Known for its amazing cultural riches, Morocco has always fascinated travelers and fun-seekers for centuries. With its rich cultural blend of Arab, Berber, European and African influences, Morocco is also known as the Maghreb boasts of Atlantic and Mediterranean coastlines, a rugged mountain interior and a history of independence not shared by its neighbours. Arising from the name and major religion of the country, Morocco has always conjured up images of sprawling sauks, rocks, walled medinas and mosques and towering minarets calling its 99% Muslims to prayer.
Offering a wide range of relaxing beach resorts on the coast, beautiful ancient cities inland, amazing landscapes of the Rif and Atlas mountains, and the eerie solitude of the Sahara desert, this beautiful country will surely not leave you disappointed either as a tourist or a holiday traveller.
One of the many wonders of Morocco is Marrakech, a bubbling city that Winston Churchill once referred to as “simply the nicest place on Earth to spend an afternoon”. This comment about Marrakech also known as the Red City is very true as it is everything you would expect it to be – busy, chaotic, and exotic. It is also home to some of the most beautiful and interesting sites in the world.
Further down the Atlantic coast is the national capital of Morocco, Rabat; one of the four imperial cities in the country located on the Atlantic coast, Casablanca, atmospheric Essaouira, and the lively beach of Agadir which is a favourite among sun-seekers and surfers.
The official language of Morocco is Arabic and Berber; the Moroccan dialect of Arabic and French are also widely spoken. It has a population of over 37 million citizens with a square area of 710,850 km. With Islam as the official and main religion taking up 99% of citizens, the remaining 1% includes the Christians, Jews and Bahais.
If you plan to visit Morocco anytime soon, make sure you pay a visit to these charming famous places in Morocco – Marrakech, Casablanca, High Atlas, Fez, Rabat.
Apart from some of the best locations to visit in Morocco, the country also offers you a smooth transition to a more interesting culture and lifestyle that you can rarely experience anywhere.
BEST LOCATIONS TO VISIT IN MOROCCO
1. Marrakech (Bustling city with a large medina)
Located on the northern part of the foothills of the Atlas Mountains in Marrakech; a bustling city with a large medina. As a former imperial city in Western Morocco, it is a major economic centre and home to mosques, palaces and gardens. Described by the Telegraph as “where Europe, Africa and the Middle East mingle and merge”, Marrakech is one of the great cities of the Maghreb.
Here is a list of things to do in Marrakech:
● Shop the Medina Souks
● Experience Djemma El Fna After Dark
● Stay in a Medina Raid Hotel
● Admire the Koutoubia Mosque
● Stroll around Majorelle Gardens
● Visit the Medersa Ben Youssef
● Soak in a Hamman
If you are visiting Marrakech for the first time and you want to be in the heart of the action, the best area to stay is in the medina, near the Djemaa El Fna, the large square at its entrance. You can also take an organized tour to see all the highlights of Marrakesh and the Atlas Mountains and experience the traditional culture without struggling to find your way.
2. Casablanca ( Modernity yet cultured)
Although Casablanca might not be as atmospheric and beautiful as the other cities, it is one of the best places to visit in Morocco. It is the ideal representation of modernity and culture. Asides from the city’s breathtaking Moresque building, the awesome food and architecture make Casablanca one of the best places to travel in Morocco.
Things to do:
● Get around the city in a Casa Tramway
● Enjoy Scenic views of the city from the Casablanca Twin Center
● Visit the King’s Palace and explore the Islamic architectural masterpiece
● Visit the Hassan II Mosque
3. High Atlas (Paradise for Trekkers)
Taking its place as the highest mountain range in North Africa, High Atlas is popularly known as the mountain of mountains. From its name, the High Atlas is a paradise for trekkers, especially from spring to autumn. Out of all the beautiful places to visit in Morocco, this place provides a surreal experience with its beautiful mountain peaks and terrain.
Things to do:
● Go for a hiking trail in the Toubkal National Park
● Explore the souvenir shops and restaurants in Imil
● Enjoy spectacular views from the Tizin’Test Pass
4. Fez (The Old Maghreb City)
One of the tourist attractions of Morocco is Fez; a 1,200-year-old Maghreb city in the Middle Eastern deserts. One of the fascinating features of Fez is the Fes el-Bali, which is the historic heart of this city. The elegant boulevards of Ville Nouvelle where the French had created beautiful palm-fringed avenues is also another tourist attraction of Fez.
Things to do:
● Visit Fes el-Bali
● Taste luxury in the beautiful hotels
● Admire the architecture
5. Rabat (Stunning capital city)
Sitting comfortably on the Atlantic coast is Rabat; the capital of Morocco and also one of the top tourist attractions. The tranquil beaches and all-round good weather are some of the reasons why Rabat is a favourite for tourists. With the wide boulevards, outdoor cafes, and medina, you must not skip this place off your itinerary.
Things to do:
● Take a tour of the Hassan Tower
● Visit Chellah and escape the crowd
● Buy fresh produce and gift items from the medina
When is the best time to travel to Morocco?
Although Morocco enjoys amazing weather throughout the year, the best time to visit if you want to save cost is during the shoulder season – April to May or September to November.
Morocco Travel essentials
In reality, aside from your normal style of dressing, there are key items to bring when travelling to Morocco. Some of these items are Imodium/Gastro Stop, Plenty of water, Socks, Electrolyte tablets, Sunscreen, Hat, Insect repellant, Headwrap and scarves, Loose-fitting pants.
Yes, Morocco is open for tourism. As always, foreigners need a valid passport of at least six months of validity at the time of entry, one blank passport page is required for stamp entry. For tourists, visas are not required for stays under 90 days. The currency restrictions for entry is to declare large quantities at entry and export of Moroccan currency is prohibited.
Due to the COVID restrictions, visitors should check the latest lockdown update and travel advisories.
The unit of currency used in Morocco is the Moroccan dirham (MAD). It comes in both coins and banknotes. The banknotes have denominations of 20,50,100 and 200 dirhams.
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