"The Souks - 'Layout'" Top 5 Page for this destination Souks Tip by suvanki

Souks, Marrakesh: 54 reviews and 125 photos

  One of the Souk gateways
by suvanki

Some would recommend a guide for your 1st visit into the souks- personally I didn't bother, I prefer to just wander . However, if you're short of time, or looking to buy something special it might be an advantage.
( I did hire a guide later for half a day, to visit some sights, and we did venture into the Souks).

Souks amazingly do have a pattern to them!

Traditionally, the Mosque was at the centre of the souk. Nearby, stalls were set up to sell candles and incense etc to the worshippers.

Booksellers and scribes then set up their businesses, again having strong connections with the mosque.

Next, craftsmen producing leather goods, such as bags, and slippers established their pitches, initially to sell goods that were essential to the citizens, later expanding into fashion goods, and now with the tourist trade keeping the tradition alive.

Drapers and tailors provided the next 'layer' of tradespeople, as textiles such as cotton and silks, were sold or made into clothing. You can still find tailors in this souk, along with clothing of various designs and quality.

Those trading in precious stones, metals, textiles and furs etc found themselves in a 'safe building' which could be secured. - a quissaria- (covered market).

On the edge of the souk, traders rather than craftsmen were situated- these sold everyday items to the locals.

Visiting tradesmen and travellers, arriving at the city by horse or camel, may require the services of a blacksmith, later they were joined by ironmongers, mechanics etc as motorised transport arrived.

Banished beyond the city walls were the smelly trades!! - the tanners (the solutions used in the tanning process) and the potters (smoke from the kilns)

This pattern remains much the same today, in the souks of Morocco.

Address: The Souk, Marrakesh.
Directions: From Djemma el Fnaa, head up one of the alleyways towards the north end.

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Mar 22, 2009
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