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Nightlife in Marrakech is polarized. In the medieval medina it is almost impossible to get an alcoholic drink (outside of a hotel) because it is illegal to drink in sight of a mosque. In the New City and beyond European clubs are hotbeds of drinking and dancing that would put many international cities to shame. One of the biggest attractions in Marrakech is the Night Market in Jemaa El Fna, a huge, open-air restaurant, with stalls selling delicious Moroccan-style fast food. A meal here is a must on any trip, not least for the entertainment. At dusk storytellers and snake charmers fill the square, joined by boy boxers, traditional musicians and transvestite dancers. Both the Koutoubia Mosque and the city walls around the medina are dramatically lit at night. Walk through the Koutoubia Gardens after dark to see the spiritual centre of Marrakech under the spotlight. Dusk is a good time to take a caleche (horse-drawn carriage) ride, when the traffic has died down and the city walls are lit up.
Read more on this destination in The AA Citypack Guide to Marrakech.
Recommended evening entertainment in Marrakech
Nightclub: Pacha - Well-known Ibiza nightclub, Pacha, has been brought to Morocco, and it's creators boast it is the biggest club in Africa. Revellers come dressed to impress, chilling out in the lounge and by the pool (only open in fine weather), or to eat in one of the restaurants. Mostly though as with all Pacha clubs, they come to dance to the sounds of internationally famed DJs. Avenue Mohammed VI.
Activity: Dunes and Desert Exploration - Thrilling half-day go-karting and quad biking trips and camel rides through a landscape of dried out rivers, palm trees and Berber villages - though not strictly desert. Hotel Club Palmariva, Km 6, Route de Fes.
Cookery Courses: Riad Enija - One-day cookery courses tailored to individual needs - whether you want to know how to make your couscous fluffy, or the best way to choose spices. After a visit to the local spice market enjoy a private cooking lesson in the riad kitchen. The Riad Enija cookbook is a beautifully photographed delight, with inspiring menus to try at home. Riad Enija, Place Rabba Kedim, 9 Derb Mesfioui.
Casino: Grand Casino La Mamounia - Plenty of celebrities have rolled the dice at the large and grand casino attached to the famous hotel. Roulette, black jack and gaming machines are some of the options for gamblers. No jeans, trainers or cameras. Passports required for pay-outs. Admittance to over 16s but gambling for over 18s only. 292 Avenue Bad Jedid.
Bar: Kosybar - A funky spot that is worth a visit any time of day, whether you drink tea from the breezy rooftop terrace, sink into deep sofas on the middle floor, or listen to evening jazz in the ground-floor piano bar. This is the only real bar in this part of town and many people's favourite watering hole in the medina. It's a relaxing, even romantic spot to indulge in fine wines (some of the best in the country) and excellent, reasonably priced cocktails. 47 Place des Ferblantiers.
Spa: Les Bains De Marrakech - Squeezed into the Kasbah quarter, this riad spa is fit for a king. If you choose gommage (scrubbing), almost every crevice will be given attention, if the pressure is too much, just say: 'doucement' (softly). Follow it with a sublime massage before chilling out in the courtyard. Bookings and payment should be made several weeks in advance. 2 Derb Sedra, Bab Agnaou, Kasbah.
Royal Golf Course - built in 1923, the oldest course in Morocco and superior to the other two 18-hole courses (at the time of writing, several more championship courses were being built). Well maintained, if rather uniform, course where royalty and Churchill have putted. BP 634 Ancienne Route de Quarzazate
Piano Bar: Quarzazi - The snug little corner of this luxury hotel nightly serves very decent cocktails to the tinkling from the resident pianist, creating a not particularly Moroccan - but very pleasant - atmosphere. The service is slick, the drinks strong (although not cheap) and you could easily find yourself whiling away a few hours here either before or after dinner. 26 Rue El Koutoubia.
Nightclub: Theatro - The opulent interior of this former theatre is now a nightclub. Ladies', Ministry of Sound and theme nights. Performers fill the large, galleried space and their attempts to make this an experience do work; one of the most enjoyable clubs in Marrakech. Hotel Es Saadi, Avenue El Qadissia.
Moulay Abdeslam Cyber Park - Most of Marrakechis and visitors come here to escape the traffic-clogged streets of the 21st century city and to relax by one of the fountains or in the shade of an orange tree. This royal park filled with ancient palm trees has been transformed into a 'cyber park', sponsored by high-tech companies such as Philips and Microsoft. It is an 8ha (20-acre) Wi-Fi zone (although few laptops can be seen) dotted with rather ugly, and not always functioning, internet terminals. Avenue Mohammed V, (entrance opposite Ensemble Artisanal).