Morocco’s Ministry of Tourism has embraced a thorough procedure for building up Morocco’s tourism segment to make Morocco one of the world’s top travel destinations and to support tourism as the driving force for financial, social, and cultural development in Morocco.
The administration’s 2020 Vision Plan, which looks forward to expanding incomes from tourism to MAD 140 billion by 2020, concentrates on genuineness to make Morocco a more alluring destination for travelers. The ministry will take on preemptive measures to protect Morocco’s natural and cultural heritages to reinforce Morocco’s cultural identity.
The 2020 Vision additionally supports Morocco’s different sub-societies, natural assets, and environmental framework, and openness to Africa and Europe, The Tourism Ministry takes operates these components to make them meet the desires of visitors.
The 2020 Vision additionally concentrates on giving quality service and enjoyment to supplement the prime tourism framework. Morocco will build up its lodging capacity, concentrating on differed entertainment and recreation facilities keeping in mind the end goal to contend with other international tourism franchise.
Sustainable tourism is likewise among the significant targets of the 2020 Vision. The Ministry of Tourism will keep operating on components that have given improvement to Morocco as a better tourist destination. The strategy will think about keeping on the modernity as well as authenticity by carrying out a coordinated system that includes watching and assessment by the Sustainable Tourism Commission and the High Authority of Tourism.
So as to take into account this goal-oriented vision, Morocco will multiply its residential capacity in twofold by making 200,000 beds, increase the local tourism, and make 470,000 employment.
Morocco’s General Manager of National Tourism (ONMT) Mr. AbderrafieZouitensaid in a meeting that “Morocco needs to pull in 1.5 million visitors in the following two years” which will entail an additional 400 million Moroccan dirham, far beyond the expense of 2020 vital vision. This arrangement concentrates on travelers from the theUnited States and Germany. Morocco will probably produce new organizations with aircraft and open 57 aerial tracks.
Zouiten additionally clarified that the agency utilizes digital media to give data on Morocco’s topographical dissemination of tourism, upgrade Morocco’s label for tourism, and report the authoritative strategies required for foreign voyagers to come to Morocco. “These strides which will be accessible one month from now will empower 80 percent of voyagers to utilize the Internet for arranging and booking their tours,” he included.
Morocco Travel and Tourism in Report Morocco to 2017
The Moroccan travel and tourism industry recorded slow growth during the study’s timeframe between 2008 to 2012, because of the European sovereign debt crisis and the 2010 Arab Spring uprising. Government activities on local and global tourism advancements, the improvement of tourism foundation and expanded government ventures will build up the tourism industry over the estimated time frame of 2013 to 2017.
The report published by website Research Markets in 2014 presented an extensive market study, insights, and information including:
– Historical data and estimated number of travelers covering the whole Moroccan travel and tourism industry
– Detailed report of visitor buying patterns in Morocco for different classifications in the travel and tourism area, like settlement, touring and entertainment, transportation, food service, retail, travel agents and others
– Detailed travel market classification in every kind, with assessment comparing the inbound and outbound tourist flows.
– Detailed report on the industries of airline companies, hotels and another lodging, auto rental and travel intermediaries.
The website encourages business owners in the tourism sector to get a copy of the report so they can make strategic and sound business choices utilizing historical and projected market information engaged in the travel industry. The report would also help them the demand progression within the country’s tourism industry, alongside essential market trends and development opportunities.
Key Report Features
– In June 2013, the Ministry of Tourism introduced the new version of the KounouzBiladi program to advance the local tourism. KounouzBiladi targets middle-class families who don’t budget some money for outings. The ministry reported attractive price offerings and travel offices gave away appealing packages like those offered to foreign visitors all through the 2012 version of the program. The service additionally declared that KounouzBiladi will be stretched out to other seasons to empower local travelers to be consistently rewarded by discounts for one year.
– In July 2013, the tourism board expanded its emphasis on nations like Eastern Europe, China, North America, Russia and the Middle East to boost Morocco as a beautiful travel destination. The Moroccan National Tourist Office has effectively set up workplaces in Beijing and introduced an arrangement expecting to pull in Chinese vacationers. The office has likewise asked for carriers in both Morocco and China to fly non-stop flights between the two nations.
