MoroccoWeekend trips

Morocco itinerary for 4 days: from Rabat to Marrakech

posted by Liza 11th February 2016 1 Comment
From Rabat to Marrakech by train: Morocco in 3 days

Last updated on February 5th, 2019

Morocco is amazing and deserves more than 4 days, of course. But we all are busy people and often, there are just not enough vacation days to stay in every country for longer. In this post, I will share with you our itinerary for Morocco in 4 days (basically a very long weekend in Morocco), where we managed to travel from Rabat to Marrakech and see two Moroccan cities in one short trip. We visited Morocco on a budget, so you won’t find any expensive things to do in Morocco.

Flying to Morocco: cheap flights to Morocco

If you’re flying to Morocco only for 3 or 4 days, you probably want to buy an affordable ticket. The cheapest airline to fly to Morocco is Ryanair and there are plenty of flights to Morocco from all around Europe. Check the availability and the prices of the flights to Morocco now.

We bought super cheap tickets to Rabat from London Stansted and the return ticket was actually cheaper from Marrakech. That’s it, our itinerary was basically decided by the ticket prices. The train to Marrakech was also super affordable, so our itinerary was settled.

We bought our tickets in April and were flying in May. Morocco in May is amazing, but I will tell you about it in the next paragraph.

We always do budget-friendly weekend breaks and getaways! Read this post about this weekend road trip in France or this weekend in Stockholm on a budget.

Morocco itinerary for 4 days: from Rabat to Marrakech

Morocco in May: weather & what to pack

Morocco is good to visiting pretty much anytime during the year. However, Morocco in May is especially amazing, sunny and warm and not yet too hot like in the summer months. We visited Morocco in the beginning of May and every single day it was sunny, warm (around 28C) and also warm at night (we didn’t need our jackets that we thoughtfully brought for our long weekend vacation in Morocco).

As you see, the weather in Morocco in May is usually very good and stable, so it’s a perfect month to visit the country. Now, what to pack for Morocco in spring.

What to wear in Morocco in spring (May)

If you’re a male traveller, you’ll be fine wearing pretty much anything. However, don’t forget some long pants (jeans or linen trousers) in case you want to visit a mosque or a very nice restaurant for dinner.

If you’re a female traveller, I’d suggest you to cover your shoulders if you don’t want to attract too much attention. The best outfit would be a maxi dress or a knee-long light dress with short or 3/4 sleeves. You can honestly wear whatever you want, however, you will get a lot of stares and attention if your skirt is too short. I would not recommend wearing shorts outside a resort in Morocco, especially in Medina (Old town) of Marrakech.

What to wear in Morocco in May

The itinerary for 4 days in Morocco on a budget:

Days 1 & 2 in Morocco: Rabat

As I mentioned before, the only reason, why we decided to visit Rabat, was because of the really cheap flights to the city (4x cheaper than to Marrakech).

However, we ended up liking Rabat a lot. 

Getting lost in Rabat

We stayed in a Riad Marhaba in the middle of Medina, and it was almost impossible to find it. The riad was actually amazing and we loved it, but it was hard to find it. We didn’t have internet and roaming at all and at the airport, there was no wifi to check the directions. We just took a bus to the Medina of Rabat. Luckily, Pepe speaks French, so we asked the locals in the middle of the market in the city centre of Rabat. Tourists are not so common in Rabat, so the locals are very friendly. After nearly the whole market gathered around us, we finally found a person, who knew where our hotel was and how to find it. And he guided us there for free. We offered him some money, but he didn’t accept it and he said that he just wanted to help us.

Morocco 4 day itinerary

Rabat is a friendly city

No one in Rabat tried to scam us or give us a higher price. We haven’t seen a single person begging on the streets either. Maybe that’s why I liked Rabat so much. From the aesthetical point of view, there is really not much to see in Rabat but the atmosphere in the city is great. It’s quite modern, even the Medina is a bit different from Marrakech. Rabat is also much cheaper compared to Marrakech.

What to wear in Morocco in May

Street food in Morocco / Food in Rabat

I liked the food in Rabat a lot. It was so tasty and so cheap! Overall, street food in Morocco was great, even though we’ve read in all the guides that it’s not recommended to eat street food in Morocco. We tried a lot of street food and were completely fine.

For £1 on the streets of Rabat, you can have a huge pita bread filled with freshly charcoaled lamb! And for one more pound – a fresh smoothie made of Mango, Orange, Kiwi and Papaya. Also, for 1 pound you can have a handful of boiled snails. We tried them, but…they weren’t our cup of tea.

When we woke up in the morning, we had an amazing breakfast on the top floor of the building. Our hotel had an open terrace. It was so calm there (we were alone) and still a bit chilly. Breakfasts in Morocco are fabulous. A typical breakfast consists of at least 3 types of bread, different sorts of jam and also olives.

Street food in Morocco

Is Rabat worth visiting?

