If you haven’t been fortunate enough to have traveled to Morocco sometime during your adult life, you are missing out on one of life’s greatest experiences.
Nestled away in the northernmost regions of the African continent, Morocco is a distinct country, with its historical significance, unmatched scenery, and dramatic mountains making it a must-see destination.
Traveling to Morocco is an incredible experience anyone would behold, yet planning a trip to the Islamic nation can be daunting. Being a tourist is not as easy as some people think, and there are certain key areas of importance they should fully account for.
What Is The Best Way To Plan A Trip To Morocco?
Morocco has been among the most romanticized countries for decades, mainly due to its rich cultural and historical background, with the classic 1942 movie Casablanca further enhancing its stellar global reputation.
Local Moroccan citizens and any prior tourists will agree that the north African country has something to offer everyone traveling there. The unique and intricate tile works and authentic madrasas would intrigue any architect. At the same time, people passionate about shopping can spend hours, if not days, haggling and exploring one of the local souks.
Conversely, suppose you are a tourist seeking as much adventure as possible. In that case, Morocco has a variety of high-quality offerings for you to enjoy, such as riding a local camel, riding a dune buggy, or hiking through the desert.
For food lovers, Morocco has near-endless options for entertainment and excitement. Local souks are packed full of fragrant, unique, and distinct spices. At the same time, in many of the remote regions of the desert, there are some spices with such strong associated aromas that many people claim to be able to taste them before seeing them.
Morocco has numerous exciting opportunities for photographers, with the north African country having some of the most picturesque mountains and scenery imaginable.
At the same time, Morocco has many resorts and locations for tourists to relax to their heart’s content, usually in the city center, desert regions, and within many of the country’s sought-after suburbs.
In addition, Morocco is home to world-renowned Moroccan spas, which have seen thousands of tourists coming from far and wide to lay their eyes on the north African incredible relaxation offerings.
As a tourist in Morocco, there are endless activities to entertain even the most snobbish travelers. From incredible art to outstanding desert-themed relaxation areas to desert exploration.
Due to the variety and novelty for western tourists associated with Morocco, planning a trip to the north African country can occasionally be overwhelming unless effective prior research is undertaken, as this article will demonstrate.
How To Start Planning A Trip To Morocco
Suppose you are a first-time traveler to Morocco, planning a trip. In that case, there can be slightly daunting for western people, especially due to the notable cultural differences, the Islamic nation rules, the language barrier, and the country’s romantic allure.
While Morocco may be closer to Europe than other parts of Africa or even America, it still involves quite a significant amount of traveling and planning to arrive safely. For first-time travelers, staying for three days to a week is highly recommended, visiting a few different cities before departing to obtain the most authentic and enjoyable experience imaginable.
However, it should be noted that Morocco is a relatively sizeable country. This means that your planning must be excellently thought out to experience a unique, worthwhile, and memorable holiday. For example, Marrakech and Fez are among the two most popular and unmissable tourist destinations, although the cities are more than 600 miles away from one another.
Despite the significant travel times between many of Morocco’s main tourist destinations, the experience can be completely hassle and stress-free if successfully planned ahead of time.
Further along this article, we will suggest the most effective and efficient ways of traveling through the awe-inspiring north African country, allowing you to focus on its indisputably authentic and unique cultural and historically significant instead of worrying about what time your transport is departing or other logistical concerns.
Important Things To Know Before Traveling To Morocco
Fortunately, if you are currently a resident in a European, African, or Asian country, you do not require a visa if you stay in Morocco for less than 90 days at a single time.
While Morocco does require people from some countries to obtain a visa before they travel to the north African country, these are very few and far between. For some countries, Morocco requires the individuals’ passports to be valid for six months after their stay has ended.
It is vital to ensure your administrative tasks are fully accounted for before traveling to Morocco to avoid any unnecessary headaches, queues, or hassle. Usually, the north African country does not require any specific vaccination cards, although a negative Covid19 test and at least one fully blank page in your passport are essential.
How Much Time Is Necessary To See All Morocco Has To Offer?
Morocco has endless opportunities for exploration, sightseeing, and other exciting activities, meaning that the more time you can safely spend in the country, the better.
While it is obvious that spending months in the north African country is not an option for most people, we recommend spending as many days or weeks as possible before departing back home.
The more time you spend in Morocco’s historical cities, the better, as it will allow you and your family to obtain the most authentic, memorable, and unique cultural experience possible.
