Surviving the souks of Marrakech

If you do just one thing when you visit Marrakech, make sure you visit its world famous souks. More than just a market, the souks house the heart and soul of the city. Mesmerising sights, smells and sounds, it’s an experience that you won’t forget in a hurry. If it’s your first time it can be easy to feel a bit overwhelmed by the hustle and bustle, so follow these simple tips to have more fun and grab yourself even more bargains…

Haggle

Whatever price they give you, offer half that price (or less!) and work from there. Remind yourself that in the souks you are supposed to haggle, so get used to it and try to enjoy it!

Walk away

If you really don’t want to pay higher than say, 50 dirhams for an item, but the stallkeeper is insistent on say 80 dirahms, firmly say 50 like you mean it. Then walk away, don’t look back, and he may come running after you offering it for 50. And if he doesn’t, you’ll find the same item on another stall anyway so you can try again…

A bit of banter goes a long way

The stall keepers like a bit of banter. Crack some jokes, keep it light hearted and you may be able to knock a few dirhams off that necklace…

We may or may not have staged this convo for the photo… (but don’t worry, the real banter happened just 2 mins before!)

Give yourself time

Give yourself the first day to scope out the souks, decide what type of things you want to buy and test out the prices. The never ending winding alleyways make it easy to become overwhelmed by the amount of stuff on offer.

Jemaa el Fna square and the souks from above

Keep calm

Don’t get too frustrated. Remember this is their job. They hustle all day long to provide for their families, and they work more than 12 hours a day so may go over the top to try and make a sale. If you’re not interested all you have to do is walk away, simple.

Kit your house out

This city must be the best place on earth to come to for home furnishings. So make sure you buy a few things for your house (from kitchenware, to cushions, and everything in between) and you can bring a bit of authentic Marrakech back home with you.

It definitely took me days to choose a pattern…

Smile!

A smile goes a long way. I’m sure my smile got me a few discounts 😉

 

Most importantly, enjoy and have fun!

 

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