Marrakesh – The Food

Marrakesh was a culture shock in every sense of the word.  It had been on my list to visit for years and finally in August 2015 I booked a week away.  Ryanair will fly you there in just a couple of hours and the plane tickets are surprisingly cheap.  Okay so I went in a very hot month where it was literally like sitting on the sun with 40 degree heat most days.  Maybe that was why my ticket was so cheap.

It is however an incredibly intriguing place.  Its like nowhere else I’ve ever been. The sheer hustle and bustle of Marrakesh is mind-blowing. I remember standing in the middle of Jemaa-el-Fnaa square and being surrounded by thousands of people, tourists and locals alike getting on with their day. In that same square vying for passage through were people, bikes, horses, buses and cars. I think I might have even spotted a camel at one point.   That level of mayhem is not for the faint hearted let me tell you.  Personally I loved it.

This post however is to give a snapshot of some of the food I sampled on my trip.  I had high expectations for the food in Marrakesh.  I imagined exotic tagines bursting with flavour. Fresh fruits and of course mint tea (I’m not obsessed with it and brought home a teapot). I had read about the food stalls in Jemaa-el-Fnaa and the more upmarket restaurants housed in the hotel restaurants around Gueliz and Hivernage and I wanted to try it all.  So I did. I literally ate everywhere that I could.  Food stalls, markets, my own hotel, local restaurants and hotel restaurants.

While I did develop an almost obsessive love of the mint tea, I have to say the cuisine didn’t exactly blow me away.  It didn’t quite live up to the expectation I had placed on it.  The best food by far was in Jemaa-el-Fnaa which was a fraction of the cost of what I paid in numerous restaurants.  Food aside, I would return to Marrakesh in a heartbeat. It is a spectacular place to visit and I’m not done exploring it yet.

As a seasoned traveller said to me before I visited, which I think sums it up perfectly,

“Day one you are like Yay tagine, day six you are like Uhh tagine

Have you been to Marrakesh? How did you find the food? I would love to know your thoughts and of course your tips for my return visit.

2 thoughts on “Marrakesh – The Food

  1. Mark Moran

    Heading to Marrakech today and simply can’t wait! I’m a foodie as well so trying as much local cuisine is high on my list of things to do!

    Reply
    1. Rory Post author

      I have to say Mark i literally tried every type of food outlet and found street vendors were the best overall – massive difference in price between hotel restaurants which are considered high end but not nearly as good in flavour. Marrakesh is very much a city of two halves, wealthy and poor. Great tip, you can hire a taxi driver to take you around for the whole day, great for visiting sites. And negotiate with them. One restaurant to try is Nomad which is rooftop above the souks and La Cantine Parisienne
      YSL gardens are fab.
      Beldi Country club also. Didn’t get to visit there but was on my list

      Reply

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