Morocco is one of those unique destinations that will capture your heart the moment you step off the plane. If the country isn’t already on your travel list, WHY NOT?! A true wake up call for all your senses, exploring Morocco is the adventure we’ll all need once we can get out and explore the world again.
Expect a taste of ancient Arabic culture mixed with European influence and cuisine you won’t be able to forget. A trip here could mean waking up in the Sahara Desert, surfing the waves along Morocco’s coasts or hiking in the Atlas Mountains as you learn about Berber culture. To help you prepare for your next adventure, we’ve narrowed down the best places to visit in Morocco – that happen to be outstandingly beautiful. And if you’re looking for a packing list, we’ve got that too. Let’s go!
Prepare to lose yourself in this maze-like metropolis as you wander through what’s known as “The Red City,” one of the best cities in Morocco. Leave the map behind and follow your feet (or nose) to explore the country’s biggest souks – AKA markets – through dwindling streets all leading to another ancient spice shop, carpet stall, shoe maker or locals offering the traditional fare like kebabs, tagine, harira or grilled sardines. Did we mention bring your appetite? As the sun sets, the city’s famed night market, Jemaa El Fnaa, lights up where you can find storytellers, artists, snake charmers and mystical dancers. Plus, enjoy a Special Stay on this Morocco trip at Riad Africa with two swimming pools, a traditional spa, a rooftop restaurant and a cooking school.
Wondering where to find your best Insta shot? Look no further than Le Jardin Marjorelle, one of the best places to visit in Marrakech which was actually rediscovered by Yves Saint-Laurent in the 1980s. Look for the electric blue, yellow and white villa in the middle of the garden for that perfect shot and check out the 300 species of exotic plants surrounding – you won’t want to miss this!
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36 hours in Marrakech
Fez is the oldest of Morocco’s imperial cities and is growing in popularity for Morocco vacations. It’s surrounded by hills covered with olive groves and orchards. One of the most fascinating attractions in Morocco and particularly in Fez, is the leather tannery. In the middle of it all, surrounded by mysterious labyrinth lanes and staircases, lies Fès el-Bali. This is the heart of the ancient walled medina with car-free lanes and adorned entryways like Bab Guissa and The Blue Gate. A Local Guide shares all the secrets of mysterious Fez on this Iberian Peninsula and Morocco Contiki trip and shows you where to find the drool-worthy Co-operative of Handmade Carpets for a perfect souvenir. You might notice the French influence along the spectacular boulevards of Ville Nouvelle, one of the best places to visit in Morocco, where the French created palm-lined avenues and fountains to decorate their lavish hotel centres.
As one of Morocco’s largest cities, Casablanca is the main gateway to Morocco for travellers, plus the city set the scene for the classic romance movie from 1942 (haven’t seen it? That’s your eve sorted). Today, Casablanca is Morocco’s powerhouse and travellers can discover its past through the old downtown area, which you can do on this trip. Head to Rick’s Café, the famous bar from the Casablanca movie. One of Morocco’s landmarks that the country is known for is the massive Hassan II Mosque, while the Cathedral du Sacre Coeur is one of its most beautiful. Built in the 1930s, this impressive cathedral is a blend of both European and Moroccan style – a theme you’ll notice throughout the country. Check out Casablanca’s Corniche (beachfront district) in the Ain Diab suburb. You’ll get a chance to see how locals live as they head to the shore for chill out vibes. Count us in.
A sweet seaside town, Essaouira will get you away from the hustle and bustle of cities like Fez and Marrakech. It’s made for seafood lovers and water babies, and you can try surfing, kitesurfing and windsurfing here. You’ll feel that hipster vibe with colourful fishing boats lining the harbour and new mazes to discover in the old town. White-washed homes with cobalt blue shutters make it feel like you’re on an exotic island. Morocco’s beach resorts are unmissable so come see what life feels like on Morocco’s Atlantic coastline. Btw, back in the 1960s, this spot was a popular hangout for stars like Jimi Hendrix and Bob Marley.
