Morocco: the most original visits and experiences

Morocco: the most original visits and experiences

Are you leaving soon for a trip to Morocco, and would you like to get off the beaten track and discover this country in a more original way? If so, Morocco is the ideal destination for some amazing experiences. What’s more, if you want to travel there, you’ll need somewhere to stay, so I’ve put together a guide to the most beautiful riads in Marrakech! Finally, for an unforgettable stay, here’s my selection of unusual activities in Morocco.

What to see and do in Morocco?

Morocco is a country with a wide variety of landscapes, from tourist centers like Casablanca, to high mountains ideal for trekking, to the breathtakingly beautiful desert of Marrakech.

If you travel here, you’ll be able to enjoy a huge variety of activities. Of course, if you’re staying near the sea, you’ll be able to relax on the beach. But if you prefer sporting activities, you’ll have the chance to go hiking, particularly in the famous Atlas mountain range. You can also discover Moroccan culture by going to the souk, the hammam, discovering how leather is made and tasting Moroccan gastronomy, one of the best in the world in my opinion. As you can see, Morocco is a destination of choice if you’re looking for an enriching, eye-popping vacation!

Skiing in the Moroccan Atlas

I’m sure that when you think of all the great experiences you’re going to have on a Morocco Tours, winter sports aren’t necessarily on your list.  Yet in the Moroccan Atlas mountains, which rise to over 4,000 meters, there are several ski areas with dozens of kilometers of slopes. And this is not a new activity, since Morocco’s first ski school opened its doors almost a century ago.

Throughout the winter, these resorts are covered in snow, so you can enjoy a complete change of scenery. Unlike Europe’s big resorts, those in the Middle and High Atlas remain on a human scale, offering downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing, hiking, snowshoeing and much more.

The best-known (and best-equipped) ski area is at Oukaimeden, just an hour’s drive from Marrakech in the High Atlas mountains. With an average snowfall of 120 days a year, several slopes at altitudes of between 2,700 and 3,200 meters and good infrastructure, it’s the ideal place for skiing in Morocco.

An excursion into the heart of Moroccan nature

What could be more exotic than discovering the magnificent landscapes of the Atlas Mountains or the Sahara Desert on a Moroccan desert trek? Whether on foot, quad bike, 4×4, horseback or camelback, you’ll discover superb, varied panoramas and meet the Berber people, their culture and customs.

These excursions are accessible from several cities, including Marrakech, Fez, Meknes, Chefchaouen and Agadir. Marrakech is the ideal starting point for discovering the Atlas and Toubkal massifs. From Ouarzazate and Agadir, excursions can take you directly into the Western Sahara. From Meknes or Fez, you can discover greener, less rugged landscapes. In fact, if you’d like to stay in Fez, here’s my guide to what to do.

Unusual activities in Morocco: flying over the desert in a hot-air balloon

Whatever your destination, a hot-air balloon flight is always a memorable activity, but the sensations are really multiplied when you fly over the desert. In fact, this activity is extremely popular with visitors to Morocco, but it’s so original and memorable that, in my opinion, it more than deserves a place on a list of the best unusual activities.

Marrakech is the city of choice for a hot-air balloon flight over the Moroccan desert. So, if you’d like to stay there, here’s my guide to finding a place to stay in Marrakech!

As far as hot-air ballooning is concerned, take-offs are usually a few kilometers from the city, north of the palm grove, early in the morning so that you can watch the sunrise over the Agafay desert from the basket. More and more service providers are offering this type of flight, which you can also find elsewhere in Morocco, particularly near Agadir. In fact, don’t hesitate to consult my guide to finding accommodation in Agadir if that’s the city you want to visit!

Discover the Akchour waterfalls

From Chefchaouen, you can set off on an incredible hike through lush forest and along a small river to one of Morocco’s most beautiful hidden treasures: the Akchour waterfalls.

This relatively accessible walk (especially in comparison with other hikes in Morocco) is the perfect opportunity to discover landscapes not usually associated with Morocco. Thick greenery, impressive gorges, freshwater springs, crystal-clear waters… here, nature is superb and unspoilt.

During your hike, you’ll also discover the Pont de Dieu, an almost 25-metre-high rock that links the two sides of a gorge. The Akchour waterfall is impressive, and at its foot are natural pools where you can bathe in turquoise water. There’s even a small restaurant where you can enjoy a tajine in a natural setting of bewitching beauty.

Unusual activities in Morocco: pottery-making

Pottery occupies an important place in Moroccan culture, and one thing’s for sure: local craftsmen will be delighted to share their skills with you.

During your trip to Morocco, you’ll have the opportunity to take a pottery class and gain an insight into the traditional techniques used to make these distinctive pottery designs. During this convivial experience, you’ll be able to shape the clay and learn the rudiments of several ancestral modeling, sculpting and throwing techniques. So, here’s another experience to add to your list of unusual activities in Morocco!

A thalasso holiday in Morocco

Morocco is becoming an increasingly popular destination for travellers seeking well-being above all else. Several towns overlooking the sea, mountains and desert are invitations to relax, and you’ll find thalassotherapy establishments boasting state-of-the-art facilities.

