Marrakech in 2 days: See the best places in 48 hours!

Last Updated on June 29, 2023 by asoulwindow

Marrakech in 2 days: Biggest Guide

Marrakech in 2 days is a lot of fun! Needless to say, Marrakech is one of the top places to visit in the Kingdom of Morocco. A place as culturally vibrant as Marrakech deserves to be explored slowly till you absorb all that it has to offer! Having said that, it is still possible to see all the major attractions of Marrakech under 2 days.

Much like any Indian city, the lanes and busy souks of Marrakech are equally overwhelming and chaotic. But then the how to escape my love for places which are brimming with such positive energy, sounds, colours and smells. I also love people watching and what better place than Marrakech to indulge in this pastime!

So, can you do Marrakech of Morocco in 2 days? Are 2 days enough to see Marrakech? Here is a comprehensive guide on what to do in Marrakech under 24 hours! Though there is still a lot you can see and do in Marrakech, but this detailed travel guide lists down all the major highlights of Marrakech which can be seen within two days! Most of the busy tourists have just about 2-3 days in any city. So, this exhaustive guide on Marrakech under 48 hours will help anyone planning a trip to Morocco!

Is 2 days in Marrakech enough? Here is all you wanted to know about the best things to do in the red city of Marrakech! But first, let’s go through this famous quote on Marrakech:

Soul Window Quotes

“I believe that Marrakech ought to be earned as a destination. The journey is the preparation for the experience. Reaching it too fast derides it, makes it a little less easy to understand.”

Tahir Shah, In Arabian Nights: A Caravan of Moroccan Dreams

Where is the pink city in Morocco?

Why Marrakech is called the red city? Anyone who has traveled to Marrakech even once will claim to have lost his heart in the pink city! There is so much to see in this African nation that even 7 days in Morocco is less.

I have grown up watching the lovely pink coloured buildings in Marrakesh. Thanks to the use of beaten pink clay, most of the buildings and the city walls of Marrakesh. You can easily see this building in Jamaa el-Fna square. This vibrant marketplace is located in the heart of heart of the medina area.

Many of these buildings were constructed by the conquerors of North African Empire in the 12th century C.E. Marrakesh is also known as the red city for its red buildings.

Yves Saint Laurent once famously said:

“A visit to Marrakech was a great shock to me. This city taught me color”. 

Soul Window Connects

There are several similar colorful cities in Rajasthan in India. While Jaisalmer is known as the golden city, Jodhpur is known as the city of blue houses. Similarly, Jaipur is called as the Pink City of India. I have visited these historical places myself can now compare their beauty! There indeed is some magic in centuries old cities full of culture, vibrancy and colour!

2 Days in Marrakech

When you have only 2 days in Marrakech, you must see all the major attractions of this inimitable red city of Morocco first. Here is a detailed 2 days itinerary of Marrakech.

Day 1: Marrakech in two days

What to do in Marrakech in 2 days? Here is the most comprehensive guide on how to spend 2 days in Marrakech. Below is the detailed list of top places to visit in Marrakech on day 1

Koutoubia Mosque: Marrakech in 2 days

All tourists who visit Marrakech for 2 days make sure to include the Kutubiyya Mosque in their itinerary. Also, known as Koutoubia Mosque or Mosquée Koutoubia in French, it is one of the top places to see in Marrakech under 2 days. Since Kutubiyya Mosque is the largest mosque in Marrakech, it is always buzzing with activity.

Situated in the southwest medina quarter of Marrakesh, there is a lot which you can do here. From people watching to prayers, from admiring the architecture to photography, there is no dearth of things to do in Kutubiyya Mosque. You can spend good amount of your time here if a ticking clock is not a constraint. Kutubiyya Mosque is situated in close proximity with the nearby Jemaa el-Fna.

The spell binding architecture of the mosque is a tourist attraction in itself. The 250 feet or 70 meters tall minaret is a major tourist attraction here. Only Muslims are allowed to visit inside. You can still admire its exteriors which are equally stunning!

It is also a pleasure to walk at the huge plaza with gardens here. In the night, the floodlit garden acquires a new personality. Now you know why you must include this iconic mosque of Marrakesh when deciding what to see in Marrakech in 2 days.

