Morocco: a desert nation in Africa filled with spectacular gates, beautiful tiles, crimson partitions, the beginning of the Sahara, scrumptious delicacies, and vibrant marketplaces. There are countless attention-grabbing issues to do in Morocco – from gorgeous cities to go to, to scrumptious meals to eat, to unimaginable experiences to have.
So let’s dive into the record! Listed here are 15 unforgettable issues to do in Morocco:
Discover Previous Fortified Cities
Within the desert and the Atlas Mountains east of Marrakech is an space often called the Highway of 1000 Kasbahs. A kasbah is a big, fortified house, and customarily has 4 towers within the corners. This a part of the Moroccan desert was a part of the salt street, and kasbahs dot the panorama. Often, you’ll come throughout a ksar, or a fortified village.
Essentially the most well-known of those fortified villages is the Ksar of Ait Ben Haddou, a surprising fortified village constructed into the hillside of the desert. Ait Ben Haddou was an essential cease on the Salt Highway, and thus hosted many vacationers and needed to keep at bay many bandits. Right this moment, just a few households reside within the historic city, however you’ll be able to stroll by and uncover the various alleys, church buildings, granaries, and retailers.
You might also discover throughout your go to that they nonetheless use the identical strategies of development in Ait Ben Haddou as we speak as in years previous, creating bricks from mud and straw.
Haggle within the Souks
The souks and marketplaces of Morocco, are vibrant, bustling locations, filled with attention-grabbing items and colourful wares. You will discover all kinds of issues to buy and convey house as souvenirs from Morocco, like conventional Moroccan kaftans or djellabas (lengthy “attire” that each women and men put on, with hoods), tagines (the dish that many Moroccan meals are cooked in), leather-based sneakers and purses, contemporary pressed argan oil, ceramic bowls, platters, and plates painted in quite a lot of colours, buckets heaped full of colourful spices, shiny teapots, and extra.
Wandering by the souks is an expertise, each due to the issues on the market and on show, but additionally as a result of the salesmen are consistently calling out to you, inviting you to look at their wares. And if you’re fascinated with making a purchase order, don’t look forward to finding any costs listed. As an alternative, the store proprietor will quote you a worth, and you then’ll must haggle the worth all the way down to a suitable level.
In Morocco, haggling is nearly like a pleasant dance. They quote a worth, and you then faux to think about, and say, “oh wow, that’s rather a lot. How about this a lot as an alternative?” They usually say “oh no, no it’s very top quality/I must feed my household/or another line.”
This goes backwards and forwards for some time till you attain an agreeable worth. Whereas newcomers could be a little intimidated by the haggle recreation, simply bear in mind – be pleasant however follow your weapons (we normally aimed to pay 50% of the unique asking worth) and simply lean into the method.
Keep in a Riad
A riad in Morocco is a conventional guesthouse that normally has only a few rooms, with an open-air courtyard within the center and delightful decorations. Staying in a riad is an absolute must-do when visiting Morocco – it actually appears like a cultural expertise in its personal proper.
There are, after all, riads that can match into any price range, however even essentially the most fundamental riads have lovely archways and sometimes some lovely tilework inside. Many riads really feel like little museums in and of themselves, with mosaics, columns, plunge swimming pools, heavy materials, and water options.
Specifically, the riads of Fes are completely unimaginable artistic endeavors, with lots of them having carved stucco and cedarwood and being lined in mosaics, at a really affordable worth.
Marvel on the Bahia Palace
Morocco, and Marrakech particularly, has many completely beautiful buildings full of intricate tiles and mosaics, and are completely gorgeous. Visiting the Bahia Palace is likely one of the most unimaginable issues to do in Morocco to take pleasure in these visible masterpieces.
This historic palace is sort of giant and has many rooms you’ll be able to wander by. There are giant and small courtyards and gardens, plus adjoining rooms, full of carved cedarwood, stained glass, water options, and symmetrical layouts.
The Bahia Palace is likely one of the most well-known sights in Marrakech and one you’ll not need to miss!
Go Glamping within the Sahara
The Sahara desert begins on the very japanese fringe of Morocco, and one of the epic issues you are able to do in Morocco is to spend an evening (or two!) within the Sahara sand dunes.
