Morocco is located on the extreme northwestern corner of the African continent bordered by Mauritania and Algeria to the south and the east. The coastline of Morocco is on the Mediterranean Sea as well as the Atlantic Ocean. The western coast faces the Atlantic and is characterised by sandy beaches. To the south-east of Morocco is the Sahara desert, the hottest desert in the world and the third-largest after Antarctica and the Arctic.
Why Consider a Morocco Vacation?
Exotic is the first word that comes to mind to describe Morocco. Ancient cities exude a mysterious ambience leaving you with a strong impression. Also add into the mix, excellent beach resorts, snow-capped mountains, cedar forests, orange groves and the colourful Sahara Desert. It is a country influenced by Roman, Arab, Berber and French civilizations to be experienced on Morocco vacations.
Best Time To Visit Morocco
The best time to visit Morocco is during spring (mid-March to May) or autumn (September to October). The weather is warm but pleasant, unlike the cold temperatures and snow of winter, or the scorching heat of summer.
The coastal regions can be visited year-round. In the winter they are pleasantly mild, while in the summer they bask in temperatures hovering around the mid-20°Cs.
The High Atlas Mountains can also be visited all year round, although it does get cold in winter. The summer may still be a bit hot to embark on any long-distance hikes, but if the heat doesn’t bother you then conditions are fine any time between April and October. Outside these months, there is snow on the peaks, which makes hiking more dangerous, but creates some spectacular panoramas.
The Islamic festival of Ramadan will affect transport in Morocco. The dates vary each year, so it’s worth checking what they are while planning your trip.
15. Best Places To Visit In Morocco
#1 Best Places To Visit In Morocco
Meknes is made up of the old (medina) and the new (ville nouvelle); two distinct centres less than three miles apart but harnessing quite different vibes. The medina holds the city’s historic sights and sought-after romantic flavour, while in the ville nouvelle you’ll find big houses, modern cars and branded takeaways.
You’ll find everything from specialist souks selling crafts and swathes of textiles, to knock-off trainers, souvenirs and carpets in the medina. At its heart is the twelfth-century Grand Mosque (although this is closed to non-Muslims), while teahouses in secret courtyards, ornate riads, and the odd hard-working donkey add to the atmosphere.
If you’re in the mood for more shopping, head to the market sandwiched between the medina and old Mellah (the old Jewish quarter, worth a peek for its distinctive architecture). Juicy oranges, cart-loads of red chillies, dried grains and precariously stacked bowls of olives sit alongside everyday items such as kids’ toys, kitchen appliances and piles of underwear.
#2 Best Places To Visit In Morocco
A peaceful town on the northern coast of Morocco, Asilah is a tranquil and beautiful destination on the Atlantic Coast. Offering a refuge from the nearby bustling cities of Tangier and Tetouan, Asilah features deserted, quiet beaches and a relaxing atmosphere. The town has Mediterranean-influenced buildings, including whitewashed houses with blue accents on walls and doors. The array of houses decorated with paintings highlights the island’s reputation as an artists’ hangout.
The town is sleepy for most of the year, but in the summer months its population triples and the streets and town beach are crammed with sun-seeking Moroccan and Spanish families, some of whom retain holiday houses here. The best time to visit is in spring or autumn when the weather is still pleasant but the holiday hordes have left.
3. High Atlas
#3 Best Places To Visit In Morocco
High Atlas mountain range of Morocco, invites you on an exciting trekking vacation. The region offers you a visual treat with the majestic countryside dotted with walnut and cherry trees stretching as far as the eye can see. The view of the valley from one of many vantage points is not to be missed. Besides being a popular trailhead, the quaint hamlet has a cluster of shops showcasing a variety of local crafts and produce as well as trekking supplies.
Here, you get to see firsthand how the funds that tourism brings in are channelized into developmental projects such as facilitating waste management and constructing a community hammam (Turkish bath). From Villages like Imlil, you could also attempt to scale Jbel Toubkal, North Africa’s highest mountain at 4167 meters.
4. Essaouira (Mogador)
#4 Best Places To Visit In Morocco
Bright and breezy Essaouira, on Morocco’s Atlantic coast, is an enchanting, laid-back alternative to the frenetic melting-pot of Marrakesh. The town’s name means “little picture” in Arabic, and it’s a painter’s dream location, with a vibrant blue-and-white “medina” (inner walled city), enclosed by fairy-tale, sand-coloured ramparts and imposing stone gates (“Babs”). Beyond the colourful port, rolling waves and a wide buttery beach stretching for miles complete the canvas.
The bustling medina is much easier to navigate than you’d imagine. A series of linked streets forms a central spine leading directly from the northern gate, Bab Doukkala, to the main square of Place Moulay Hassan, by the waterfront. Tiny passageways and pungent souks splay outwards like fish-bones.