The first ever construction at Kutubiyya Mosque complex was done in the year 1147 by Abd al-Mu’min. Other names of this famous mosque in Marrakech are Kutubiya Mosque, Mosque of the Booksellers, Kutubiyyin Mosque and Jami’ al-Kutubiyah. Constructed in the 12th century C.E. by the founder of Rabat, the present capital of Morocco, Kutubiyya Mosque is a must-see place if you have only 2 days in Marrakech, also spelt as Marrakesh.

Also, do not miss the Koubba de Lalla Zohra. It is a small white building which is located right outside the mosque. What makes this building stand out is its beautiful domed rooftop. It makes for a great background for picture! Lalla Zohra who rests here was the daughter of a slave. She was converted to Islam. As per the legends, she was highly capable of performing magic which earned her popularity with children and women. Unfortunately, she led a hard life. She was imprisoned when she refused to reciprocate the love of a prince!

Jemaa el-Fnaa: 2 days in Marrakech

Jemaa el-Fnaa is a bustling and atmospheric market place and a popular square of the old city of Marrakesh. Located in the medina quarters, Jemaa el-Fnaa is best enjoyed just after dark. All roads lead to Jemaa el-Fnaa in evening as international tourists and locals swarm Jemaa el-Fnaa for shopping, dining out and entertainment. It is after all the main square of Marrakesh!

While in the day time, you can visit the orange juice stalls, the evenings are for grand entertainment events.

Have you heard of Chleuh dancing-boys? Traditionally girls were barred from performing dances publicly, therefore boys used to perform such dances. You can catch a dance live in the evening! Just ask around! You can also visit practitioners of traditional medicines, magicians and even story tellers. Though the story tellers narrate the tales in either Berber or Arabic language because their primary audience is local people! It is still worth it to attend a session. It is immersive travel at its best!

jemaa el fnaa marrakech in 2 days
Jemaa el Fnaa. 2 days in Marrakech Pic by Morocco Travelling

Jemaa el-Fnaa gets very crowded in the evening but isn’t that where the fun is! Despite being chaotic, loud, and a frenzied place, I love such markets which are so vibrant and full of character. As a traveller, such bustling market places are very fascinating and brimming with local culture! Some of the souvenirs and things to buy from Jemaa el-Fnaa are every day appliances, Moroccan lamps, clothes, handicrafts, local crafts, food with shelf life such as kalamata olives and zatar masala and décor items etc. Bargaining is common here, so do not shy away from it!

When done with all the entertainment options, move on to treating your taste buds with some delicious food at the road side stalls! You can choose your meal and drinks from the hundreds of food stalls that line the street. What’s not to love? A local guide can, of course help you find much more!

Soul Window Facts

Did you know that you can see glimpses of Jemaa el-Fnaa in the 1956 movie of Alfred Hitchcock known as ‘The Man Who Knew Too Much’? Yes, Jemaa el-Fnaa is that famous a place! Do not miss it! Your 2 days long trip to Marrakesh is incomplete without a visit to Jemaa el-Fnaa, also known as Djemaa el-Fnaa, Sāḥat Jāmiʾ al-Fanāʾ, Djema el-Fna or Jemaa el-Fna!

Saadian Tombs: 48 hours in Marrakech Morocco

Much like the royal cenotaphs of Rajputs inthe state of Rajasthan and Gujarat in West India, Saadian Tombs is also a place reserved for the members of the royal Saadi dynasty. But unlike the Hindu cenotaphs, which is only symbolic, as many as 60 family members were laid to rest in Saadian Tombs over several years. Wandering around these sepulchres and mausoleums is one of the top things to do in Marrakech under 48 hours. The rule of the Saadi dynasty in Morocco began in the year 1549 C.E. and ended in 1659 C.E.

It was only in the year 1917 when the French rediscovered this important historical monument through an aerial survey! Till then, it was lost and forgotten! Today Saadian Tombs are some of the top tourist attractions to see in Marrakech if you have 48 hours in hand.

One of the highlights of Saadian Tombs is that the expensive Italian Carrera marble is used in the construction. In fact, several monuments in this area are built using this exclusive marble which indicates how important this place was.

As you walk out of the main buildings, you will stumble upon the graves of the servants and soldiers who served the members of the Saadi Dynasty. Do not leave without appreciating the stucco and cedar carvings which dot the 3 exquisitely adorned rooms of the main tomb here. The impressively detailed tilework known as zellige is also worth a dekko! All said and done, Saadian Tombs remain the top thing to see in Marrakech in 2 days.

