Marrakech Museum Walking Tour (Self Guided), Marrakech

The museums of Marrakech amaze with most surprising revelations of local traditions, history, and culture. But it is not only the collections exhibited there that make this tour a unique experience. It is also the architecture of the buildings and the fascinating atmosphere of past times. And even though Marrakech is not exactly the city of the museums, it is definitely worth a visit to the existing ones by taking the Marrakech Museum Walking Tour.
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Marrakech Museum Walking Tour Map

Guide Name: Marrakech Museum Walking Tour
Guide Location: Morocco » Marrakech (See other walking tours in Marrakech)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 6
Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.3 Km or 3.3 Miles
Author: ann
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Musée Dar Si Saïd (National Museum of Weaving and Carpets)
  • Musée Tiskiwin
  • Ministero del Gusto
  • Musée de Marrakech
  • La Qoubba Galerie d'Art
  • Majorelle Museum
Musée Dar Si Saïd (National Museum of Weaving and Carpets)

1) Musée Dar Si Saïd (National Museum of Weaving and Carpets) (must see)

A calm and interesting place to spend a few hours is at the Museum of Moroccan Art (Dar Si Saïd), one of Marrakech’s most beautiful houses.

Dar means house, and this one was built for Si Saïd ibn Moussa, the Minister of War, whose brother was the Vizier Bou Ahmed. More than a simple townhouse, this magnificent building was put up in the mid 19th century and surrounds a superb courtyard full of flowers and cypress trees with a gazebo and a fountain.

The exhibition rooms around the courtyard have carved doors, extraordinary stuccowork and mosaics. You can visit the domed reception room and the harem quarters.

The prize of the collection is a 10th-century Spanish marble basin, brought to the city by the Sultan Ali ben Youssef in 1120. He put it in the mosque, even though it has eagle and griffons carved on it and Islamic law states that no decorations should represent living creatures. The basin was removed to the Ben Youssef Madrasa during the Saadian Dynasty and was donated to the museum when the college was restored.

Why You Should Visit:
This palace was always worth visiting for its wonderful interior, which has thankfully now been renovated.
The main public areas are now filled with antique carpets showcasing the different styles found across Morocco.
If you have no previous knowledge of Moroccan carpets, this wonderful exhibition will give you some valuable insight into the remarkable variety of styles & colors available here.

Opening Hours:
Wed-Mon: 10am-6pm; closed on Tuesdays
Musée Tiskiwin

2) Musée Tiskiwin (must see)

Marrakech has some excellent museums and one of the best is Musée Tiskiwin which stands on Rue de la Bahia. There is only a small sign indicating the entrance, so keep an eye out for it, as it would be a shame to miss this fascinating collection.

The house is a very beautiful example of Spanish/Moroccan architecture, built in the late 19th century. Dutch anthropologist and art historian Bert-Flint began his superb collection in 1946 and the museum opened its doors in 1996.

You will find the finest examples of Moroccan arts, carpets, musical instruments, sculpture, jewelry, ceramics, basketwork, textiles and furniture not only from the area but also from villages and settlements along the legendary “gold road”. There are rooms dedicated to art from Mali and Mauritania.

Mr. Flint wasn’t just happy spreading out his collection and sticking a name and date on it. Being an anthropologist and a historian, he has studied not only the details but the ethnology of each piece. When you arrive at the museum, you will be given a very good booklet that will clearly guide you through the origin and the history of every item, which makes the visit all the more interesting.

Why You Should Visit:
Eclectic and eccentric – it would never win any museum design award but very interesting content.
The setting is small and intimate and doesn't seem to attract large tour groups.
There is a lovely courtyard that you find as you finish viewing the collection.

Make sure you pick up one of the photo-copied guides at reception as these help explain what you are looking at.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 9:30am-12:30pm & 2:30-6:00pm
Ministero del Gusto

3) Ministero del Gusto

Located in the heart of the Medina, Ministero del Gusto is a small art space owned by visual artists. The gallery was established in 1998. It displays avant-garde works of artistic geniuses from all over the world. The prominent feature of the works exhibited here is the modern African touch.
Musée de Marrakech

4) Musée de Marrakech (must see)

The Marrakech Museum is housed in the 19th century Dar Menebhi Palace which was restored in 1997 by the Omar Benjelloun Foundation. It is one of the best examples of Spanish/Arab architecture and made up of rooms around a central courtyard with three fountains, seating areas and detailed tile work.

This courtyard, which is now the atrium of the museum was once open to the sky but now has been covered with glass and textiles to create the impression of being inside a tent. The centerpiece of the atrium is undoubtedly the magnificent chandelier made of metal shards, each one delicately decorated with inscriptions and geometric symbols.

The side rooms around the courtyard have lovely painted wooden ceilings and they house the exhibits, featuring historical books and manuscripts, clothes, coins, carpets and pottery from Arab, Berber and Jewish civilizations. You will see several jewel-encrusted daggers and swords and many beautifully decorated examples of the Koran.

The museum also holds temporary exhibitions on modern Moroccan art, but sadly, the explanations of each item, along with those in the permanent exhibition are all in Arabic/French.

There is a café that serves mint tea, very strong black coffee and small snacks. Artwork and souvenirs are on sale in the museum shop.

Why You Should Visit:
As long as you don't go inside expecting a historical museum experience, you will enjoy a stop here.
It's a beautiful building and a very good place to check the modern art of Marrakech.
The interior courtyard is stunning with beautiful tiled floors, elegant arches and wonderful decoration.
Another attraction is the huge wooden chandelier that looks like a UFO (and actually, it does).

Opening Hours:
Daily: 9am-6:30pm
La Qoubba Galerie d'Art

5) La Qoubba Galerie d'Art

Whether you are an art lover or just looking forward to discovering Moroccan art, La Qoubba Galerie d'Art is the right place for you to visit. Here you will find paintings from all over the country, all reflecting modern and postmodern styles. The gallery is located not far from the Marrakech Museum.
Opening Hours: Mon-Sun: 9am-1pm, 2:30-6:30pm
Majorelle Museum

6) Majorelle Museum (must see)

If you want to visit the Museum of Islamic Art, you will find it in the lovely Majorelle Museum, which is one of the most visited places in Marrakech, especially for its gardens.

Jacques Majorelle was a French artist, born in Nancy in 1886. He later attended the Nancy School of Art before moving to Paris. Although the Art Nouveau movement had more or less passed, he continued with the style, which he learned at school in Nancy.

In 1910 he paid his first visit to Africa and fell in love the country. He moved to Marrakech in 1917 and started painting his wonderful canvases full of color depicting the African way of life. In 1930 he was one of the first artists to use Africans as nude models. He painted his house in bleu Majorelle, a rich deep cobalt, and edged the windows and roof in yellow.

His house was bought after his death by Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé and they installed their personal collections of Maghreb, Oriental, African and Asian carpets, ceramics, pottery, textiles, weapons and woodwork, creating the museum.

There is a stunning collection of Berber and Tuareg jewelry and wedding costumes and some rooms are dedicated to Jacques Majorelle’s fine works.

Why You Should Visit:
Interesting and informative representation of the indigenous culture of Morocco!

Rather high price for Morocco, so book for a cheaper full three-visits ticket (Majorelle Garden plus 2 museums – Berbère & YSL). This way, you won't have to suffer the long line to get into the Garden.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 8am-5:30pm

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