of Marrakech s surface)

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