HMN Holidays

Everything you need to know about Amazing Morocco

Morocco boasts a diverse landscape, encompassing rugged mountain ranges, golden sand dunes, ancient cities, and scenic beaches. Its unique blend of Arabic, Berber, and European cultural influences creates a one-of-a-kind familiarity for its visitors. Discover enchanting medinas, vibrant souqs, quaint mountain villages, the vast Sahara Desert, the Atlantic coast, and beyond during your journey through Morocco.

Location

Morocco is a North African country that shares its eastern and southeastern borders with Algeria, is bordered by Western Sahara to the south, faces the Atlantic Ocean to the west, and is bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the north. Notably, it stands as the sole African nation with coastal access to both the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. Excluding Western Sahara, under Moroccan control, its land area is just slightly larger than that of the U.S. state of California. Additionally, two minor Spanish enclaves, namely Ceuta and Melilla, are located on the northern coast of the country.

Weather conditions

Morocco experiences a different four-season climate, characterized by scorching summers with minimal rainfall, wet and snowy winters accompanied by humidity, and milder conditions. The transitional seasons of autumn and spring maintain typical patterns, offering warm to mild temperatures.

Language

Arabic and Amazigh (Berber) are considered two official languages of Morocco. French is also used as a second language that majority people speak. English is not widely speaking there that usually cause communication barrier between the locals and tourists.

Following are the list of words that can help you during your trip to Morocco:

Yes = Naam

No = La

Hello = Saalam\

Goodbye = Bsslama

Excuse me = Smh’li

Please = Aafek

Thank you = Shokran

How much? = Shahal taman?

The bill, please = Bch-hal aâfak

Where is… = Fayne…

Do you speak… = Wesh katehdar…?

Currency

The official currency of Morocco is the Moroccan Dirham. While major stores accept credit cards, it’s advisable to carry cash for smaller vendors. Banks and prominent hotels facilitate currency exchange for English pounds, US and Canadian dollars, and euros. Additionally, some shops may accept euros instead.

Best time to visit Morocco

The ideal time for visiting Morocco are spring (April to June) and fall (September to November), avoiding the extremes of summer’s intense heat and winter’s cold nights. September stands out as an ideal month due to fewer tourists, both domestic and international as well as the pleasant weather along the coastal cities. It’s advisable to steer clear of the peak tourism season in July and August, marked by increased crowds, elevated airfares, and accommodation rates. During summers it is advisable to consider heading to the coast for a stay from the heat and engaging in activities like hiking, kitesurfing, and swimming.

Top Places to visit in Morocco

There’s a lot to explore and experience in Morocco from golden dunes to rugged mountain ranges and visiting ancient city. Following are some top attractions of the destination.

Marrakech

Marrakech is the capital of Morocco that captivates a blend of European, African, and Middle Eastern influences. This enchanting city boasts an ancient medina, a UNESCO-listed main square, vibrant galleries, and serene garden oases, creating a mesmerizing tapestry of cultural richness.

Top attractions of the city are:

Marrakech Medina: A maze of narrow alleyways and vibrant souks offering a diverse array of goods, from silver teapots to hand-woven carpets, fragrant spices, and fresh dates.

Jemaa el-Fna Square: A UNESCO World Heritage Site where 11th-century street theater traditions come alive. Experience snake charmers, acrobats, fortune tellers, and henna artists. Don’t miss the evening food stalls for local delights like snail soup and kefta.

Jardin Majorelle: An Instagram-worthy residence and garden created by Jacques Majorelle in the 1920s, later owned by Yves Saint Laurent. Explore 2.5 acres of gardens, a Berber museum, and the Musée Yves Saint Laurent.

Bahia Palace: An opulent palace adorned with zeolite (colorful mosaic tilework) and zouak (painted wood) details. Stroll around lush inner courtyards and the extravagant grand court.

High Atlas Mountains: Embark on a day trip to Toubkal National Park and hike the High Atlas Mountains. Marvel at the snowcapped Jebel Toubkal, known as the “roof of North Africa.”

Chefchaouen

Nestled in the Rif Mountains, this 15th-century city stands as a breathtaking gem. This city of Morocco is known as” Blue Pearl” .Chefchaouen fascinates with its cobalt-hued buildings adorning steep, cobbled lanes, accompanied by vibrant fuchsia geraniums. Don’t forget to explore the mesmerizing beauty of this Moroccan wonder. 

