The old Medinas, the mountains, the Saharan dunes, the aroma of spices … all this is within a welcoming, warm and attractive country:The Moroccan Kingdom!
The Mecca of travel in the 60s and 70s, Morocco is still a fascinating blend of Islamic, Arab, African, Berber cultures with an imposing french touch. Take a look at some peaceful towns, breathtaking scenery, excellent beaches, good quality trekking, lots of interesting shops where there is something for everyone. Moroccans are predominantly Muslim but not too obsessive about it, flights are now readily available to Marrakech as well as to Casablanca.
This North African country receives thousands of visitors around the world for many reasons, which we will attempt to cite on this article.
Morocco is at the center of the world, sort-off!
All flights to Marrakech takes only a few hours from Europe which makes Morocco a close and easily accessible destination. It is also an ideal place for a wonderful weekend, at any time of the year. You can climb the Atlas Mountains on a Saturday, spend a night under the stars of the Sahara and hit the souks on Sunday. This sherifian kingdom will offer you a dream-like getaway!
Morocco is not expensive:
Morocco can be a destination for small budgets, especially in the winter months. You can book a hotel at less than 20 Euro per night! Or spend nights in a traditional Riad with a sublime decoration and a pleasant setting in the center of the medina less than 50 Euro all inclusive. Food prices vary from city to city, but this is really cheap when a meal in a respected restaurant will cost you less than 4 Euro.
Morocco is a haven of geographical diversity:
Dive into the Atlas Mountains for a true taste of Berber culture. You will have the opportunity to discover extraordinary landscapes and smiling people through small villages. Morocco is a favorite spot for hikers, thousands of people come to the country each year to spend their days trekking, and spend nights under the stars, eating meals cooked at home in comfortable lodgings.
Morocco is a coastal country:
Morocco is also the sea, with impressive coastal cities. Essaouira is located just west of Marrakech and it is close enough for a day trip. Enjoy the local seafood by strolling through the old Portuguese port, and have a look at the medina. If you fancy a swim in the sun and a nice beach, Agadir is a good address to the southwest.
Moroccan gastronomy is one of the best in the world:
Moroccan cuisine is known throughout the world. Rich in taste and full of colors. Tajines and couscous, two tasty dishes, but there is also much more to discover. Head to Jemaa El Fna square in Marrakech, a large square that fills up with food stalls at night, to taste all that is delicious in Moroccan cuisine.
Lamb is by far the most popular meat in the country, it is the basis of a variety of Moroccan meals. Vegetables and spices are a real enriching cuisine. Also try the Harira (famous soup of Ramadan) or the Bissara (white bean soup).
The climate in Morocco:
The best period for your stay is between September -October, March and May. Good period: the winter months, November to February, are generally sunny and warm, except in the north or towards the mountains. The least suitable period is between July and August when the temperature can hit up to 40 ° C, although it can be very good on the coast.
The main attractions of Morocco:
Marrakech is home to some splendid buildings usually pink in color, especially traditional riads, museums and a large covered souk (market) – The best place to find quality handicrafts in Morocco as well as excellent local cuisine.
Fez is the oldest imperial city in Morocco and the largest medina in the entire world, with many old period walls and ancient gates. You will be able to lose yourself in the medieval labyrinth of 10,000 small streets of the city.
Another beautiful ancient city – Meknes, is a day trip from Fès.
In Erfoud or Zagora you can go see the dunes on the edge of the Sahara desert, and stay two or three days or more to get a real idea of the place and local lifestyle. The beautiful Ziz valley in Erfoud – then Merzouga and the Sahara desert all have their own charme. Up on the Atlas mountains sailing is fairly easy, the roads are deserted and gives you a spectacular views.
The city of Essaouira in the other hand is strongly recommended for a peaceful seaside scene. Try this pretty fishing port with blue and white walls. To get there there is a spectacular road and it will take a few hours drive from Marrakech.
Casablanca is a large modern city with little ethnic interest but the largest mosque in the world and the old quarter are worth a look.
Rabat, the capital and seat of government, is smaller than Casablanca and much easier to access for visits. The city is peaceful, without problems, beautiful architecture and presence of pleasant cafes is highly celebrated.
Tangier, main port of Morocco and only one hour’s ferry from Spain has some interesting structures and a beautiful market down the old town. It is the ideal transit point to have an avant-garde of the magic ff the rest of Morocco.
The desert of Sahara:
This notorious desert that stretches over North Africa is the size of the United States, but made only about 25% from sand. The rest is made up of volcanic hills, rocks and gravel plains and vegetation that houses about 300 species of birds and animals such as mongooses, snakes, jackals, hares, roe deer, foxes and even baboons.
The experience of the desert is not to be missed, but preferably to be done on camel back and for a duration of two days, including sleeping under the stars, an unforgettable moment.
Advice for the visa:
A 3-month visa is available upon arrival for citizens of the European Union, the United States, Australia and New Zealand.
Mainly Arabic, lots of French and a good amount of English speakers in tourist areas.
Travelers who wish to stay in a more authentic place than in a western hotel might consider renting a riad. It is a traditional Moroccan house. Marrakech is a particularly good place to find beautiful riads for rent.