The history behind Marrakesh is actually really fascinating – and that’s saying something considering I usually I lack the capabilities to understand and remember any stories of the past. Here’s a random fact for you: did you know that Marrakesh was actually the whole of Morocco at one point?
I can go on and on about some of the most historical buildings in Marrakesh – the grand gates all around the city, Jamaa el Fna, the mosques – but what amazes me most here are the palaces, the Bahia and the Badi to be exact. Located just a few minutes away from each other, each palace has a unique story to tell, from their history all the way to the facade of ruins that’s left behind.
The name “Bahia” can be translated to “brilliance” and I for one completely agree with the name. Built in the late 19th century this palace filled with dozens of rooms actually still functions as a royal residence to this day, but is open for the public when the royal family is absent. According to Wikipedia (yes I am quoting Wikipedia, don’t judge me) its garden is 2 acres big with the palace’s rooms, which captures the essence of the Islamic and Moroccan style, opening onto courtyards.
While I cannot vouch for Wiki’s information on the area of the garden, I can definitely agree with the style and magnificence of the palace. Personally it would be easy to get lost in its grandness and madness of taking various royal-esque pictures in this place.
While Bahia Palace had only been built recently and is still functional, the Badi Palace it the complete opposite. If my sources are correct, the walls and ceilings of this palace used to be layered with gold which were stripped bare less than a century after the palace was built. Built in 1578, it is now standing tall as a ruined palace – glorious nonetheless. With a massive pool and sunken gardens, I can only recommend you to visit this place and discover the awesomeness by yourself, considering I was so overwhelmed by the place I actually almost forgot to take pictures.
My suggestion? Visit both, no doubt*. They are a walking distance from each other, and with the entrance fee being only 10 Moroccan Dirhams, I think it would be a great way to learn a little history and take a lot of jump shots in.
xo and smiles,
*but Badi Palace is my favorite...