Marrakech in October 2018

Marrakech in October 2018 – Festivals, Events & Things to Do

As autumn dawns in the Ochre City, October temperatures drop to a most agreeable average of 21˚C and rainfall returns to the pre-summer figure of 4 days per month. However, visitors can still look forward to plenty of sunshine – an average 8 hours per day. October being one of the most popular months of the year for tourists, there are plenty of events and festivals to enjoy and other things to do and see in Marrakech in October 2018.

Marrakech in October 2018 – Festivals & Events

Morocco will be hosting the last stages of the Cap Femina Adventure. Starting in France on 3rd October, this is an all-female, 5,000 km race across France, Spain and Morocco culminating in 6 sporting stages across the Moroccan desert between the 6th and 12th.  An award-ceremony and gala dinner is held in Marrakech on the 13th. Meanwhile, another competition exclusively for ladies, the Trophée Rose des Sables, is being held between the 10th and 21st October.

At about the same time, the beautiful landscapes around Marrakech and the winding mountain roads of the Atlas set the scene for the Grand-Prix Historique de Marrakech (a ‘vintage car’ rally) due to take place between 10th and 14th of the month.

From 12th to 14th October, music lovers can enjoy the delights of the Moga digital arts & electronic music festival in coastal Essaouira (a couple of hours by coach from Marrakech). Combining a line-up of top-quality local and international underground artists, the event is all the more appealing for its delightful seaside setting and the unique charm of the old walled town with its narrow, pedestrianised streets and 18th century military architecture.

Other events to consider adding to your itinerary this month include the 11th edition of the important El Jadida Horse Show (15th to 21st October) held outside this attractive coastal town, south of Casablanca. A major event attracting some 1000 horses and no fewer than 200,000 people over the week, it is designed to highlight the importance of Morocco’s national equestrian heritage. Among numerous attractions and international competitive events are show-jumping and displays of arab thoroughbreds. In similar vein but on a smaller scale, the Tissa Horse Festival takes place in early October in a small town on the edge of the Rif mountains, some 50 kms from Fes. A tented city is set up for performances of traditional music and dance and displays of local handicrafts but the main focus of the event is the exciting competitions for tribal horsemen as they recreate charging into battle discharging (very noisily!) their ancient rifles.

Also held this month, over three days (the dates determined by the harvest), is the famous Erfoud Date Festival, a fascinating post-harvest celebration of the area’s primary resource derived from the largest expanse of palm groves in Morocco. There are no fewer than 100 different varieties of dates and many of them are on show here along with stalls selling food and drink; elsewhere, all the fun of the fair is to be enjoyed in the shape of music and dance, processions, a fashion parade, the crowning of the ‘Date Queen’ and, not least, a dromedary race.