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“Must do experience” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Jemaa el Fna

Jemaa el Fna
Central square at entrance to market, Marrakech, Morocco
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Top Rated
$40*
and up
Marrakech Discovery Tour
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.
Bolton
Level Contributor
124 reviews
43 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
“Must do experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 27, 2013

Al fresco eating in the warm evening air watching the locals flock into the square for traditional storytelling is great

Visited March 2013
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Aylesbury, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
30 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Fantastic vibe”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 27, 2013

Great vibe in this square, we ate in the square and in the restaurants around the square and all seemed ok to me. Just please don't take photos of the monkeys and snake charmers as it's funding a cruel attraction, there are other ways for the locals to make money. Everyone very friendly just keep your eye on your pockets as someone tried to pick pocket one of us! Great place to people watch though

Visited May 2013
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Milan, Italy
Level Contributor
146 reviews
40 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
“A magic explosion of life”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 27, 2013

This square is one of the most incredible sights I have ever seen. It's just magic one of those rare places that could be a tourist trap but somehow manage to be maintain a real local flavor!
In the morning it's the world of snake charmers, monkey trainers, horse carts, street vendors (of just about anything). But at night it completely booms: hundreds of delicious food stalls, music, noises, dances, people everywhere, in a word: fun.
Two hints. You'll soon find out that this square is not only the Marrakesh number one must see but also the main meeting point wherever you want to go: knowing where it is will help your orientation so make sure it's one of the first places you visit. The souvenirs they sell in the shops all around are not the cheapest: go deeper into the souks for better bargains.

Visited May 2013
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London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
112 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
“Mental”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 27, 2013

Snakes, monkeys, drummers, acrobats, horse carriages, bicycles, mopeds and people, lots and lots of people.
Best place to watch it all unfold at sunset is Cafe de Paris. Yes, the cafe is extremely touristy and a bit dirty but it also has two big terraces where you can sit and watch the food stalls setting up and the whole thing take shape.

Visited May 2013
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St. Albert, Canada
Level Contributor
147 reviews
38 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 94 helpful votes
“Not to be missed”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 25, 2013

Experiencing Jemaa el Fna was mind boggling. To see so many thousands of people was incredible. Certainly there were tourists there, but we felt many were local people, enjoying a warm spring evening. It was fascinating to people watch. Although we couldn't understand the story tellers, watching the expressions on the faces of the older women and men sitting around the actors was unforgetable. A short distance away, young boys that couldn't get through the crowds were watching from above, propped in trees and moving to the music playing loudly for the younger generations. Watching people enjoy the many food offerings was another great experience, especially the ones putting away great quantities of snails! And although the snake charmers and monkey handlers were likely there mostly for the tourists, our young grandson treasures the picture of the monkey that jumped up and sat on his grandfather's head. We did not see any animals being mistreated and certainly didn't feel any of the monkeys were dressed in ways more degrading than some of the ways we have seen people dress their dogs at home. We loved every minute, even went back for more, and never felt we were being unduly pressured (obviously sellers of anything will try to sell their wares), or pushed around. A simple "no thank you" was all we ever needed to say. We didn'd try eating at any of the food stalls on "ground level" but did enjoy sitting outside in the upper restaurants where we had great views of all the goings on and enjoyed light meals and coffee breaks.

Visited April 2013
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