What is Marrakech Medina?

The Marrakech Medina started in 1070 by the Almoravid dynasty. Its buildings are special and different. UNESCO said it’s important in 1995. Like other old cities, it’s inside a wall with gates to protect it. The old city is called Medina, which means “a city” in Arabic. It has many neighborhoods connected by streets. Each area has four main things: big and small mosques, public steam baths (Hammam), and a public oven. These are usually in the center of the area, near a square where people do lots of things.

Marrakech Medina
Marrakech Medina
Derbes and Riads in Marrakech Medina:

In the Medina, neighborhoods are linked by streets called Zanka, which lead to narrow paths. People live in houses along these paths called ‘derbs.’ There are two kinds: Passageway derbs go to other paths or main streets, while dead-end derbs stop at a dark, small arch called ‘Saba.’ The nicest, roomy houses are often in dead-end derbs.

In the Medina, there are three kinds of homes: the riad, the house (or “dar”), and the “dwiriya.” A riad is a big house with a hallway leading to a garden patio with two rooms opposite each other called Qubba or domes. Inside, there’s a hammam, storage room, big living areas, two kitchens, and a separate room called ‘Masriya.’ Traditionally, Marrakeshi riads have one floor. A house or dar is smaller with a small patio and about 4 to 7 rooms. Dwiriya is tiny, like an apartment. Historically, it was part of the riad and where guests stayed. Many riads and houses are now guest houses, giving tourists a cozy and authentic stay in the heart of the medina.

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