Marrakesh is one of Morocco's largest cities along with Casablanca and Fez and is considered the center of Morocco and the habitat of Islamic civilization. It is known by the name Red city due to its red-colored buildings and is also named City of Seven Men after a group of seven Sufi scholars who have contributed in spreading political and cultural awareness among citizens of Marrakesh. It contains a large number of mosques that is up to 123 mosques and overlooks a lot of natural landscapes including mountains, seas, and deserts. It was built by Sultan Yusuf Ebn Taschvin in the year 454 Hijri as an expression of love to his wife Zainab Nefazawy. The origin of the name remains controversial, but it is known that Marrakesh comes from the Berber words amur akush which means Land of God. The modern Berber name for Marrakesh is Mṛṛakc. Marrakesh has witnessed an increase in tourism since the highways from Marrakesh to Casablanca, Agadir and the local airport have improved, leading to attracting over two million tourists annually. It contains a variety of tourist destinations including historical and Islamic landmarks, gardens, mosques and famous markets, which reflect the heritage of Marrakech.
Marrakesh is located 580 kilometers southwest of Tangier, 327 kilometers southwest of Rabat, 239 kilometers southwest of Casablanca, and 246 kilometers northeast of Agadir. It lies near the foot of High Atlas Mountains, the highest mountain in North Africa, and the Ourika River valley is located about 30 kilometers south of Marrakesh. It is divided into two parts the old city of Marrakesh which is surrounded by walls, and the new city of Marrakesh which lies outside the walls. In general, during the year its climate is hot and dry with a little rain. During summer, the climate becomes very hot and dry especially in July the temperature reaches 28 C. During winter, the climate is usually moderate but in January it turns cold, and the rain usually falls in February.
Marrakesh is considered the center of culture and the city of art, crafts, theatres, and musical performances. It gathers a variety of races and is ranked fourth after Casablanca, Fez, and Tangier in terms of the population since it is inhabited by up to one million people and the third in terms of area. Since it contains a large number of palm trees, it is famous for date trading. Therefore, the French called it the Town of Palm Trees. Marrakesh is also famous in the medical field because of the Moroccan Hammamat which contains more than 150 medical Moroccan Hammam where you can have a traditional bathing experience.
The origins of Marrakesh traces back to the year 1070 A.D. in the era of Almoravid by the leader, Abu Bakr bin Omar. It is considered one of the cities that have been built by The Moroccan Barbarian Empires since it was inhabited by Barbarian farmers in the Neolithic era. In the 12th century, Almoravids built a number of madrasas (Koranic schools) and mosques which reflected the Andalusian influence, in addition to a group of buildings that were built using red sandstone from which the name Red City was derived. A number of events have weakened the Almohad Caliphate, and thus it has been divided into two parts; one in Morocco and the other in Andalusia. Then, Marrakesh has become under the control of Yahya bin Mohammed Al-Nasser whose death by the Spanish army of his uncle has led to the downfall of the Almohad Caliphate.
The civilization of Marrakesh is reflected in its tourist attractions like El Badi Palace which is famous for its unique decorations and carvings. The museum of Marrakesh is a famous museum that contains a group of possessions that includes modern art, ceramic crafts, textiles, Quranic inscriptions, and traditional pottery. There is also the Royal Palace which is not allowed to enter but is allowed to enjoy the beauty of its architectural art and history, and Tesquin House museum which displays the history of Marrakesh and Morocco and contains a lot of unique artifacts. Marrakesh also possesses some religious tourist attractions like Koutoubia Mosque, the largest mosque in Marrakesh, which has a minaret tower that is about 70 meters high. The Mosque is famous for its ancient architectural art, and its area is about 5000 meters. You will also find Saadian Tombs, one of the famous landmarks in Marrakesh, with a history that traces back to the time of the Saadian dynasty sultan Ahmad al-Mansur.
In Marrakesh, the popular destination for tourists is Jemaa el-Fnaa which is the main square and market place, where you can enjoy the performance of storytellers and musicians and do shopping. You will also find Bab Ghmat which consists of two big historical bows, is located in Sidi Youssef Ben Ali district which contains a large tomb and lies near Souk Rbiaa. Wall Marrakesh Doukkala is also a famous tourist attraction in Marrakesh which was built in the year 1126 A.D to protect the city from enemies. If you like enjoying nature, you need to visit Jardin Majorelle. It is a well-designed garden that reflects the beauty of the green nature and contains a number of unique plants which have been collected from different continents such as Cactus, palm and ferns. It has been named after the French artist Jacques Majorelle. You will also find Menara gardens which lie outside the walls of the city and is considered an escape for citizens from stress. It was built by Almohad Caliphate ruler at the end of the 12th century.
Marrakesh is a city with a great history for embracing a large number of historical and touristic landmarks. It has established its place in the international list of UNESCO for heritage and monuments in the year 1985. It is considered one of the preferable tourist destinations in Morocco and the main source of popularity in tourism since it merges between ancient and modern civilizations.