#5 Best Places To Visit In Morocco
Chefchaouen is situated in the heart of Morocco’s Rif Mountains. Chefchaouen (sometimes called Chaouen) is relaxed, with very affordable accommodations, and above all, quite stunning to look at. The streets and most of the buildings in the old part of town (medina) are painted a most brilliant sky blue.
The mountains which you can see at the end of every cobbled street are rugged and majestic. The clear mountain light just adds a magical touch to the place. It’s no wonder that Chefchaouen is a favorite destination for backpackers visiting Morocco (and it’s not just the readily available supply of hashish). The main square in the medina is lined with cafes and filled to the brim with locals and tourist mingling easily.
6. Sahara Desert
#6 Best Places To Visit In Morocco
Few places on earth compare to the Sahara Desert, a natural wonder of vast plains and sun-baked dunes that dominates the south and east of Morocco. The world’s largest hot desert, the Sahara stretches a staggering 5.6 million square miles (9 million square kilometers) over several countries. Hemmed in by the Atlas mountain range, the Saharan sands are one of Morocco’s many highlights.
The best time to for visiting the Sahara Desert in Morocco is between October and May. Daytime temperatures are mild and it will generally be dry with humidity as low as 10%, with sandstorms more frequent from January. During the Moroccan winter, especially between December and early February, night temperatures drop, sometimes below freezing.
The summer months of June to September can be unbearably hot with July and August daytime highs often crossing 50°c. Many campsites close and activities do not take place during these months.
#7 Best Places To Visit In Morocco
Colorful souks, Moorish architecture, intimate gardens and boutique hotels–Marrakesh is unforgettable. Spend your days exploring the quiet courtyards and snaking alleyways of the historic Medina, walking through the serene Jardin Majorelle or taking in the beauty of the city’s mosques before ending the evening at a one-of-a-kind riad.
You will be able to admire all the architectural richness of the Medina, upon visiting one of its many riads, small oriental palaces overlooking a beautiful patio. You can also relax and recharge at the Menara, a vast garden with an emblematic basin. Marrakech shower its visitors by its splendour and its diversity, you just have to leave the ramparts to be immersed in modern Morocco. The districts of Gueliz and Hivernage offer the most modern infrastructures, luxury boutiques and international ready-to-wear stores, airy avenues ; which all contribute to Marrakech’s unique offering.
#8 Best Places To Visit In Morocco
In the atlantic coast of Africa you’ll breathe the energy of modernity and live with glow in the biggest moroccan industrial and trade centre. On the other side of the coin, Casablanca distinguishes from other cities of Morocco through its european side that, in spite of everything, doesn’t overshadows the traditional arabic roots of some of its most hidden places. Get in the streets of this city and find the nightlife and the commercial offer of boutiques and stores that fill in the palm avenues.
In Corniche (the famous avenue by the sea) you’ll be presented with lots of restaurants and nightclubs that promise fun and relax. With a hollywood-like environment, Casablanca is a city of passage for thousands of wondered tourists.
#9 Best Places To Visit In Morocco
Setting out for Ouarzazate, Zagora, Tinghir is going for an extraordinary journey brimming with a breathtaking wonders. The region reveals to its visitors a diversity of incredible landscapes, from the singular atmosphere of the desert to the picturesque green valleys.
It’s not a surprise that David Lean, Ridley Scot, Martin Scorsese or Alejandro González Iñárritu, have chosen this destination, just like their forefathers did who became famous for filming the record-breaking “Lawrence of Arabia”, “Gladiator”, “Kundun”, “Babel” and mots recently “Prison Break”.
Thrill seekers who eager for adventure and trekking, will find many tracks to take you to the edge of the desert. Meet camel drivers and their caravans at the crossroads of the roads of Draâ, Ziz and Dades,
#10 Best Places To Visit In Morocco
Rabat is a cultural city deep-rooted in history. Many masterpieces decorate its streets and squares. Visit the Kasbah des Oudayas which is a majestic and splendid architecture embellished by the surrounding gardens. Not far from the walls, stand the imposing walls of the Chellah ; a necropolis from the time of the Merinids. Crossing the walls is like entering another world ; walk among ancient vestiges, gardens and storks.
Rabat is also a modern eco-responsible capital with its green spaces. Beautiful parks await you, such as the botanical test garden or the Exotic Gardens of Bouknadel which is a few kilometres from the city. Rabat boasts an outstanding coastline ; on the Atlantic Ocean shores, it has kilometres of well equipped beaches that lead to the neighbouring city of Casablanca.
With its modern infrastructures and various festivals, Rabat is a living city. Airport, tram, shopping centres, cafés and restaurants, all the amenities are within your reach. Revel in bustling vibes of music that Rabat celebrates like no other city ; from Mawazine, to Jazz au Chellah and many others that fill the atmosphere with sounds and rhythms from all over the world !