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Ait Ben Haddou, Morocco
Ait Ben Haddou, Morocco by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash.

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Morocco Travel and Tourism on Travel Notes

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Find Morocco Travel and Tourist Information with links to official travel and tourism websites and state resources for visitors to Morocco.

About Morocco

With a rich history, vibrant culture, and diverse landscapes, Morocco's attractions include Marrakech, Fez, Casablanca, Chefchaouen, and the Sahara Desert.

Whether you're exploring the bustling cities or immersing yourself in the tranquility of the desert, Morocco promises an unique and memorable experience.

Countries neighbouring Morocco: Western Sahara and Algeria.

Travel Map Mapping Morocco

Map of Morocco

Map of Morocco 

Morocco is a country located in North Africa, bordered by the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea to the west and north, respectively.

Be sure to visit the historic cities of Marrakech and Fez, explore the stunning Atlas Mountains, and experience the unique cuisine and culture of the region.

Morocco shares a land border with Algeria to the east and south-east.

Morocco Overview

Morocco, Al Mamlakah al Maghribiyah in Arabic, is an hereditary monarchy.

The monarch must be male, and he appoints the prime minister and cabinet.

Morocco has a rich history and cultural heritage, blending Arab, Berber, and European influences.

Cities

Morocco is home to several fascinating cities.

Marrakech is known for its bustling medina (old city) with vibrant souks (markets), historic palaces, and the iconic Djemaa el-Fna square.

The capital city, Rabat, offers a blend of ancient and modern attractions, including the impressive Hassan Tower and the Kasbah of the Udayas.

Other notable cities include Fes, known for its well-preserved medieval old town, and Casablanca, a cosmopolitan city with modern architecture.

Culture

Moroccan culture is a vibrant mix of Arab, Berber, and French influences.

The majority of Moroccans practice Islam, which heavily influences their customs and traditions.

The country is renowned for its rich architecture, intricate handicrafts, lively music, and delicious cuisine, which includes dishes like couscous, tagines, and mint tea.

Festivals

Morocco hosts various cultural and religious festivals throughout the year.

One of the most famous is the annual Fes Festival of World Sacred Music, which brings together musicians and performers from around the world.

The Mawazine World Rhythms Festival in Rabat and the Gnaoua World Music Festival in Essaouira are also highly regarded events.

History

Morocco has a long and diverse history.

It was inhabited by Berber people for thousands of years before coming under Arab control in the 7th century.

The country has been influenced by various civilisations, including the Phoenicians, Romans, and Islamic dynasties.

In the early 20th century, Morocco came under French and Spanish protectorates before gaining independence in 1956.

Hospitality

Moroccans are known for their warm hospitality and welcoming nature.

It is common for visitors to be greeted with mint tea, a symbol of friendship.

Traditional Moroccan hospitality ensures that guests feel comfortable and enjoy their stay in the country.

Languages

The official languages of Morocco are Arabic and Amazigh (Berber).

French is also widely spoken, particularly in business and administration, due to the country's historical ties with France.

In tourist areas, English is often spoken and understood.

Natural Beauty

Morocco boasts diverse landscapes, from the Sahara Desert in the south to the Atlas Mountains in the centre.

The Atlas Mountains offer opportunities for trekking and hiking, with picturesque valleys and traditional Berber villages.

The country's coastline stretches along the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea, providing beautiful beaches, such as those in Essaouira and Agadir.

Tourism

Morocco is a popular tourist destination, attracting millions of visitors each year.

Travellers come to explore the vibrant markets, visit historic sites like the UNESCO-listed Medina of Fes, go on camel treks in the desert, or simply relax on the beach.

The country offers a range of accommodations, from luxurious riads (traditional houses) to budget-friendly hotels.

Morocco and Moroccans

Moroccans are descendants of the original Berbers, although fewer people are speaking the language.

From 1912 to 1956 Morocco was divided into French and Spanish protectorates.

The Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla, on the Mediterranean coast, are within Morocco, and several small islands off the northern coast of Morocco also belong to Spain.

The south-eastern boundary of Morocco, in the Sahara Desert, is still not well defined, and since 1979 Morocco has also occupied the neighbouring country of Western Sahara.

Morocco has been influenced by several ancient cultures, and more recently by the French.

Phoenician, Hellenic, Carthaginian, and Roman civilisations all passed through Morocco.

Christianity spread here in Roman times, but after the end of Byzantine rule in the late 7th century, Arabic influences, with its written language and the religion of Islam, remained the strongest.

At the height of the Almohad Empire, Morocco embraced most of north Africa, and large areas of Spain and Portugal.

The western African influence of dance also came from the south along the trade route.

The Archaeological Museum in Tetouan portrays this colourful history in its collections of Carthaginian, Roman, and Islamic art and artefacts.

Visiting Morocco

Morocco offers a captivating blend of history, culture, and natural beauty, making it an unique and enticing destination for travellers.

From bustling cities to stunning natural wonders, Morocco offers a wide range of experiences for visitors.

Morocco Highlights

When visiting Morocco, it's important to respect the local customs and traditions.

Dress modestly, especially when visiting religious sites, and be mindful of cultural norms.

Bargaining is common in markets, so feel free to negotiate prices.

Also, be cautious of tourist scams and take necessary precautions to ensure your safety.

Atlas Mountains

If you enjoy outdoor activities and beautiful landscapes, make sure to visit the Atlas Mountains.

Go hiking, trekking, or skiing, depending on the season, and admire the breathtaking vistas.

The High Atlas region is home to traditional Berber villages where you can learn about their way of life and enjoy their warm hospitality.

Casablanca

While often overshadowed by other cities, Casablanca is worth a visit for its modern and cosmopolitan atmosphere.

The Hassan II Mosque is a stunning architectural masterpiece and one of the largest mosques in the world.

Walk along the Corniche, a seaside promenade, and explore the vibrant neighbourhoods like the old medina and the Habous Quarter.

Chefchaouen

Known as the 'Blue City', Chefchaouen is famous for its picturesque streets and buildings painted in various shades of blue.

It's a great place to relax, wander through the narrow alleyways, and explore the local crafts and markets.

The nearby Rif Mountains offer hiking opportunities for nature lovers.

Fes

Fes is another must-visit city, renowned for its well-preserved medieval architecture.

The Medina of Fes el-Bali is an UNESCO World Heritage site and offers a maze of narrow streets, bustling markets, and traditional tanneries.

Be sure to visit the University of Al Quaraouiyine, one of the oldest continuously operating universities in the world.

Marrakech

Start your journey in Marrakech, one of Morocco's most famous cities.

Explore the lively Medina, visit the historic Bahia Palace, and wander through the vibrant souks (markets) filled with spices, textiles, and handicrafts.

Don't forget to visit the iconic Jardin Majorelle, a stunning garden designed by French painter Jacques Majorelle.

Moroccan Cuisine

Indulge in the rich and flavourful Moroccan cuisine.

Don't miss out on trying traditional dishes like tagine (slow-cooked stew), couscous, pastilla (a savory pastry), and mint tea.

Explore the local street food scene and savour the vibrant flavours and aromas of Moroccan spices.

Sahara Desert

A trip to Morocco wouldn't be complete without experiencing the Sahara Desert.

Take a camel trek into the dunes of Erg Chebbi or Erg Chigaga and spend a night in a traditional desert camp.

Witness breathtaking sunsets and stargaze under the clear desert sky for an unforgettable experience.

The Atlas Mountains

Morocco has the highest mountains in north Africa, tempting many skiers to the region in winter too.

The Atlas Mountains run across Morocco from the north-east of the country to the south-west.

Most Moroccans live along the Atlantic coast, so travel to the Atlas range can be quite an adventure.

Morocco Travel

Royal Air Maroc

Royal Air Maroc (AT) is the national airline although many other international airlines also fly to Morocco.

