Mesmerizing Moroccan Destinations for Your Travel Bucket-list

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Amazing Places In Morocco You Must Visit

Morocco is on almost everyone’s bucket list. It is so diverse and has so many things to see and do. You’ll be captivated by Morocco’s historical gems like the grand Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca and the ornate Bahia Palace in Marrakech. You can immerse yourself in the vibrant streets of Chefchaouen, the Blue City, and revisit history at the medieval UNESCO site of Fes.

Venture into the natural majesty of the Sahara Desert for an unforgettable camel ride under the stars or hike the rugged trails of the High Atlas Mountains. Don’t miss the coastal charm of Essaouira’s art-filled medina or the bustling souks of Marrakech. Each destination beckons with its own unique allure, promising unforgettable experiences and insights.

These are my top places to visit and most impressive things to see in Morocco.

The Andalusian Gardens in Rabat Morocco
The Andalusian Gardens in Rabat Morocco

Historical and Architectural Marvels

Discover the architectural grandeur of Morocco’s historical sites, from the sprawling Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca to the intricate Bahia Palace in Marrakech.

1. The Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca

The Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca is a must-visit for both its architectural magnificence and cultural significance.

As one of the largest mosques in the world, it boasts a towering minaret that stands 210 meters high, offering breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean. The mosque’s intricate designs, including exquisite mosaics, carved ceilings, and a retractable roof, highlight the pinnacle of Moroccan craftsmanship and Islamic art.

The mosque accommodates up to 105,000 worshippers and features state-of-the-art amenities such as heated floors and a laser light visible from miles away. Its construction, completed in 1993, represents modern engineering marvels while preserving traditional Moroccan design, making it an architectural and spiritual landmark.

Its location on the oceanfront in Casablanca only ads to the photographic possibilities and its one of the best mosques I’ve ever seen. The mosaic details alone are worth the visit.

Learn how to visit the Hassan II Mosque in this article.

Hassan II Mosque Minaret
Hassan II Mosque Minaret

Visit The Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca

2. Bahia Palace Marrakech

Visiting Bahia Palace in Marrakech is a journey through Moroccan history and artistry. Constructed in the late 19th century, this sprawling palace spans over eight hectares and showcases the epitome of Moroccan and Islamic architectural styles. With its intricately carved wooden ceilings, beautiful zellij tilework, and lush gardens, the palace is a fantastic place to escape from the bustling city, even if its just for an hour.

Each room and courtyard of Bahia Palace tells a story of the opulence and grandeur of Moroccan aristocracy. The Grand Courtyard, with its stunning marble floor and surrounding galleries, is a highlight, providing a perfect spot for reflection and admiration of the detailed craftsmanship. The palace’s harmonious blend of Arabic and Andalusian influences is evident in the ornate decorations and the meticulous attention to detail in every corner.

Beyond its architectural splendor, Bahia Palace also offers a glimpse into the rich cultural heritage of Marrakech. The palace served as the residence of Si Moussa, the grand vizier of the sultan, and later his son, Bou Ahmed, who expanded it to its current glory. As you wander through its halls and gardens, you can imagine the grandeur of the past and the historical significance of this magnificent site.

Bahia Palace, Marakech
Central court in Bahia Palace Marrakech

3. Volubilis Roman Ruins

As a well-preserved archaeological site, Volubilis boasts stunning ruins, including majestic arches, intricate mosaics, and remnants of grand basilicas and temples. Visiting Volubilis in Morocco offers a fascinating journey into the ancient Roman Empire’s influence in North Africa.

Walking through this UNESCO World Heritage site, you can explore the Decumanus Maximus, the main thoroughfare, and admire the House of Orpheus and its detailed floor mosaics that depict mythological scenes.

In addition to its historical significance, Volubilis provides a picturesque setting with panoramic views of the surrounding countryside.

The site is situated near the holy city of Moulay Idriss and the imperial city of Meknes, making it a perfect day trip destination for history enthusiasts and travelers seeking to delve into Morocco’s rich cultural tapestry.