Bahia Palace: Marrakech in 48 hours

What to do in Marrakech in 48 hours? Here is what else you can do. Visit this grand monument! Bahia Palace is one of the top places to see in Marrakech in 48 hours! Bahia Palace has a very rich and interesting history. The construction of Bahia Palace was first commissioned by Si Musa in the year 1859 C.E.  He was a descendant of black slaves who served the royal government or Moroccan makhzen. He climbed the social ladder rapidly and ended up holding the highest offices of the then Morocco! He was also the grand vizier of Alaouite sultan Muhammad ibn Abd al-Rahman.

The Grand Courtyard of the Bahia Palace is beautifully decorated. Several rooms here open onto the big wide courtyard. No matter which corners you look at, you will be greeted with amazing artwork! From stucco carved with Arabic inscriptions on the walls to the use of expensive marble and zellij tiles in paving the floors, there is a lot which vies for attention in the premises of Bahia Palace.

If you hire a local guide, he can also show you several interesting geometric patterns, muqarnas and arabesques on the walls.  

Bahia Palace was an important project! No wonder, Ba Ahmed had used materials from various places in Morroco. For example: While the tiles were sourced from Tetouan, marble was imported from Meknes. Similarly, the source of cedar wood is Middle Atlas! In fact, back then, the highly skilled artisans from various parts of Morocco had travelled all the way to Marrakech to build this magnum opus. No wonder, Bahia Palace is still one of the most visited places in Marrakech, especially if tourists have just 2 days in this beautiful city.

Did you know that Bahia Palace is so huge that there are as many as over 150 rooms here? As is common in Islamic traditions, this palace also had a harem which housed 24 women. You can also stroll around the beautifully landscaped garden which spreads across 2-acres.

And just as you leave, crane your neck in order to admire the cedar-wood ceilings painted with colourful floral patterns! Needless to say, if you have only 48 hours in Marrakech, make sure you squeeze in Bahia Palace in your Morocco itinerary. It is worth it! It is after all rare to see such a beautiful blend of Moroccan and traditional Islamic styles under one roof!

However, the women were barred from leaving the premises of Bahia Palace. Only the Kings and eunuchs were allowed to look at them. No other men were allowed to have a glimpse of the royal women. It was the same case with the Mughals in India.

To summarise, Bahia Palace still attracts hordes of curious tourists and discerning travellers every day. This is why Bahia Palace is still one of the top places to see in Marrakech under 2 days. Do not miss it!

Day 2:  Two days in Marrakech

How many days do you need in Marrakech? It is a commonly asked question! You can see the best of Marrakech under 2 days if you plan well in advance. Here is what you can do on the second day of your 2 days Marrakech itinerary.

After an intense day 1 in Marrakesh, let’s take it slow in the fabled red city of Marrakesh! Below is the detailed list of top places to visit in Marrakech on day 1

Jardin Majorelle or Majorelle Gardens

Renowned French painter and orientalist artist, Jacques Majorelle has been credited as the designer of this scenic garden. He began his work in the year 1923 and it took him a whooping 40 years to build this garden from scratch.

I am personally not too much into pretty gardens but if water fountains, marble pools, flowers, lily ponds, landscaped gardens and bamboo grove excite you, then do consider including Jardin Majorellein your 2 days Marrakesh itinerary! What’s more, the garden also provides great backdrops for photo ops!

Spread across two-acre or one-hectare of land, the Majorelle Garden is one of the best places to see in Marrakesh in 2 days.

And there is no way you should miss out on the Berber Museum. This unusual in-house museum documents the arts of the Berber community. Berbers were the native people of North Africa. Since Morocco is located in Northern most tip of Africa, close to Spain, it was home to the Berber people. Yves Saint Laurent Museum is also located nearby, just in case you have some extra time at hand!

Almoravid Qubba or Koubba Almoravid: Marrakech under 48 hours

Constructed by Almoravid dynasty in the early 12th century, Almoravid Qubba or Qubba Barudiyyin or Ba’adiyyin is the top place to see if you have only 48 hours in Marrakesh. Since it is a very small monument, it doesn’t take much time to see. This historical monument of Marrakesh is also known as Koubba Almoravid. Bring your Arabian Nights fantasy to reality by paying a visit to Almoravid Qubba.

