My husband and I are planning our first trip to Morocco. We are from the USA. I have looked at a guide book and am trying to do more research. We are planning to go to Marrakesh. Does anyone have a particular Riad to recommend, or one to stay away from. We would like mid price range $70 - $100 USD per night. Do some of the Riad's have air conditioning? Private baths. Are beds usually twin, or double? Not sure what the terminology is.
Are there other areas around Marrakesh to see. Is it recommended to stay in a smaller area outside Marrakesh for a few days also? We are thinking of staying 5 - 7 days. Shorter stay? Or is that enough? And one big question...what are public restrooms like. We have traveled quite a bit in Thailand, Cambodia and Laos so we are familiar with non-western toilets. I just like to be aware in advance. We are thinking of going end of April, 1st of May...is the weather reasonable?
Am looking forward to all advice. Thank you.
I can personally recommend Riad des Arts (they have a web site), a small Riad very close to Djemaa el Fna tucked in a back street and very quiet. All rooms have en suite showers, not sure if one had a bath? Our room was no A/C'd but a fan was supplied and by the very nature of the buildings it remained relatively cool. This one is run by Moroccans who were very helpful and friendly. Think we paid 35 euros each incl breakfast. Really lovely place but fills up quickly.
Another is Dar Zaman, quite a way from the main square but easily walkable. Again a lovely place,especially the room on the roof. They do have one room with a tub (small bath). It is run by an englishman and again has a web site.
Rooms are usually doubles but it is possible to have a twin if you prefer.
Public restrooms, to my knowledge, are non existant but most restaurants will allow you to use theirs. They are standard western style toilets mostly.
If you are interested in history, mosques, palaces and architecture, there is a lot to see in Marrakech, otherwise 3 days would be plenty.
If you want to get away for a few days there are several options. There is a very good bus service. CTM and Supratours are the best. CTM has an office in the main bus station, a short bus ride from the main square, booking is advisable.
You could go to Essaouira on the coast or a zillion other options, or even have a couple of days in the desert. You really need to check your guidebook to see what interests you most. (the Atlas mountains are stunnung!)
Personally, 7 days would be way too much for me in Marrakech and it would be a shame to travel all that way and not see some of the outlying areas. There are plenty of day trips accessable by grande taxi or bus.
March to May is one of the best times to go as it is not too hot and the countryside lush and green.
Hope this helps!
Try Riad Tizwa.
It's English speaking and air conditioned.
Marrakech is very civilised these days and 'rest rooms' are generally pretty good - this isn't always true outside the city!