With its combination of impressive ruins and beautiful landscapes, Volubilis offers a unique and educational experience for visitors. It is so impressive that so many intact mosaics still remain and it seems like almost nothing has been done to protect them. They are in full weather and there seemed to be no-one really guarding the ruins so it was quite incredible as to the condition they still maintained.

Me at the blazing hot Volubilis Ruins. It was so bright that day!
Me at the blazing hot Volubilis Ruins. It was so bright that day!
Amazingly intact mosaics at Volubilis Morocco
Amazingly intact mosaics at Volubilis Morocco

Cultural Gems In Morocco You Must Visit

4. Chefchaouen The Blue City

Step into the vibrant hues of Chefchaouen, the Blue City, where every street and alleyway is bathed in mesmerizing shades of blue, offering a truly unique urban escape within Morocco.

Known as the “Blue Pearl,” this charming town is renowned for its striking blue-washed buildings that create a serene and enchanting atmosphere. Wandering through the narrow, winding streets, you’ll find vibrant markets, cozy cafes, and stunning views of the Rif Mountains. The blend of Moroccan and Andalusian influences in the architecture and culture adds a unique charm to this tranquil town.

Beyond its aesthetic allure, Chefchaouen offers a rich cultural experience. The town is a hub for traditional crafts, and visitors can explore local artisan shops offering handmade goods like woven blankets and pottery.

The surrounding natural beauty, including the nearby Akchour waterfalls and Talassemtane National Park, provides ample opportunities for hiking and exploring the Moroccan countryside. Chefchaouen’s peaceful ambiance and scenic beauty make it a perfect destination for those seeking both relaxation and adventure.

As you wander, you’ll find the air infused with the scent of spices and the sound of distant prayer calls, enhancing the city’s ethereal feel.

Colorful pots on the stairs of Chefchaouen Morocco
Colorful pots on the stairs of Chefchaouen Morocco

5. Fes and Its Mdina

Don’t miss exploring Fes, a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for its sprawling medina and traditional leather tanneries. Here, history permeates every corner, from the ancient University of Al Quaraouiyine to the bustling souks.

Visiting Fes in Morocco offers an immersive journey into the heart of Moroccan history and culture. As one of the oldest cities in the country, Fes is home to the world’s oldest continuously operating university, Al Quaraouiyine, and the famous Fes el-Bali medina, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Exploring its labyrinthine streets, you’ll discover stunning architecture, bustling souks, and vibrant tanneries (if you can tolerate the smell), all of which reflect centuries-old traditions and craftsmanship.

Fes is also a cultural epicenter where you can experience the rich tapestry of Moroccan life. The city’s medersas, or Islamic schools, such as Bou Inania and Al-Attarine, showcase exquisite tile work and intricate carvings. Festivals and cultural events abound, offering glimpses into local music, dance, and cuisine.

I was fortunate enough to be in Fes when the European cup was in full swing and got stuck in traffic in the midst of a Moroccan football celebration. It was insane but so much fun and I loved every second of it.

Whether you’re marvelling at the historic gates, such as Bab Bou Jeloud, or enjoying a traditional Moroccan meal, Fes provides a captivating blend of history, culture, and vibrant daily life.

The mdina in Fes Morocco
The Mdina in Fes Morocco

Natural Wonders

Exploring Morocco’s natural wonders offers you a breathtaking journey through diverse landscapes, from the expansive Sahara Desert to the towering peaks of the Atlas Mountains. Immerse yourself in the vastness of the Sahara on a camel ride at sunset, feeling the gentle sway as you traverse golden dunes. At night, the desert sky reveals a star-studded canopy, perfect for stargazing.

6. Atlas Mountains

Venture into the High Atlas Mountains, where rugged trails lead to Berber villages tucked in verdant valleys. The air’s crispness contrasts with the warmth of local hospitality.

This stunning mountain range, home to North Africa’s highest peak, Mount Toubkal, offers amazing landscapes of rugged cliffs, lush valleys, and traditional Berber villages.

Hiking trails range from moderate to challenging, providing opportunities to explore the diverse flora and fauna, experience traditional Berber hospitality, and enjoy panoramic views that change with the seasons.