– In June 2013, Royal Air Maroc reported that it would buy 20 to 30 new planes by 2020, including five long-haul airplanes. British Airways had expanded the number of flights from seven to 10 between November 2012 to March 2013 flying Marrakech and London. In April 2013, Ryanair has likewise restored its long haul enthusiasm for the nation by including two bases in Marrakesh and Fez, expanding its Moroccan operations to 60 courses and eight air terminals, transporting 2.5 million travelers a year to Morocco.
– Premium and top of the line lavish lodging brands, for example, Mandarin Oriental, The Address Hotels, Oberoi, Rocco Forte Collection and Kempinski, have begun putting resources into new properties in the nation; 54 hotel projects are planned with an overall capacity of 15,000 new guest rooms. To be included in this undertaking are 18 five-star hotels will be constructed in Marrakech. Kempinski is likewise setting up two new properties in the nation. The Royal Palace Hotel opened in Agadir with 260 rooms last March 2013, and in October 2013, Al Houara hotel with 270-room opened in Tanger.
– The cost of leasing a basic car without any limitations on travel distance begins from MAD3,408.2 (US$395.0) each week or MAD491.8 (US$57.0) each day. This is exceptionally costly for a North African nation. Most auto rental organizations likewise request a refundable money deposit of MAD2,934.7 (US$340.0) or MAD4,875.0 (US$565.0) if not paid by a charge card. The best urban communities to call car rentals are in Tangier, Casablanca, and Marrakesh, where autos are accessible at modest costs.
- Travel agencies in Morocco are profiting by local crowds through web advertising strategies, and all travel packages booked through them are liable to a 15% rebate. Local tourists can likewise get to an interlocutor if they are disappointed with the travel organization’s services.”
Travel Guide: Top Places to Visit in Morocco
Some of the best places to travel when in Morocco include the imperial metropolis of Fes, Marrakech, and Meknes. This is the place where you will find beautiful bazaars, royal residences, and busy town squares. Morocco is likewise well known for its shorelines, and a portion of the best ocean towns areEssaouira, Tangier, and Asilah. Morocco has an innate beauty. You can rent a camel and trek through the Sahara; climb the highest peak of North Africa; or stay in a conventional Kasbah in the entrancing Dades Valley.
Travel Guide to Marrakech
Located at the foot of the Atlas mountains, the royal city of Marrakech is huge, loud, tainted and stinky. Be that as it may, Marrakech is captivating and loaded with history. On you appreciate an assault of overwhelming senses, then you’ll have a great deal of fun. When the most famous sights include many references to “Serenity” and “peace” like the Majorelle gardens or the greenery enclosures around the Saadian Tombs you know you’re in for a fascinating happening.
It’s fairly easy to get around Marrakech without even hiring a tour guide. There are so many areas that you can see; it’s recommended to spend three days in Marrakech. If your budget allows, treat yourself to a stay in a Riad so when you come back from a busy day, you can unwind and have some mint tea in a peaceful patio.
Best Time to Go
Visit Marrakech in the cooler months from September and May. However, some yearly events happen in summer which you might want to experience:
- Marrakech Popular Arts Festival in July. This yearly celebration draws in artists, fortune tellers, acting troupes, snake charmers, fire dancers and then some, from all over Morocco. Since 2000 the event has additionally pulled in numerous craftsmen and performers from Europe and Asia. The main events happen in the remains of the 16 century Badi Palace and the Djemma el Fna).
- Fantasia is a stallion riding exhibition that incorporates many charging horsemen (and ladies) wearing traditional attire. The spectacle is one feature of the Popular Arts Festival, so it also happens in July. You can see the Fantasia on the nights outside the city walls close to the Bab Jdid. If you don’t get the opportunity to see it in July, there’s the Chez Ali, a restaurant that offers the Fantasia as the amusement while you eat.
- Imilchil Marriage Feast is a Berber marriage festival where up to forty couples get married. It happens in Imilchil in the Middle-High Atlas Mountains close to Marrakech. The festival is an extraordinary way to experience the culture of Berber including dance and music. The occasion happens after harvest each year, so the dates differ, it’s normally held late August or early September.
