We had a good nights sleep, or at least I did, my snoring kept Elaine awake and after a breakfast of bread, cake, pancakes, jam and honey we set off to explore.
I didn’t know much about marakech before we got there and now having left after two full days there, I don’t know much more.
Similar in many ways to Istanbul, busy, noisy and largely good value, it seems to have quiet days and busy nights. The traders around the main square are pushey but easy to deflect if needed, and the bartering can be fun, but be realistic about your expectations. Probably best to have an idea what you want to pay then start talking a bit below it. Only move up to your price when the vendor is about to walk away. They may try and give you the impression that they have started at a low price, but there is always room for improvement. There is a significant amount of fake goods on offer, don’t be mistaken into believing they are the genuine article, they are not. Sports wear is the main item on offer and watches. Buyer beware.
Some of the locally crafted items are very good value, but check the quality, and remember you have to get them home. One of our team has bought a lot of items and I guess they will be going home in one of the cars!
In the main square, it is very busy and can be a bit oppressive, traders constantly want you to buy things, usually tacky tourist rubbish, and lots of noise form the snake charmers and other musicians. There are people with monkeys. This doesn’t sit comfortably with me and I don’t think it would go on back home. The snake charmers have several snakes, I am no snake expert but I don’t suppose the snakes are very happy.
Also note, if you pay some one to take a photo, ie a snake charmer, they will always ask for more, don’t give them more, look at how much the service has cost them and pay them a fair price. I gave a snake charmer 10 dirhams to take a photo , i was only there a few seconds, he wanted more, that would work out at a very high hourly rate, I politely declined at first then told him in industrial language to go away. He got the message.
Food is ok here, but I am not that impressed from a vegy point of view. It doesn’t seem that tasty, given they traditionally trade spices, they seem pretty reluctant to use them.