Is Marrakech a bike friendly city?
Cycling in Marrakech has always been a popular mode of transport. Marrakech is also popular among Moroccans with the amount of cyclists and especially female cyclists. However, with the introduction of Chinese mopeds and motorcycles, more people have changed to a moped.
The access and the affordability of the mopeds have led to a decline in the utility of bicycles as a mode of everyday transport. This continued until 2016 and specifically during the COP22 when new bicycle lanes were built and a project of shared bicycles was launched in partnership with UNIDO, GEF, the Ministry for the Environment of the Kingdom of Morocco and the town of Marrakech. Marrakech is the first city in Africa continent to host such a project.
Is it safe to cycle in Marrakech?
Marrakech is a pretty flat city, so it is relatively easy to get around by bike, regardless of your fitness levels. It is also fun and much safer than you might have expected. This does not mean that you should not know how to cycle.
Visiting Marrakech by bike is great but you have to be a competent and confident cyclist, hugely experienced cycling alongside traffic, including buses and trucks, and intimately familiar with the idiosyncrasies of the Moroccan streets. Although the traffic might look crazy but when you spend some time in it, you will realize that it is an organized chaos where everyone knows their place.
Where to buy a bicycle?
I bought my first second hand bike in Souk Bab El Khemis. The latter is a famous flea market in Marrakech. In this large souk, you can find all sorts of old items as well as new items.
There is also a bicycle and moped market which is not far from the flea market and it is called “Souk lmouatar” which means Moped market but it has a section for bicycles too.
In addition to many stores where you can buy new or second bicycle, you can also buy your bicycle online on avito.ma or Facebook marketplace.
How to book a bicycle tour in Marrakech?
If you are on a holiday in Marrakech, and you do not want to buy a bicycle, then you still have no excuse to not use a bicycle. Bicycle rental is quite common and available. You can ask your hotel reception or bike rental agencies.
The other option which I highly recommend is booking a guided bike tour in or around the city of Marrakech. This option is safer because the local guide with his knowledge of the city, they can help you avoid the busy and dangerous roads.
Marrakech Green Wheels
MGW is a social enterprise who has introduced the bicycle to the local community as well as to tourists and encouraged cycling with the purpose to enhancing equal opportunities, providing an affordable and sustainable means of transportation and integrating sustainable tourism in Morocco all while combating unemployment by providing sustainable employment and training for Moroccan youth. You can rent or book a bicycle tour in Marrakech here. For more information on the social project you can visit here.