Winter in Marrakech
From mid-January to mid-February there is typically enough snowfall in the Atlas mountains for skiers. The Oukaimden ski resort is just 50 miles from Marrakech. There are a few ski lifts to get a magnificent view.
Places to See in Marrakech
The Djemma el Fna. The expansive central square in the old city (Medina) is considered to the heart of Marrakech. During the day, it’s a great spot to grab a fresh orange juice and a bunch of dates. Toward the evening the Djemma el Fna changes into a performers haven – in case you’re into snake enchanting, juggling, real entertainment like that of medieval times.
Souqs. The souqs are essentially undercover markets that offer everything from chickens to fantastic specialties. The souqs of Marrakech are thought to be among the best in Morocco, so if you like shopping and haggling, you’ll have fun enormously. Regardless of the possibility that you don’t care for shopping, the souks offer an authentic cultural experience you should not miss.
Majorelle Gardens and Museum of Islamic Art. In the 1920’s, French craftsmen Jacques and Louis Majorelle made a very beautiful garden amidst Marrakech’s new town. The Majorelle Gardens are loaded with plants of all shapes and sizes, blooms, ponds, and tranquility. The famous Yves Saint Laurent is the owner today and has constructed his house on the property. Inside the compound is a building called Majorelle which houses the Museum of Islamic Art. This little gallery incorporates some great case of Moroccan tribal workmanship, floor coverings, pottery, and jewelry.
Saadian Tombs. Ruled most of southern Morocco between 16th-17th centuries, Sultan Ahmed al-Mansour of the Saadian made these tombs for himself and his 66 family members. The tombs were in 1917 which we beautifully preserved surrounded by a beautiful garden
The Ramparts of Marrakech. Standing since the 13th century, the walls of the medina which run for 12 miles make for an awesome early morning walk. Every entryway is an art themselves like the Bab ed-Debbagh gate which gives a great photo-opportunity brimming with striking hues.
Palais Dar Si Said (Museum of Moroccan Arts). A castle and museum in one, the palace boasts of a lovely patio where you can unwind and take some photos. The exhibition hall’s showcases are well laid out full of artifacts like ceramics, jewelry, costumes and other relics.
Ali Ben Youssef Medersa and Mosque. The Medersa was constructed during the 16th century by the Saadians and could hold up to 900 religious students. The design is flawlessly preserved, and you can check out the small rooms where the students used to live. The mosque is next to Medersa.
El Bahia Palace. A great example of the Moroccan architecture, this palace built as a harem’s residence possesses heaps of subtle element, curves, light.
How to Get to Marrakech
The international airport of Marrakech has direct flights between London and Paris as well as chartered flights landing from all over Europe. If you are flying from the US, Canada, Asia or somewhere else, you’ll need to change planes in Casablanca. The air terminal is just around 4 miles (15 minutes) from the city and buses and taxis work for the duration of the day
Trains operate daily linking Marrakech and Casablanca. The ride takes around 3 hours. To go to Fez, Meknes or Tangier then you can take the train through Rabat (4 hours from Marrakech).
Supratours, CTM and SATAS are three national bus companies that connect Marrakech and neighboring cities and towns in Morocco
Places to Stay in Marrakech
A standout amongst the lodging options in Marrakech is a Riad, a traditional Moroccan house located in the Medina (old town). Most riads have courtyards with fountain, restaurant or pool. Some riads additionally have terraces where you can have breakfast and get a stunning view of the city.
Reads like the Dar Mouassine, MaisonMnabha and the Hotel Sherazadeare not all costly.
Marrakech has a great number of lavish hotels including the well-known La Mamounia, as featured in the film Sex and the City 2. There are a few famous hotel chains like the Le Meridien and Sofitel.
The most well-known luxury hotel in Marrakech is La Mamounia which Winston Churchill described as “the most beautiful place in the world”.
Travel Guide to Fes (Fez)
Morocco’s most ancient Imperial city, Fes (Fez) and its “old town” is currently a UNESCO World Heritage site. Behind the Medina’s Fes el-Bali’s towering walls is an enchanted, medieval city overflowing with life in each one of its 9000 narrow roads. Fes is the spiritual and cultural capital of Morocco, and you’ll surely encounter its liveliness.
