Marrakech, located in the foothills of the snow covered Atlas Mountains, beautifully combines the old and the new. The Djeema El Fna Square is the center of activity and at dusk is an exciting venue with its musicians, variety of foods, snake charmers and storytellers.
Fez, the former medieval capital, has one of the best preserved walled medinas (old city) in the Arab world with its special sights, sounds and smells and an excellent place to purchase leather goods.
Nearby is Meknes, a modern laid-back city where you can view the Roman ruins of Volubilis. In the south is Ouarzazate, a UNESCO world heritage site with some of the best preserved Kasbahs. It is from here that you can spend a night in the Sahara Desert.
Hassan II Mosque, Casablanca, Morocco
The Hassan II Mosque is a mosque in Casablanca, Morocco. It is the largest mosque in the country and the 7th largest in the world. Its minaret is the world's tallest at 210 metres (689 ft). The minaret is 60 stories high topped by a laser, the light from which is directed towards Mecca. The mosque stands on a promontory looking out to the Atlantic Ocean, the sea bed being visible through the glass floor of the building's hall. The walls are of hand-crafted marble and the roof is retractable. A maximum of 105,000 worshippers can gather together for prayer: 25,000 inside the mosque hall and another 80,000 on the mosque's outside grounds.
The city of Tetouan, on the Mediterranean and gateway to the Rif mountains, has a medina which again is a UNESCO world heritage site.
For pure relaxation, Agadir, on the Atlantic coast, is the best known beach resort with its natural parks, secluded beaches and excellent surf.
Tangier on the Mediterranean, is another relaxation choice with its unspoiled beaches which combine nicely with its exotic old areas.
Essaouira – An ancient sea-side town newly rediscovered by tourists. From mid-June to August the beaches are packed but any other time and you'll be the only person there. Nearest Coast from Marrakech
Morocco is one of the most unique and wonderful places you could ever visit. The color and bustle of the medieval medinas and the amazing diversity offered throughout the country are an unforgettable experience. People are friendly, and the culture is rich and deep. Moroccan people love mint tea and couscous.
The most traditional clothing in Morocco is a djellaba. Djellabas are loose fitting garments that you put over whatever you are wearing, and serve well to hide your figure. There are djellabas for both men and women, however, women more commonly wear them. Morocco ’s traditional clothing also includes kaftans, which are usually worn for weddings and celebrations. The difference between a djellaba and a kaftan is that kaftans do not have a hood, and they are often fancier. However, dress codes are really varied in Morocco. While some are expected to fully cover up with a djellaba and head covering, many walk around in t-shirts and tight jeans. Factors include marital status, age, family and location. Dress for men is a little easier; however, they are rarely seen wearing shorts.
Mountains and Desert
From Saharan dunes to the peaks of the High Atlas, Morocco’s beautiful and diverse landscape is a delight for travelers. The mountains – not just the famous High Atlas but also the Rif and suntanned ranges leading to Saharan oases offer breath taking scenery and beautiful night skies. On lower ground, there are beautiful coastlines, waterfalls and caves in forested hills, and the exotic and unforgiving Sahara desert. The road are generally very well maintained if you feel like driving, but there is also a comprehensive train network that will take you to most of the main cities.
There are lots of available activities - hiking up Atlas Mountains, camel trekking, shopping in the souks and medina, and enjoying spa like atmosphere in the hammam. The famous riads offer nice accommodation.
Often exotic, sometimes overwhelming and always unexpected, these ancient centres are bursting with mystique: the perfect complement to the serene countryside. When you hit town and join the crowds, you follow a fine tradition of nomads and traders stretching back centuries. Unesco has bestowed World Heritage status on medinas including Fez, the world’s largest living medieval Islamic city, and the Djemaa el-Fna in Marrakech.
Fast Facts on Morocco
Morocco Travel Information – Fast Facts
Fast Facts Overview:
Official Name: Kingdom of Morocco
Official language: Arabic
Major Religion: Islam
Government: Constitutional Monarchy
King: Muhammad VI
Population: 31.6 million
International dialling code: +212
Visas:Citizens of the US, Canada, UK, EU, Australia and New Zealand are granted 3 month visa stamps upon arrival. All visitors require a passport.
Morocco is an exotic gateway to Africa; Morocco is a North African country that has a coastline on both the North Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. The Western Sahara is part of Morocco to the south, Algeria to the east and the Spanish North African territories of Ceuta and Melilla on the Mediterranean coast in the north. It is just across the Strait of Gibraltar from Gibraltar, Spain. It has excellent beach resorts, snow-capped mountains, and the colorful Sahara Desert. It is a country influenced by Roman, Arab, Berber and French civilizations.
The largest city is Casablanca - it is an industrial and economic center with beaches along on the Atlantic Ocean. The beautiful Al Hassan Mosque is in Casablanca. Rabat, the capital, is on the Atlantic Ocean. Worth visiting are the Kasbah (market), Hassan Tower and the Royal Mausoleum and Palace.