Morocco

A place of charming chaos, squashed between the mighty Atlas Mountains and the vast Sahara desert, with a vast array of iconic cities.

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The vast haunting emptiness of the Sahara, trodden by the Bedouin for millennia; vibrant Marrakesh, nestled at the bottom of the mighty Atlas Mountains; the dusty road up to Jebel Toubkal, a dizzyingly high town, offering majestic views of snow-capped mountains; the deep red cliffs of the Dades Valley, lined with imposing forts; the sandy beaches and white-painted houses of Asilah; the art-deco, Moorish blend of Casablanca; and a huge array of other things, makes Morocco a place that everyone should add to their bucket list.

The bridge between Europe and Africa, Morocco has played host to some of the greatest civilizations ever to exist: originally part of the Phoenician Empire in the 8th century BC, it was then conquered by Carthage before eventually becoming part of the Roman Empire, until the Arab conquests in the 7th century AD. As a tourist, you will see bustling bazaars, sun-kissed beaches, vibrant cities and the stark contrast between the mighty mountains and vast empty deserts.

Sensorial Experience

Sights 5
Sounds 5
Smells 4
Tastes 4
Feels 4
Sights 5

The sea of colourful lampshades, rugs and other trinkets that can be seen at bazaars; red-hot coals, which fire bubbling shisha pipes; the chaos of Marrakesh; golden beaches and deep blue waters; the majestic royal Medina of Meknes; the iconic blue painted houses of Chefchaouen; white-washed Tangiers, with its boat-filled harbour; the breath-taking glory of the Atlas Mountains from Jebel Toubkal; the mighty Sahara desert, which cannot help but inspire awe in all who see it.

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Sounds 5

High-pitched, snake charming flute players; traditional Berber folk singers, strumming their banjo-like instruments; the slow rhythmic beat of drums; the call of market sellers in the bazaars; the silence of the mountains and the desert; the call to prayer, which booms out of the mosques five-times-a-day; the waves crashing against golden beaches.

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Smells 4

Hay underfoot as you enter a bazaar; rich spices, like allspice, nutmeg, cinnamon, depending on which you are closest to at that point in time; stews slowly cooking in huge pots; the mint tea, which almost every Moroccan drinks; the bubbling smell of shisha, roasting over hot coals; the unique scent of camels, as you get closer to the emptiness of the desert.

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Tastes 4

Fruity, aromatic tagines, which come in dark red clay pots; herb infused couscous, which comes with lamb that just melts in your mouth; ‘Harira’ a spicy lentil soup, filled with plenty of goodness; slow-cooked lamb that just falls off the bone; flavoursome mint tea, which can be found in almost everyone’s hand; ‘Chebakia’, crisp sesame, honey and cinnamon flavoured desserts and many, many more.

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Feels 4

Morocco is a chaotic, disorganised country, but that only enhances its charm: it is the kind of place where you can get lost, in the beautiful cities, or the majestic natural sights. This makes it a tourist’s dream, where you should abandon the guidebook and go and explore all the magic it has to offer ad hoc.

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