Deciding what to buy in Morocco can sometimes be overwhelming. The thing is, there are so many things you can shop and bring back home. And if you are on a budget or have a limited luggage weight, it can be a little bit difficult to narrow your options with all the beautiful Moroccan products you can find. If you have ever been in a Moroccan souk, you know what I mean. The question: what to buy in Morocco quickly becomes what not to buy in Morocco, as you are surrounded by Moroccan shops full of treasures asking to be explored.
Personally, I often exceed my budget but I never regret it. All the products I buy are really useful and, once back home, they remind me of Morocco for months and even years. Besides, Moroccan gifts & souvenirs are anything but boring, they make very thoughtful presents, and they are quite affordable.
Before we get started, make sure you pack a cheap luggage scale with you. If you are already in Morocco, you can find luggage scales in most Moroccan supermarkets for a similar price. The temptations are strong in the Medina, and you will probably buy different items and souvenirs. Without gradually checking on a scale, you can easily end up exceeding your weight limit.
If you are curious about Moroccan products, here is an overview of the best things you can find in Morocco. You might ask why all the hype? Well, the best about shopping in Morocco is that you can find beautiful traditional handcrafts. Most Moroccan craftsmen are passionate about their crafts and some families run their workshops for generations. The materials used are often of high quality, including leather, silk, silver, and copper making each item unique and valuable.
Shopping in Morocco: The Moroccan Market & the Souks
Moroccan Markets are of two major kinds. The Souks for buying food-related products, and the Medina, for buying lifestyle products like clothing, home decor & jewelry. This being said, It is not unusual to find some food products in the Medina, like spices & herbs. Which makes the Medina the heartbeat of most Moroccan cities.
If you are planning on shopping in the Moroccan Markets, the Medina will probably be your best shot, as it encompasses most of the things you might be interested in. The most important thing is to understand the hidden rules of Moroccan markets, so you shop smartly and avoid scams. Before I share with you a list of the items to buy in Morocco, let’s see first some of the most important aspects to keep in mind while shopping in the Moroccan Markets!
Counterfeiting in Morocco
The first thing to remember before shopping in Morocco is that there are A LOT of counterfeit products. I mean, it’s not unusual to have middle-class Moroccan women wearing Louis Vuitton handbags, Gucci belts, Versace scarves, and Chanel Sunglasses, all at the same time. It even gets crazier with Louis Vuitton Djellabas and Louis Vuitton traditional Moroccan slippers (aka the babouches).
But most importantly, counterfeiting in Morocco also targets handcrafted Moroccan products, which saddens me at a high level. In fact, Moroccan markets, like most markets, are open to Chinese and Indian imported products. Which means that NOT all the products you will find in the souks would be locally made. I recently went to Marrakech Medina and was surprised by how tourists could easily mistake Indian and Chinese imported products for Moroccan products.
The Bargaining Game
Another thing to remember is that it is often possible to negotiate the prices with vendors. Bargaining is a common game in Morocco and most of the time, vendors will give a slightly higher price knowing that the consumer will likely ask for a reduction. It can sometimes get tricky especially when you don’t know the average price tag for a product. So for general price references, my Morocco detailed shopping guidewill do the trick and give you the normal price ranges for many Moroccan items.
What to Buy in Morocco | The Best Items, Moroccan Gifts & Souvenirs
Spices and dry herbs
Moroccan cuisine is full of spices and herbs, which gives it delicious flavors that stick in the mind. If like me, you buy your spices from your local supermarket, believe me, buying some of your herbs and spices from Morocco is a really great deal. Not only the prices are SO much cheaper, but the products are of a much higher quality.
Unfortunately, you can’t bring home every piece of food you tried in Morocco (if only that was possible right?). The good news is, there are some Moroccan food products that keep well for days and even weeks. Some traditional pastries, like Gazelle corns, Fekkas and Chebakkia, are extremely delicious and can conserve for 2 weeks in the fridge, sometimes even more.
Moroccan Beauty Products
Moroccan women love using natural beauty products to take care of their skin and hair. If you want to try their routine, get some Henna to color your hair naturally or some black soap to exfoliate your skin deeply. If you love taking care of yourself, I promise you will love discovering and trying Moroccan natural beauty products.
Clay pots and Tagines, traditional teapots, silverware, beautifully decorated tea glasses, … you have so many things to choose from. The best items are handmade and use raw materials like clay, glass or durable materials like stainless steel.
The choices are infinite and will add to your kitchen a colorful and exotic touch.
Home Decor Items
If you love decorating your house and finding interesting pieces, Moroccan markets will be like exploring an Alibaba cavern. Moroccan rugs, carpets, blankets, copper chandeliers, decorated pillows, fancy mirrors, golden lamps, traditional clay pots, and so much more. The hardest part will be to choose and stop yourself from buying, otherwise, you won’t be able to get everything in your suitcase. Which happened to me many times, for real.
That’s basically where my shopping gets out of control. Moroccan jewelry is gorgeous and there are so many models to chose from. You can have handmade designs made with fancy materials like silver and gold, as well as cheaper but good quality replicas that can last for years.
Moroccan Traditional Clothing
I have talked about traditional Moroccan clothing in many of my previous posts. If you love experimenting in fashion, there are many Moroccan fashion items that are GORGEOUS and that can look extremely stylish. I grew up in my aunt’s sewing shop playing with fabrics and colors and now, there is nothing I enjoy more than shopping traditional Moroccan clothes and wearing them back home on multiple occasions.
Morocco is known for its traditional tanneries where good quality leather is made. So, in most Moroccan Medinas you will find handmade leather items like handbags, travel bags, shoes, and poufs. As I mentioned earlier, it’s important to check that those products are not counterfeits and that they are really made in Morocco. I have purchased many Moroccan leather items across the years and they are still in perfect shape and so beautiful. A really great investment! Honestly, there is nothing like handcrafted Moroccan products.
So, do you see Moroccan Medinas potential? It’s not a coincidence that shopping is what most visitors love to do in Morocco. Even for locals, the Medina is a pretty exciting place to go. But it can also get overwhelming, especially if you have a limited budget and are not very familiar with Moroccan markets dynamic.
The last advice would be to take your time to compare the different products and prices. If you need a viable support system, check my detailed guide about shopping in Morocco. This guide details each product worth purchasing from Morocco, the normal price-ranges and how to spot the real deals (not scams!). It’s the perfect guide to shop with confidence and fully enjoy your experience.
I was planning on doing some serious shopping in Morocco .. my friends and family wanted a whole lot of souvenirs from Morocco and I was on a budget. I was in Morocco when I purchased your ebook, and I am glad I did that! The ebook gave me exactly what I needed: interesting and affordable souvenirs to bring back home. I am back and everyone is really happy with their gifts. Thank you so so so much!
Response from Moroccan Zest
Wow, I am so happy about that, Ines! Thank you for your feedback — xx
everything I needed to know before going to Morocco and shopping. thank you!
that’s why I love traveling, seeing different cultures and lifestyles, thanks for the insights. I hope I survive bargaining lol
Response from Moroccan Zest
Just see it as a game and don’t get frustrated if you can’t get what you want! Oh and try to learn about Moroccan handicrafts to know exactly what to look for. I have an ebook about the subject if you are interested, it’s linked to this post 😉 Have fun –xx
for all those traveling to Morocco soon, this is a good guide but get the ebook, especially If you have a budget and want to spend it wisely. otherwise, the temptations and bad choices will be there
best guide !
I just finished shopping and want to tell you how much I enjoyed reading your book and following your recommendations! I would have made so many mistakes and lost money without you, thank you!