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“Go at dusk!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Jemaa el Fna

Jemaa el Fna
Central square at entrance to market, Marrakech, Morocco
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Ranked #12 of 90 Attractions in Marrakech
Type: Landmarks/ Points of Interest, Neighborhoods, Performances
Activities: Shopping
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Attraction Details
Fee: No
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: This is the entrance to the outdoor market and food court of the city center.
Hereford, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
16 attraction reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
“Go at dusk!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2013

We went to the Djema twice while in Marrakech. Once during the day when it seems a large, sprawling market square. And then in the evening when the place is just dazzlingly bright and noisy. It can be a bit intimidating but if you remain polite with the hordes of people trying to sell you something and the packed streets into the Souk it is a sensational experience. We ended the evening by eating in a Riad.

Visited March 2013
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Nuneaton
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Absolute Chaos But Embrace It !”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2013

My partner and I recently visited Marrakech and came here most days - what an experience!

Our first visit was on the day we arrived and we were a little taken aback by the spectacles in the street; monkeys (in clothes & nappies), snakes (cobras & pythons), henna artists, dancers & musicians.... completely nuts! This was fabulous to observe however be mindful of where you walk and keep your wits about you as we were approached very suddenly by a man who practically threw his monkey onto my partners arm whilst another man approached with his smaller monkey, another with a camera and then a lady offering henna! We must have stuck out as new tourists to the area and it was a little overwhelming to begin with. Obviously these people want paying to allow you to have photographs and hold the monkey but they leave little time to negotiate prices before they place the animal in your arms. They tried to charge us 100 dirhams for both (£8) but we managed to get away with paying 70dirhams. BEWARE the monkey actually bit my partner, thankfully he didn't break the skin but these are still wild animals and still caused havoc by snatching our sunglasses and hair clips before throwing them across the square... Only in Marrakech!

There is also plenty of restaurants to grab some lunch or drinks, both in the square and off the side roads which is a nice rest bite from the craziness. Also in the Jemma El Fna locals have their own little stalls and what only can be described as car boot style areas where they sell the traditional items (tagine pots, cosmetics, jewellery, hats, shoes, ornaments etc etc). These are positioned in the centre and around the square. Be prepared to haggle (advisable to offer 45% of the asking price) and stay strong with your price THEY WILL BACK DOWN! You can grab some really great bargains!

During the day we found this to be quite tame compared to the evening, at night the place comes alive! As mentioned already there is this and more - the stalls are set up where you will find rows of local Moroccan food being cooked. We didn't try this however I have read that it's a must do in Marrakech and the food is meant to be good very tasty and very good value. We were recommended to try stall # 31....

As it's outdoors it is free to go and turn up which is great if you are travelling on a budget. It's the sort of place you can visit again and again, and probably spend a few hours walking round or simply sitting with a drink taking in the atmosphere.

Top Tips:

* Be prepared to tip and pay for almost everything - photos, looking at items etc! Be assertive if you are not interested and don't ask how much if you don't really intend to buy.
* Go with an open mind - it is dirty, there are animals dressed up, there are mopeds whizzing around everywhere and the locals can be very persistent but remember this is Morocco!

Visited May 2013
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Pleasanton, California
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251 reviews 251 reviews
75 attraction reviews
Reviews in 81 cities Reviews in 81 cities
84 helpful votes 84 helpful votes
“This is the Heart of Marrakech!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2013

I have no idea how many people are there every night but it seemed like thousands. Fortunately it is a big square and everyone was enjoying themselves without any problems. Do eat at one of the stalls there.

Visited May 2013
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Kent, England
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
13 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Unmissable”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2013

You have to see this place - both by day and by night. The famous arrival of the food vendors at dusk is great - the food less so. The drummers and singers are exciting and the snake charmers strangely disturbing. Be prepared to pay for everything you look at

Visited May 2013
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London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
12 attraction reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“Unique experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2013 via mobile

An absolute must visit, yes it is dirty, crowded and smelly but that is all part of the experience of being in a very unique City! You see things here you would never see anywhere else! From snake charmers to stalls with hundreds of second hand teeth! A definite must-do in Marrakech!

Visited May 2013
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