A Romantic Guide to Morocco
If you’re wondering whether or not you can spend a romantic trip in Morocco, then you’re in the right place. The answer is simply yes! Morocco is a very beautiful country with beautiful scenery and beautiful destinations.
I am writing this romantic guide to Morocco as a Moroccan woman. I hope to give you some insights into our beautiful country from the perspective of a local.
Whether or not you’re planning on spending a romantic trip to Morocco, you will have it either way. There are so many cities in Morocco that are famously known for romantic escapades. That is why you’ll hear that most people go spend their “honeymoon” in it. And although Morocco is a Muslim country with some very conservative traditions, tourists get off the hook 100% of the time. Morocco is quite a liberal country even though the majority is Muslim.
You wouldn’t have to worry about a dress code or being punished for not being Muslim, but most importantly, you’ll get to the spend the most romantic trip of your whole life if you get to go to it. So, if you’re wondering how just continue reading!
Marrakech, the city of 1001 Romantic Arabian nights
If you’re planning on going to Marrakech for your romantic escapade then you’re absolutely right! Marrakech is, if not the best city of Morocco, the best destination for romantic trips and escapades. Everyone loves Marrakech from tourists to locals.
It’s quite known that Marrakech is the usual destination for locals on their honeymoon. The city has a charm that no one can quite explain! It’s warm and fuzzy and makes you feel at home with all the kindness. Marrakech has a lot of nearby regions that are perfect if you’re looking for outdoor activities or adventures. The city has the best food and it has also the best locals. Everyone is friendly and most of the locals speak French and English so, you’re quite safe if you speak these two languages.
You wouldn’t have to worry about getting lost or getting robbed. Marrakech is probably the safest city in Morocco with police standing at every corner. It’s the official gathering of many tourists which is why it’s heavily guarded.
So, if you’re planning on making Marrakech your first destination on your Moroccan trip, here are the thing you can do as a couple in it:
Romantic shopping at the Souks
Shopping for most couples is not such a romantic experience. Shopping in a traditional Morrocan Souk is a different story.
The souks are an integral part of the Moroccan culture. You can not say Morocco without thinking of souks. The world “Souk” means the market and thus, souks are the traditional markets here in Morocco.
Souks will offer you a unique experience that you won’t get elsewhere. The smells of fresh herbs and mint teas. They’ve got everything you can think of, you can find carpets, clothing, leather, food, jewellery, pottery and so on. Anything that you can think of, you’ll find it there.
Besides having a quite traditional architecture because most souks exist in ancient medinas or alleys, the stores in Souks are beautifully designed. You can find a totally different experience in each store. Some will appear very colourful while some will look like labyrinths. It’s a very beautiful experience so make sure you take your camera with you.
There are a lot of stores in Souks where you’ll find souvenirs or Moroccan decorations to take home with you. We have a whole article on how to organise an Arabian date night at home. So stocking up on some spices and decorations is a great idea to have some fun date nights when you are back home.
Make sure to bargain before you agree to the price! It is custom in Arabian countries to discuss the price. So make it a little competition between the both of you.
Since Marrakech is an imperial city, it’s very ancient. And the modern parts of it that you’ll visit are not how the city looked like a decade ago. If you want to get more sense of what the city looked like before then you’ll have to take a look at the ancient Medina.
The ancient Medina has some very narrow alleys that will fascinate you, the structure and architecture of it all will keep you dreaming. Most people take a walk at ancient Medinas to get a look at the “Riads” that are there or to take a picture in those narrow, yet, beautiful alleys.
You can also find ancient stores there that sell traditional pastry, seasoning, and so on. So, make sure you take your time exploring the Medina.
Hot Air balloons
If you want to get a little bit creative and don’t really want to visit the Ancient or traditional parts of Marrakech, then hot air balloons might be the perfect activity. It’s fun and it’s very romantic. You’ll be able to get a good look at Marrakech from above, with all the city lights, the tops of mosques and the top of mountains.
Nothing beats a good romantic scenery. Make sure to take the ride either early in the morning with the sunrise or with the sunset to enjoy the most beautiful picturesque view.
Café in Marrakech square
If Marrakech is famous for one thing, then it’s Jemaa El Fna. It’s the Marrakech must-see for all tourists and locals. It’s a very big square where you’ll find all sorts of things. You’ll find stores, stalls, carts, and everything.
Jemaa El Fna is very romantic by night especially when all you see are the lights from the stores and stalls. You can spend a whole day there without even getting tired. You can eat breakfast there in a café where you’ll enjoy Moroccan mint tea and Moroccan cookies, you can eat lunch at one of the stalls, and take an afternoon break in one of the cafés again. For a little bit of fun visit, the snake charmers or the monkey trainers, you’ll get a laugh or two. If you wait until it’s night then there will be a lot of gatherings around dancers or storytellers for a fun show. Don’t take pictures or videos unless you want to pay them for it!
