We got back from our vacation a few weeks ago and I’m determined to share photos from our trip sooner than I did last year! Here’s to hoping I get all my blog posts up before the end of the year. 😅Anyway, this year, we spent two weeks visiting Marrakesh, Morocco, the Algarve coast of Portugal and Lisbon, Portugal. Our first stop was Marrakesh!
I visited Marrakesh with three coworkers-turned-friends 7ish years ago on a whim after a work trip in Barcelona. We were only there for a few days, but the trip stuck with me and I’ve been itching to go back to Morocco. I am super inspired by Turkish and Moroccan textiles and knew I wanted to stock up on some pillow covers/rugs/poufs! I was surprised at how much Marrakesh has changed since I visited! It definitely was a bit more touristy than years ago, but still has this charming, old world feel. Wandering around Marrakesh was this strange pull of the sesnses; there was so much color and beauty and liveliness but amidst simplicity. Things weren’t curated to look perfect, but instead were imperfectly perfect in their own way. It was magical. ✨
Without further ado, here’s a TON of photos from our trip, and a quick rundown of what we did in Marrakesh, where we ate/drank, and some tips for traveling to Morocco with kids.
Things to Do:
Wander the Souk: this is what we did every day in Marrakesh! after breakfast, we’d head into the center of town to the souk, which is an open-air Arab market. we’d wander the tiny, winding roads (that are basically impossible to navigate) and just visit different shops and market stands. I was dyyyyying over all of the gorgeous textiles (rugs! pillows! poufs!), the handwoven baskets, the colorful spices on display, everything. the entire experience is a little overwhelming but so so inspiring and invigorating! When shopping in the souk, bargain, bargain bargain! I usually would offer half of what the asking price was and got some great deals from it. 💯
Visit Le Jardin Secret: quite literally a secret garden tucked within the busy souk. it was a quiet, relaxing haven within the chaotic and busy market!
Visit Dar Si Said Moroccan Carpet and Weaving Museum: this was a spontaneous stop, but by far one of my favorite places in Marrakesh. We got to wander quiet, beautiful courtyards with the most stunning tiles and carpets/rugs on display everywhere. It was a dream ✨
Experience a Hammam: I knew I wanted to try out the hamman experience during our trip! I booked an appointment last minute at Assal Hammam and it was great! For about $45 US dollars, I did the traditional hammam experience (which basically was someone giving me a full-body steam, exfoliation and mask treatment) plus a one hour back massage. It was heavenly!
Desert Tour: we didn’t do this, but spending a day driving in the nearby Atlas Mountains is very popular. I did it on my first trip, but we opted to not go this time because our trip was already only five days and we didn’t want to make Lucy hang out in a carseat in a bumpy van all day.
Go on a Camel Ride: we booked a one hour tour via Get Your Guide.We were picked up at our hotel and took us to a palm grove area for our tour. It was just us three, our guide, and two other people. One hour was pleeeeeenty of time, at least when you’re riding a camel 5.5 months pregnant and with a toddler! Lucy loved the experience and we had soooo much fun too!
Where to Eat/Drink:
El Fenn: this is a gorgeous hotel near the center of the medina. we grabbed drinks and snacks on the super cute rooftop patio and then hung out on the instagram-famous yellow velvet couches (Lucy preferred the nearby hammock!)
Nomad: restaurant that came highly recommended. we loved it!
La Famille: my favorite meal of the trip! the restaurant patio is so pretty and they only serve a few (all vegetarian) dishes each day. it was soooo good! the vibe of this place sort of reminded me of Posada Margarita in Tulum, Mexico
La Mamounia: we had an early dinner one night at this super fancy hotel and explored the hotel gardens and grounds. It was like a Moroccan version of The Parker in Palm Springs. It was super upscale and impeccably decorated. Our food was just okay, but it’s worth going to look around and admire all the architecture and gardens!
Tips on Visiting Marrakesh with Kids:
Morocco is so family-friendly! Everyone LOVED Lucy and people are super accommodating towards children. We had people coming up to us to say hello to Lucy and even to touch her hands/cheeks (this would weird me out in America but we just went with it when traveling). The culture is very family-focused, and we found that people were overly kind towards us and went out of their way to help us.
Ditch the stroller. The roads within the souk itself are so tiny and bumpy and busy — it’s not very stroller-friendly. I brought the ring sling a few times, but for the most part, E just held Lucy in his arms or on his shoulders
Pack layers. While it was mostly VERY hot during the day, the mornings were a little chillier, so having an extra layer during breakfast/early evening was helpful.
Here’s a few articles I read and saved to get ideas on where to go/what to do in Marrakesh:
- Popular photo spots in Marrakesh 📸
- 36 hours in Marrakesh (I always look up NY Times 36 Hour stories for places we visit!)
- Giant List of What to do in Marrakesh with Kids