8 must Do’s at amazing Jemaa El-Fna in Marrakesh

Magical Marrakesh

Jemaa El-Fna by Night- 8 must Do’s

For over more then a thousand years, Jemaa-el-Fna is set out as a gathering place and market at the heart of Marrakesh. Here in the heart of the city you will find the hustle and bustle of the market and the entrance to the soukhs. It is a must visit place that you simply have to experience.

Magical Marrakesh Jemaa-el-Fna

A visit to the Place Jemaa-el-Fna by night is a true baptism by fire. It is intense and somehow magical at the same time. Marrakesh by night is a lot of food, fruits , festivities and noise. Lot’s and lots of noise. But with the 8 must do’s list you will survive!

Vendors at the square

The sellers from the stalls are trying to catch your attention by shouting out the fresh Maroccan dishes they are preparing for you on open fire. Other vendors are dancing in groups, playing music on traditional instruments, they tell stories and some eat fire. Animals are part of the party too. Some scary monkies follow you and snakes seem to hypnotise you.

Sunset at the rooftop

At sunset it all comes to life, the square is vibrant and buzzing with energy. Get a spot on one of the many rooftop bars surrounding the square, from here you can watch the amazing sunset and enjoy the square without having to participate. Save that for later after you feasted your eyes on the craziness and got used to it! Darkness sets in, the heat slightly fades away the more crowded it gets.

The fragrances float all over the market! With the smokey smells of the local food cooked on black coals there is a lot going on for your senses. So much to see, hear, smell and taste.

Streetfood & Pop-up restaurants

Just make sure to walk around on the spectacular Jemaa-el-Fna Square. Be cool, stay calm …. they are just trying to sell you their juices, foods, bags and what have you! Taste the food from this huge open air kitchen. This is streetfood at it’s best. Just take it all in from one of the many stalls where they have open air pop-up restaurants. And finish the evening with a fresh mint tea!

8 Must Do’s

  1. Watch the traditional Maroccan dancers and musicians with their colorful clothes or see how locals play a game with empty soda bottles.
  2. Listen to the storytellers, poets or fortune tellers even if it is in Arabic just see how they captivate the audience with their stories.
  3. Taste snacks like dried fruits, nuts, olives etc. The vendors will be more then happy to let you taste and obviously try to sell you the goodies!
  4. Drink freshly squeezed juice from all type of fruits. It is simply delicious!
  5. Make sure to get a table at one of the rooftop bars when the sun sets in and try to sit front row while you watch all the hustle and bustle of the Jemaa el Fna and enjoy the views.
  6. Beware of snakes that try to hypnotise you, or monkies that will jump on your shoulders. Some will love to take pictures with them. Definitely not my cup of tea. I already start running when I hear the whistle of the snakecharmer.
  7. Sip on a super sweet and spicy tea at one of the stalls. The tea with spices like star anise, cardamom and clove galanga is cooked in a big pot from copper, over a low fire.
  8. So many food stalls so many choices you would say. However for the average vegetarian or let alone vegan it might be a bit hard too find something besides the salad and olives. If you are a carnivore then a must-do is definitely to find a place at one of the many pop-up restaurants at the square. Just beware they will definitely try to sell you as much as they can and keep on bringing dishes. As long as you are clear on your choice and tell them No thank you we did not order this, it will all be good. I ate one of the best chicken dishes ever. Finger licking good it was!!
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Marrakesh is a city that has so much to offer. It is a very cosmopolitan city, fabulous for a city trip but also very suitable for happy occasions like birthdays, weddings and honeymoons. You can enjoy Marrakesh in one of the many luxury hotels, smaller boutique hotels or in a stylish riad. At Handpicked Lifestyle we would love to let you make the most of your stay in Marrakesh. Contact us today!