It’s truly beautiful, you can take a look at the pictures on the web and you’ll be immediately tempted to visit it.
Although this is not a very traditional destination, it’s still worth it. Majorelle Garden has been designed by Jacques Majorelle and he did a very good job at it. The garden is always maintained to perfection so it can always be an attraction to tourists.
It’s very famous for 2ft long cactuses that are very much picturesque. The garden is so calm and serene, you can enjoy a morning there going through the gallery or the garden itself. Needless to say, it’s perfect for couples. Just make sure you visit it very early in the morning so you don’t get stuck in the queue.
There’s also a more traditional garden which is the Menara garden, you’ll find some very small cafés in it, a very ancient building surrounding a big man-made fish lake. The walk around is quite soothing and relaxing, you can take a look at the olive trees and date palms, you can also find some souvenirs on your walk. It’s best to visit it by the evening, it won’t take you more than an hour or so to explore it, but it’ll be perfect if the only thing you want to hear is birds and your partner’s voice.
An escapade on rooftops
It may not seem like a lot but dinners on rooftops are wholesome and are very romantic. Wherever you’re staying be it a hotel or a Riad, you’ll find that there are some very beautiful rooftops and terraces for you to enjoy.
You can enjoy the view from the rooftop while enjoying a well-cooked dinner. You can ask for your dinner to be served on the roof if you’re staying at one of these hotels, but if not, then there are a lot of cafés out there that can do this.
Whoever says Marrakech, says the Atlas Mountains. They’re only one hour away from Marrakech and they’ll offer you the most beautiful natural landscape if you’re a nature lover. You’ll get to see how it looks like on top of the mountains, hike, run, take pictures and so on.
What’s better than a work out on top of the mountains and end the day sitting on one and enjoying the sunset? While you’re there, there is a “Riad” called Kasbah Tamadot which will make your day or stay a lot better.
If you think waterfalls are beautiful and are perfect for couples, then Cascades d’Ouzoud is the perfect destination for you. They’re the highest waterfalls in Morocco and they’re 157,4 km away from Marrakech. They offer you the best romantic sight and setting when the waterfalls come crashing down into the water below.
It’s a refreshing sight, away from the crowds and the busy city life. You visit the base where you’ll be at the bottoms of the waterfalls to enjoy the sight up close. You can even take a boat and enjoy a refreshing experience in the main pool. You’ll probably meet a lot of locals as well.
Marrakech is really hot in the summer, so a lot of locals go to the smaller pools in Cascades d’Ouzoud to cool off. You can do the same and join them. You can spend the day there and even enjoy the sunset for more romantic scenery. If you want to stay the night there, then you’ll have to plan that with your guide.
A Moroccan romantic itinerary
Now on to the real deal, if you plan on visiting Morocco, then having a travel itinerary is a must, right? So, here are the best places to visit in Morocco for a honeymoon besides Marrakech:
The Sahara Desert
Coming to Morocco without visiting the Sahara Desert can be quite dull, how would it feel like to visit a country without visiting its most pillar regions? Right? Staying in the deafening silence of the Sahara Desert can be quite a charming experience, especially if you’re staying a luxurious camp.
Staying in the Sahara Desert means trying out a lot of new experiences that will make your honeymoon so much more memorable. You will be staying there without any Internet connection or Wi-Fi but it’s nice to get away from technology, right? Instead of electric lights, be ready for some moody candles and romantic lighting that will just make your heart melt.
Make sure to try riding some camels while you’re there. The Sahara is most known for camel ridings to help you navigate through it, and it’s a very pleasant experience.
And if you still want to try this isolated experience yet get a fresh breath of air from the city, then “Dakhla” city is the perfect escapade. Imagine a place where the Atlantic meets the Sahara! That’s right; a place like that exists and it’s none other than Dakhla.
You can enjoy the heat of the Sahara’s sand on your feet yet take a dive in the Atlantic. Dakhla is quite a small city, close to the border of Mauritania since it is on the southern edge of Morocco. Its population is no more than 100 000 people and they’re very welcoming.
It wasn’t quite famous until these last years because of kitesurfing, people from all around Morocco and also from all around the world come to Dakhla to see the magic of this city. It has a lot of small hotels and small villages, but most people opt for resorts because they’re more fun and they’re like a small village on their own.
If you want to visit the city then there are flights from Casablanca and Marrakech with RAM (Royal Air Maroc) with a price ranging from 80$ to 110$. You can also drive to Dakhla but it’s quite hectic and if you’re on a honeymoon that means time is ticking and you’ll want to enjoy as you can of Morocco’s scenery and experiences instead of driving.