Beyond hiking, the High Atlas Mountains offer cultural immersion in remote, picturesque villages where life has remained unchanged for centuries. Visitors can learn about Berber culture, enjoy local cuisine, and witness traditional crafts like weaving and pottery.

The area’s natural beauty combined with its rich cultural heritage makes the High Atlas Mountains an unforgettable destination for those seeking both adventure and a deeper connection with Moroccan culture.

Don’t miss the awe-inspiring Todra Gorge, where towering red cliffs frame a narrow canyon, inviting rock climbers and hikers to explore its majestic heights and serene riverbed.

Day Tours To The Atlas Mountains From Marrakech

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Small village in the mountains of Morocco
Small village in the mountains of Morocco

7. Sahara Desert

Visiting the Sahara Desert in Morocco offers a unique and inspiring experience. You can expect to witness endless golden dunes, especially the majestic Erg Chebbi near Merzouga, where the landscape shifts with the wind.

Activities like camel trekking provide an authentic taste of nomadic life, leading to camps where you can enjoy traditional Berber music and cuisine under a blanket of stars. The serene beauty and vastness of the desert create an unforgettable backdrop for sunrise and sunset views.

Beyond the dunes, the Sahara offers a variety of experiences. Explore ancient kasbahs, interact with local Berber communities, and visit the fossil-rich areas that reveal the region’s geological history.

Adventure seekers can try sandboarding, quad biking, or 4×4 excursions across the rugged terrain. A visit to the Sahara Desert is not just a trip; it’s an immersive journey into the natural wonders and cultural heritage of Morocco and in my personal opinion a must do while you are in Morocco.

Camel trekking in the desert
Camel trekking in the desert Morocco

City Escapes In Morocco

After reveling in the natural beauty of Morocco’s landscapes, you’ll find the country’s cities offer an equally enchanting charm with their unique blend of modernity and tradition.

8. Marrakech

Wander through Marrakech’s bustling souks, where the aroma of spices fills the air and vibrant colors mesmerize your senses. Don’t miss the historic Saadian Tombs and serene Jardin Majorelle.

In the heart of the city, you’ll find the bustling Jemaa el-Fnaa square, where storytellers, musicians, and food stalls create an electric atmosphere. The medina, with its narrow, winding streets, is filled with colorful souks offering spices, textiles, and traditional crafts.

The city’s palaces and gardens, such as the Bahia Palace and Majorelle Garden, showcase exquisite Islamic and Moroccan designs, providing serene spots to explore and relax.

Marrakech also offers a rich cultural experience with its historical landmarks and cultural sites. The Koutoubia Mosque, with its towering minaret, stands as an iconic symbol of the city, while the Saadian Tombs reveal intricate details of Moroccan artistry.

Culinary enthusiasts can indulge in Moroccan cuisine through cooking classes or dining at traditional riads. From hammam experiences to lively nightlife, Marrakech promises a diverse and engaging visit, blending the old and the new in a captivating way.

A storm coming in over Marrakech
A storm coming in over Marrakech

9. Mekenes

Visiting Meknes in Morocco offers a glimpse into the country’s imperial past, rich with history and architectural splendor. As one of Morocco’s four imperial cities, Meknes boasts grand gates like Bab Mansour and impressive sites such as the Mausoleum of Moulay Ismail, reflecting the grandeur of its 17th-century zenith.

The city’s medina, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is a maze of narrow streets filled with bustling markets, traditional crafts, and vibrant local life.

Meknes also provides a more tranquil experience compared to its larger counterparts. Visitors can explore the Dar Jamai Museum, housed in a 19th-century palace, and the nearby Roman ruins of Volubilis, which offer a fascinating insight into ancient civilizations.

The lush Agdal Basin and the Royal Stables further add to the city’s charm, making Meknes a perfect destination for those seeking a mix of historical exploration and cultural immersion in a less touristy setting.

Meknes city surrounded by its ancient city walls
Meknes city surrounded by its ancient city walls

Meknes is often visited as part of a day tour from Fes that also encompasses Volubilis which I mention above.

Day Tours That Visit Meknes Morocco

10. Rabat

Rabat, the capital, balances modernity with rich history and is really worth a few days.