The new part of Fes, called ville nouvelle, was constructed by the French and is entirely distinct from the medina. The wide avenues are lined with modern day shops, and traffic is chaotic. There’s not much to see, but rather if you incline toward bigger Westernized lodgings, this is the place you’d want to stay.
Best time to go to Fes
The best time to visit Fes starts on September running to November and then April to June where it’s not very hot, and there are fewer travelers. The Fes Festival of World Sacred Music is normally held in June and is unquestionably worth a travel plan.
Places to see in Fes
Fes el-Bali. The must see the place in Fes is the old medina (Fes el-Bali)and an ideal approach to get around it is hire a guide through your lodging or Riad for an estimated cost of around 250 dirhams. Any longer and you can just depend on agreeable businesspeople to point you in the right heading or a decent guide. The delight of touring the old Fes is walking along the narrow alleys and discovering a donkey drinking from a beautiful tiled fountain, watching Moroccan artisans at work; or ducking into a nearby Hammam and appreciating a decent good scrub.
Tanneries. Fes is well known for its leather items, and the greater part of it originates from the leather bazaar in old Fes. The tanneries have been in operation since medieval times, and little has changed, which makes them completely captivating to visit.
Kairaouine Mosque. Tucked the heart of the medina, the Kairaouine Mosque is enormous yet you can scarcely get a decent look at its size since it’s basically wedged in the middle of several shops and houses. 20,000 individuals can pray here yet unless you’re a Muslim, you won’t have the capacity to go inside. In any case, following the Mosque has as of late opened up again after extensive restoration, when the entryways are open visitors can look in and wonder about the lovely tile work. The library here is a standout amongst the most critical and most established on the planet. You’ll know you’re drawing near to the mosque in the event that you strike your head against a wooden pillar in a rear way. The pillars were put so individuals would bring down their heads when drawing closer the mosque and it likewise prevents donkeys from getting excessively close.
Museums. There are 3 historical galleries in old Fes that are worth visiting and offer a spot to get some rest. The Nejarine Museum of Wooden Arts and Crafts is in an beautiful construction with a decent little rooftop bistro. The Dar Batha Museum has an exceptionally fascinating showcase of artworks, particularly if you appreciate the conventional blue-shaded pottery Fes is well known for. The Belghazi Museum offers comparative fine art to Dar Batha, yet here you can purchase it what you like! The museum is located inside a palace and is a decent, if expensive, spot to appreciate some lunch.
Medersas. There are two Medersas (religious schools) worth going by in old Fes. The MedersaBouInania was constructed during the 1300’s and has some excellent examples of Merenid plasterwork and woodwork.
The Mellah. The Mellah is the old Jewish quarter of Fes, and you can tell its architecture varies from whatever is left of the medina. Houses with overhangs and windows facing the roads are exceptionally un-Muslim-like. The Jewish graveyard is very eye-popping here with white headstones running down the hillside as far as the naked eye can see, some are wavering directly over the edge.
Merenid Tombs. The Merenid Tombs are located outside the walls of old-Fes, and you see them from most rooftops in Fes. Vacationers head up the hill to the tombs to get a decent perspective of Fes as the sun sets. The tombs themselves aren’t much of a view.
How to get to Fes
You can get to Fes by train, bus and plane so there’s no reason not to visit the most mesmerizing city in Morocco. On the off chance that you haven’t ever been to a developing nation, Fes might be a little intense. If visiting Marrakech is part of your plan itinerary, you might need to head there first since it’s somewhat more laid back. Try not to spend all your cash on knickknacks in Marrakech however; you’ll see it’s less expensive in Fes.
Morocco has an efficient railroad line, the trains are comfy and they keep running on time. Fes has one train station and you can get a train from Marrakech (7 hours), Tangier (5 hours), Casablanca (4.5 hours) and Rabat (3.5 hours). You can just book your train tickets in Morocco and it’s wise to book them a day ahead of time.
Morocco’s best bus company is called CTM. They have buses operating out to Fes from major spots in Morocco. In case you’re not on the train line, then a bus is a fine alternative and constantly less expensive than the train (a 4-hour bus trip cost 70 dirhams and a 6-hour ride cost 120 dirhams). CTM has a modernized system for booking so you can book all your transport tickets for anyplace in Morocco at any CTM office.
