For my best friend Ali’s birthday she decided to go on a budget break to Marrakech, Morocco – and take me along too! As none of us could spare loads of time or cash on the trip, we wanted it to be short but sweet. We packed our itinerary full of activities and chill out time to make sure we made the most of our four day holiday.
After getting back, I can honestly say that we planned it perfectly. We managed to plan our activities with the weather uncannily well (iPhones and free WiFi had nothing to do with it, honest) which meant that we managed to fit a lot in to a small amount of time and still not feel too overwhelmed. Here’s our itinerary, and a brief breakdown of how it panned out – I don’t want to spoil too much for upcoming posts!
PS; Ali and Gary are huge fans of going out for lots of meals when away – so a delicious dinner every night was a must!
Hiking in the Ourika Valley
- Arrive Sunday evening
- Eat dinner and get an early one!
- Ali’s Birthday! Explore Jama el-Fnaa
- Visit Koutoubia Mosque
- Visit the Saadian tombs
- Visit the Royal Palace
- Chill out at the hostel
- Have an adventure day out in the Ourika Valley
- Go out for dinner
- Travel to the French Quarter
- Explore the Yves Saint Laurent Gardens
- Have lunch and explore the square
- Walk back and relax
- Go shopping!
- Go out for dinner
- Pack up and check out of hostel
- Visit the Bahia palace
- Do any last minute shopping
- Travel to the airport
How it actually worked!
Visiting a herb garden near the Atlas Mountains
We arrived absolutely exhausted and ended up getting dinner in the hostel which was tasty! An early night was definitely in order.
We got up early and set off to visit the square and XXX which went well. We stumbled across the tombs while looking for the palace, which was an interesting little surprise. We stopped for lunch, then had a nightmare finding the palace – only to discover it was closed. We spend the next little while getting delightfully scammed in a shop – although the owner had walked with us to help get us home so it was almost a fair deal! Exhausted, we ate at the hostel again and had an early night – we had booked an adventure day…
I don’t want to spoiler this one, but we couldn’t have planned it more perfectly. We followed the weather forecasted and made a couple of quick decisions which meant that we climbed a mountain and descended to spitting rain, before snuggling up for a warm lunch – while it poured outside! We went out for a decadent dinner at Cafe Arabe in honour of Ali’s birthday.
It was set to get hotter and hotter throughout the day, so we travelled to the gardens from the Old Quarter by cab in the morning. The weather was perfect, and we explored the gardens and museum. We ate lunch in the square – which was a modern contrast to el Fnar. We wandered around a market, then headed back to our hostel. I admit it – we spent the scorching hot afternoon lounging on our roof terrace. But hey – we were on holiday! When the sun went in we headed to the Souks to grab a few deals before we ate dinner at a restaurant overlooking the bustling square. It was the perfect way to end our last night.
We got up early and checked out. It was cold and rainy – which was so different from the day before! We layered up and headed off in search of more sights. After getting really lost, we sheltered from the rain in what looked like a little French cafe, but was actually a stunning huge Riad I will have to share with you soon. We had a decadent hot chocolate and pondered our next move. Somehow, we found the Bahia palace, which was beautiful. We walked back to the square for another ‘panoramic’ lunch, before grabbing some last minute bargains and hailing a cab to the airport.
Have you ever been to Marrakech? What did your itinerary look like? Share your ideas in the comments below!