Marrakech is a major city of the Kingdom of Morocco. It is the fourth largest city in the country by population, after Casablanca, Fez, and Tangier. It is situated to the north of the foothills of the beautiful snow-capped Atlas Mountains.
The city was founded in 1062 by Abu Bakr ibn Umar, chieftain and cousin of Almoravid king Yusuf ibn Tashfin. In the 12th century, the Almoravids built many madrasas (Koranic schools) and mosques in Marrakesh that bear Andalusian influences. The red walls of the city have given it the nickname of the “Red City”. Wander through the many alleyways of the ancient medina and be entranced by the colors of the various spices and unique clothing on sale.
Jemaa el-Fna is the busiest square in Africa. Somewhat of an open-air theatre and museum combined, Jemaa el-Fna is the pulse of Marrakech. The daily square buzzes with snake charmers, henna tattoo artists and various other entertainers; while at night there are countless stalls boasting traditional lamb heads and fresh orange juice. Tourists flock here all year round to experience the true heart of the city and to discover the intriguing things the locals have to offer in this magical Moroccan square.
The medina is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, bordered by modern neighborhoods, the most prominent of which is Gueliz. Today it is one of the busiest cities in Africa and serves as a major economic center and tourist destination. Marrakesh has the largest traditional market (souk) in Morocco, with some 18 souks selling wares ranging from traditional Berber carpets to modern consumer electronics. Crafts employ a significant percentage of the population, who primarily sell their products to tourists. It is the perfect place to find trinkets to take back home to loved ones!