By far, Eid al-Adha is the most important holiday for Muslims around the world. It occurs two lunar months after the end of Ramadan. Confusingly, Eid al-Adha called by many different names. Eid el-Kbir (often spelled “Eid el-Kbeer, “Aid al-Kébir” and other variations) is really common. It translates to “The Big Holiday”. With francophiles, la fête du mouton (“sheep festival”) is also common. (more…)
Morocco isn’t just winding souks and desert dunes: it’s also 1,200 miles of coastline running along the Atlantic Ocean all the way to the Mediterranean Sea. Along the coast, charming harbors, busy fishing ports and picturesque beach towns abound – they’re just as diverse as Morocco’s interior. There are many Moroccan coastal towns waiting to be explored, most of which are completely off the radar destinations.
Aside from Agadir and its package holiday resorts, most of Morocco’s coastal towns actually remain largely untouched making them ideal for laid back travelers curious to get to know Morocco off the beaten path. From stress-free medinas to incredible mountain backdrops, our top 5 Moroccan coastal towns have it all. Take your pick and spend your Moroccan getaway taking easy strolls along the beach.(more…)
Morocco is probably one of the most kid-friendly countries I have ever travelled. As soon as I started taking trains, buses, taxis and visiting the souks with my kid, an entirely different country opened up before my eyes. I hate to stereotype, but it really does seem to me that most Moroccans have an extra warm, fuzzy, soft spot in their heart for children. If you spend anytime with a Moroccan family, you can see how this might be. At home, the kids really do rule the roost. Read on for some great tips and insider notes as we bring you our Parent’s Guide to Morocco. (more…)
Essaouira, formerly known as Mogador, boasts a history as vibrant as its striking blue and white architecture. This coastal jewel has witnessed civilizations come and go, each leaving their mark on its character. With a wide array of cultures and experiences in a very human-sized city, today’s Essaouira has a well deserved place on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.(more…)
Morocco is a land of mountains, deserts, medieval cities, roman ruins and more than a few familiar movie locations. Thinking about Morocco and film undoubtedly conjures up images of Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman in the 1942 American classic, Casablanca. Ironically none of Casablanca was filmed in Morocco, but many classics were, such as Lawrence of Arabia, Alfred Hitchcock’s The Man Who Knew To Much, and Bertolucci’s The Sheltering Sky. More recently, not one but two James Bonds have been seen giving chase across the Tangier rooftops, while other hits like Gladiator, The Mummy and Game of Thrones were filmed on locations across the country.
As I stepped foot on the sun-kissed shores of El Jadida, a Moroccan coastal city steeped in history, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of wonder. This hidden gem, with its blend of Portuguese and Moroccan influences, promised to unveil a world of mesmerizing beauty and captivating tales. I found myself enchanted by the city’s UNESCO Heritage sites, which stood as testaments to its rich cultural heritage and historical significance. Join me as we embark on a journey through time and explore the wonders of El Jadida, where every corner holds a piece of a dreamy past.(more…)
Morocco is home to an impressive 9 UNESCO World Heritage Sites! These sites are dotted throughout the country, from expected places like Marrakesh and Fez, to Tetouan, a relatively untouristed northern city, and on to the desert lands of the Sahara. If you are a lover of history and culture, it makes a lot of sense to use these sites as pillars or totems for your own tour of Morocco.
Fez, one of Morocco’s most enchanting cities, is a treasure trove of cultural heritage. Steeped in history and boasting a rich tapestry of architectural wonders, Fez has been recognized by UNESCO for its exceptional universal value as early as 1981. For amateurs of history, architecture, crafts and arts alike, the several Fez UNESCO World Heritage sites are very well deserving of a spot on any bucket list.(more…)
Rabat is home to several UNESCO World Heritage sites that showcase the city’s rich cultural and historical heritage. These landmarks are an absolute must for anyone who wishes to visit the city and explore what makes it so special.(more…)
Morocco is a country that offers visitors an authentic culinary experience, where they can taste the richness of the country’s history and culture. A great way to explore the local food scene is to hit the streets and indulge in the vast array of street food. Street food is an integral part of the Moroccan culinary scene, where locals and tourists alike can enjoy a variety of delicious and affordable dishes. The smell of freshly baked bread, the sizzling of spices, and the aroma of charcoal-grilled meats waft through the air, inviting you to try the delicacies on offer.
