Ideas for your free time in Marrakesh

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A caleche (horse-drawn carriage) around the walls of the city is a bit clichéd, but none-the-less worthwhile, especially as the enterprise has been regulated a bit now, making it less likely you’ll be overcharged for the pleasure! A coffee or orange juice overlooking the Jemaa El Fna is one of the great pleasures of Marrakesh, as is being there at dusk when it changes from an open space to a carnival of street entertainers, fortune tellers, snake charmers and food stalls.

The traditional demarcation of different areas of the souqs for different trades has been largely eroded these days, but there are still some specific areas associated with certain trades: immediately north of the Jemaa El Fna square is the Dyers Souq, where stall holders will deomstrate the methods of dye making. In a similar area, and for those with strong stomachs, is a small cul-de-sac off the main thoroughfare where chickens are stored, sold and butchered on site! One of the nicest shopping streets in the souq, wide and with a decent selection of shops, is Rue Riad Zitoun El Kedim; it leaves the south-east corner of the Jemaa El Fna and runs all the way down to the El Badi Palace and the Place Des Ferblantiers (the Place is currently undergoing renovation and should be very appealing when finished).

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