In the end, as I already said, I ended up liking Rabat a lot: visiting Rabat allowed us to see how people normally live in Morocco and how friendly Moroccans really are. That’s something you can’t find in Marrakech. I was happy that we included Rabat in our short itinerary for 4 days in Morocco. I’m not sure I would return, as there are not many things you can do in Rabat, Morocco, but if I would, it would be for the local street food.

Getting to Marrakech: train from Rabat to Marrakech

In the first half of the day in Rabat, we walked around the Medina in the daylight. It was really busy with many people buying groceries, household goods and other things they need. There were so many amazing fruit stalls that we wanted to buy everything! However, we also wanted to see Marrakech, that’s why we headed back to the hotel to pick up our luggage and headed to the Railway station of Rabat.

The tickets for the train from Rabat to Marrakech were quite cheap, less than £10. You can’t buy tickets online, so you have to come to the station. The train ride was slightly more than 4 hours but as long as you are sitting – it’s okay. We were lucky to find 2 spare seats, and everyone who entered 1 stop after us, wasn’t able to find a seat already.

Train from Rabat to Marrakech

Days 2-4 in Morocco: Marrakech on a budget

Once we arrived in Marrakesh, we took a taxi. Taxi drivers usually refuse to bring you inside the Medina and leave you at the entrance of it. We, nonetheless, agreed with one driver, that somebody will pick us up at the entrance of Medina and bring us to the hotel.  Even though we were on a budget, we were able to afford a taxi, as the prices for taxis in Marrakech aren’t high, especially if you like bargaining.

Our riad in Marrakech

In Marrakesh, we lived in Riad Tamarrakecht. Again, the hotel surprised us with amazing interiors and delicious breakfasts on top of the building. Riad Tamarrakecht is very well located: in the middle of the medina, 15 minutes away from Jemaa el-Fnaa square, the main landmark of Marrakesh. We stayed in this hotel for 2 nights.

Our riad in Marrakech

Food in Marrakech: eating at the Jemaa el-Fnaa square. Scams in Marrakech

This square is a must for every traveler, however, during the day, there is not much to see. All the activity appears during the evening hours. The main place to visit on the Jemaa el-Fraa square is the food market: in various food booths, you can try all the possible traditional dishes of Morocco. This market is also considered to be the street food of Morocco.

It makes sense to go to the most crowded booths as lots of people are sort of a guaranty of the quality of the food in the booth. However, keep your eyes open for various scams of Marrakech. The staff of one of the food stalls tried to charge us 40 dirhams extra for our meal. We asked for the bill and pointed at the dishes we actually didn’t have.

Another unpleasant moment or a scam in Marrakech (depending on the way how do you see it) is that while you’re eating at the main square, many beggars approach you and ask for money or ask to buy something from them (e.g. tissues).

How to avoid this particular scam in Morocco: bring a pack of tissues with you and put it on the table, and then, each time you are asked to buy something, the point at the pack of tissues at the table. This little trick works well.

Scams in Morocco

Other things to do in Marrakech (+henna tattoo scam)

Next day we went to the main souk (souk means market) of Marrakesh. This place is so huge! Seems like half of the old city is the market. Don’t hesitate to bargain, otherwise, you will end up paying up to 3 times more.

Also, we visited the Bahia palace of Marrakesh. I cannot say that it’s very impressive but if you have a bit of free time, why not see it? The gardens around it are actually very beautiful and it’s a good price to hide from the Moroccan sun (especially during the hotter months).

Things to do in Marrakech

Another common scam in Morocco is the henna tattoo scam. Beware of Henna tattoo masters! The prices they offer is a total rip off, moreover, it’s extremely different to bargain with them. Starting from 200 pounds for a tattoo, I decreased the price to 30 pounds. It looked great but anyways, it was more expensive than doing a tattoo like this in London.

Scams in Marrakech

The evening we spent again on the main square as it’s the best [and only] activity you can do in the evenings in Marrakech being on a budget. An alternative would be a nice restaurant but we pretty much exhausted our resources, so it wasn’t an option anymore. Even in Morocco, restaurants aren’t very affordable.

The way back to the airport was much better than the way from the railway station: our driver somehow managed to squeeze into the streets of the medina and picked us up just some 150 metres away from our riad.

Main square of Morocco

Summary of 4 days in Morocco in May and on a budget

Overall, we really enjoyed our trip to Morocco and as I said before, 4 days are not enough to discover Morocco. However, 4 or even 3 days in Morocco (especially if you fly to Marrakech directly) are enough to get the overall impression from the country and decide, whether you’d like to return to Morocco one day.

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1 Comment

10 ideas for Valentines Day weekend getaway in Europe & Africa 8th January 2018 at 11:51 pm

[…] FROM MARRAKECH TO RABAT OR VICE VERSA : MOROCCO IN 3 DAYS […]

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