You’ll meet up together with your guides within the city on the fringe of the Erg Chebbi sand dunes, climb aboard your camel, after which trip the 1.5 hours into the desert, arriving at an opulent desert camp earlier than watching the solar set on the horizon.
You’ll take pleasure in your individual, spacious tent, full with an actual mattress, carpets on the ground, electrical energy, and a full toilet, and sumptuously ready meals the place you’ll be able to dig your toes into the sand whereas consuming your tagine.
At night time, collect across the campfire to take heed to the lads play conventional Berber music, which is heavy on drums and rhythmic beats. Within the morning, you’ll be able to go ATVing, go sandboarding, or simply take your self on a stroll into the undulating, orange dunes.
An expertise doing a Sahara desert tour will probably be one of the memorable nights of your life and is totally probably the greatest issues to do in Morocco.
Drink Mint Tea
Mint tea is the popular drink of virtually each Moroccan, and you can be supplied mint tea when arriving at your riad and at most restaurant meals. It’s a poignant custom to take part in, because it comes with some spectacular rituals.
Mint tea is definitely inexperienced tea that has been steeped with mint leaves. Your server will convey the ready mint tea to your desk in a shiny, engraved metallic teapot and pour it for you into glasses that resemble a big shot glass. The model of the pour is extremely essential – you need to maintain the teapot excessive above the glasses, creating a protracted arc of tea into the cup.
Loads of sugar cubes can be found on the desk so as to add to your tea – Moroccans love their tea candy!
Observe the Tanneries in Fes
Fes is an attention-grabbing metropolis for a lot of causes – it has an identical hustle and bustle as Marrakech, however with out the crimson partitions. There have been extra lined passageways in Fes, and the streets felt much more slender and winding than in Marrakech. And whereas Marrakech does have tanneries, the tanneries of Fes are indisputably the most important, finest, and oldest within the nation.
Observing the tanneries is likely one of the most attention-grabbing issues to do within the metropolis. There are just a few leather-based retailers with terraces overlooking the tanneries, and shopowners are very comfortable to let guests come observe on the terraces. You’ll see males working hides in vats of coloured liquids and chemical compounds, taking the hides by the method to show them into nice leather-based merchandise.
After all, the shopowners are all too comfortable to point out you their items whereas taking you again out of the store (and really, there are such a lot of unimaginable leather-based items to purchase – from sneakers, poufs, wallets, jackets, and extra). This is likely one of the most iconic spots in Fes and price a cease, significantly if you’re fascinated with making a leather-based buy.
Wander the Blue Metropolis of Chefchaouen
Chefchaouen is named the “Blue Pearl of Morocco,” as your complete medina is painted various shades of wealthy blue! Whereas the origins of why the town was first painted blue are unknown, you’ll be able to’t deny that it’s extremely aesthetically pleasing. Chefchaouen is a smaller city nestled within the mountains north of Fes, so there aren’t a number of sights within the metropolis – the town IS the attraction.
You may spend an exquisite day wandering the streets of Chefchaouen, discovering all the lovable little corners and spots, performing some procuring, and taking photos of the streets with colourful pots or baskets on them. For an important view over the town, do a brief hike as much as the Spanish Mosque, which sits on a hill overlooking the city.
Stand in Awe on the Hassan II Mosque
As a predominantly Muslim nation, you will note mosques and minarets in each city and metropolis you go to. Nonetheless, the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca is the most important mosque in Morocco, and it’s the seventh largest mosque on this planet, with the third tallest minaret.
It’s also the one mosque in Morocco that permits non-Muslims to enter. There are a number of guided excursions of the mosque accessible every day, the place you’ll be able to enter the mosque, study its development and historical past, and study extra about Islam.
The mosque is totally beautiful, with intricately carved stucco and cedarwood adorning the partitions, ceiling, arches, and columns all through the mosque. Wealthy carpets are on the ground, colourful mosaics are on show, and the rooms are giant, with hovering ceilings.
Visiting the Hassan II Mosque is an unimaginable factor to do in Morocco and for certain must be part of your Morocco itinerary.
Really feel Tutorial at Madrasa Ben Youssef and Madrasa Al Attarine
Lots of the bigger cities of Morocco had been areas for universities beginning within the 1300s, and as we speak these historic universities, or madrasas, are open to the general public. In Marrakech, you’ll be able to go to the Madrasa Ben Youssef, and in Fes, you’ll be able to go to the Madrasa Al-Attarine.
