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Tangier

Tangier

Tangier

Tangier (city) — one of the most evocative places in Morocco, the name Tangier immediately conjures up images of an exotic city – bright white buildings under a hot sun blazing down from a clear blue sky, the gateway to this much loved kingdom. Located 3 ½ hours northeast of Casablanca (via A1 & A3 highways), Tangier’s proximity to Spain makes it an ideal place to enter Morocco, a great launch pad from which to explore more of the country. Tangier has inspired people for generations with its offering of fascinating history, beautiful scenery and eclectic mix of people.

Whether you want to spend time on the lovely beaches, take a mint tea in one of the cafés where Burroughs and Matisse used to sit, or explore the old quarter, Tangier is a place where you should spend time, rather than just rush through. Those looking for a tourist-friendly beach in the Tangier area may consider Plage de Sidi Kacem, a charming spot with French bistros, chaise lounges and umbrellas in the sand.


Tamaris Aquaparc

Tamaris Aquaparc

Tamaris Aquaparc

Tamaris Aquaparc (Route d’Azemmour km. 15, Casablanca) – this is the only water park in the Casablanca area – not far from Tamaris beach. Children will enjoy the wave pool, the huge river and slides of all sizes. Built in an oasis of greenery, Tamaris Aquaparc is a very popular destination for the residents of the city as well as tourists. See the Tamaris website for more info: www.tamaris-aquaparc.com


Royal Golf Dar Es Salam

Royal Golf Dar Es Salam

Royal Golf Dar Es Salam

Royal Golf Dar Es Salam (Km 9, Ave. Mohammed VI, route des Zaers Soussi, Rabat) — designed by Robert Trent Jones and located in the heart of a cork oak forest, the Royal Golf of Dar Es Salam is only fifteen minutes from the center of Rabat. Opened in 1971, visiting golfers have two 18-hole courses and one 9-hole course to choose from, along with a practice area. In 2019, this golf course hosted both the Ladies European Tour and the (Mens) European Tour. See the course’s website for more info: www.royalgolfdaressalam.com

Rif Mountains

Rif Mountains

Rif Mountains

Rif Mountains – located 7 hours (553 km) northeast of Casablanca, this fascinating and scenic mountain range in the country’s north is the stronghold of the Berber people. Wonderful trekking opportunities avail, including through the fir forests in the Talassemtane National Park. The tour outfits that offer excursions to the Rif Mountains include: www.fes4x4excursion.com; www.festrips.com; http://hiddenmoroccotours.com; www.mintteatours.com; www.travel-exploration.com

Rabat

Rabat

Rabat

Rabat (city) — Imperial city, cosmopolitan centre of commerce and capital of Morocco, Rabat is a delight for holidaymakers. Located an hour (86 km.) northeast of Casablanca, Rabat is a grand city, full of fine buildings and welcoming people, with plenty to see and plenty to do. Over the centuries, Rabat has been owned by the Phoenicians, Romans, Almohads and Merenids and you’ll find plenty of monuments in the city to these past cultures, not least in the ancient medina. But it’s not all about history in Rabat, there are many fine restaurants to eat in, world class hotels to stay at, and a long warm beach to relax on.

Marrakech

Marrakech

Marrakech

Marrakech (city) – located about 3 hours (242 km.) south of Casablanca, Marrakech is not only a fantastic city, it is also a symbol of the Morocco that once was, and which still survives here. The streets of the old and pink city have been too narrow to allow effective introduction of cars. And tourists searching for the “real” Morocco have turned the medieval structures of Marrakech into good business.

Marrakech is certainly a city of history, and all with a few days to pass here must see the beautiful, large mosque and madrasa of Ben Yussef inside the large suuq, that begins at the northern side of Jemaa l-Fna. For deeper understanding of Moroccan architecture, the Almoravid koubba 20-30 meters south of the mosque of Ben Yussef. Palaces like El-Bahia, El Badi, and Dar Si Said were built to please the senses, while those who cannot get enough of gardens can still feel old greatness in Agdal garden.

Majorelle Garden / Berber Museum

Majorelle Garden / Berber Museum

Majorelle Garden / Berber Museum

Majorelle Garden / Berber Museum (entrance in side street off Avenue Yacoub el Mansour, Marrakech) — given by the fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent as a gift to the city of Marrakech, this botanical garden was created in the 1920s by French artists Jacques and Louis Majorelle. Perfectly manicured gardens, with pools, giant cacti, bamboo, coconut and banana trees, stand out against the bright-blue wash that covers the villa and garden walls, with splashes of lemon yellow and emerald green on planters, doors and furnishings.

Visitors will be able to see inside Majorelles’ old studio, which now houses Yves Saint Laurent’s collection of local arts and antiques in the Berber Museum (which displays over 600 objects, in a compelling panorama on Berber culture in Morocco).

Admission: 100 Dhm per person (foreigners), 60 Dhm (Moroccan nationals). Hours: 10:00 am – 6:00 (Thursday – Tuesday), 10:00 am – 5:30 pm (Wednesday).

Jidar Street Art Festival

Jidar Street Art Festival

Jidar Street Art Festival

Jidar Street Art Festival (Rabat) – first time visitors to Rabat in recent years may notice that portions of the city resemble an open-air art gallery, with local and international street artists painting elaborate works of art on the sides of buildings there.

Every April, an independent organization called the Artistic and Cultural Education-L’Boulvart (EAC-L’Boulvart) Association puts together this art festival (“Jidar Street Art Festival”) – inviting local and international artists to Rabat, and paint murals on various buildings throughout the city. Given the high quality of these murals, the city effectively becomes an open-air museum for passersby to see. In 2019, Moroccan artist Machima (a digital artist based in Casablanca), as well as international artists like Phlegm (a world-renowned British cartoonist and illustrator), and Caratoes (a Belgian-born contemporary artist who currently lives in Hong Kong) were among the Festival’s participants.

Thanks to this initiative (which has support from the Moroccan government and the private sector), not only Rabat, but other major cities like Casablanca and Marrakech, as well as smaller cities like Safi and Essaouira are also becoming sites for such artistic projects. More info on this festival and related murals can be found at: https://www.jidar.ma/

Jemaa el Fna

Jemaa el Fna

Jemaa el Fna

Jemaa el Fna (Marrakesh) — Jemaa el Fna square (a.k.a. Place of the Dead) is the center of medina life both day and night as a gathering place and unofficial stage for street theatre. It is also Marrakesh’s main square. For more than a millennium, the Jemaa el Fna’s daily bill has featured acrobats, henna tattoo artists, storytellers, belly dancers, musicians, snake charmers and potion sellers. Mint sellers and carts selling dried fruit and fresh orange juice make way at dusk for 100 makeshift barbecue restaurants and troupes of entertainers vying for attention.

Visitors should take plenty of loose change, as the performers do expect a couple of Dirhams worth of appreciation and some of the more colorful characters will pose for a photo for a small charge. That said, this is not a spectacle just for tourists; the crowd is mostly Moroccan. Jemaa el Fna is surrounded by cafés and restaurants, perfect places to escape the hustle and observe the proceedings with a mint tea, coffee or light meal.

Jazz au Chellah

Jazz au Chellah

Jazz au Chellah

Jazz au Chellah (festival) — this musical festival is held in Rabat every September. Launched in 1996 by the European Union in Morocco (in partnership with the Moroccan Ministry of Culture), it is dedicated to the discovery of European jazz and the encounter between European and Moroccan jazz musicians. This Festival has featured 190 such concerts so far. More details can be found here: http://jazzauchellah.com/