From the hustle and bustle of Marrakech and Fes to the photogenic Chefchaouen and also the sand dunes of the Sahara Desert, Morocco
has an improbable blend of geography, climate and culture. Each region has its own unique activities for travelers to settle on from, further as specific weather patterns that require attention.
Main Regions of Morocco
Stretching from the Mediterranean coast and Rif Mountains in the north to the Atlantic coast in the west to the hot desert regions of the Sahara in the south, Morocco is a vast country with numerous landscaped areas. Across its midline are the Atlas Mountains, with the Sahara Desert on one side and the more lush coastal regions on the other.
Each region of Morocco has its own landscape, climate, traditions, customs and modern developments. All are fascinating in their own way. Morocco certainly offers a wide range of options for all kinds of travelers, where you can create a tailored itinerary that includes the areas and activities that interest you most.
In northern Morocco, you will find coastal cities such as Tangier, Rabat, Casablanca and Jadida. All of these offer charm as well as long and pleasant beaches. Inland are the historic cities of Fes and Meknes, ancient imperial cities. You’ll also find the Rif Mountains to the north, a scenic area and home to now protected macaques.
Further south – now the center of Morocco’s tourism today – is Marrakech. Exotic and mesmerizing, this “City of Roses” (so named for the pink color of its buildings) is an ideal base to start or end your trip. Time in the city offers exciting activities, traditions and colour, not far from the tranquil foothills of the High Atlas, the plains of Marrakech and the surrounding Jbilet mountains and Atlantic coastline.
West of Marrakech, on the Atlantic coast, is the delightful and very active traditional fishing port of Essaouira. The architectural colours of white and blue add to the charm of the town, the medina and the coastal defenses. Morocco’s unique argan tree grows inland and provides argan oil, prized for its culinary and cosmetic benefits. To the north and south of Essaouira are other lovely coastal areas and charming villages.
South of Marrakech are the High Atlas Mountains. Toubkal is the highest peak (13,671 feet/4,167 meters). Whether hiking or 4WD, exploring deep valleys and towering peaks opens up a fascinating world about the Berbers, their activities and customs. Their extraordinary creativity, hard work, and understanding of how to work with the environment have allowed the community to thrive here for many centuries.
The Sahara Desert
The southernmost but still easily accessible place is the Sahara Desert. Think oases, palm trees, sandy seas and camels against the backdrop of the sunset. The Sahara Desert consists of rocky deserts and sandy deserts. For example, watching a magnificent sunset from the sandy beaches of Merzouga is very beautiful. Spending a night “under the stars” (in a Bedouin tent!) was also the most exhilarating.