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Help!!! non-experienced traveller in marrakech :-/

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Cumbria, UK
posts: 5
reviews: 13
Help!!! non-experienced traveller in marrakech :-/

hi,

me and my partner have booked a weeks stay in marrakech in february. we booked it to experience something different from the standard spain type resort holidays.

However......neither of us really know anything about marrakesh and reading lots of different forums and "things to do" pages has just got me confused.

firstly, weather in feb? im reading that basically it will be warmish through daytime and cold at night?

second, who is best to book tours with. no tours are included in the holiday we booked and we would really like to visit the atlas mountains.

third, am i right to be a bit worried about being hassled the whole hliday by locals? how is best to deal with the locals? ive read you need to keep change seperate to give to beggars? and to not get taxis?

any help, advise or recommendations would be greatly appreciated.

pip x

Marrakech, Morocco
posts: 4,324
reviews: 55
1. Re: Help!!! non-experienced traveller in marrakech :-/

Panic ye not PipFox! Welcome to the Marrakech forum.

For weather detals click on WEATHER INFORMATION (top right of your screen) which gives monthly statistical averages.

There are many tour agencies in Marrakech, many of them well established. If staying in a riad then staff will advise on the ones that they use or use the search box above to look for tours and excursions. You can visit the High Atlas with a private driver or as part of a tour group, whatever you feel happiest with.

The question of harassment has surfaced many times and there are many threads devoted to this topic. Again the search box will provide you with information but basically it comes down to attitude. A smile, a polite "no thank you" (la shukran) usually suffices. Some people experience no hassle at all whilst other seem to be magnets for this kind of unwanted attention. A sense of perspective and humour goes a long way.

I very seldom give to beggars as many are of the "rent a beggar" type. If the locals are providing small change then the recipient is probably genuine.

Taxis - another much discussed topic. Taxis are required by law to have functioning meters. If the driver does not turn it on or gives some excuse for not doing so, then leave the taxi. There will be another one along in a minute.

Much of Marrakech is walkable, and within the souks of the medina you have no option. Daytime petit taxi fares are around 15 dirhams from locations in the medina to the new town, Guilez.

The Scottish Borders
posts: 2,529
reviews: 57
2. Re: Help!!! non-experienced traveller in marrakech :-/

"am i right to be a bit worried about being hassled the whole hliday by locals"

OK, so I am a regular visitor to Egypt which is known for it's intense hassle but I found the hassle in Marrakech pretty tame compared to Egypt and also the likes of Turkey and Tunisia. I was more hassled by time share touts in the Canaries than I was at times in Marrakech.

Yes - there are a few scams but they are very obvious (keep your wits about you) .....

The first one pulled on us was within 5 minutes of setting foot outside our Riad and on entrance to the square "hey...... I know you, I work at your Riad, do you not remember me? "....... mum quickly replied "and which Riad would that be then?" and of course it was the completely wrong Riad - "we said laughing "nice try" and kept walking

Another one pulled...... "This road is closed today" or "special market this way, only on today" we just kept walking in the direction we were heading.

My favourite..... "The Badi Palace is closed today................ because it is dirty"

Shopping - you will get invited to look into people's shops, a polite "la shukran" (no thankyou) worked well if you didn't want to look, infact in most shops we were left alone to browse without additional sales pressure.

My advice is to keep your sense of humour with you at all times, I found Moroccans to be good natured and have a wicked sense of humour. Don't let the hassle get to you - that's when it begins to ruin your holiday!

I kept change in a separate compartment of my purse but used it for tipping when I felt a tip was appropriate, I did not give to beggars as I am aware that (like in other countries - even the UK) organised begging goes on, of course there will be genuine cases but when you are a newcomer to a country it's hard to tell who is genuine and who isn't

Marrakech is a fantastic place to visit, I hope you enjoy it as much as my mum and I did, we will certainly be back.

Cumbria, UK
posts: 5
reviews: 13
3. Re: Help!!! non-experienced traveller in marrakech :-/

wow, thanks for both of the quick and helpful replies :-) it sounds like some people on reviews are just having a good old moan then. the reason we picked marrakech as a different holiday was to experience the excitement of a busy place so i feel happier now that so long as im good natured i should have no problem with the "hassle".

"la shukran" is a great tip, thanks, i will have to remember that one.

and i will make sure to wait until i am out there to book any tours. is there just one standard tour to the mountains or a few different to choose from?

x

marrakech
Destination Expert
for Morocco
posts: 7,334
reviews: 62
4. Re: Help!!! non-experienced traveller in marrakech :-/

Hi,

There are various areas of the mountains you can visit for the day. My personal favourite is Ouirgane then back over the Plateau de Kik.

idaho
Destination Expert
for Sun Valley, Ketchum, Beach Vacations, Idaho
posts: 8,806
reviews: 306
5. Re: Help!!! non-experienced traveller in marrakech :-/

don't worry, you will , hopefully, love morocco, and have to plan another trip, to see more of the country. have fun.

6. Re: Help!!! non-experienced traveller in marrakech :-/

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Removed on: 9:38 am, October 29, 2013
San Francisco
posts: 100
reviews: 8
7. Re: Help!!! non-experienced traveller in marrakech :-/

I went to Marrakech in Feb last year. The weather was ok. Not warm enough for sunbathing but pleasant. A coat was good in the evening and especially during the trip to Ait Bennhaddou (good day trip). Mountains were frigid!!!

Melbourne
posts: 1
reviews: 128
8. Re: Help!!! non-experienced traveller in marrakech :-/

Hi, I traveled to Marrakech as a solo traveler in August and had a great time. Yes the locals can make you feel a bit overwhelmed on the first day but isn't that why you travel to somewhere different to have new experiences so be polite. Take the usual precautions with your belongings as you would anywhere and you should be fine. Book trips with your hotel or riad. I stayed in Riad Blu and was well looked after and could have organised anything I wanted. There are plenty booking agencies in the main streets too. Locals are accommodating so long as you are polite and respectful.

9. Re: Help!!! non-experienced traveller in marrakech :-/

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Removed on: 8:05 pm, November 10, 2012
Marrakech, Morocco
posts: 4,324
reviews: 55
10. Re: Help!!! non-experienced traveller in marrakech :-/

Do you work for nothing Jack E? Thought not, so please stop this ill informed posting. I am also not fond of being called a liar.