Though the Kingdom of Morocco and its city of Marrakesh is situated in the Sahara Desert, Marrakesh is specifically not referred to as a desert city because of its placement on the north side of the Atlas Mountains. The city still boasts a predominately hot, semi-arid climate, but those mountains make a big difference because they trap precipitation-bearing clouds that allow Marrakesh to receive some rainfall. That leads to more varied seasons so that the entire year isn't just one long, hot summer with no relief in sight. Marrakesh offers an excellent vacation destination all year long, and understanding what to expect from the weather during each of its seasons will help you plan the perfect visit.
As in America and some other areas of the world, the season of spring in Marrakesh occurs in March, April and May, and visitors should expect pleasantly warm days and up to nine hours of sunshine each day. High temperatures range between 77 degrees and 84 degrees with the higher temperatures occurring as the season progresses. Once the sun sets, you'll want at least a light jacket for low temperatures that range from 51 degrees to 59 degrees.
There is some rain during the spring months, and both March and April usually get about 1.5 inches of rainfall over an average of eight days each month. There are around five days of rain in May, which normally adds up to less than an inch of precipitation. Short thunderstorms may occur, and sandstorms are also possible when strong winds pick up across the Sahara Desert.
The months of June, July, August and September make up the Marrakesh summer, and it's by far the hottest season of the year. Completely clear skies and a blazing sun that shines from nine to 11 hours a day brings highs of 91 degrees to 100 degrees. Nighttime lows bring some relief with temperatures from 66 degrees to 69 degrees, and the humidity stays quite low during the day, which makes the hottest days feel a bit more comfortable.
Locals tend to enjoy a bit of a siesta during the hottest time of the day during these summer months, and visitors are encouraged to use this time exploring some of the city's air-conditioned offerings. Of course, these are also wonderful months to visit the area's swimming pools, water parks and other bodies of water for fun activities.
The summer months see the least rainfall with no more than a quarter-inch of rain during September over a period of only three wet days. Visitors may catch a bit of a sprinkle in July, but rain is unlikely for most of the summer months. When it does rain, it often comes in the form of a short thunderstorm.
Even the autumn months of October and November are pleasantly warm and sunny in Marrakesh with up to eight hours of sunshine daily. High temperatures range from 73 degrees to 84 degrees, and nighttime lows fall significantly with temperatures from 51 degrees to 60 degrees.
October brings less than an inch of rainfall over six wet days, and that increases to 1.6 inches of rainfall during seven wet days in November. The rain usually comes in short thunderstorms, and brief flash floods have occurred.
Those who plan to journey to Marrakesh to celebrate the Christmas holiday definitely won't see any snow, but the months of December, January and February are the coolest months of the entire year. These months still boast up to eight full hours of sunshine each day, but the high temperatures only range from 66 degrees to 69 degrees. Nighttime lows are quite cool at only 42 degrees to 46 degrees, so visitors will definitely want to dress warm when they're out for the evening and have a good blanket when it's time to sleep.
Winter is absolutely the wettest season of the year, and the most rainfall is seen during February. This month brings about 1.4 inches or rainfall over seven wet days, and January sees around 1.2 inches of rainfall over eight wet days. December has the least rainfall with around a half-inch of rain during seven wet days. These rains usually fall in short, heavy downpours.