The Fes’ Saiss Airport is located only 6 miles from the new town center. Some European charter planes fly in directly from Paris and London. Royal Air Moroc has a flight to Fes from Casablanca, which flies twice daily.
Via Grande Taxi
If you plan to visit Meknes and Volubilis you can either take a train or bus or you may also pick the more costly Grande Taxi. Grande taxis don’t have meters, so you have to successfully negotiate the fare before jumping into the taxi. These taxis are regularly shared, so don’t be amazed if more travelers get picked up along the way. The ride takes an hour to get to Meknes from Fes.
Places to Stay in Fes
Rent a traditional house. In case you’re truly up for a unique local experience, try renting out a traditional house. It’s less expensive than staying in Riads, and the houses look just as pretty. This is a perfect choice if you need the comfort of having your refrigerator and the little kitchen.
Riads are traditional homes in old Fes that have been revamped and transformed into little inns. There are typically a set number of rooms or suites constructed around a patio, making the experience more private. Rooftops give great perspectives over the city and make for an awesome spot to have some breakfast and watch the people go about their day to day business.
Travel Guide to Essaouira
Essaouira is known for its laid back coastal town that offers explorers a good break from the hustle bustle of Marrakech, which is only a couple of hours away. The town’s beaches, medina, and fresh catch seafood are what interest travelers to visit Essaouira.
Best time to go
There’s no rain in Essaouira from March to October, so that may be the best time to go. Essaouira’s temperatures don’t get much above 80 Fahrenheit (26 Celsius). If you are not into group tours, then May, June and September would be the best time to visit Essaouira. Winters don’t get excessively frosty, the temperatures can be up to 60 Fahrenheit (15 Celsius) amid the day, excessively chilly, making it impossible to swim or sunbathe, yet at the same time great time to do bargain hunting in the medina.
Essaouira’s biggest annual event, the Gnaoua World Music celebration is held for three days on June. Gnaoua is the descendants of slaves coming from Black Africa, who built up Brotherhood all through Morocco. They are comprised of expert artists (maalem), clairvoyants, metal castanet players, mediums and their devotees. This celebration showcases their abilities and that of global performers who have grasped this type of music and magic.
Places to see in Essaouira
Beach. Essaouira is fairly a small fishing town, and that’s what makes it a charm, it has a holiday and local feel to it. Because the place has strong winds, it’s ideal for water sports like windsurfing, surfing, and kite surfing.
The Medina and Souqs (markets). Shopping here in Essaouira is more relaxed compared to Marrakech and Fes but not necessarily cheaper. The medina is enclosed by walls, and there are five primary gates you can walk and easily navigate as it’s also car free and clean.It is just a small area but avoids the Mellah area of the medina around evening time.
Ramparts and the Port. Essaouira’s medina is walled like numerous old towns in Morocco, and the defenses are entirely amazing as they’re created on the cliffs. Local people and guests appreciate walking around the ramparts as the sun sets. The port is a bustling port loaded with fishing vessels.
Hammams. Essaouira may not have the best hammams, but this is a good place to experience a traditional Moroccan steam bath. The Hammam de la Kasbah is highly recommended by The Lonely Planet Guide to Morocco.
How to get to Essaouira
Most travel to Essaouira by bus simply because there is no train station. There is direct bus operating from Casablanca to Essaouira daily which takes around 6 hours. Buses from Marrakech takes 2.5 hours, and a few bus companies travel this course. The bus station at Bab Doukkala in Marrakech is the place the buses leave from.
Tourists found that Grande Taxis will take them from the Marrakech to Essaouira airport only during the daytime.It will cost you around $80 (50 Euros)for the trip which takes around 3 hours. On the other hand, you can get a taxi at the main bus station in Marrakech and after that jump on a bus to Essaouira.
Places to stay in Essaouira
Riads. Each room inside a Riad is one of a kind. Essaouira has some exceptionally pleasant riads in its medina. Riads are hidden along narrow streets, and you’ll need to ask somebody to help you with your packs since no cars can get to the medina.
Where to Eat
Since Essaouira is a fishing town, you, therefore, need to try its local dishes like grilled sardines. Any eatery along the harbor front offers fresh fish daily. Some of the best eateries are shrouded away in Riads in the medinas. The Place Moulay Hassan on the edge of the port is an incredible spot for a beverage and affordable Moroccan food.
