When the time comes to go travelling once more, do you have a destination in mind for where you’d like to visit?
Me personally? I’m seriously considering Morocco.
Morocco is one of those parts of the world that just appeals to me, and with any luck, after reading this article today, it’ll appeal to you as well.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I love a beach holiday as much as the next guy, but after a while, fighting through crowds of drunken holidaymakers to get to the bar for a drink, and having to put up with night after night of bad karaoke singing just seems to lose its appeal.
I’m getting on a bit now, and I want something a little quieter and more relaxing and cultured for my next holiday, which is why I looked into Morocco.
As already mentioned, Morocco is very appealing to me right now, and after reading this, it will be to you as well.
Here are se7en reasons why you should travel to beautiful Morocco.
History and character
One of the best reasons to consider visiting Morocco is simply due to the fact that the country, particularly the towns and cities, are packed full of history and character.
If you head into any Moroccan city, you can guarantee it won’t be like the typical cities that you’re used to at home.
Over there, the cities are loaded full of history and character, which is evident in the architecture, the design, the brickwork, the buildings, and the surroundings in general.
Marrakesh, for example, is one of the world’s most famous cities and it is found in Morocco. The ‘Red City’ as it is called, is home to ancient monuments such as the Bahia Palace and the Koutoubia Mosque, as well as one of the oldest universities on the planet.
What’s that? You DO want a beach holiday but not one that involves drunken holidaymakers, rowdy karaoke, and copious amounts of frozen fried greasy food and cheap lager?
If so, then Morocco could be just the ticket.
Morocco has some truly amazing beaches located on both the Atlantic Ocean, as well as the Mediterranean Sea, so you can take your pick when deciding which you would prefer.
With soft white sand, hot sunshine, clear blue skies, warm waters, and plenty of facilities, the beaches in Morocco are incredibly inviting. Not to mention lots of the coast is favourable to surfing so a beach in Morocco could be the perfect place to learn this fun sport.
If you want to be near other holidaymakers, places such as Agadir and Tangier are ideal. If you want something a little quieter, El Jebha and El Jadida are tranquil, quieter, and are frequented by more of the locals.
Fantastic walking locations
For some people, a holiday is the perfect excuse to relax, unwind, and be about as active as an elderly sloth with bad knees that has just taken an extra strong tranquiliser. If you want to relax, sunbathe, and enjoy doing nothing then that’s fantastic, but just remember that it isn’t for everyone.
Some people out there enjoy being active and can’t sit still for longer than 10 minutes at a time, which is why Morocco is perfect because it caters for everyone.
If you enjoy being active and hiking, you’ll love it in Morocco.
Morocco has some awesome walking locations including the Rif Mountains, the Middle Atlas Mountains, the High Atlas Mountains, and the Anti-Atlas Mountains. These mountain ranges offer spectacular scenic views, and escape from modern living, and plenty of diverse wildlife.
The steam baths
Trust me on this, when I say that no visit to Morocco would be complete without a visit to one of the country’s many steam houses.
Nowadays, many of us are lucky enough to be able to bathe in the comfort of our own homes, but centuries ago, this wasn’t the case. Back then, you could only bathe if you visited a public steam bathhouse.
The bathhouses nowadays are better than any spa day experience as you’ll leave the bath feeling clean, refreshed, and invigorated.
The Sahara Desert
If you were forced to list the name of just one desert in the world, 9 times out of 10 you’d go with ‘Sahara’, right?
The Sahara Desert is the world’s most famous desert and is somewhere that you should definitely visit at least once in your lifetime.
The Sahara is easily accessible from many parts of Morocco and you can explore it on foot, or for an even more authentic experience, on the back of a camel.
If you want a truly magical experience, head out into the desert at night as the views of the stars, unobstructed by light pollution, are spectacular.
Just remember to be safe and wrap up warm, as it can get very chilly as soon as the sun goes down.
When in Morocco, for a truly authentic experience you simply must visit one of the country’s many Souqs.
A souq is a Moroccan market where locals purchase and sell their many wares.
Instantly recognisable thanks to the vibrant colours, the scents and smells, and the sound of hagglers and traders both looking to get the best deals possible.
Whereas the wares on offer will depend on the trader, typically you can expect to find items such as spices, rugs, tapestries, lamps, tea sets, clothing, Fez headwear, and cheap tourist trap souvenirs.
Just be aware that when visiting a market here, nothing is a set price, so you must be willing to haggle, so make sure you have a rough idea about what each item is worth.
Pro tip: if you have no idea what an item is worth just ponder for a second what it might be worth to you. That should give you a rough estimate of the price to aim for.
Finally, if all of the above wasn’t enough to convince you to visit Morocco, a traditional lamb tagine will be.
A lamb tagine is one of the signature dishes made and served in Morocco, and it tastes out of this world.
The dish gets its name from the vessel it is cooked in, a cylindrical clay pot that is designed to gently steam the meat as it bakes, making it extra moist and tender.
Recipes vary from city to city and town to town, but generally, a lamb tagine is made with chopped onions, garlic, ginger, diced lamb, tomatoes, spices, apricots, stock, dates, and almonds, and is served with a flatbread and/or rice or couscous.
The ingredients are fried off in oil in the tagine, before being baked, usually in/over an open fire and slow-cooked for several hours until the meat is so tender it falls apart with the touch of a spoon. Yum!
I hope I have given you some good reasons to head out to Morocco for your next holiday.
Until then stay safe, stay curious and don’t stop wandering!