A trip to Morocco is like a trip to a magical Arab fairy tale with waterfalls, eternal snow on top of mountains, and tangerine trees. The famous Casablanca, the beaches of Agadir, the bustling markets of Marrakech, the majestic mosques of Rabat, the vast expanses of the Sahara Desert – all this is Morocco. Here are the top things you should know for your adventure in Morocco?
The Kingdom of Morocco is located in North Africa, bordering Algeria to the east. The northern shores of the country are washed by the Mediterranean Sea, the western shores by the Atlantic Ocean.
To enter Morocco for up to 90 days in advance to issue a visa is not necessary. Requirements for an international passport, too, are not strict: it must be valid at the time of entry. At the border, the passport is stamped with an entry stamp. Also need to fill out a migration card, so do not forget to bring a pen.
You can go to Morocco all year round – the beach season here lasts without interruption. On the Mediterranean coast, the water is warmer, but there are no major resorts. The ocean water, which washes the shores of Agadir and Casablanca, warms up to +21°C in summer.
The best time to go to Morocco is spring and early fall. On the beaches of Morocco, for example, in Agadir, you can rest in the summer – the ocean breeze helps to take the heat easily.
As in many Arab countries, the currency of Morocco is the dirham (MAD in the international classification). One Moroccan dirham has 100 centimes. For 5 Russian rubles, you get 1 dirham. It is most convenient to bring dollars or euros. The exchange rate at Moroccan exchange offices is about the same everywhere.
Morocco has hotels of all categories, from modest guest houses to large five-star hotels of world ranges. There are expensive hotels on the front line and cheaper hotels farther from the ocean. Be prepared for the fact that a three-star hotel may not have a pool. Meals in hotels in Morocco are most often based on half board, “all-inclusive” is found in large hotels of world brands.
Hotels can accommodate a group of students as well as couples. There are even special “youth” hotels in Morocco, where only young people go. Almost all of them are equipped with swimming pools and offer guests to take advantage of the services of the local massage parlors and beauty studios.
Lovers of relaxing on the sand are best to go to Agadir – a resort with long beaches, great weather, and a full range of maritime activities.
And for those who like to spend time looking at the local attractions, offer interesting excursions to the ancient Arab cities. From Agadir or Casablanca, you can go to Rabat with a huge number of museums of antiquities, beautiful Marrakech or Fez with colorful oriental bazaars. For even more exoticism you can get acquainted with the Berber tribal culture. Casablanca will appeal to those who like to walk along the waterfront and the authenticity of oriental cities with the comfort of modern hotels. Sports enthusiasts can recommend the windy coast of Essaouira.
In the center of Agadir is a beautiful and spacious tourist quarter, Boulevard Mohammed V. Wildlife lovers will love the Valley of the Birds Zoo. The market is worth a visit – hidden under bright canopies, it is jam-packed with all the amazing things you can find in Morocco. Wonderful ceramics, spices, leather shoes, carpets, and clothes – the variety is literally eye-opening.
The two most visited sites in Casablanca are the Mahakma do Pasha and the Hassan II Mosque. The Mahatma do Paşa is a huge white-washed building that used to be the residence of the ruler of Casablanca. The many sumptuous halls, courtyards, and galleries are decorated with elaborate carvings and mosaics. The mosque of Hassan II is a grandiose construction, second only to the mosque in Mecca in its beauty and grandeur.
Go to Marrakech to get to the Jemaa al-Fna square with lots of magicians and snake charmers, fortune tellers, and vendors of all kinds. After shopping, you can go to the Menara Garden at the foot of the Atlas Mountains.
In Morocco, couscous and lamb dishes are highly respected. The menu is full of vegetables and spices, which give the dishes a unique flavor and aroma. On major holidays, pigeon pie with pigeon meat and almonds is served. Tea drinking in Morocco is a true ritual. It is brewed with mint in a special way, poured into a glass from a teapot from a height to achieve foam. It is customary to serve pine nuts and dates with tea.
It is convenient to move around the resort towns either on foot or by cab. Be prepared for other passengers in a cab on the way. The average price of a cab ride in Morocco is 10 to 50 dirhams (usually not more than 10 dirhams per kilometer). High-speed trains run between cities. You can get to Casablanca from the capital, Fez, and Marrakech in a seated carriage. Intercity buses run more frequently and cost less, but because of their popularity, it is more difficult to buy tickets for them. Not to mention, many travel agencies in Morocco offer transportation, if you are in Morocco, Marrakech, there are many tourists who take the 3 days desert tour from Marrakech to Fes in order to experience the camel ride in the Sahara.
What to bring:
As souvenirs from Morocco, they bring embroidered leather shoes (Babushi, shoes without backs), painted earthenware, teapots, lamps, bedspreads. They often buy spice sets and tea as gifts.