As a UNESCO World Heritage site, the city features landmarks like the Hassan Tower and the Mausoleum of Mohammed V, showcasing impressive Islamic architecture. The Kasbah of the Udayas, a tranquil fortress with Andalusian gardens, provides stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean.

Rabat’s medina, though smaller than those in other Moroccan cities, is charming and less crowded, making it a delightful place to explore traditional markets and crafts.

Rabat also boasts vibrant cultural and artistic scenes. The Mohammed VI Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art highlights Moroccan and international artists, while the Royal Palace and the picturesque Chellah ruins add to the city’s historical allure.

The city’s coastal location allows for pleasant strolls along the Bouregreg River and visits to nearby beaches. With its mix of historical sites, cultural attractions, and modern amenities, Rabat offers a rich and varied experience for travelers.

Me at Kasbah of the Udayas Rabat Morocco
Me at Kasbah of the Udayas Rabat Morocco

Coastal Charms

Morocco’s coastline offers a breathtaking array of destinations, from the historic medinas and vibrant art scenes to the sandy beaches ideal for water sports.

11. Essaouira

In Essaouira, you’ll find a charming medina alongside galleries that showcase local art, all set against a backdrop of waves perfect for surfing. It’s a place where culture and relaxation blend seamlessly.

This picturesque port city, with its well-preserved medina, is a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its white-washed buildings with blue shutters, narrow alleys, and bustling souks.

The Skala de la Ville, historic ramparts with cannons, provides stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean and a glimpse into the city’s past as a fortress. Essaouira’s relaxed atmosphere, coupled with its rich history, makes it a captivating destination.

Essaouira is also a haven for water sports enthusiasts and art lovers. The city’s windy beaches are ideal for surfing, kitesurfing, and windsurfing. The annual Gnaoua World Music Festival attracts international and local artists, celebrating the region’s unique musical heritage.

Art galleries and workshops dot the medina, showcasing local craftsmanship and contemporary art. With its vibrant cultural scene, scenic beauty, and laid-back vibe, Essaouira offers a refreshing contrast to Morocco’s busier cities.

Essaouira streets Morocco
The charm of Essaouira streets, Morocco

There is heaps to do in the surrounding area of Essaouira too. Surfing lessons are available most of the year, dune tours on buggy’s and quads are also pretty much always available and this cooking class was really fun. Julia and I did the cooking class and loved it.

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12. Agadir

Head to Agadir for expansive golden beaches where you can indulge in everything from jet-skiing to a simple sunbathe. The city’s modern resorts guarantee comfort, while its souk markets offer a taste of Moroccan life.

With its long, sandy coastline, the city is a paradise for sunbathers and water sports enthusiasts. The beachfront promenade is perfect for leisurely walks, while the lively marina offers a variety of restaurants and shops. Agadir’s modern infrastructure, combined with its warm, sunny climate, makes it an ideal destination for relaxation and recreation.

Beyond the beaches, Agadir offers cultural and historical attractions, such as the hilltop Kasbah with panoramic views of the city and ocean. The Amazigh Heritage Museum provides insights into Berber culture and traditions, enriching your understanding of the region. Agadir is also a gateway to the scenic landscapes of the Souss-Massa National Park, where visitors can explore diverse wildlife and natural beauty. This combination of beachside luxury and cultural richness ensures a fulfilling visit to Agadir.

The wide stretch of sand in Agadir Morocco
The wide stretch of sand in Agadir Morocco

Amazing Places To Visit In Morocco

Morocco is full of color. Everywhere you look its the red of the desert or the colors of the Medinas and it can be hard to narrow down where to go and what to see. Hopefully this has given you an idea of places to visit in Morocco and a small glimpse into just how wonderful Morocco really is

Jenny Marsden - Charge The Globe
About the author

Meet Jenny, a passionate Australian travel blogger who has explored 103 countries to date. With over 30 years of travel experience, Jenny has a wealth of knowledge to share with her readers about the cultures, landscapes, and people she has encountered on her journeys. She’s always battling unfashionably frizzy hair and you will never catch Jenny in anything but comfortable shoes. Learn more about Jenny and her travels.