I was too ambitious with the day. With Lahsen, my friend and driver, I had hiked to the top of Mount Zagore and back down to Zagora. Afterward I fingered the deep green pottery of Tamegroute and lingered in the mudwalled ksar of Amezrou, breathing in history. It was no surprise it was a swift sunset, as it always seems to be in the Sahara. Quickly the dark folded around us as the 4×4 bounced over the rock strewn path. It was my fault we were trekking through the Sahara to our camp in the dark, headlights violently bouncing with the 4×4. Suddenly, Lahsen slammed the brakes and we skidded to a quick stop. A creature loped toward us. I thought it was a dromedary, common across this part of the Sahara. But I was wrong. The shadow of the creature gave way to two great horns gleaming in the headlights. (more…)
For many travelers the question isn’t if you’ll be traveling or when you’ll be traveling. It’s a matter of where you’ll be traveling. Where do you want to go on your dream vacation? Where should you spend your beach getaway to relax after a hectic month at the office? Where will you be taking that once-in-a-lifetime family trip? If you’re reading this, you probably already know where you’re going: Destination Morocco! (more…)
Tangier is a history full of odd ducks and strange corners of history. You probably know that for the first half of the 20th century, it was a popular haunt for oil barons and shipping magnates, bankers and spies, thieves and artists. (more…)
The prickly pear is a fruit Moroccans love to eat and love to hate! It’s appropriately named for its spiky outer shell, and the fact that it is the fruit of the cacti plant. If you look out the window during your Moroccan road trip, you will notice an impressive number of these prickly pear cacti pretty much everywhere! (more…)
My girls emphatically insist on seeing gaudy, kilowatt-sucking, elaborate red-and-white, Rudolph, Frosty and Santa-inspired holiday decorations at the same time as everyone else in the United States – the day after Halloween. It doesn’t matter that they have never lived in the US. And, it doesn’t matter that Halloween hasn’t exactly a been “traditional” holiday anywhere we have lived, whether that was in Central or West Africa or, these days, Morocco. (more…)
Here’s our top reasons why Santa Claus may wish to re-think his Christmas delivery strategy – using camels instead of reindeer this year! (more…)
If you’re looking to get away when the temperature plummets and the snow starts falling from above, why not consider spending Christmas in Morocco? While many travelers from the Northern Hemisphere initially consider a European destination for their winter holidays, a multitude of savvy travelers are choosing to spend their holiday in Morocco. With it’s sunny skies, colorful allure, and variety of cultures and landscapes, Morocco is becoming one of the most sought-after destinations for travelers looking for some winter warmth. (more…)
The souks of Morocco are chock full of the perfect gifts for your special someone. Whether you’re looking for something small for a stocking stuffer or something a bit larger to toss into Santa’s sleigh, the likelihood of you making a big holiday splash with unique, often handmade gifts is assured. (more…)
Traveling in Morocco, you are bound to trip across one of the most defining characteristics of the country – the Berbers. As the original inhabitants of Morocco, they are rightly proud of the contributions they have made in shaping the country. With a unique language and culture, the Berbers stand out as one of last bastions of tradition in an ever-modernizing society; while even the oldest villagers now happily chat on cell phones, they do so in a tongue almost impenetrable to anyone from the outside world.
Many travelers today associate Morocco with hashish (kif), but although the country’s production of the drug is centuries old, it was not until the early 1970s that Morocco became internationally recognized for it…
Riding a camel across the undulating dunes of the Moroccan Sahara is unquestionably the stuff that holiday memories are made of. Any element of discomfort will fade into the distance, along with the recollection of any aching muscles when you shake the sand out of your shoes and remember the sunsets…
When the LGBTQ+ communities were being persecuted in Europe, centers in Morocco like Tangier and Marrakesh were seen as safe spaces. Not only are they wonderful destinations in their own right, but the local populations have a sort of worldly ‘been there, seen that’ attitude of acceptance. In many ways, this remains true even today.
There are very few places on Earth that compare to the incredible landscapes you’ll see visiting the Sahara Desert. Running roughly north-south along Morocco’s eastern border with neighboring Algeria, the Sahara Desert is the world’s largest hot desert. In fact, the Sahara covers an area roughly the size of the entire United States. Many travelers visit Morocco specifically with the intention of venturing off into the desert and spending a night under the stars. And we can’t blame them! A desert adventure is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity you shouldn’t miss out on. (more…)
Take the road from Erfoud to Ouarzazate and you will find yourself driving along what is commonly known as the Road of One Thousand Kasbahs. You’ll catch a spectacular view of a vast valley dotted with small oases and hundreds of ancient fortifications. The sand-colored walls of the kasbahs may all start to look the same after a while, but don’t be fooled: they each hold a special historical treasure within.
Now, more than ever, it’s easy to stay connected with your loved ones back home while you’re traveling to Morocco. Sporting a very robust network, with 4g cellular capability in major cities as well as much of the countryside, you should have no problems using popular programs like WhatsApp and Facetime to keep in touch. And where 4g is unavailable, a surprisingly quick 3g connection is often found. (more…)
Moroccan culture is steeped in tradition. It permeates every facet of life, from the kitchen and dinner table to the street corner and school; even language holds to traditional mores. There are certain Moroccan phrases or sayings that come almost automatically to Moroccans. If you enter a room, a taxi or a shop, you must greet everyone with a rousing hello. Those around you will answer in turn. To do otherwise would simply be … wrong. (more…)
You’ve booked your ticket to Morocco, now you need to decide where to stay. After all, you’ll need a place to sleep, shower and relax between riding camels on the beach, shopping for handmade rugs and eating couscous on your holiday to Morocco. While there are a variety of chain hotels and luxury resorts available throughout the country, every visitor should strongly consider spending at least a few nights in a Moroccan Riad.
Although demoted from the position of Morocco’s capital city, there is little doubt that Morocco’s former capital, the city of Fez, remains one of the most important cities in the entire country. Fez was the capital of Morocco for over four centuries, and it still remains the cultural center of the country, as well as one of the most important religious centers. The city was founded in the late 8th century, and a large part of Fez remains a medieval city in design, a visual proof of the city’s history and culture.
Until 1925 Fez was the modern capital of Morocco and it retains its prestige as one of the most enchanting and enriching cities in the country. Home to the world’s largest car-free city center and the world’s oldest functioning university, it’s no surprise Fez is listed as a UNESCO world heritage site and a must-visit on tourist radars. Before you pack your bags and visit Fez, here are ten articles for you to read, get prepared, and make sure you get the most out of your visit to this ancient city. (more…)
While many a tourist and traveler to Tangier spend their time immersed in the medina and navigating the kasbah – if fresh air and flora is your thing, there are some wonderful outdoor spaces to explore. One of these pockets of nature is Donabo Botanical Gardens, located in the forest conservation area of the same name.