El Fenn

Derb Moullay Abdullah Ben Hussain,
Bab El Ksour,

+212 524 44 1220
[email protected]

A Walk in The Marrakech Medina

No-one ever forgets their first visit to Marrakech medina. The old walled town (which is also home to the souk) is a maze-like network of tiny, twisting streets – packed with market stalls, scooters and people – so the location of where you stay is key. 


Get it wrong and you could be in for long walks into the centre of the medina. It’s also important to remember that the souk gets quiet at night once the market stalls close so you might have to walk some pretty deserted streets if you’re out late.



Get it right however and all that the medina has to offer – from sightseeing to shopping and eating – is easily walkable. Here at El Fenn, we’re just five minutes from the Koutoubia mosque and Djemaa el Fna so everything is on our doorstep. And it means that you can easily pop in and out of the hotel throughout the day: take a wander through the souk in the morning, come back for some lunch and pool time, before heading off again to sightsee in the afternoon. 


Here are two of the places we love to visit on foot – both less than a ten-minute walk from El Fenn.




Dar El Bacha is the former residence of Thami El Glaoui, the last pasha – or governor – of Marrakech. Built in 1910, El Glaoui hosted everyone from Josephine Baker to Colette and Charlie Chaplin at his stunning home.


But after World War Two, the palace was shut down and the building fell silent for the next 60 years. Then, after a two-year restoration, it was beautifully brought back to life and reopened in 2017 as the home of the Museum of Cultural Confluences.


The museum collection explores Morocco’s fascinating cultural heritage spanning everything from Amazigh to Arab culture, Islam, Judaism and Christianity. The building itself is an exquisite example of traditional architecture featuring patios, fountains and beautiful zellige.



It’s also home to Bacha Coffee, where a backdrop of palms and monochrome checkered floors make this sumptuously designed cafe more than just a pitstop. It’s a destination in itself. Dozens of varieties of 100% Arabica coffee are served alongside other drinks and light meals.


Once you’ve visited the museum, you’re also on one of the medina’s prime shopping streets packed with art, homeware and fashion.


:: Museum of Confluences, Dar El Bacha, Rte Sidi Abdelaziz. Open 10am-6pm daily (except Mondays).   




If you ever needed proof that every simple wooden door in the medina might hide a stunning surprise then look no further than the Secret Garden. 


In the midst of the medina’s jostling streets and buildings, the doors to this property open to reveal a huge oasis of green. 


There’s been a palace on the site since the seventeenth century but the original building was destroyed before being rebuilt two hundred years later. It was then passed through the hands of several noblemen before falling into disrepair. 



Today the beautiful garden has been restored and is laid out in four parts adhering to classical Islamic design. You can also learn the fascinating story of how water was channeled from the Atlas Mountains into Marrakech hundreds of years ago. 


It’s also on the doorstep of the souk to head off to see the leather, metal and wood artisans once you’ve seen the garden.


:: Le Jardin Secret, Rue Mouassine 121. Open 9.30am to 6-7.30pm depending on the season.


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