Capitalizing on Morocco's geographical location as a hub between Europe and Africa, Royal Air Maroc is positioning itself as an essential air player at the international level.

Thanks to Royal Air Maroc, Casablanca has become an essential platform for air connections between Africa and the rest of the world.

Royal Air Maroc connects all of Morocco with Casablanca and more than 105 destinations worldwide.

Charter flights from Europe also land in Tangier.

Moroccan Airports:
Arrivals and departures around Morocco.

Morocco by Train

ONCF trunk line trains run through the heart of Morocco connecting some one hundred stations spread out over 1,907km of track.

If you're looking to travel to Agadir, Tetouan, or Nador there are bus connections from Marrakech, Tanger and Taourirt respectively.

Tangier

Tangier is a seaport and tourist destination on a small bay of the Strait of Gibraltar.

Tangier was taken from the Arabs by the Portuguese in 1471, and given to Charles II of England as part of the dowry of Catherine of Braganza.

The English abandoned the city to the Moors, in 1684, because of continued piracy in the region.

Rabat

Rabat is the capital of Morocco.

Map of Rabat

Map of Rabat

The city's 12th century Hassan Tower, with its 55-metre minaret, is a major attraction for visitors. The national library is also in Rabat.

Other Moroccan Cities

Casablanca

You saw the film, now visit the largest city in the kingdom of Morocco.

Fez

Fez is a well preserved imperial city, rich in history. A visit to the old city is almost like being transported to another time.

Ouarzazate

Ouarzazate originated as a French outpost and is also a popular tourist area.

Around Morocco

Located between the snow of the Atlas and the sand of the desert, Kasbah Itran is a real balcony overlooking the life of Berber peoples in the Dades Valley.

South of the Souss Valley and beyond the western end of the Anti Atlas, Tiznit is an old walled medina town; originally the site of a cluster of Kasbahs, which were encircled in the 19th century by some 5km of pise wall.

Marrakech

Ringed by terracotta-red ramparts and palm-groves, filled with ancient Islamic monuments and superb restaurants, Morocco's accessible and exotic southern city is quickly becoming an international travel destination.

Founded in 1062, Marrakech was once the southern capital of the sultans and a visit to the old city is a must.

Roaming Camels

Roaming Camels Morocco:
Any company can get you to the mountains or the desert but only the best tour company will care about your experience along the way, so travel Morocco with a local guide to immerse yourself in this ancient land.

Marrakech Accommodation

Dar Ayniwen:
Set in a lush garden in the heart of the Marrakesh palm grove and only a ten minute drive from the city centre.

Moroccan Language

The official language of Morocco is Arabic, with French and Spanish also spoken. Less than 25 per cent of the population use Berber as their first language.

In tourist areas the touts can reel off a number of phrases in English, Dutch, German, and even Swedish.

Learning just a few Moroccan Arabic words and phrases will immediately set you apart from the average tourist, who simply relies upon French or English.

Moroccan Culture and Customs

No shorts, bare arms or shoulders.

After shaking hands with someone, touch your right hand to your heart as a sign of respect.

Use your right hand for shaking hands, eating out of a common dish and handling merchandise or money.

The left hand is commonly used to clean oneself after using the toilet and is considered insulting when used for any right hand activity.

Before taking pictures of people, ask their permission (your guide will help you with that). In rural areas women will almost never agree, and men only occasionally.

As a general rule: donkeys, landscapes and buildings don't mind having their pictures taken.

Adventures of Morocco

Mystique blends with fabulous nature, friendly people and excellent food. Add to that first class infrastructure, low prices and a very high level of security, and you have all the reasons to start planning your visit to a country that everyone should see at least once.

Morocco Maps and Travel Guides

Lonely Planet Morocco (Travel Guide) DK Eyewitness Morocco (Travel Guide)

Morocco Travel Guides - Morocco Maps.

Weather in Africa:
Local weather forecasts for destinations around Africa.

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