Whether you wish to focus on one particular aspect of Morocco — scenery, cities, countryside, customs, or traditions — or whether you wish to see a wide range of what Morocco has to offer, this is the first decision that has to be made. As Morocco is such a vast country, it's better to decide on the type of trip you'd like to have and then focus on one or two areas where you can experience this.
You'll want to have adequate time to absorb and relish all that you are seeing and experiencing rather than trying to fit everything in. Additionally, the Moroccan population is a mixture of Berbers, Arabs, Africans and the Andalous, another consideration when itinerary planning, depending upon the particular cultural and traditional aspects (e.g. gastronomy) with which you wish to engage during your trip.
This city offers exciting hustle & bustle, color, and life, most especially in the square of Jemaa El Fna and the maze of Souks of the city’s Medina, the old central walled area (now a World Heritage Site). The Koutoubia mosque dominates the skyline here; a rooftop terrace café is an ideal place to watch the early evening sun go down behind its minaret.
A visit to an apothecary, to learn of herbs and spices and their medicinal and culinary uses, is always intriguing. And after the clamor, visit the Majorelle Gardens, an oasis of calm and tranquility in the Rose City.This can be followed this up with a hammam spa bath and a massage.
Rif Mountains and Chefchaouen
Chefchaouen is a delightful, small city in a glorious setting. Chefchaouen is often called the "Blue City" as the buildings are painted white with much deep blue paint being used on doors, windows, and decorative features. It is a calm city with a gentle and slow pace of life. The city is located amongst the high peaked and rolling Rif mountains where meadows, woodland, and farmland are all to be seen on the lower slopes. Chefchaouen is located about 60 km South of Titouan, in the northwest of Morocco. The area round about is ideal for all levels of hiking and outdoor activities.
Casablanca, Morocco’s largest city, is “fast paced” certainly when compared to other Moroccan cities. Located on the Atlantic seaboard, Casablanca is very much a modern city but the buildings of the old city and the Hassan II Mosque are very good to visit.
Fez was once the capital of Morocco and is home to the oldest university in the world; a World Heritage Site Medina adds to its great attraction (as well as its famed Potteries). Mekenes, with its over 1,000-year history, and again a one-time capital city of Morocco, is one of Morocco’s four Imperial cities. Much of historical interest is to be found here, for example, the Bab Mansour, a gigantic arched entrance gate, tiled all around, that was an entry into the imperial city in its heyday.
Essaouira offers fresh, oceanside air, a very extensive beach & relaxing promenade as well as the, by contrast, bustling Medina area. Narrow lanes lead you passed a myriad of shops, stalls, cafés, and restaurants. The harbor is crammed with working fishing boats with many nautical activities to watch and enjoy. As well as Essaouira, there are many other smaller Atlantic coastal villages between it and Agadir to the south that offer very calm and relaxing seaside options.
In the High Atlas, there are towering mountains and deep, river-cut valleys. Here Berber communities cling on by sheer endeavor. Traveling here, either on a hike/trek or on a traveling tour in a 4x4 vehicle, reveals a fascination of people going about their countryside business, in the fields, in the marketplaces, along the routes. Chance encounters and meetings (and often informal invitations to drink some mint tea) add great joy to an already enlivening environment.
After crossing the High Atlas, southwards, the Sahara is reached. The arid mix of plain, mountain and rolling “waves” of sand seas can be explored by camel, on quad bikes or in 4x4 vehicles. To spend a night in a Bedouin camp further deepens the desert thrill (although it can be very chilly at night!). Small desert communities can be visited in order to gain insight into their traditions and ways of life in this harshest of environments.