We think that Morocco has some of the best cities for you to visit in 2021 for several reasons. Morocco has always been a top-class holiday destination and this year will be no different. Morocco is still very much an exotic location with a philosophy and a system of its own. It is anything but ordinary.
If you are looking for something beautifully different, Morocco can offer you many kinds of differences. This post is the beginning of a comprehensive list of all the most attractive cities to visit in Morocco.
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Due to the current health situation, there might be travel restrictions for visitors to Morocco. Make sure to check regularly for changing travel guidelines on the government websites. You can also take a look at Flatten the Curve website for information on travel restrictions about Morocco.
Basic Map of Morocco
The following map is intended to give you a basic idea of the locations of the top cities to visit. This map does not include all of Morocco.
Top cities and towns in Morocco
Marrakech is one the best-known cities in Morocco, and North Africa in general. Marrakech is not very far from the Atlas mountains and on a clear day, you will get to see a nice view of the city surrounded by the Atlas mountains.
Marrakech city extends on 600 hectares, making it the 4th largest city in Morocco. Marrakech is one of the UNESCO World Heritage sites.
The heart of the city, the old Medina has been and still is an attraction for many tourists from around the globe. With narrow streets, fountains, and majestic gardens, Marrakech certainly owns the charm of a historical city. Marrakech is colorful, vibrant, and easy to fall in love with from the first visit.
Marrakech is home to a lot of landmarks, monuments, historical mosques, gardens, and Riads just waiting for you to visit.
Read More About Marrakech | The Ultimate Travel Guide to Marrakech, Morocco
Meknes is one of the four imperial cities in Morocco. Located towards the North of Morocco, between Fes and Agadir. It can be described as a calmer and more livable version of Marrakech.
Meknes was first inhabited by an Amazigh (Berber) tribe, called Meknassas, and this is where the name originally came from. It was first fortified as a military city by The Almoravids in the 11th century.
The city later served as the capital of The Alaouite Kingdom under the rule of Sultan Moulay Ismail. Sultan Moulay Ismail turned Meknes into an impressive Moroccan city in the iconic Spanish-Moorish style.
Surrounded by high walls with great gates, Meknes is an imperial city with a lot of historical monuments and natural sites that reflect its different historical influences. It is also the nearest city to the Roman ruins of Volubilis.
Even though Meknes holds a rich history and a lot of interest in tourism, the city still does not attract as many tourists as it deserves. For me, Meknes is a location that should definitely be on the to-visit list in Morocco.
Read More About Meknes: Meknes, Morocco: Top Things to Do & See in 2021
3. Chefchaouen (Chaouen)
Chefchaouen is one of many beautiful cities in northwest Morocco. It is also well-known as The Blue City because of the vibrant blue color of its buildings and streets. Chefchaouen is closer to Tangier, making it a popular tourist destination.
The city is surrounded by breathtaking mountains. The ancient Medinah with many narrow streets hides ancient Kasbahs and tiny Moroccan houses.
Chefchaouen is heaven for influencers and Instagrammers with plenty of photo opportunities and instagrammable places in every corner of the city.
The city is also popular with many hand-crafts and traditional Moroccan products such as woven blankets, and clothes.
Read More About Chefchaouen: Meet The Blue Pearl of Morocco, Chefchaouen
Tourism in Morocco is generally associated with the Sahara desert, busy souqs and markets, and snake charmers. Ifrane, however, is unlike any other city in Morocco. Located at an altitude of 5460 feet above sea level in the Middle Atlas region, this small hill town has a Swiss Alpine feel to it with its red-roofed buildings, blooming flower beds, and snowy winters.
This remarkable European-style city of Ifrane is often referred to as the little ‘Switzerland’ of Morocco.
Ifrane has a unique climate that is mild in the Summer and can get icy in the Winter.
Finally, if you are thinking about studying in Morocco, then Ifrane should be the perfect spot. Ifrane was chosen as the home of the prestigious Al Akhawayn University, which is an English-medium American curriculum-based institution.
Read More About Ifrane | Snow In Morocco, Everything you Need to Know!
5. Fez (Fes)
Fez is one of the popular imperial cities in Morocco and the second-largest city after Casablanca. Fez was a former capital, cultural and economic hub in Morocco. The ancient city boasts a mixture of Arab, Amazigh, and Andalus heritage that can be clearly seen in its impressive sites, buildings, and architecture.
Unsurprisingly, Fez is home to the oldest university in the world, al-Qarawiyyin university that was established by Fatima Al Fihri in AD 859.
