6 Practical Tips for Safe and Fun Walking in Morocco
Posted: Mar 24, 2014
Walking in Morocco is a fun experience, full of natural beauty, historical significance, cultural brilliance and religious solemnity. The country's varying geological formations, varying climate patterns, and unique culture, however, mean that you need to come prepared. Here are a few tips to help you do just that.
- Identify your route – it is a very common misconception that this country is nothing more than an arid desert. It subject to various seasons, from harsh summers to chilling winters, and the temperature shifts from these seasons tend to swing more wildly the further from the coast you go.
- Bring layered clothing – this is the safest option if you are heading anywhere near the more mountainous or inland regions of the country. Bringing layered clothing will help you better deal with the bitingly cold winter nights of the Atlas Mountains and interior lowlands. Then you can just strip off a layer or two during the daytime or when you cross over into the more temperate regions.
- Dress loosely and modestly – this is especially true for women. Long skirts with long-sleeved shirts will not only help make walking in Morocco a lot more comfortable, but will also help avert unwanted attention. Gentlemen also need to uphold dress standards as well, however, although a decent shirt is basically all that is needed.
- Ask people to point you in the right direction – following the confusing signs around major cities like Marrakech will get you hopelessly lost. Simply ask people for directions instead – but don’t let them lead you anywhere. The latter carries a high risk of having locals lead you somewhere else and then demand that you cough up cash for their ‘assistance.’ This is why it is best that any excursions should always include having a guide to show you around.
- Bring just enough local currency – the markets operate primarily using cash, so make sure to make sure to convert your pounds into dirhams as soon as you arrive in the airport. You will definitely need cash when interacting with the various shops and stalls in the towns. Just make sure you have a safe place on your person that is not such an obvious cache for cash.
- Spend your remaining dirhams before leaving – the dirhams you have left over from your trip cannot be converted back to any other currency. This is because of the country's closed nature, so make sure to use up any excess dirhams before leaving the country. It shouldn’t be hard with plenty of interesting wares on sale for you to bring back home.
One last thing: pack lots of drinking water with you. This is a very basic tenet of travelling anywhere around the world, but is still worth repeating considering that walking in Morocco can so easily dehydrate your body. With that said, keep all the aforementioned tips in mind and you’ll have the adventure of a lifetime.
Tony Maniscalco is the Marketing Manager for Ramblers Worldwide Holidays. Join us on a holiday walking in Morocco to see the most scenic locations & landscapes at the best value prices. We offer over 140 guided group walking holidays in over 60 different countries.
Writer and Online Marketing Manager in London.