This site contains affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.
Now that Morocco is open for tourism, I’ve been reminiscing about the North African country and my 2018 trip there more than normal. I recapped my trip to Morocco a while back, but my time there is still very fresh.
The travel itch is getting too real for me! I need another international trip, pronto.
But I do find comfort in pictures and the Moroccan souvenirs laid out around my eclectic home.
If you are planning to visit or just happen to love Moroccan-inspired décor as much as I do, not only should you know the best souvenirs to buy in Morocco, but where to find them and what prices you should be paying.
If I’m being honest, I tend to avoid buying souvenirs whenever I travel. I would rather save the money for experiences and allow my travel photos to tell the tales later.
But Morocco is an entirely different story.
In fact, although I usually only travel with a carry-on, I wish I’d have brought a larger bag to carry more Moroccan souvenirs!
If you are traveling with a friend or partner, I recommend packing light or having a spare suitcase with you so you can safely carry your Moroccan goodies back home.
No doubt, if you travel around Morocco, you will find yourself in a souk eventually. These marketplaces vary by the city, but all are filled with various textiles and products, arranged aesthetically and rich in color.
Wandering through souks and exploring shops is all part of Morocco’s magic. Every one is meant to entice a tourist’s eye.
Remember, buying souvenirs in a place like Morocco actually helps the local economy. As long as you are buying from a small shop or direct source, your purchases help stabilize commerce and encourage a family business.
While there are many popular items often listed as the best souvenirs to buy in Morocco, I’m only including the ones I personally bought or found most functional.
Many of these can also be found online if you are truly desperate and unable to visit Morocco yourself!
No trip to Morocco is complete without a visit to Fez (also spelled Fes), the oldest imperial city in the country.
Here, you don’t have to look too far inside the medina’s maze to find the highest quality leather goods. You just need to follow your nose.
Local tanneries still practice ancient methods to this day. All hides are dyed in various stone pits and stomped upon by men waist-deep in the dyeing liquids.
The smell is atrocious. No sense in lying about it. Although when you visit a place like Chouara Tannery, shop staff will hand you a mint sprig to rub and sniff in an attempt to mask the odor.
In these shops, and in the souks throughout Morocco’s largest cities, you will find leather goods ranging from wallets, belts, slippers, and purses to large floor poufs and other furniture.
While it is possible to buy 100% leather goods online, through a site like Moroccan Leather Wholesale or even Marrakech Gallery on Amazon (below), it does defeat the purpose of shopping small.
Plus, picking out your own handmade leather pouf amidst the horrendous stench after watching the process from a tannery balcony is all part of the experience!
Flour Poufs and Pillows
Floor poufs and pillows have grown in popularity in recent years, thanks to the boho movement. But I’d wager the trend started in Morocco.
Maybe you aren’t into leather, or just don’t want to spend as much cash on a leather pouf. Either way, a handmade fabric floor pouf is a great alternative.
If you read my recent blog about saving money, you know I am not an impulse shopper. Likewise, I took my time admiring floor poufs and other materials in every city we entered.
It wasn’t until I meandered the sleepy coastal town of Essaouira that I felt the time was right. I didn’t feel pressured. I was able to look at dozens of patterns and prints without hearing opinions from my fellow travelers or feel heckled by the sellers.
Best yet, the floor pouf came as the cover only, meaning I could fold it flat on the top of my bulging carry-on duffle bag.
Once home, I used crumpled newspaper and some cotton fluffing to fill my floor pouf. See below! By the way it is made, I’m beyond confident this Moroccan floor pouf will last for years.
Since it’s trendy, World Market has handwoven and embroidered floor poufs and pillows in stock, but they aren’t quite the same.
For something similar but inexpensive, try this black and white floor pouf that will match any color scheme:
Moroccan Mint Tea
My favorite Moroccan memories revolve around a warm, strong, and syrupy-sweet cup of mint tea.
Enjoying a Saharan sunrise? Drink tea. Visiting a nomad camp? Drink tea. Washing down a delicious camel burger? Drink tea. Relaxing after a long hike or a trip to the souk? Tea, tea, and more tea!
Funny thing is, I never got tired of it.
When in Morocco, scour the souks for what the locals call gunpowder green tea. While originally from China, Moroccan culture has embraced these potent, tightly rolled green tea leaves.
Once steeped in boiling water, add honey or sugar (xylitol is keto-friendly) to your preference. Last but not least, throw in a handful of fresh spearmint.
To drink it like the Berber Nomads, add either saffron or aniseed (fennel) to the teapot. Northern Moroccans sometimes add absinthium, verbena, marjoram, or sage, as well.
If you’re duplicating this method at home, Sultan is a popular and authentic Moroccan green tea you can order on Amazon, then follow the steps above.
However, Numi’s Moroccan Mint Tea is also pretty close to the real deal, if you want something quicker!
I have just one regret from my trip to Morocco. I did not purchase a handmade, hand-painted piece of pottery or ceramics for fear it would not survive the flight home.
Recently, my workmates bought me a beautiful, handmade bowl from World Market (similar to these) for my birthday. While the piece says it is sourced from Tunisia, the quality and style are so similar to Morocco.
Of course, not all Moroccan pottery is super colorful or intricate, there are simple designs, too. Even if it isn’t quite your style, it’s hard not to appreciate the detailed work that goes into making these pieces.