Visiting the old city of Fez is a truly magical experience. It is the closest you will ever get to the past without a time machine. The souk consists of a maze of long narrow streets packed with traders, artisans, and traditional craftsmen displaying age-old artifacts.
Fez consists of 3 different main districts: the old medina, the new median, and the Jewish medina. The mosques of Fes el-Bali and Fes el-Jdid are located in UNESCO world heritage sites. Both districts offer a spiritual journey into Morocco’s history through narrow streets, palaces, markets, madrasas, and many more.
Read More About Fez | The Ultimate First-timers guide to Fez, Morocco
Breezy and dreamy Essaouira is one of the best cities to visit in Morocco, and one of my personal favorites. It is located along the Atlantic coast in the western region. The inner walled city (Medina) of Essaouira was recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2001. Essaouira is a rather laid-back alternative to Marrakesh.
Famous for its white-colored houses, bustling souq, super windy beaches, and stunning gates and castles, Essaouira offers a mixture of what every avid traveler needs. Plus, if you are a music lover, visit this beautiful city during the Gnawa music festival held every year around June/July. Essaouira can be a great day trip from Marrakech.
Read More About Essaouira | The Ultimate First-timers of Essaouira, Morocco
Ouarzazate is a famed city in Morocco that not many know about. How? Well, Ouarzazate is basically a prominent filmmaking location that hosts some of the big film studios. The little city was featured in some of the well-known productions such as Game of Thrones, Lawrence of Arabia, The Mummy, Gladiator, The Hills Have Eyes and many more.
Being very close to both the Sahara and the Atlas mountains, Ouarzazate is a favorite tourist destination and starting point for excursions to the orange dunes in the Sahara and to the famous Daa Valley in the Atlas. That’s not to say that Ouarzazate is lacking in tourist sites. In fact, Ouarzazate hosts some of the historical kasbahs, green Oasis, and Studios.
Read More About Ouarzazate | The Ultimate Travel Guide to Ouarzazate, Morocco
8. Merzouga/ Sahara Desert
Discovering the Sahara on the hump of a camel has always been the Moroccan desert dream experience for so many tourists. Waking up early and watching the sunrise in this landscape is a breathtaking experience.
Whether you decide to rent a car or take part in a group / private trip, you must allow yourself 3 to 4 days to discover this stunning southern landscape. You will get to see, on the way, so many beautifully surprising attractions such as the Atlas Mountains Ait ben Haddou, Ouarzazate city, Dadès Valley, Todra Gorges.
At Merzouga, you will get a chance to experience camel rides while wandering in the beauty of the Erg Chebbi dunes, jump into a 4X4 for a desert adventure, enjoy a night-party in a desert camp with tented accommodation, and most importantly, savor the local food.
Many people overlook Casablanca when visiting Morocco. Casablanca is a great city hiding in plain sight. It is the heart and soul of Morocco. Also, most flights naturally fly directly into the largest airport which is just outside Casablanca.
So why not spend a day or two enjoying the sights and sounds of Morocco’s largest and busiest city. For one, you will get to see the Hassan II Mosque, which is one of the largest in the world.
Casablanca is also a city that links all the transport lines that lead across Morocco.
Read more about Casablanca | Awesome Things to do in Casablanca
If you would like to experience Morocco and go for a swim, then look no further than one of Morocco’s best beach cities, Agadir.
Agadir is a growing city with a mix of old and modern architecture. The seaside is beautiful and the city offers some interesting sites like the Passage Ait Sous Museum and the Agadir Souk. If you are a nature lover then be sure to visit the Sous National Park.
The city of Tangier lies on the Northern tip of Africa, a stone throw from mainland Europe. This Moroccan city is one of the oldest, going back thousands of years. Tangier has benefitted from the free flow of trade, people, and ideas for all of its history. Today, Tangier is not known for any one thing in particular. Rather, it is a city that is awash with color and culture.
everything about Tangier is just cool. the cafes on the beach, the museums, the old Kasbah, it is just all in a class of its own. Tangier needs to be experienced, not for its big things, but for its many little things, that when combined, make Tangier a top Morocco travel destination.
12. Al Hoceima
Unlike Marrakech and Fez, Al Hoceima is one of the underrated and less-known cities in Morocco. Located on the northern edge of the Rif Mountains and on the Mediterranean coast, Athe Riffian city boots both golden beaches and mountainous rocky areas.
Cala Iris, Bades, Torres, Quemado, and Tala Yussef are just a few of the many clean beaches you can enjoy in Al Hoceima. In recent years, the city featured a lot of tourism developments making it a fast-growing resort destination for locals and tourists alike. Certainly an opportunity not to be missed!
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