Despite its small size, Qubba Barudiyyin is a must visit places in Marrakesh. What makes this monument so famous is that fact that it is the only surviving building which boasts of the unique Almoravid architecture in all of Marrakesh. No wonder then that tourists make a bee line to admire this extraordinarily decorated monument of Marrakech.

Watch out for the decoration on the arches, the domed pavilion, ornamentation inside the cupola and the unique water basin which is located right under the dome. Also observe the old cistern and pipes here. It will give you a glimpse of how things worked in the past!

Remnants of the triple-arched fountain is also a must-see sightseeing attraction near Almoravid Qubba. A local tourist guide can also show you lesser-known places such as the base of the Almoravid pavilion. I find hidden gems such as these exciting when travelling in a new country. In fact, there are many such offbeat places in Marrakech which do not make it to travel guide books. Here is another insider tip. You can still see the ruins of private latrines near Almoravid Qubba. This is a lesser-known fact. Do visit this place and thank me later for these secret tips!

Soul Window Travel Tips

Almoravid Qubba is located in close proximity with other major tourist attractions of Marrakesh. For example, Almoravid Qubba is located only 2.2 kilometres and 10 minutes away from Jardin Majorelle or Majorelle botanical gardensvia Rue el Gza. Interestingly Marrakech Museum is also located close to Almoravid Qubba. What’s more? Almoravid Qubba is located merely 40 meters south of the Mosque of Ben Youssef.

This is why it makes sense to include Almoravid Qubba in your 2 days itinerary of Marrakesh. You can also just take pictures of the domed pavilion from outside if you want to save time and money!

Marrakech Museum: Marrakech under 2 days

Situated in the old centre of Marrakesh, Marrakech Museum is a top tourist attraction. Apart from the various exhibits in the museum, the architecture of the building and the decorations itself makes the Marrakech Museum a top place to see in Marrakesh under 48 hours. One of the salient features of the Marrakech Museum is the brass chandelier dangling in the middle of the courtyard. The main courtyard of the Marrakech Museum is visually stunning! Needless to say, it is also great for your Instagram feed!

Do not miss some unique things on display in the Marrakesh Museum such as a dagger, which is locally known as kummiya. This dagger dates back to 19th-century C.E. Some of the main exhibits displayed in the Marrakech Museum are:

  • Berber jewellery
  • Carpets
  • Costumes
  • Jewish liturgical objects
  • Pottery from Fez
  • Weapons
  • exhibits of contemporary art
  • traditional art objects
  • Saddles

Ben Youssef Madrasa: 2 days Marrakech itinerary

Also known as Ibn Youssef Medersa or simply Bin Yusuf, it is the top place to see in Marrakech in 2 days. This Islamic madrasa located in the heart of Marrakesh in Morocco, served as the largest Islamic college in its good days! Christened after the Ben Youssef Mosque next door, it is a famous monument visited by tourists all day.

Built by Sa’di (or Saadian) Sultan Abdallah al-Ghalib, Ben Youssef Madrasa served asone of the largest theological colleges in all of North Africa! I was impressed to learn that it could accommodate as many as 800 students simultaneously.

You need to look at all the features of the madarsa carefully to be able to appreciate its small nuances. For example, do not miss the Mihrab of the prayer hall. One of the things you must notice here include an Arabic inscription in kufic script. The carved stucco designs, which also includes darj wa ktaf motifs is also a must-see feature of this medieval college.

An important historical building in Marrakesh, Ibn Youssef Medersa attracts thousands of tourists all day! Established in the 14th century C.E., some of the best things to see here include lush green gardens, ornate fountains and tile work. Being one of the most unusual places to see in Marrakech, do not miss it!

Moroccan hammam in Marrakech: 48 hours Marrakech itinerary

A trip to Marrakesh is incomplete without a visit to traditional Moroccan hammam. While the new age hammam have metamorphosed into spa like luxurious experience, the traditional hammam experience remains my favourite. Purists vouch for the pleasure of entering a hot steam room, followed by a trip to a warm room next for a quick bath and calling it a day after a rinse in the cold room. Sit back, relax and enjoy as the ‘masseur’ scrubs every inch of your body. Before you go, you must know that the section for men and women are segregated in traditional hammams.