Suggested Restaurants in Essaouira:
Chez Sam at Essaouira’s port has fantastic seafood and fish but not that many local Moroccans.
Riad le Grande Large – known for its flavorful traditional dinners, than its rooms. Fantastic set dinners begin at 12 Euros (around $19), and your fish dishes will, as a rule, be served by live music.
Chez Georges is one of the most costly restaurants in Essaouira. Al fresco dining, so wears something warm.
Things to Consider Before Traveling to Morocco
Planning a trip to Morocco? Before you get on the plane, there are a few things you most likely need to know. Moreover, if this is your first trip abroad, or maybe you just need a reminder here’s a list of questions and answers including what you should do or bring before your trip. If you want to achieve an easy, headache-free Moroccan travel (and who doesn’t?), taking care of basic tasks like researching activities at your destination, managing your finances and getting your traveling bags in order is the key. Do not run off from home without accomplishing and thinking of the following list!
Do I need to get a vaccine before traveling to Morocco?
Although a personal decision, getting a vaccine is not mandatory in Morocco.
Do they accept credit cards? What is their local currency?
The Moroccan Dirham (DEE-rahm). Keep in mind that you will get cash out of an ATM in dirham and that you will regularly be charged for the foreign transaction fee of around 3 percent by your bank, whether you get cash out or swipe your credit card.
What is the language there?
The Moroccans talk a fascinating blend of Arabic, Berber, English and French. Amazingly, you may hear several languages in just one sentence.
While English will probably be understood by many in the bigger urban areas, you may have some language barrier in the rural areas. For this situation, Arabic and French are likely equivalent fallbacks for the bold traveler.
What practices could get me in a bad position in the event that I don’t follow them?
There are likely two major things you ought to be worried about here. One is the way you use your left hand to eat or shake hands. Muslims, Moroccans among them, feel that it’s unclean. Be wary of this custom especially in public. The other thing is that ladies modest dressing. Westerners tends to walk around in tank tops and short. Tourists are advised to dress conservatively.
Do they drink/do drugs/party?
Moroccans, however, devoted Muslims, appear to do the majority of the above. Hashish is common in Morocco, and it’s not that difficult to get liquor at numerous bars in spite of the Muslim being against it. Cities like Casablanca or Marrakech has bars and dance club where there’s a chance to party until the small hours.
A musical form of party called Aissawa, is like a Sufi rave. Sufism, an old enchanted branch of Islam concentrated on lifting the soul, is still practiced all over the world. The celebrated writer Rumi was a Sufi, and numerous Westerners have come to know Sufism through Rumi’s composition. Dancing and spinning is a standout amongst the most well-known practices at the Aissawa, with the sought impact to create an altered state of mind.
Do I require a visa to get in?
All English-speaking countries (except for South Africa) require no visa to enter the nation, and guests can stay up to 90 days.
Will my cellphone work there?
Just like some other countries in the Middle East, it will be far less expensive for you to purchase and get a local number than it will be for you to utilize your phone, which will probably cost many dollars in extra roaming charges and fees before you are finished.
What’s their food over there, and would I be able to eat fresh vegetables and fruits and drink clean water?
Not like the United States and the United Kingdom, which are moving quickly to packaged foods, even for the basic staples like fruit and vegetable produce, Morocco will have only local produce. Thus, the choices will be limited than maybe you are used to, yet the vast majority of it will have been organically grown and harvested and served on your table the way it would have been in the past – quick and with no harmful processing.
In case you’re stressed over nasties in new stuff, do what local people would do: press a decent amount of lemon or lime juice on it. I promise there will be less chemicals on your serving of mixed greens than at McDonald’s at home, and the food will taste new and flavorful. Be savvy — in case you’re eating from a road seller, you’re taking your risks, and they have no controls or even refrigeration now and again. In the event that you have a sensitive tummy at home, pack charcoal tablets and keep in mind on eating yogurt in Morocco to get a few probiotics. Appreciate the local food – that is one of the basic reasons you went! As in most remote nations, you ought to likely stick to filtered water as a safety check – we are regularly not used to the critters in another person’s water supply.