There is no perfect or set amount of time you should remain in Morocco; however, taking at least two or three days in the most historically and culturally significant locations around the north African country will allow you to obtain the most thorough possible experience.
It is essential to factor in the time it will take to travel from destination to destination, as Morocco is a relatively large country concerning its land mass. For example, taking a train from Marrakech to Fez, two of Morocco’s most beloved locations, can take more than eight hours on a good day.
While the travel time may be significant, it is worthwhile as you can take in all the magnificent, unmatched, and unparalleled scenery the north African country offers.
If you have the luxury of committing a week to explore Morocco, you will likely spend five or six days in certain important locations. In comparison, the remaining two days will be dedicated to traveling.
Visiting Fez, Marrakech, and the blue city of Chefchaouen is highly recommended. However, to take in everything these stunning cities offer will require at least a week or ten days, including the all-important travel time.
While it is possible to visit many of Morocco’s most desirable regions in less than a week, it will make the experience rushed and not as enjoyable and memorable as it could be.
The Best Time To Travel To Morocco
Anyone fortunate enough to have visited Morocco previously will unanimously agree that the country’s climate is near perfect all year round. However, it can be incredibly hot in the middle of the harsh summer months.
Take it if you can visit the north African country anytime during the year. However, traveling to Morocco in late August, September, October, November, and early December is recommended due to how the local climate plays out.
Since Morocco is a dry, arid, and even desert climate, the months of May, June, July, and early August are incredibly hot, with temperatures reaching close to 100 degrees Fahrenheit during the middle of most days. Yet, even during the hottest days in peak summer, hiding out and drinking in one of the famed medinas is one of life’s greatest treats.
It may seem counterintuitive, although Morocco usually experiences peak tourist season during its hottest summer months. Most tourists travel to the north African country during its hottest and driest months because it coincides with the European summer months when most western tourists travel to their chosen destinations.
To obtain the best and most authentic Moroccan experience imaginable, experts recommend waiting for the high season to pass before descending to the incredibly historically significant country known as Morocco.
At the same time, it is worth noting that because Morocco is an Islamic nation, there are a few important holidays tourists should be aware of. Attempting to access or view some of the country’s most popular sites could be challenging if it coincides with a religious holiday, as they will likely be closed to the public. At the same time, the locals celebrate their holy days.
The Best Way To Travel To Morocco
If you live in America and plan to travel down to Morocco sometime during the year, the most effective and cheapest way to get there is by purchasing a direct flight departing from the east coast.
While it is possible to fly from most other regions within the United States, traveling from the East coast will cost, on average, $200 less per ticket, which can lead to significant financial savings if traveling with a group of four or even five people.
In addition, take a direct flight to London or Amsterdam, which will enable you to catch a direct flight to Morocco’s capital city, Marrakech. Moreover, booking a few months or weeks in advance is necessary as the flights to the north African country can be limited if left to the last minute due to the high demand experienced in peak tourist season.
If you can find a round-trip ticket for $1000 or less per person, we recommend taking it, as this price is usually on the lower end of the spectrum. Traveling directly to Marrakech from Europe is a much more straightforward process, usually requiring no stops, significantly lowering the cost per person and the overall travel time.
When searching for the best value for money, flights directly to Morocco, Norwegian Air, Iberia Air, TAP Portugal, and Royal Air Maroc are usually the best options. However, do not limit yourself or your traveling group to these airlines, as many mouth-watering specials are available throughout the year.
Moreover, it is recommended to search for any direct flight to Marrakech. Usually, flights direct to Marrakech are the cheapest, while the historic city is a must-see for any tourist aiming to travel to the culturally significant north African country.
In addition to Marrakech, searching for direct flights to Casablanca is your second best bet, as the city should be on the top of any tourist’s to-do list.
Best Places To Stay In Morocco
It is well known that Morocco, especially Marrakech, is packed full of internationally recognized hotel chains that offer the usual high-end services usually expected of them.
However, any tourist with an open mind and obtaining the most authentic Moroccan experience possible will agree that staying in one of the local riads is more suitable. For those of you not entirely familiar with a Moroccan riad, you are in for a life-changing experience.
Moroccan riads are a mixture of traditional western bed and breakfast-styled accommodations. However, the amenities usually associated with western-styled bed and breakfasts are enhanced by incredible and unique Moroccan architecture and other boutique luxuries.