I highly recommend touring a facility like Art Naji in Fes to watch the manual process from start to finish.
Also, if you enjoy Mediterranean cuisine, like couscous and stewed lamb, add an authentic Tagine pot to your kitchen shelf, like this one:
You’ve probably heard about argan oil and its benefits by now. But did you know it comes from native trees in Morocco?
Related to the almond family, the purest, cold-pressed argan oil products are beneficial to improving the overall appearance and stimulation of hair, skin, and nails. Argan oil in its roasted form can also be used in cooking.
Just outside Marrakech, Morocco, I was privileged to watch women manually grind and extract argan oil from small nuts (again, similar to almonds) to then be bottled in its pure form or used in soaps, sprays, and other products.
If you are interested in purchasing argan oil, it is best to do so at the source to avoid scams or overpaying for lesser quality.
There are a few facilities in the area where visitors are allowed to watch the process. Argane Aouzac is the first Fair Trade, certified argan oil company in Morocco. Feel free to contact them, as they may be able to ship worldwide.
However, if you prefer to shop Amazon, this brand, VoilaVe, certifies all argan oil is sourced responsibly in Morocco and then imported to the US.
Rose Water or Rose Oil
If you know me, you know how much I love real rose scent. I don’t particularly care for roses themselves, but I can never deny their smell.
On our way to the famous movie backdrop Ouarzazate, we stopped in Hdida, also known as the Valley of Roses. Although it wasn’t exactly high season, we could still smell the sweet fragrance outside the town.
Just along the roadside, there is a plaza selling local wares and, yes, rose products like rose water and rose extract perfume. These were the purest forms of rose oil I’ve ever smelled or used.
Again, like argan oil, Moroccan rose products are best bought at the source in the area it is carefully harvested. You don’t want alcohol, cheap oil, or other fillers and additives to dampen the true rose scent.
Rose water not only smells fantastic when applied to your hair and skin, it actually has healing and cleansing properties as well.
If you live in the Phoenix area, some local Middle Eastern shops sell pure rose water.
But this $12 bottle of pure organic rose water from Amazon would also work great and last quite a while.
OK, so maybe there were two regrets from my visit to Morocco.
Alas, while I ogled many Berber wool rugs on my journey, I did not have room to pack one home. While many shops will ship for a sum, I didn’t want to chance it getting lost.
There are a few things to remember when searching through endless Moroccan rugs.
One, while it may be less expensive to buy it in Morocco, a real Berber rug will never be cheap. If a seller is willing to part with it for an unbelievable price, more than likely the quality is lacking.
The best rugs are 100% wool, and not completely perfect, revealing it is truly handmade. You have every right to ask the seller to do the burn test on a rug you have your eye on. Wool will not ignite!
A Berber rug is really a one-of-a-kind décor piece. Each one is handmade by nomadic women who pass down the skill and knowledge to their kin.
If I never make it back to Morocco, I will probably buy a gorgeous, unique Moroccan rug from Baba Souk, a Canadian company who sources rugs directly from Morocco. It’s really only a matter of time and extra cash at this point!
Kaftan Tunic or Dress
Again, Essaouira came in clutch on this Moroccan souvenir.
I had seen many kaftan tunic shirts that I really liked, but none I felt comfortable enough to peruse. That is, until I stumbled upon this small shop of seamstresses who spoke minimal English.
When they realized they didn’t have my size for the style I liked with the mismatched loop buttons, they offered to quickly make the adjustments to a shirt that did fit me. Having nowhere important to be, I agreed. They immediately closed their shop curtains and let me watch as their quick fingers carefully removed then reattached the buttons.
While I realize they did this for the sale, I also felt a bond with these hardworking women as we made awkward but genuine conversation to the extent our languages allowed.
The only downside to this tunic is that it is white, and I really do not trust myself with white clothing. Other than that, the material is soft and flowing. Even with the ¾ length sleeves, the tunic is breathable and lightweight for the Phoenix heat.
You can find kaftan tunics and dresses on Amazon for a reasonable price, like the one below. This style is modest and flattering on any body type!
Tips for Souvenir Shopping in Morocco
In my experience, although Marrakech is a huge tourist hub with plenty to see, it’s also where you will run into more aggressive sellers and performers.
For a single female or solo traveler, this practice can be intimidating. If you’re especially not familiar with how to haggle and negotiate, I recommend shopping for souvenirs in less intense cities.
As I mentioned, I had great luck in Essaouira. Fes can be a great place to window shop as well, but you’ll want a guide with you who knows the alleyways within the medina so you don’t get lost.
Always keep local cash and spare change on hand, but in a secure pouch, as many vendors and drivers run out of small bills. In main cities, you should be able to find a bank or ATM to withdraw more dirham (Moroccan currency) for souk souvenir shopping.
If you like several items from a vendor, ask about a discount for a combined purchase. Until then, though, don’t act too interested in an item as it may lead the vendor to think you are ready to haggle for a price.
Lastly, be respectful. If you want a picture of a souk, make sure the vendor is alright with it, especially if they are featured.
Above all, take in all the sights, sounds, flavors, and yes, the smells of Moroccan souks! I can't wait to see what Moroccan souvenirs you claim as your treasure.
Morocco has so much to offer any traveler. For your sake, I hope you find a way to visit soon or simply incorporate the fun Moroccan style into your home and lifestyle!