Highlights of Morocco
Rabat, the majestic capital, city of lights, culture and history. The enchanted capital city of Rabat is home to many historic monuments. Rabat, which lies on the Atlantic coast, replaced Fes as the capital of Morocco in 1912 when Morocco was turned into a French protectorate. The French administrator General Louis Hubert Lyautey commissioned an architect to start building a French-style city, which today is the main area of Rabat. A must-see is the Mausoleum of Mohammed V, which was completed in 1971 and contains the tombs of the late Moroccan king and his two sons. The building is considered to be a prime example of modern Alaouite architecture with its typical white silhouette and green tiled roof. Get your first taste of a Moroccan medina with a visit to the Oudaya Kasbah, built in the 16th and 17th centuries on ancient foundations. Travel outside the city walls to see the ancient city of Sqala, the first city in Morocco to be built by the Berbers. Its streets and public squares are full of masterpieces.
Cosmopolitan Casablanca is considered to be the economic capital of the kingdom.The largest and most populated city in Morocco, Casa, as the locals call it, is also home to the largest religious monument in the Arab world after Mecca, the Hassan II Mosque. Designed by the French architect Michel Pinseau, the mosque has a glass floor, with room for 25,000 worshippers, through which the Atlantic can be seen while a further 80,000 can fit into the courtyard. The mosque's minaret is the world's tallest at 210 metres (689 ft).
The historic city of Meknes is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Meknes' golden age as the imperial capital of Morocco began in 1672 with Moulay Ismail's accession to the throne. The city has been referred to as the "Versailles of Morocco" due to its many extravagant monuments and buildings. Bab Mansour is the largest and more striking of the Meknes' many gates. The Roman ruins of Volubilis, another World Heritage Site, are only a short trip from Meknes.
Known as "the red city", Marrakech is packed with beauty, charm and culture. Enjoy a view of the snow-capped Atlas Mountains and the minaret of the Koutoubia mosque from almost any terrace in the city. Visit the many architectural attractions inside the medina, the old fortified city. The ornate El Bahia palace, with its gardens and tranquil courtyards, is a popular destination. Djemaa el Fna is the largest market in Morocco and the biggest square in Africa. Make sure to have a walk around the square in the evening when musicians, dancers, and story tellers fill the square. Wander around the many souks adjacent to Djemaa el Fna where you can buy everything from spices to shoes and teapots. Visit the famous Menara and Majerolle gardens or perhaps enjoy a ride on a traditional horse drawn carriage.
One of the four imperial cities in Morocco (the others being Marrakech, Meknes and Rabat). Fes is also the most unspoiled and boasts the most enchanting souks. In Fes you can get a real feel for authentic Moroccan culture, a trip back on time, and a visit to this city is not complete unless you take a walk around the historic Nejjarine Fountain and one of the many madrassas (Quranic schools) located around the town.
The beautiful city of Chefchaouen, known as the blue pearl, is set on the impressive Rif Mountains. Bright blue and white buildings with red tiled roofs make it a very picturesque sight. There are many legends behind the blue walls, one of them is that they were painted by the Jews who escaped from Hitler in the 1930's. Because it's the color of the sky and heaven, the blue color is a reminder to lead a spiritual life, or simply to keep the mosquitoes away. The city was founded in 1471 as a small fortress by Moulay Ali Ben Moussa Ben Rached El Alami to protect northern Morocco from Portuguese invasions. The charming town has a a lot to offer to guests. It considered the sixth most beautiful city in the world.
Main attractions include the Medina, Petit Socco (market), the Museum of Moroccan Art, the Market Square, the Kasbah and a chance to wander through the Grand Socco. Make a quick stop to enjoy the gorgeous view of the Bay of Tanger. Visit the Cape Spartel (where the Mediterranean and Atlantic meet) and the Caves of Hercules, where legend says that Hercules rested after creating the Straits of Gibraltar.
Take a look around the fishing port of Asilah, known for its old medina with whitewashed houses inside the 15th-century ramparts. For art lovers, there are numerous art galleries in the town and a festival every year.
Tetouan, daughter of Granada, also called the white dove, is lovely city influenced by the Spanish Moorish architecture. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, and a part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network for it's crafts and art.
The city was founded in the 15th century by the Muslim and Jewish refugees fleeing Andalusia. The city was occupied by the Spanish for almost two centuries, the Medina is still untouched and has kept it's authenticity, the city gained a chic reputation with it's prestigious institution. The seaside resort town of Tamuda Bay and its 9 miles of fine sand beaches await just down the road from Tetouan.
Erfoud - Erg Chebbi and the Sahara Desert
This small town on the edge of the desert is a Hollywood filmmaker's dream and indeed many movies were filmed here amidst the dormant volcanoes and endless dunes. Here, a unique desert camp awaits you. Positioned between the dunes and with nobody around for miles, experience the complete solitude of an exclusive desert camp and enjoy the sunset behind the vast desert plains.
Taroudant is a market town where the busy souks sell the produce of the rich and fertile Souss Valley. Tour the old Kasbah Quarter, where the Saadians had their palaces.
Ouarzazate is one of the main gateways for caravanners, to get a magnificent introduction to Berber Architecture visit the Kasbah Taourirt. Another close attraction and World Heritage Site is Ait Benhaddou, an ancient village that lies along the Ouarzazate River. Famous numerous movies were filmed in that site that kept intact.
Beautifully situated on the Atlantic coast about a two and half hours drive from Marrakech, with miles of unspoiled beaches, this harbor town is a hot spot among water sport fans. Especially popular are kite surfing and windsurfing. Explore the narrow paths of the charming old quarter with its blue doors and whitewashed houses. It is also home to the Gnaoua Festival of world Music. The medina is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a fine example of a late 18th century fortified town.
Well known for its endless sandy beaches, and great sunshine, this is a recommended destination for Seminars, meetings and incentives. Also appropriate escape for recreation and leisure seekers.
The Atlas Mountains
Less than an hour's drive from Marrakech, the breathtaking Atlas Mountains stretch across the northern part of Africa extending about 2,400 kilometres (1,500 miles) through Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia. The ranges are divided into several sections including the High Atlas, Middle Atlas and Ant-Atlas, which are all found in Morocco. The highest peak is Jbel Toubkal, with an elevation of 4,160 metres (13,670 ft) in southwestern Morocco. The second highest mountain is the M'Goun at 4,070 metres (13,350 ft). Discover the beautiful scenery, amazing colours and the incredible Berber villages of the High Atlas range. Active travellers may enjoy a half day trek in the mountains while wandering through a forest of juniper and oak trees. This can also be enjoyed on horse back. Your trek ends with the opportunity to experience the amazing view from the Tadawt plateau followed by a refreshing mint tea in a Berber home.