While Moroccan riads can be extraordinarily luxurious and expensive, they start from as little as $300 a night for a group of four or more. It should be noted that there are countless riads to choose from, meaning that selecting the optimal one for your or your group’s specific requirements can be challenging.
It would be best to contact a reputable travel agency well before traveling down to Morocco, as this will alleviate most of the stress and unknown factors associated with traveling to a far-away non-western country.
Fortunately, tourists can use many easy-to-use websites, dramatically lowering the stress and time factor traditionally associated with traveling to an ethnically, culturally, and historically diverse country.
In addition, long-time trusted websites such as Jetsetter, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Booking.com, and Airbnb are fully functional in the north African country, making your journey as effortless and enjoyable as possible.
El Fenn is the best value for money combined with an incredible all-round offering. Reading the reviews and speaking to western tourists fortunate enough to be accommodated in the remarkable location will convince you beyond any reasonable doubt that it is the place to be, with it being the perfect location for romantic honeymoons.
However, western tourists should not become overwhelmed with the selection and variety of choices the north African country is known to offer. It is recommended to fully immerse yourself into the African and Islamic culture in the north African country, as any other popular tourist destination in other regions cannot replicate it.
How Much To Budget When Traveling To Morocco
One of the most attractive things about Morocco is the outstanding value for money offered by the north African country.
While you should never budget too little for your travels to an Islamic nation, it is far less expensive than being a tourist in any European or North American country. Furthermore, the amount of money to be budgeted for your trip to Morocco is exclusively dependent on your lifestyle, excess income, and style of travel.
You can travel to Morocco and experience most of the country’s undoubtedly rich historical nature while being a student or if you do not have endless amounts of cash to part ways with.
However, experts note that between a $60 and $100 a day budget, excluding accommodation, should cover most basic requirements such as eating out, haggling at the local souks, and taxi fares.
To further indicate just how much money is necessary to take along with you on your Moroccan travels, an exceptional meal at one of the north African country’s finest restaurants will usually set you back nearly $20 per person. Yet, for less than $10, you can dine at one of Morocco’s more authentic restaurants.
However, it should be noted that dining at one of the cheaper local restaurants will allow one to obtain the most authentic experience possible, although issues such as a strong language and cultural barrier will be obvious to tourists unwilling to immerse themselves in the local Islamic way of life.
Morocco is an extraordinary country to visit for tourists with an extensive budget. With an endless budget, you can frequently travel to one of the country’s many souk districts before purchasing among the most exquisite and timeless hand-sewn rugs, carpets, and blankets, which you can take back home with you and treasure for the rest of the time.
It is worth noting that staying in an appropriately located riad near the center of Marrakech, Fez, and even Casablanca is the most advantageous way of experiencing Morocco. Residing close to the city’s happenings and the local souk districts will save you significant money on taxi fares.
Forking out cash for taxi fares is an unavoidable expense, although staying in an authentic location near the city center is the most effective way of exploring and taking in everything Morocco has to offer as it forces you to explore the city on foot, interact with the friendly locals, and obtain an understanding of the traditional Moroccan way of life.
Best Things To Pack For A Trip To Morocco
Packing the optimal wardrobe for Morocco can be tricky for first-time travelers due to the intense summer heat and respect for Islamic national traditions.
It is recommended to cover your shoulders, knees, and feet as much as possible for both men and women, as this is a sign of respect in the Islamic nation. However, the dress code is not as strict as some people would have you believe.
By bringing a few layers of clothes, which will be suitable to wear in most conditions, your stay in Morocco should be enjoyable and controversy-free. In some of Morocco’s main cities, such as Marrakech and Fez, wearing shorter dresses for certain occasions is acceptable, especially when walking in and around the hotel’s grounds you are staying at.
Yet, covering as much of your body as possible is advisable without going to too many extremes. It is recommended to respect the local Islamic traditional way of life as much as possible; however, Morocco is among the more liberal Muslim countries regarding strict dress codes for men and women.
The best items to pack and take with you will be a comfortable set of light pants and a jumpsuit that covers as much of the shoulder area as possible. In addition, longer dresses and jumpsuits are highly recommended.
Although travelers should remember that the country is in a desert region, the average temperatures are usually significantly higher than you would be accustomed to in your home country. It is also important to pack enough swimwear as Morocco has numerous of the most desirable and temperate beaches imaginable, making your stay pleasurable.
Happen to travel to any of Morocco’s main cities alone. Interacting and socializing with the locals will be a straightforward process, with your positive experience being further benefitted by thousands of other people in the same boat as you.
