Marrakech: Shopping

Marrakech is a shopping mecca for those who want souvenirs and unique crafts. The city is home to the largest traditional market in Morocco, as well as the busiest square in Africa (Jemaa el Fna). There are also many souks (markets) selling anything you can imagine.

Though the Jemaa el Fna is more of a performance center at night, there are vendors almost around-the-clock selling food, drinks, clothing and other souvenir-type items. If you are looking for a specific type of merchandise, try one of the souks , which are usually organized by product type. There is the Kimakhin for instruments, Hadaddine for metalwork and Siyyaghin for jewelry, just to name a few. Of course, Marrakech is famous for its tanneries, so a visit to the leather souk of el Kebir can be rewarding. When buying merchandise from these markets, remember that bargaining is expected. Prices for foreigners will almost always end up being higher than prices for locals, but the cost of the goods will still be much lower than for comparable items in developed western countries. Haggling over prices, however, is time-consuming, and shoppers should be prepared to spend a few hours in a souk when they go.

Marrakech: Shopping Tip

Marjane Hypermarket. If you plan to spend more than a few days in Marrakech and want to stock your riad or hotel room with some produce, snacks or alcohol - a quick trip to one of the two Marjane hypermarkets is recommended. Check with your accommodation if this is allowed as many do not encourage this practice.

Majane has two outlets in the Marrakech area and both are great hypermarkets located not too far outside the old medina.

The most convienient is at Abdelkarim el-Khatabi street.  A petite taxi from the Jamaa al-Fna area will run about 15-20 dirhams (one way) and any taxi driver can get there.

The hypermarket itself is huge in size and has a very large array of available goods, including a wide range of European brands and locally produced fresh produce; great breads;  local items including Argan nut products; a great in-store gellatto stand and a small deli that has a limited selection of pork products.

The market also has a large selection of spirits for sale (beer, wine, including Casablanca beer). During Ramadan, however, this section is usually closed.

For those who wish to do some gift shopping, Majane also sells household goods and clothes which are all sold at fixed prices and may be a good option if you do not wish to bother with bartering in the souks.

The second Majane is located on the road to Essaouria and Agadir, a little further out of town, but an equally large and well stocked hypermarket. 

So, if you're in town for an extended time and need to stock your shelves, a trip to one of these hypermarkets is worthwhile.

 In the summer months you might like to hang around the refrigerated section for a while to get some welcome relief from the heat outside!

The prices for everything do tend to be a little more expensive than the small stores, however you are paying for convenience. However, many items are for sale at less cost than at the local markets (beverages, Argan products, clay tagines, etc).  As usual - comparative shopping will pay benefits.

There's also a McDonalds and a sushi bar/restaurant at the Abdelkarim el-Khatabi street store and an additional shopping centre in the immediate area outside with western-style stores.  Lastly, if you're feeling really adventurous, they also have several brands of mopeds for sale (for your trip back to the medina).

 

Alternative Supermarkets:

Aswak Assalam  - Aswak   is a chain of supermarkets located in Rabat, Kenitra, Tanger, Temara, Agadir, and Marrakech.  Aswak is a smaller sized  store and is not as well stocked as Marjane.  Aswak does not sell alcohol or pork products.

Acima - There are several Acima outlets which sell pork products and alcohol.

Carrefour - Set in a shopping mall on the Ourika road is a new hypermarket.