Soul Window Facts

Did you know Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh is the only city in India where a hammam is still active? Who would have thought! Not many people know about this 18th century Hammam in Bhopal. This 300-year-old traditional hammam is situated in the lanes of Kamala Park area of Bhopal.

Enjoy Nightlife of Marrakesh

Listening to live jazz music at Le Bistro Arabe or enjoying the sunset views from a rooftop restaurant overlooking the city are some of the best things to do in Marrakech at night. You can also spend the nights exploring the vibrant souks of Marrakesh.

Vegan and vegetarian food in Marrakech

Local vegetarian and vegan food options in Marrakech are easy to find. Even as a vegetarian, it comforts me to say that it is easy to find local vegetarian and vegan food of Morocco in Jemaa el-Fnaa.

Some of the best vegan and vegetarian dishes to eat in Marrakesh under 2 days are Tajine, vegetarian Cous cous (a very traditional Moroccan dish), lentil salad, meat free harira, salads, pizza, pasta, quiche, bread rolls, sandwiches. Also do not miss the traditional Moroccan mint green tea! Want more ideas on where to eat in Marrakech? Try the unusual cauliflower hummus with pita bread or flatbread! Lentil, brinjal and fennel salad is also a must-try vegan dish of Marrakech.

There are many top-rated restaurants and cafes in Jemaa el-Fnaa and near Bahia or El Badi Palace where you can find great local vegan and vegetarian dishes with amazing Moroccon flavours.

Books on Marrakech

  • Hideous Kinky: In his novel Hideous Kinky, Esther Freud shares vivid and interesting details about Jemaa el-Fnaa market square! It will give you a fair idea of what this market place was like, back in the 1970s.
  • A Year in Marrakesh: You can also read interesting accounts of Jemaa el-Fnaa by a book by Peter Mayne in his book known as ‘A Year in Marrakesh’. This book paints a vivid picture of the market in the 1950s. Peter Mayne was a reputed British travel writer.

Places to see in Marrakech

What are the other places to visit in Marrakech? If you have only 2 days in Marrakech and some places in the above list of tourist attractions which I shared doesn’t interest you, then based on your choices and preferences you can also pick some of the places I am listing below.

  • Almoravid Koubba or Koubba Ba’adiyn
  • Anima Andre Heller Garden
  • Ateliers d’Ailleurs (for pottery, basketry and cooking)
  • Badi Palace
  • Bahia Palace
  • Ben Youssef Madrassa
  • Boucharouite Museum
  • Dar Batha (a museum in Fes)
  • Dar Si Said Museum (an arts & crafts museum of Marrakesh)
  • Djemaa El Fna: Visit after dark
  • El Badi Palace
  • Gueliz
  • Jardin Majorelle or Majorelle Gardens
  • Jemma el-Fnaa (Beware of pickpockets here)
  • Koutoubia Mosque
  • Le Jardin Secret – Medina
  • Maison de la Photographie
  • Marrakesh Museum: Admire the Interiors of Marrakesh Museum
  • Marrakesh Tanneries
  • Medersa Ben Youssef
  • Medina of Marrakesh
  • Mellah: The Jewish quarter of Marrakech
  • Menara Gardens
  • Musée de la Musique
  • Musée de Mouassine
  • Musée des Confluences
  • Musée Yves Saint Laurent
  • Palacio da Bahia
  • Riad Yima Tea Room or Andy Warhol of Marrakech
  • Saadian Tombs
  • Souk Place des Épices
  • Souk Semmarine
  • Souks of Medina
  • The Orientalist Museum of Marrakech

Easy Excursions from Marrakech

There are many exciting places to see near Marrakech where you can also go off the beaten track.

Below are some of the best places to see near Marrakech:

  • Aït Benhaddou
  • Casablanca
  • Chefchaouen
  • Day Trip to Atlas Mountains
  • Essaouira
  • Fes
  • Imlil
  • Merzouga
  • Ourika
  • Ouzoud
  • Sahara Desert Tour
  • Tangier
  • Tizi-n’Test Pass
  • Toubkal National Park
Sahara Desert Tour near Marrakech
Sahara Desert Tour near Marrakech. Pic by: Morocco Travelling

Marrakech Packaged tours: Marrakech 2-day itinerary

How to travel around Marrakech in 2 days? If it is your first time in Marrakech (and even if it is not), you must book a package from a local tour operator who can show you more in lesser time.

