Marrakech Journals

Memories of Marrakesh

Best of IgoUgo

A January 2004 trip to Marrakech by Gaires2359

Life is colourful Photo, Marrakech, Morocco More Photos
Quote: Marrakesh is a symbol of the Morocco that once was and still thrives today. The pink city with medieval structures remains unchanged despite visiting hordes.

Memories of Marrakesh

Best Of IgoUgo

Overview

Life is colourful Photo, Marrakech, Morocco
Quote:
The first mention in an 11th-century manuscript preserved in the Kairouyine Library in Fez refers to "Marrakouch," the land of the sons of Kouch, black African warriors from Aoudaghost, a large caravan town in Mauretania surrounded by palm trees. It became the capital of the Almoravid Empire and center of a great empire under Youssef Ben Tachfine, who died at the age of 100 in 1106. His son, Ali, whose mother was an Andalusian Christan slave, became one of the greatest rulers of Morocco. He was the one who commissioned Andalusian craftsmen to build a new palace and mosque. The architectural masterpieces that survive till today include the koubba el Baroudiyin, the minbar of the Koutoubia...Read More

Djemaa el Fna/Jamma el-Fnaa

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Place Djemaa el Fna"

Djemaa el Fna/Jamma el-Fnaa Photo, Marrakech, Morocco
Quote:
Despite its name -- Square of the Dead -- Place Djemaa el Fna is a very lively place. A traditional meeting place for peasants and merchants from the Sous region, the High Atlas and the South, it was where the caravansary stopped. And where the story tellers, singers, dancers, acrobats, snake charmers came to entertain them. Although the caravansary no longer exists, the entertainers, however, remained. The square has become the heart of Marrakesh. Jerome and Jean Tharaud once said "the soul of the South is here, in the groups of the onlookers who, from morning to night, gather and disperse around the street performers with the fluidity of smoke." At dusk, this square fills with jugglers...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on October 13, 2004

Djemaa el Fna/Jamma el-Fnaa
Medina Quarter
Marrakesh, Morocco

Menara Gardens and Pavilion

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Menara Gardens"

Menara Gardens and Pavilion Photo, Marrakech, Morocco
Quote:
Located slightly on the outskirts of town, just beyond the city ramparts, the Menara Gardens offer a pleasant escape from the excitement of central Marrakesh. With its serene park, chirping birds, beautiful lake, and backdrop of the Atlas Mountains, it is a scene set for love and romance. Designed initially as a resort where the sultans could escape the scorching summer heat, it was rebuilt for Sultan Adu Rahman in the 19th century, for his other, more risqué misadventures. Complete with a fruit orchard, date palm plantation, and olive grove, it is a place to take a breather and time off to smell the flowers. The Menara Gardens cover an area of about 250 acres. In the middle of the par...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on November 1, 2004

Menara Gardens and Pavilion
Avenue de la Menara
Marrakesh, Morocco

Koutobia Mosque and Minaret

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "The Koutoubia Mosque"

Koutobia Mosque and Minaret Photo, Marrakech, Morocco
Quote:
Like all Morocco’s mosques, the Koutoubia, both a place of worship and a Koranic school, does not admit non-Muslims, but we managed to view the surrounds from outside its gates, with commentary given by our local guide. The Koutoubia, or Booksellers’ Mosque, was named after kutubiyin, sellers of manuscripts, who in the 12th and 13th centuries, gathered to lay out their stalls on the square in front of the mosque. The original mosque, built in 1147 after the conquest of Marrakesh by Abd el Moumen, was later demolished because it was found to be incorrectly positioned in relation to Mecca. Its foundations can still be seen today to the right of the existing mosque. The second mosque, repre...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on November 22, 2004

Koutobia Mosque and Minaret
near Avenue Mohammed V in the medina
Marrakesh, Morocco

El Badi Palace

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "The Incomparable and the Beloved Palaces"

El Badi Palace Photo, Marrakech, Morocco
Quote:
Behind Bab Berrima, a gate flanked by massive towers overlooking the Place les Ferblantiers, a passageway between high walls leads to the entrance of the Dar el Badi, the Palace of the Incomparable. Work on this huge palace, built to commemorate Ahmed el Mansour’s victory over the Portuguese at the Battle of the Three Kings, was begun in 1578 and continued for the next 25 years. It was financed by the war indemnity paid by the Portuguese, by gold brought back from Guinea, and by sugar produced in the Sous region. Large numbers of European craftsmen were employed to work on the project, and the most luxurious materials were imported from black Africa, Italy, France, Spain, and Indi...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on November 22, 2004

El Badi Palace
Place Des Ferblantiers
Marrakesh, Morocco