I've had an amazing time in Morocco, but it's worth mentioning that it's not the safest country in the world and one needs to be more vigilant than you might be used to in Europe. A couple of recommendations I'd make in that connection:
- Don't travel alone - go with your partner / friends or join one of the guided group tours (an unfortunate reminder of how horrifyingly unsafe Morocco can be, was the news of "two Scandinavian tourists murdered in the High Atlas Mountains" in Dec'18)
- Tell people you are travelling with (or your hotel reception if you decided to travel alone) where you are going if you're breaking away from the group, make sure your itinerary is known to family & friends back at home
- Reconcile yourself with the fact that taking pictures might not always be possible. Moroccans don't like their pictures taken (see below) and if they let you, be prepared to pay (esp. if it's in a touristy place like Jemaa el-Fnaa). People might get outright aggressive if you try to skip paying. Have a couple of coins of a small denomination in your pocket to 'buy them off' without flashing all your cash in frong of strangers.
Day 1-2 : Casablanca to Rabat
Casablanca - an old pirate lair and Morocco's economic capital today.
Mohamed V Square
Enjoy the wonderful art-deco architecture of the city centre and around Mohamed V Square (aka “pigeon square” 🐦)
The grand Hassan II Mosque 🕌
Rabat - Morocco's administrative capital, is definitely more than just that.
Hassan Tower & Mohamed V MausoleumVisit Rabat’s most famous landmark, 44m Le Tour Hassan (Hassan Tower) and the nearby Mohamed V Mausoleum
Oudaya KasbahDon't miss one of the biggest highlights of the trip to Casablanca - a walk through the picturesque narrow alleys between whitewashed houses of the Oudaya Kasbah!
Day 3 : Meknès & Volubilis
Started the day in the ancient Roman city & UNESCO world heritage site, Volubilis (AD40) - home to some of the most impressive (& best preserved) Roman ruins in North Africa.
MeknèsContinue the journey to Meknès - a Berber town, formerly the capital of Morocco during the reign of Moulay Ismail. Today the town is known for its Place el-Hedim, the heart of the Meknès medina, and home to the huge gate of Bab el-Mansour, the grandest of all imperial Moroccan gateways.
Day 4-5: Fez
University of Karueein
Delve into the fascinating history of mediaeval Fèz, which is home to the world’s first university (University of Karueein, 859 AD).
Fès el-Bali (Old Fez) is the world’s largest living Islamic medieval city and the biggest car-free urban environment on the planet. Confuse your senses in the cacophony of noise surrounding the heady alleyways of Medieval Medina, home to tanneries, carpet shops and local restaurants.
Fès el-Bali (Old Fez)
The rawhides are first put into pits filled with cow urine (!) water & salt. This helps remove flesh & fur and breaks down the tougher leather. After 3 days of soaking, excess fat and fur are scraped away. The hides are then moved into other vats filled with pigeon poo 🐦💩 (!) and water. Blew my mind! 🤯😳
Day 6: Marrakech
- Admire Koutoubia Mosque’s iconic minaret
- Wondered at the intricate Arabic craftsmanship at the Bahia Palace
- Explore the ‘haute couture’ garden of Jardin Majorelle and the stylish Musée Yves Saint Laurent
- Taste the 'real Morocco' at the lively souks around the Jemaa El-Fna square and bargain over a Berber rug that you have no intention of buying.
- Grab a traditional Moroccan dinner & show at “Comptoir Darna”
Day 7: Marrakech
- Started the day with a dromedary 🐪 ride (they'll be offended if you call them 'camels')
“Le Jardin Secret”
- Feel like you've been ‘let in on a secret’ @ “Le Jardin Secret”
- Be ‘reborn’ after a Hammam & scrub with black olive soap at the “Fatnatchi Spa”
“Le Maison Fotografie”
- Listen to “adhan” (‘call to worship’) & watch the sunset from the rooftop of “Le Maison Fotografie”
- Have dinner at a hole-in-the-wall” restaurant (well, I took it a tad too literally this time around and went to a place called “Le Trou Au Mur”)
- Spend the rest of the night amid the storytellers at Djemaa el-Fna