Agadir, Essaouira, Tangier, Casablanca and Rabat are just some of the cities where you’ll find prestigious wellness centers, often located in seaside hotels. Whatever your desires, you’ll be able to enjoy the benefits of the sea, benefit from a wide range of spa and beauty treatments, and disconnect from everyday life for a few days to recharge your batteries, recharge your energy and take care of yourself.

My thalasso hotels in Morocco

Le Médina Thalassa sea & spa hotel, Essaouira

This spa hotel is close to the beach and just a 5-minute walk from Essaouira harbor. All rooms are equipped with TV, bath and shower. The hotel has 3 restaurants and 2 bars, and is directly linked to a thalassotherapy institute where you can enjoy thermal baths, massages, scrubs, the hammam and much more. A beauty and hairdressing salon is also available for a fee. The minimum price for a night for 2 at this spa hotel is between €90 and €185, depending on the season. Of course, depending on your options and the room you choose, the price will be much higher.

The Radisson Blu Hotel in Casablanca

This 5-star hotel boasts an excellent location right in the center of Casablanca. Rooms, equipped with TV and minibar, are spacious and modern, with direct views over the city.

The hotel also features a gym and restaurant, and organizes a variety of evening events. For a fee, you can use the hotel’s spa and wellness area, which includes a hammam, Jacuzzi, sauna, massage area and swimming pool. The minimum price for a night for 2 is between €140 and €205, depending on the season. Please note that this price range applies to the simplest offer, so the price will be much higher if you choose a suite and wish to include options.

Vichy Thermalia Spa Hotel, near Fès

Located in Moulay Yacoub, 20 minutes from Fès, this highly secure establishment is a haven of peace, with all rooms featuring TVs and balconies overlooking the beautiful hills.

The hotel also features an outdoor swimming pool, a gym and a restaurant serving international cuisine. The hotel is connected to the Moulay Yacoub thermal center, where you can relax and enjoy an indoor pool, thermal baths, hammam, massages and many other treatments. Please note that access to the spa is subject to a charge and is forbidden to under-18s. The minimum price for a night for 2 in this hotel is between €90 and €290, depending on the season. Obviously, the price will be higher depending on the room and options you choose: this price range concerns the least expensive formula.

Unusual activities in Morocco: visit a mythological cave

Volubilis is not the only site in Morocco closely linked to the Greco-Roman era. Near Tangier lies an astonishing archaeological site: the Hercules caves. We don’t really know the history and origin of these caves, but according to archaeological excavations, they were already inhabited in prehistoric times.

According to legend, it was here that the son of Jupiter came to take shelter and rest before going to steal the golden apples, one of the 12 tasks he had to accomplish.

These natural and partly man-made caverns are as beautiful as they are enigmatic. From inside, you can enjoy a superb sunset over the ocean and Cape Strait of Gibraltar. They also house a number of unusual attractions, such as openings in the walls that allow you to see the ocean. One of them is even shaped like Africa.

Take a Moroccan cooking workshop

During your trip to Morocco, you’ll have daily opportunities to discover the country’s gastronomy, but if you’d like to take this experience a step further, I recommend a Moroccan cooking class with a local chef.

By booking the activity below, you’ll learn to cook several Moroccan specialties accompanied by two chefs who will welcome you to the heart of Marrakech’s medina. First you’ll go to the market to pick up all the ingredients you need, then you’ll cook together before enjoying your creations in a warm and friendly atmosphere.

Discover the astonishing Dragon Island

In the very south of Morocco, right next to Dakhla “the pearl of the south”, a popular seaside town renowned for living to the rhythm of the waves and offering a wide variety of water sports.

Here you’ll find an exceptional place, one of the greatest wonders of Morocco’s natural heritage. Between desert and ocean lies an island that evokes the silhouette of a sleeping dragon emerging from the waters.

Located in the heart of Dakhla Bay, Dragon Island is the perfect place to enjoy the beach, sea and sun, or to discover breathtaking panoramas from the heights. This geological curiosity is usually reached by boat, but can also be reached on foot at low tide.

Unusual activities in Morocco: visit an ancient Roman city

Yes, you read that right, during your stay at the Marco, you’ll have the opportunity to discover an authentic Roman city. Near Meknes and Fez, you can discover Volubilis, the particularly well-preserved remains of an ancient city that once belonged to the Roman Empire. So, if you’d like to visit this ancient Roman city, I’d recommend staying in one of the two nearby towns, and I’ve even put together a guide to help you find a place to stay in Fez!

This ancient city, founded by the Carthaginians and developed from the 3rd century BC, was the capital of Mauritania Tingitana. It occupied an important place in the region, thanks in particular to the olive oil trade. In 40 AD, with the arrival of the Romans in Mauritania, the town took the name Volubilis.

Today, this archaeological site is still far from having been fully discovered. Covering some 20 hectares, you can visit a museum featuring artifacts found during excavations, and discover the remains of a Roman road, an oil mill, a 2nd-century basilica, a triumphal arch and a temple dedicated to Jupiter.

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