Marrakesh

Dec 2015…

We were here years ago, at the end of one of our walking tours, but it was just one night so I always wanted to come back. And it’s only an hour or so from Málaga (via Casablanca, now there’s an airport you won’t soon forget.)  We stayed at the espectacular Riad Kheirredine for three nights (€170 per night), by far the best part of the whole trip. Can’t say enough about the great food, service, value. We had our first dinner served to us on the roof deck, looking out over the city.riad-kheirredine-marrakechjpg-xlarge

Riad Kheirredine

The old city of Marrakesh is a warren of dark alleys, unnamed streets, and perilous entrapments for tourists. It’s delicious. It’s been a market city for centuries so I can promise you the locals in the souk know a thing or two about selling. The word no is merely an invitation to grab you by the shoulders and direct-sell into your face. A polite smile of passing interest signals that you have sworn to buy their entire inventory and raise their three children.

marrakesh

at a neighborhood Mosque

Actually, wandering through the old souk is a pleasure everyone should have once in their lives, and if you make it to the other side alive, you get to experience the amazing Jemaa el-Fnaa, a centuries-old market square that still buzzes with a raffish air of danger. Snake charmers, dentists, fortune tellers, acrobats, food vendors, horse carriages, and hustlers all compete for your favors. A photo might end up costing you $10 by the time the snake charmer is done brow-beating you. The best thing is just to sit at a cafe, nursing mint tea, watching as the British tourists are harassed instead of you.

old-jemaa

Oh wait, that’s an old picture.

Jemaa el Fna (central square), Mosquee Koutoubia (mosque) in background, Marrakech, Morocco

Here’s what it looks like lately.
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