Best things to do with kids in Marrakesh
Best things to do with kids in Marrakesh
The mutual admiration between kids and Marrakesh is obvious. From the palm-studded riad gardens and their tinkling fountains to fairytale souq scenes and the spectacle of Djemaa El Fna: wonderment is everywhere in the Red City.
Is Marrakesh good for kids?
Labyrinthine Marrakesh is a great place for kids: there’s plenty to see and do, and plenty of room for little imaginations to run wild. Marrakesh can sometimes be challenging for visitors – with or without children – but advance preparation will make a visit much easier.
Ask LP Kids: is Marrakesh child-friendly?
Little boy in a medina in Morocco
Kids will enjoy exploring the narrow alleyways and souqs (markets) in Marrakesh
Best things to do in Marrakesh with kids
Marrakesh is an entertaining city for kids of all ages, and families can soak up the atmosphere of the city in its many markets, at a local cooking course or meeting Marrakshis at the park.
Shopping in the souqs
Kids will gaze in wonderment at the bounty of goods for sale at Marrakesh’s markets: potion sellers trading concoctions that seem like they’re straight out of Harry Potter, old tins hammered into Aladdin-esque lamps, cupboard-sized shops packed with spangled slippers worthy of Cinderella. Early mornings are quieter in the souqs (markets), meaning less hassle and a better view of craftspeople at work.
Top neighborhoods to explore in Marrakesh
Adrenaline-packed Terres d’Amanar balances out all that chill souq strolling. This outdoor center, 22 miles (36km) south of Marrakesh, offers zip lines, a forest adventure course, mountain biking and horse riding. The list of activities is inclusive of all age groups and abilities, and it’s great for kids. Learn to master zip lines, tackle the adventure course or head out on a horse ride or trek. There’s a pool and good restaurant, too.
People eating at a stall in Djemaa El Fna square in Marrakesh
Djemaa El Fna
Marrakesh museums are a poor substitute for the live theater of the souqs and Djemaa El Fna, the city’s famous square. At any hour, the Djemaa is lively, but from 6 to 8pm is the best time for Djemaa dance troupes and musicians, and the possibility of chance encounters with Moroccan families also doing the rounds. Early evenings is when local kids play out in public spaces, a great time for your kids to find play mates.
Creative Interactions can tailor-make a task-filled medina hunt or craft a family-friendly henna-art workshop. For parents and older children, the company also offers Moroccan Arabic classes designed for short-term travelers.
These fun and friendly workshops allow even visitors on a short stay a chance to learn the basics. Classes include tips on how to haggle. The 3½-hour sessions come with a cooking demonstration and lunch; two-hour classes include a tea-making lesson.
Fountain and park in front of Koutoubia Mosque, Marrakesh
Families can relax in Marrakesh’s parks and green spaces, including
Little kids love the green swathes and refreshing fountains of the Koutoubia Gardens. Stretching out behind the Koutoubia Mosque, this palm-tree-dotted patch of greenery is a favorite Marrakshi spot for strolling, relaxing on park benches and generally taking a quiet break.
If you need some downtime after dodging motorbikes amid the medina’s skinny alleyways, take the locals’ lead and head here for a peaceful meander.
Inquisitive older kids can sign up for Cafe Clock’s “Moroccan Culture 101,” a 90-minute crash course in common phrases, religious customs and local etiquette. Little sister to the Fez
The food, including veggie options like quiche and seasonal couscous, is decent – tourists delight in the signature camel burger. However, its popularity rests on its packed calendar of cultural performances, which also attracts many young Marrakshis.
Atelier Chef Tarik
Take a ride out to the country for a relaxed, al fresco cooking day with Atelier Chef Tarik – kids will love the organic kitchen gardens and farm animals. Farm-to-table cooking is at the heart of this rural culinary school a half-hour drive from Marrakesh, where rustic adobe houses and relaxed kilim-cushion garden seating give way to a bucolic organic farm and cooking tent.
A line of horse-drawn carriages waits on the street in Marrakesh,
Horse-drawn carriages ferry visitors around Marrakesh
When kids’ legs and parents’ backs start to give out, do what Moroccan parents do: hire a calèche (horse-drawn carriage) in Djemaa El Fna and take a grand tour. These green carriages are a pleasant way to get around if you avoid the rush hours (8am, noon and 5:30 to 7:30pm).
You can dictate the route to an extent, but a typical tour might run from the “new town” of Jardin Majorelle to the ancient Kasbah and Mellah via the main square of Djemaa El Fna, and around the city’s storied ramparts. Check the condition of the horse before haggling for a ride as some are better cared for than others.
How to get around in Marrakesh
Bicycle in the medina of Marrakesh, Morocco
Take a spin on two wheels around Marrakesh or the nearby Atlas Mountains
Explore Marrakesh or the Atlas Mountains beyond, on a family-friendly bike tour High-quality Giant road bikes, mountain bikes (including kids’ bikes) and helmets are provided.