Booking a packaged tour with a local tour agency such as Morocco Travelling can save you lot of time. You can visit their website or email them at [email protected]. They run several hassle-free trips across Morocco. You can book a travel package with them for a memorable trip as they organize trips throughout Morocco. They also organize trips to the desert and all of Morocco. You can book any of their packages in Morocco and enjoy a dream holiday in Marrakech with your family, kids and friends.  

Are 2 days in Marrakech enough? What’s more? You can see a lot more places if you have more time at hand. Morocco Travelling also offers exciting packages to Sahara Desert. Their prices are also very reasonable. Marrakech in 2 days price depends on many factors.

You can also try some of the exclusive tours organised by this local tour agency Morocco Travelling. They can also help you discover the lesser-known places near Marrakech which are off the touristy trail. There are many such unexplored places which are located away from the crowds of tourists and locals.

Some of the popular Morocco wide tours run Morocco Travelling are as below:

  • 3 days from Fes to Marrakech
  • 3 days from Marrakech to Fes
  • 3 days from Marrakech to Merzouga
  • 5 days from Fes to Marrakech
  • 5 days from Tangier to Sahara
  • 6 days from Casablanca to Marrakech via desert
  • Chefchaouen full day trip
  • Desert Day Trip
  • Excursion to Ait Ben Haddou
  • Excursion to Essaouira
  • Excursion to Ourika
  • Excursion to Ouzoud
Chefchaouen Blue City of marrakech
Chefchaouen. The blue city of Marrakech. Pic by Morocco Travelling

Highlights Of Marrakech: What To Do In Two Days?

What can you do in Marrakech in 2 days? Things to do in Marrakech under 2 days are plenty. There are so many things to do in Marrakech for young adults. You won’t be disappointed either if you are looking for things to do in Marrakech with family! You can plan some of these indoor activities such as spa and hammam after dark so that you can spend the day doing sightseeing in Marrakech.

Some of the best things to do in Marrakech under 2 days are as below:

  • Visit a spa
  • Soak in a Hammam
  • Cooking Workshop
  • Do cycling in Palmeraie
  • Take hot air balloon ride over the Marrakesh countryside.

Is 2 days enough to see Marrakech?

  • Is Marrakech worth seeing?
  • Is 2 days enough for Marrakesh?
  • Are 2 days in Marrakech enough?
  • How many days in Marrakech is enough?
  • How many days do you need in Marrakech?
  • Can you do a long weekend in Marrakech?
  • How many days is ideal in Marrakech?

These are some frequently asked questions. I am answering it in this comprehensive blog on how to spend 48 hours in Marrakech? So, can you do Marrakech in a weekend? Yes. I have shared all the details in this exhaustive blog on how to spend 2 days in Marrakech.

While visiting all the places on interest in Marrakech in two days is easily doable, but you can pack in much more if you have some more time and money is not an issue! If you spend more days in Marrakech, you can also enjoy the pleasure of slow travel.

Where to stay in Marrakech?

Marrakesh has a nice selection of hotels, resorts and hostels near the main attractions of the city. You may also want to book some of the best riads in Marrakech.

What is the best month to visit Marrakech?

What is the best time to visit Marrakech? The months of March, April and May are the best season for a trip to Marrakech. This is when the temperatures are low. Marrakech anyways doesn’t see much of a rainfall throughout the year. So that also makes it a great destination to visit in other seasons as well. If you visit Marrakech for 2 days in autumn or spring, then you can enjoy cooler temperatures with abundant sunshine.

Conclusion: Are 2 days in Marrakech enough?

Are 2 days enough for Marrakesh? Yes, you can see the top tourist places in Marrakech under 2 days or 48 hours. You can either do it independently or book a packaged tour which is much more convenient. Marrakech in 2 days package is sold by many local tour operators of Morocco. I personally feel that a city as vibrant as Marrakesh deserves even more time so that you get to the skin of it. Having said that, if you use this comprehensive guide to 2 days Marrakech itinerary, then you will be able to see all the famous monuments and souks of Marrakesh within 2 days.

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