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This Year, Do Your Christmas Shopping Virtually at Marrakech's Medina

by Eben Diskin Dec 3, 2020

Small shop owners and artisans in cities that rely heavily on tourism are suffering greatly from the current travel restrictions. So, this year, replace your Amazon holiday shopping with one that benefits the people of Morocco.

A new partnership between group travel operator Intrepid Travel and live video shopping startup Local Purse is aiming to bring souvenir shopping right into your home. They have organized two online shopping experiences in Marrakech’s medina so you can purchase unique holiday gifts for your loved ones and do good, all in one.

The one-hour Marrakech Spice and Wellness Experience on December 8 will feature Marrakech native Abdeljalil Raqas as your virtual tour guide through the medina to the Koutoubia Herbal, his own shop, while explaining the benefits of Moroccan food and wellness specialties. Guests will be able to purchase a variety of products, including fragrances, spices, herbs, and spa products.

The second one-hour event on December 9, called the Traditionally Moroccan Berber Rug Experience, will be led by Aziz Mejbar. It begins in Marrakech’s UNESCO World Heritage square of Jemaa El Fna, and takes you through the medina’s alleys to his handmade rug shop, Dar Mjber.

Each tour, which begins at 7:00 AM ET, costs $12, with proceeds going to the NGOs, artists, and local guides who run the program.

Zina Bencheikh, Intrepid’s managing director for Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, told Skift, “It could be a great thing to do long-term in addition to operating trips as the pandemic eases. By the end of the first quarter, we should have everything ready to launch and start scaling globally.”

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