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What to pack for a trip to Morocco
Another chilled-out but fun beach town is now considered one of the best places to visit in Morocco – but it didn’t used to be that way. Agadir was destroyed by an earthquake in 1960, though you wouldn’t know if you visited today. Unlike nearby Essaouira, Agadir has a beautiful stretch of sand and it isn’t as windy as its neighbour. Chill on the beach, stroll along the beachfront boulevard or hike to Souss-Massa National Park to check out the views from the 33,800-hectare national park. Since you’ll already be in vacation beach mode, why not pamper yourself at a hammam? Agadir is full of them!
6. Jebel Toubkal
If you’re one of those people who thinks nothing worthwhile comes easy, hiking to the peak of Jebel Toubkal is for you. At 13,671 feet (or 4,167 meters) this is for more experienced trekkers, given its high altitude with roughly 40% less oxygen than at sea level. But anything is possible, right? From the highest point of the Atlas Mountains, Morocco, North Africa and the Arab World, the views are out of this world. Toubkal National Park is also a beautiful place to explore if you don’t think you can make it to the top. For an easier climb, hike during the spring months as Jebel Toubkal is one of the best places to visit in Morocco in May.
7. Todra Gorge (or Morocco’s Grand Canyon)
Found in the province of Tinghir, Todra Gorge is considered a natural oasis in Morocco’s mountains, where the canyon walls can reach 400 meters in height. You can stay overnight at the mouth of the gorge and dive into Berber culture in surrounding areas like Amtoudi Village which is still home to Berber tribes. The Todra Palmeraie is another must-see, lined with palm trees, olive groves and vegetable gardens. Side note: Todra Gorge is also an ideal spot for rock climbers and is known as one of the best spots climbing areas in the world, with routes for every level.
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Why Morocco Is A Once In A Lifetime Kind Of Adventure For All
As Morocco’s ‘Little Hollywood,’ Ouarzazate is one of the best places to visit in Morocco if you’re a Game of Thrones fan. Visit Ait Ben Haddou, a UNESCO World Heritage Centre, as this is where some of season 3’s GOT episodes were shot. Catch the sunrise or sunset here for a truly epic experience. Before the show drew attention to the area and boosted Morocco’s tourism, Ouarzazate was also the filming location for The Mummy and the classic movie, Lawrence of Arabia. Plus, the city holds miles of unpaved and dusty roads which make for a perfect quad biking adventure. If you’re into 4x4s and epic adventures, head to Ouarzazate.
For a once-in-a-lifetime experience, travel to the edge of the Saharan sand dunes – AKA Erg Chebbi. Fun fact: ‘ergs’ are large areas of dunes formed by wind-blown sand and this one spans 28 kilometres from north to south, while reaching heights of up to 160 meters. Beyond Erg Chebbi is Merzouga, a small-town offering a glimpse into Bedouin life and the best way to get here is on camel back – a genuinely unforgettable experience. The Sahara Desert is one of the best places to visit in Morocco in December as temperatures are still high but more pleasant. Camp overnight in the desert and take in the black-lit sky for a story to tell your grandkids one day.
The Blue Pearl city is one of the best places to visit in Morocco, especially for your TikTok and Insta feeds. Nestled in the Rif Mountain in the north-western part of Morocco, the city is painted different shades of blue and legend has it that the colour was used to represent the divine sky back in the 15th century. Beyond taking incredible pics, explore the unique medina, with a harmonious balance of Moroccan and Andalusian influence. Love OJ? Taste what they call “the best orange juice on earth” here, you’ll thank us later. For you active travellers, enjoy a waterfall hike at Cascades d’Akchour which are a pair of waterfalls with rich vegetation culminating in a crystalline turquoise pool. Pure magic awaits.
While Assilah is a favourite Morocco location for locals, it’s an oft overlooked jewel by travellers. Think striking white buildings, a gorgeous coastline and best of all, vibrant artwork decorating the city walls, which change every year. The walls also offer perfect photo backdrops and are refreshing, in comparison to the medina walls in traditional or historical cities like Fez or Marrakech. Add Assilah to the list or come visit with us on our Spain, Portugal and Morocco trip to experience the funky, artsy side of Morocco, where Spanish and Moroccan traditions collide.
These are just a few of the many incredible spots Morocco has to offer. As a country with so much diversity, there’s truly something for everyone so get on it and book your next adventure. With warm hospitality seen throughout the country, you’ll be welcomed with open arms and a Moroccan mint tea. Bliss.