Traveling to Morocco with your entire family is recommended, as the north African country will enrich the lives of anyone fortunate enough to step foot in it.
Conclusion on Morocco Trip Planner
Traveling to Morocco is one of life’s greatest experiences and treats. It should be known that the north African country remains one of the cheapest places to be a tourist, while there are numerous daily direct flights to its major cities of Marrakech, Rabat, and Fez. If you haven’t had the luxury of being a tourist in Morocco, don’t delay it for another day, as it’s the place to be.
FAQs on your trip in morocco
How much would a trip to Morocco cost?
The cost of a trip to Morocco can vary significantly depending on your travel style, accommodation choices, and the destinations you visit. Budget travellers can expect to spend around $30-$50 per day, while mid-range travellers might spend $60-$120 per day. Luxury travellers can expect higher costs for the best hotels and experiences.
What is the best time of year to go to Morocco?
The best time to visit Morocco is during the spring (April-May) and autumn (September-October) seasons. These months offer pleasant weather for exploring cities, the Sahara Desert, and the Atlas Mountains. Summers can be quite hot, particularly in Marrakech and the desert regions, while winters can be cold in the mountains.
How many days should I spend in Morocco?
For a well-rounded Morocco itinerary, plan to spend at least 10-14 days exploring the country. This duration allows you to visit major cities like Morocco Marrakech and the Blue City of Chefchaouen, as well as experience the Sahara Desert, the Atlas Mountains, and other fascinating destinations. If you have limited time, focus on the main highlights for a shorter trip. You may want to focus on Northern Morocco in one trip and just organise day trips to the main towns. You should always plan to visit Marrakech, even if just for a day trip, as its well worth it.
Are desert tours a must when visiting Morocco?
Desert tours are a popular and unforgettable experience for adventure seekers visiting Morocco. A Sahara Desert tour typically includes a camel ride, a night at a desert camp, and the opportunity to witness stunning sunrises and sunsets. While not essential, a desert tour is highly recommended for a truly unique Moroccan experience. A private tour can offer extras in all the destinations.
How do I find cheap flights to Morocco?
To find cheap flights to Morocco, start by searching for flights on various booking websites and comparing prices. Consider travelling during the shoulder seasons (spring and autumn) for better deals. Be flexible with your travel dates and consider flying into major cities like Marrakech, Casablanca or Tangier for the best prices.
Do I need travel insurance for my trip to Morocco?
It is strongly recommended to purchase travel insurance for your trip to Morocco. Travel insurance can provide coverage for medical expenses, trip cancellations, lost luggage, and other unexpected events, ensuring peace of mind during your travels, so don’t forget travel insurance!
Is it necessary to learn some basic Moroccan Arabic before visiting the country?
While it is not essential to learn Moroccan Arabic before visiting the country, knowing a few basic phrases can enhance your experience and make it easier to communicate with locals. Many Moroccans speak French and some English, particularly in major cities and tourist areas. However, learning a few key phrases in Moroccan Arabic can be helpful and appreciated by the locals. Also remember Morocco is a Muslim country, so to have an unforgettable trip, read out guide as to what not to do in Morocco before you enter morocco!
Is taking a night bus a good option for travelling between cities in Morocco?
Taking a night bus can be a cost-effective and time-saving option for travelling between cities in Morocco. It allows you to save on accommodation costs and maximise your sightseeing time during the day. Night buses are generally comfortable, but it is recommended to book a reputable company like CTM or Supratours for a safe and reliable journey.
Are day trips a viable option for exploring Morocco?
Day trips are an excellent way to explore Morocco’s diverse destinations, especially for adventure seekers with limited time. Many cities offer guided day trips to nearby attractions, such as visiting the Bahia Palace or experiencing a traditional Moroccan mint tea ceremony. Just ensure you plan your day trips well in advance to make the most of your time.
Is Morocco safe for female travellers?
Morocco is generally safe for female travellers, but it is essential to take precautions and be aware of cultural norms. Dress modestly, avoid walking alone at night, and be cautious in crowded areas. It’s also a good idea to have a local SIM card to access Google Maps and stay connected with friends or family back home.
How can I get around Morocco efficiently?
To get around Morocco efficiently, consider using a combination of transportation options like buses, trains, and grand taxis. For longer distances, you may want to book a separate flight or take a night bus to save time. Additionally, having Google Maps downloaded on your phone can be incredibly helpful for navigating cities and finding local attractions.