From Saharan dunes to the peaks of the High Atlas, Morocco could have been tailor-made for travellers. Lyrical landscapes carpet this slice of North Africa like the richly coloured and patterned rugs you’ll lust after in local cooperatives. The mountains – not just the famous High Atlas but also the Rif and suntanned ranges leading to Saharan oases – offer simple, breathtaking pleasures: night skies glistening in the thin air, and views over a fluffy cloudbank from the Tizi n’Test pass.
On lower ground, there are rugged coastlines, waterfalls and caves in forested hills, and the mighty desert. Morocco is a storied country, that has, over the centuries, woven its ties to Sub-Saharan Africa, Europe and the wider Middle East into whole cloth. Its mixed Arab and Berber population forms a strong national identity, but an increasingly youthful one, taking the best of its traditions and weaving the pattern anew – from the countryside to the city, from the call to prayer from the mosque to the beat of local hip-hop. Morocco has a hundred faces and sounds, all ready to welcome the traveller looking for spice and adventure.
Top 10 Must-See Places in Morocco
1. Marrakesh – Marrakesh is, indeed, the most popular city in Morocco and there are many reasons why. With the majestic Atlas Mountains as a backdrop, the imperial city of Marrakesh is everything you can imagine and even above and beyond – noisy, atmospheric, authentic, unique, colourful, flavourful, crowded, and full of history.
2. Fes – The medieval town of Fes was one Morocco’s capital and you can totally expect a lot of cultural and historical heritage when visiting Fes. The city is filled with elaborate architecture, palaces, people, colours, and enigmatic stories to tell.
3. Essaouira – Do you need a relaxation after the hassle, stress, and heat of the big and hectic Moroccan cities? Essaouira is the right place to go! The beachside town is a popular hangout for a lot of big stars in the past and a lot of tourists and travelers from all around the world to this date.
4. Chefchaouen – The town of Chefchaouen could be called the architectural epitome of Morocco but also provides a lot of uniqueness for you to enjoy. Chefchaouen is called the “blue town” because of the town’s blue and white painted houses. It is popular among independents travelers.
5. Merzouga – Right on the edge of Erg Chebbi, Merzouga is a small town in the desert surrounded by mesmerizing wind-blown sand dunes of Sahara. Do you like to enter the desert interior for a lot more adventurous? Then make sure to head to Merzouga as it is the best getaway to the wilderness.
6. Jebel Toubkal – Situated in the High Atlas Mountains, Jebel Toubkal is the highest peak of North Africa with its stunning 4167 meters. The trek to the snow-capped peak is not an easy one but it definitely worth it all the effort.
7. Meknes – Meknes is truly a charming place in Morocco, smaller and more relaxed than Marrakesh and Fes but still an imperial city with well-preserved historical sites such as the medina, many easy-to-navigate souks, a lot of Moroccan architecture.
8. Dades Valley – Running between the Jebel Sarhro and High Atlas Mountains, the Dades Valley is a beautiful stretch of land and offers some of the best views you can enjoy when in Morocco. Fringed by deep red cliffs from each side and the traditional forts known as kasbahs dotted along, the Dades Valley is a must when visiting the country.
9. Tangier – Tangier is a charming city that back in the 40s and 50s used to be a favourite place for people such as Truman Capote, Paul Bowles, and Tennessee Williams. Some of the highlights of Tangier include the medina, the Kasbah Museum, and the Ville Nouvelle.
10. Asilah – Charmingly laying on the Morocco’s North Atlantic coast, Asilah is a popular beach town in the country for both locals and tourists. Here you can enjoy sandy beaches, while the houses painted in white provides you with the laidback vibe of a Greek island.