Top attractions of the city are:

Chefchaouen Medina: Immerse yourself in the charm of this Moroccan medina, influenced by Andalusian architecture. Wander through narrow lanes surrounded by vivid blue buildings, complemented by red-tiled roofs, ornate wrought-iron railings, and lively geraniums.

Plaza Uta El Hammam: Experience the allure of this shaded, cobbled plaza featuring cozy cafés, enticing restaurants, and the Grand Mosquée. It’s an ideal spot for indulging in people-watching while soaking in the local atmosphere.

Horno Bab El Ain: Step into the past at this traditional bakery where locals still bring their bread dough and bastilla (savory-sweet pies) to be expertly baked. Witness the age-old artistry of bread-making in this authentic setting.

Bouhachem Regional Nature Reserve: embark on a journey through the Rif Mountains by exploring the Bouhachem Regional Nature Reserve. Trek along mountain paths to discover the enchanting Cascades d’Akchou, marvel at The Bridge of God rock arch, and visit quaint local villages.

Spanish Mosque: While the mosque itself may be closed, the grounds provide a breathtaking vantage point for witnessing the sunset over Chefchaouen and the majestic Rif Mountains. Revel in the serene beauty of this spot.

Fez

 Fez is considered Morocco’s oldest majestic city. Wander through its maze-like streets, discovering hidden squares, artisan workshops, vibrant souks, and opulent riads. Don’t miss the chance to unwind in a traditional hammam, providing a soothing escape from the exciting energy of the medina.

Top attractions of the city are:

Fez El Bali: World’s largest medieval medina with over 9,000 alleyways.

Market Workshops: Hundreds of workshops offering leather goods, copper pots, mosaic tiles, and hand-woven rugs.

Chouara Tannery: Largest and oldest tannery in the medina, operating since the 16th century.

Neijarine Museum: Showcasing intricate Moroccan woodwork in a restored funduq (caravan inn).

Rooftop Cafe: Enjoy mint tea and a medina view from the Neijarine Museum.

Medersa Bou Inania: Mid-14th century theological college featuring massive brass entrance doors and an elaborate inner courtyard.

Jnan Sbil: Lush gardens with shady paths, fountains, and bird coops housing doves and peacocks.

Sunset Visit: Join locals in an evening promenade at Jnan Sbil gardens.

Essaouira

Essaouira, a breezy coastal town on the Atlantic, captivated Jimi Hendrix, and it’s easy to see why? With sandy ramparts, sea-blue boats, and a white-washed medina, the city creates a truly mesmerizing impact on its visitors.

Top attractions of the city are:

Essaouira Medina: A UNESCO-listed gem from the 18th century, adorned with street vendors, souqs, and art galleries.

Skala de la Ville: Explore the wind-lashed ramparts for breathtaking sea and sunset views.

The Port: Immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere as fishermen repair nets, unload the day’s catch, and craft traditional wooden boats.

Fish Auction: Witness the vibrant fish auction at the port in the afternoon, and savor fresh, grilled seafood from the charming food stalls lining the harbor.

The Beach: Enjoy the golden sand beach, ideal for leisurely walks and thrilling kitesurfing. During low tide, cross the Ksob River to discover the ruins of Borg El Berod and stroll to the village of Diabat.

Casablanca

For a contemporary vibe, explore Casablanca, a unique city showcasing “Mauresque” architecture, blending traditional Moroccan elements with 20th-century art-deco designs. It serves as a hub for the nation’s flourishing creative industries.

Top attraction of the city are:

The Hassan II Mosque stands as one of the globe’s largest mosques, a prayer hall accommodating 25,000 individuals and an outer courtyard capable of hosting an additional 80,000

The Promenade Maritime de la Mosquée Hassan II, a transformative urban project, has converted the stretch from the mosque to the El Hank lighthouse into a vibrant public space adorned with gardens and cafés.

 Abderrahman Slaoui Foundation Museum, once a private residence and now a museum housing an extraordinary collection of Moroccan decorative arts.

Tips to enjoy the Trip

  • Don’t forget the Hammam experience to revitalize yourself.
  • Enjoy being a foodie at Jemaa el-Fna Square and explore every specialty from snail soup to chebakia (deep-fried dough coated in sesame seeds). 
  • Stroll around Fez medina’s 9,000-plus streets and alleyways.
  • Enjoy a sip of mint tea while watching the sunset over Chefchaouen
  • Treat yourself with shopping while bargaining. 
  • Indulge in sea food while watching fish auction.

You’re all set to plan a trip to Morocco!

Bon voyage..!

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