The Moroccan souk, or marketplace, is heaven for the shopaholic. Marrakech, Fez, Tangier, and every other major Moroccan city have extensive markets, usually packed within the walls of a medina, or old city, where cars are banned and foot traffic is dense. Sellers cram themselves into countless alcoves along snaking walkways. Colorful goods hang overhead, burst from every corner, overwhelm the eye. Merchants clamor for attention from passersby, especially anyone who looks foreign with money to spend.
They offer attractive prices, the sellers tell you, the lowest in the medina. In reality, though, these prices are absurdly high. But price-gouging merchants offer something else: the chance to engage in the quintessential Moroccan shopping tradition of haggling.
The only way to arrive at a fair price is to haggle your way down. Don’t look at this as discrimination against tourists. Embrace it not only as a challenge but also as part of the fun. In case the fast-talking sellers of the souk intimidate you, here are a few protips to help you get started.