In these madrasas, you first enter into a big frequent room, with smaller rooms tucked off to the aspect. Then, go as much as the above ranges to see small lecture rooms and the “dorm rooms” the place college students slept. Like each essential constructing in Morocco, these madrasas are artistic endeavors, with intricate tilework, arches, and water options within the giant gathering rooms of the previous colleges.
Learn additionally: Per week in Marrakech and the Sahara Desert
Discover Roman ruins at Volubilis
Not removed from the town of Fes in northern Morocco are the traditional Roman ruins of Volubilis (do you know that Morocco had a Roman affect?). Volubilis was once a rich and busy metropolis in Roman instances due to the fertile area that surrounds it, and it was an administrative middle of the Roman empire in that area.
At its peak, as much as 20,000 individuals lived right here! However after the Roman empire, and a number of other earthquakes, Volubilis was deserted and destroyed. Right this moment, Volubilis has a number of actually well-preserved ruins, and among the buildings have been excavated and reconstructed, together with the basilica, capitoline temple, and triumphal arch.
The ruins are actually lovely and exploring the ruined buildings is likely one of the most attention-grabbing issues to do in Morocco.
Benefit from the Solar and Sea at Essaouira
Essaouira is a charming city on the Atlantic coast of Morocco. It’s about 2 hours from Marrakech however appears like a very completely different world. In distinction to the busy and frantic tempo of Marrakech, Essaouira is laidback and chill and is a haven for browsing and windsurfing, particularly between the prime months of April-November.
Essaouira can also be a serious fishing port, and you may see the long-lasting blue fishing boats lined up within the harbor and the place fishermen are busy at work bringing of their catch of the day.
Moreover browsing, just a few standard issues to do in Essaouira embrace exploring the charming previous medina, the place buildings are painted blue and white, or strolling the town ramparts overlooking the ocean. You may simply spend only a few hours in Essaouira and get a style of the town, or spend just a few days wandering round and hanging out on this lovely Moroccan metropolis.
Eat Tagine and Couscous
One of many funniest issues to do in Morocco is to pattern the native delicacies! Morocco has many very conventional dishes, essentially the most well-known and ubiquitous being tagine. A tagine meal is made in a tagine cooking dish (as we talked about within the procuring the souks part, above) and is usually composed of hen or beef and greens. You can even have a vegetable-only tagine. The tagine dish acts as a steamer to cook dinner the meal.
Couscous is one other extremely frequent Moroccan meals that’s historically ready on Fridays, the holy day for Muslims. Nonetheless, yow will discover couscous on many menus within the nation which might be accessible all through the week.
Wander the Crimson Metropolis of Marrakech
In some ways, Marrakech is essentially the most traditional and recognizable model of Morocco – there’s all of the unique really feel and attraction you’d anticipate plus the frenetic tempo, smells, and sounds you’d anticipate from a vibrant metropolis. It’s a lovely metropolis, full of crimson partitions and arched openings, intricate doorways, attention-grabbing cultural and historic websites, and delightful mosaic tiles and flooring.
Among the many architectural wonders are the Saadian Tombs, the El Badi Palace, the Jardin Secret, and the Jardin Majorelle. The mixture of all these elements makes Marrakech one in every of Morocco’s must-see locations.
Go Mountain climbing within the Atlas Mountains
There are lots of mountain climbing alternatives within the Atlas Mountains, which showcase a number of completely different terrains – tall gorges, crimson rocks, valleys, waterfalls, and mountain peaks. One of many nice factors of mountain climbing in Morocco is that the majority spots and trails are fairly off the crushed path.
The Ourika Valley shouldn’t be removed from Marrakech (about 1 hour away) and has a number of paths to hike. Probably the most standard hikes is the path to the 7 Waterfalls of Setti Fatma.
Farther away from Marrakech (about 4 hours away) are the Dades Gorge and the Todra Gorge, which each provide unimaginable mountain climbing alternatives within the red-orange canyons, by palm and olive groves, and over the tops of hilly ridges.
Greatest Issues to Do in Morocco – The Wrap-Up
For anybody who loves the unique and a little bit of journey, Morocco is a dream vacation spot. There are virtually countless enjoyable and attention-grabbing issues to see and do in Morocco. Put this cool African nation in your bucket record as we speak!