Let's face it: although Marrakech is a dreamy city, full of exotic glamour and cinematic mystique, it's far from the safest place in the world. Though it's not as dangerous as stereotypes might have you believe, you're still better off being more careful here. The truth of the matter is, the way of life here is probably way different from those in the rest of the world. You have to take the initiative in protecting yourself from harm. But how do you do it? Here are a few tips you might want to follow in order to stay safe in Marrakech!
Learn The Languages Here
One thing that can get anyone into trouble is miscommunication. It can be as simple as believing the opposite of what was said or plainly not understanding what the other person told you. And best believe that in Marrakech, a lot of tourists and expats can easily go astray since they can't speak either Arabic, French, or Spanish. So in order to avoid this, learn the languages in Morocco. There are a few schools
you can enroll in to learn any or all of them. And it won't cost a lot nor take up too much of your time!
Remember that Morocco is an Islamic country. They take their religion and traditions seriously here. And if you go against their social customs
, prepare for the worst. For all you foreign tourists or residents in Marrakech, one thing you can do to outwardly show respect is to cover up. Women, for instance, should cover their shoulders and legs. While men have to cover their torsos. It's understandable to want to dress light and show some skin since Morocco is a hot country, but when it comes to attire, the more covered up you are, the safer you'll be!
Since Marrakech is a popular tourist destination, scams are everywhere here. Always stay vigilant from them. You never really know how you'll end up if you fall victim to one. The best-case scenario is that you're just cheated off of your money. But the worst-case possible is that you might endanger your own life in the process. So when you're exploring a marketplace, for instance, try to avoid vendors who are overzealous in getting you to buy their products. And while you're on public transport
, make sure that every taxi you get has a meter that starts the moment you board.
Stay Away from Empty Alleys
As beautiful as Marrakech is as a city, there are still some places you're better off avoiding. Empty alleyways are the best examples. You might get drawn in by the mystique and by your curiosity, but if you value your life, you'll be safer staying in crowded areas. Unless, of course, you have locals accompanying you. If they know the city by heart, you can probably and you trust them, then, by all means, explore the city's every nook and cranny. Otherwise, don't go to places that don't have as many people around.
Don't Walk Alone At Night
One aggravating thing about Marrakech is that there are some places that, while safe during the day, become rather sketchy at night. Granted all the districts of the city
are different from one another, there are still a few areas you'd do best in avoiding. And the worst part is some of them are quite famous for tourists. The Guelize and Hivernage, for instance, are places with commercial areas, shopping centers, and the like. But come nightfall, some rather skeevy characters congregate here, ranging from sex workers to drug dealers and the like.
Know The Emergency Hotline
The current general crime rate of Marrakech
is 43.47%, considered just moderately high. Although it can be better, this still means that the city's police force are still doing their job in keeping the place safe and as crime-free as possible. So because of this, you might want to save some emergency hotlines in your phone while you're here (that is, of course, if you joined a local mobile network!). For the police, it's 150190. For the tourist police, it's 150 0524384601. And for an ambulance, it's simply 150. Don't forget these numbers! They may save your life one day!
As mysterious, dreamy, and exotic a city Marakkech may be, it's not exactly the safest place in the world. You still have to work hard in order to stay safe and secure in this city. But don't worry! As long as you follow these tips, you'll be fine!