Marrakesh is known for being a budget friendly travel destination accessible to all types of travelers, from backpackers to luxury lovers. Whether you're traveling cheaply or want to indulge without breaking the bank, this article will help you find value as you explore the Red City.
- Hostel: Dh100 per bed in a shared room
- Basic double room for two people in a 3-star riad: Dh600
- Self-catering one-bed apartment: Dh500
- Entry to historical sights: Dh70 per person
- Public transport ticket: Dh5 single bus fare
- Coffee/mint tea: Dh10-30
- Tagine from a street cafe: Dh40
- Dinner in a licensed restaurant: Dh250 per person
- Drinks at a rooftop bar: Beer Dh50 / Cocktails Dh100
- Total average daily cost for 3 meals, accommodation, and a small budget for activities is around Dh600 per person.
Sleep on the cheap
Marrakesh is synonymous with charming architecture and warm hospitality and, thankfully, this can be found in all price categories, whether you sleep on a local's sofa through Couchsurfing or rent a room via AirBnb.
The city also has excellent hostels, with spots like Equity Point and Central House Hostel offering high standards of accommodation in both dorms and private rooms. Plus, they're great for mingling with like-minded travelers.
Stay longer and book direct for luxe digs
If you dream of staying in a traditional riad, you're in luck: there are hundreds, and the sheer volume keeps prices down.
For more luxurious touches, Dar Attajmil offers a personalized experience emphasizing coziness, elegance and the art of slowing down. Double rooms start from Dh990 per day for two people and include breakfast; stay five nights and receive a 10% discount.
Book directly with most hotels for the best prices. Avoid the very high season – around 24 December to 4 January – when rates are hiked by at least 15%. Note city taxes of Dh30 per person per night are to be paid in cash at the end of your stay, so keep some cash on you for when you check out.
Splash out on pool passes
The weather in Marrakesh is perfect for being in or by a swimming pool. Save money by choosing accommodation without a pool and opting for day passes. There are heaps of passes granting access to the cities' top hotel pools and spas, so you can take advantage of the amenities without having to fork over extra money for every night of your stay. Prices generally range from Dh150-1,000 per day.
Getting to and from the airport
Alsa bus 19 is the cheapest option, costing about Dh30 round trip; bring some money with you as you'll pay cash on the bus, which runs every 20 minutes and makes several stops in the city.
A new airport arrivals taxi system came into operation in 2023. Buy your ticket with the taxi registration number at a kiosk in the terminal. The set fare for "Petit Taxi" is Dh80 (or Dh120 at night time). A "Grand Taxi" is slightly more expensive.
Check if your hotel includes complimentary airport transfers, especially if it's in a hard-to-access area of the Medina.
Stay central and walk
Book a riad in the area of the city you are most interested in, pack comfortable shoes and enjoy the freedom of exploring on foot. The city center is compact and mostly pedestrianized, though it can get a bit confusing to navigate; download Google Maps or Maps.me, as it can be handy to have an offline map.
Take public transport, share a ride, or use an app
If you tire of walking, hail a taxi or take a bus. If you're staying in a luxury hotel, you'll save money by hailing a taxi away from the hotel itself. See the Alsa interactive bus planner for fare and route options.
Sharing taxis, known locally as "taxi collectif" is standard across Morocco. It's how the locals travel, so it's a great way to save money and connect with the Marrakchis.
Prefer an app? Roby is the local version of Uber. It's a little more expensive than regular taxis, but if you're used to booking taxis with an app, it may save on the stress of haggling for fares.
Save on attractions
The Yves Saint Laurent Museum and Jardins Marjorelle are the most popular and expensive of the city's tourist attractions. Purchase a combined entry ticket in advance to save on queuing time and apply eligible discounts.
Book a local guide for local deals
If you're specifically interested in shopping for large items, culinary tours and/or getting to know more about historic sights, it may be worth investing in a city guide. They can help make sense of experiences, save you money on shopping and add value with their local knowledge. Costs are around Dh350 per adult in a private group; reputable hotels can make guide recommendations.
Be smart about car rental
Many people will advise you not to drive in the city center, as the chaotic and narrow Medina streets can be challenging for the most patient drivers. But if you're staying outside the Medina or planning to visit Marrakesh as part of a longer self-drive itinerary, you'll probably want a car. The cheapest rentals are at the airport, along with reputable agencies and vehicles. If you need a budget friendly place to stow your car while you explore the Medina, drop it off at the secure 24/7 Koutobia Parking located right across the street. It costs Dh10 per hour and Dh35 overnight.
Take your breakfast out
Some larger hotels and resorts charge breakfast on top of the room rate. These buffet breakfasts can be vast, so if you don't need that every day, head out to a cafe and savor the local experience. Look out for a laiterie (street cafe) where you can pick up a fresh avocado smoothie, a Berber omelette and a hot drink for Dh50 total.
Opt for street food for value and vibe
The city streets and squares brim with street stalls and cart vendors selling seasonal local produce. Grab a fresh juice squeezed before you – an orange or pomegranate costs Dh20 for around 500ml.
Mechoui Alley is the go-to place for succulent slow-roasted sheep on coals and a local speciality, tangia (stew cooked in a terra cotta pot). Serving starts around noon, but don't want too long to eat – when vendors run out, they run out.
The Djemma El Fna food stands kick off around 4 pm, and the square becomes like an outdoor food festival with hundreds of stalls serving different local dishes: tagines, fish skewers, grills, soups and tangia.
Take cash (small notes, like Dh50 and Dh100), and have some Dh5 and Dh10 coins to pay for photos and tipping street performers.
Want to try fine dining restaurants? The side streets of Gueliz are home to stylish bistros and contemporary dining. Some places, such as the Loft, offer a discounted lunch menu of two courses for Dh150 per person.
Skip the Sahara for Agafay
Marrakesh is often the launchpad for travelers heading to the Sahara desert, a whopping 10-hour drive. If this is outside your budget or schedule, the Agafay Desert is a rocky desert less than an hour's drive from the city. While it doesn't have the giant red Sahara dunes, it can, if you pick the right camp, offer space to disconnect and tune into nature and solitude.
Time out to recharge
Marrakesh can get intense on all levels – noise, smell and pace – so, thankfully, the city offers plentiful places to retreat, whether it be one of the city's parks, gardens, spas or holistic centers. Relax in the shade of the city's free parks: Cyber Park, Agdal Garden and Lalla Hasna Park.
There are a growing number of yoga studios in the city. While yoga sessions can be arranged by some hotels, avoid paying the premium for a private class and join a local studio. Root Holistic Center, close to Jardin Majorelle, runs several classes daily. Drop-in yoga classes from Dh180, a weekend pass Dh450, and a five-day pass Dh800.
For a real hammam experience, join the locals for a scrub down at Hammam Mouassine, one of the cheapest (recommended) options. If you prefer to spend more on a private hammam ritual, an independent spa such as Hammam de La Rose charges from Dh300 upward.
Know how to shop
When it comes to shopping, Marrakesh can get expensive thanks to many temptations to splurge, especially in art galleries, designer boutiques and rug shops where credit cards are accepted. But with a little shopping savvy, you can find good deals anywhere.
Generally, smaller kiosk items are fixed prices, but larger items in the souq and some independent shops are up for negotiation. If you are buying expensive pieces, the best advice is to do your research, be clear on the maximum price you are comfortable paying and stick to it.
If you like rummaging for second-hand goods, Thursday and Sunday are the best days for finding treasures at Souk El Khemis in the north of the Medina. Florence d'Arabia, a vintage shop, has interesting finds.
Bear in mind that imported goods and alcohol are expensive in Morocco.