As it’s been said above, Dakhla is very famous for kitesurfing. If you stay in a resort then you’ll most likely find them offering some classes, lessons and even packages to try kitesurfing. But if you don’t want to spend any more money in the resort then there are people in Dakhla who’ll help you book privately a kitesurfing experience.
This is another great Moroccan destination for whoever wants to spend a blissfully romantic honeymoon. Essaouira is like a mix of Marrakech and El Jadida's vibes all in one. It has the aura and the fuzzy feeling Marrakech offers, and the beaches and architecture of the Ancient Medina in El Jadida.
It’s quite the wholesome experience for anyone who’s not familiar with Morocco. What’s great about it, is that it’s a very small city which is mainly driven by tourism. That means, that wherever you go, you’ll probably find people speaking English & French so communication is much easier.
Plus, you can find all sorts of places to stay, be it an Airbnb, a hotel, or a Riad which is highly recommended. Riads in Essaouira are very beautiful and they just make your experience much better.
Essaouira's beaches are quite popular as well, and if you want some kitesurfing then you can have that as well, the beach is quite warm, at least warmer than that of El Jadida, and it’s not usually very crowded. Plus you’ve got a view of the not-so-far island which makes the scenery much more pleasing.
To go to Essaouira, you’ve got many options. You can either take a flight which can be quite expensive, you can take a big Taxi or a private driver that will take you to the city and won’t cost you as much money. Or you can take the train from a big city like Casablanca to Marrakech and then take the bus. You’ve got a lot of options depending on your budget. All you have to do is choose.
What’s great about Essaouira are the night shows, and nightlife of it, you can find everything you want and it’s very famous for crepes. You’ll find that most cafés in the ancient city sell crepes. Make sure to enjoy your stay in it as much as possible and take as many pictures as you can in its alleys. It’s a truly unique experience.
Oualidia is another great honeymoon destination, the city is very close to El Jadida which means they’ve got more or less the same weather. It’s very breezy in the summer and it’s very welcoming. The city has one of the most expensive hotels and it has gained a lot of attraction since the late King Hassan II has claimed it was one of his favorites. Since then, the city is well known for royal escapades whether they’re from the Moroccan royal family or other countries.
The lagoon breaks the water from the Atlantic and protects the beach from the waves, this way you’ll enjoy the beach without having to worry about the waves. The town is quite small, but it’s so calm and reserved. Which makes it perfect for a couple of introverts.
If you visit Oualidia then one of the main things you should try is seafood. Oualidia exports seafood to other cities in the kingdom so it’s well known for it. You might even find some merchants who sell oysters close to the beach, seafood is abundant and so is the taste.
There isn’t much to do in Oualidia, that is true, but it is the main destination for a lot of migrating birds including Flamingos in the spring and autumn. If the sight of flamingos in the lagoon combined with a beautiful sunset isn’t enough for you, then I don’t know what is.
If you’re wondering how to get to Oualidia, then a bus from Casablanca will do the job, or if you’re in El Jadida then you can take the big taxis, they’ll drive you safe and sound in no time.
The north of the kingdom and especially Tetouan are quite the main destination for locals in the summer, and for a good reason. Tetouan is a very beautiful city that is surrounded by mountains on both sides. Most of the city’s buildings are in the mountains which makes it very beautiful to look at whether it’s morning or night.
Tetouan gained its reputation for being a tourist’s favorite because of its uniqueness and because of its beaches. The city has been under the Spanish protectorate in the first half of 20th century which impacted its architecture quite some time. If you want to look at the architecture then you can take a walk in the Ancient city or downtown and you’ll see the difference between the Moroccan one & the Spanish one.
While you’re in there, you’ll most likely find people speaking more Spanish than French and you’ll even find signs that are written in Spanish. What makes this city a romantic destination are the regions around it and its mountains.
If you’re looking for a walk-in nature then you can go up the mountain of Bouanan, you’ll find people gathering around some tapes running water from wells. It’s called Bouanan water and you should get a taste of it, it’s so fresh and good for your soul! While you’re in Bouanan, choose one of the coffees that are on top to enjoy the very beautiful scenery.
And if you’re a fan of beaches, then Cabo Negro, Fnideq, Medieq, Martil and so on are perfect destinations for a beach day!
And, that’s about it for Moroccan honeymoon destinations, there are a lot of cities in Morocco that are perfect for a honeymoon, but these take the throne. Morocco is a very beautiful country, you’ll fall in love with the traditions, traditional wear, food, and scenery. Just make sure you give it enough time to explore it!
Frequently asked questions about Morocco
Can couples kiss in Morocco?
The question that most people and tourists ask while they’re visiting Morocco, is if they can kiss in public and shows signs of affection to their partner?
The answer is yes and no. Since Morocco is a Muslim country there are a lot of rules forbidding public signs of affection, especially for non-married couples. The safest thing to do is to avoid any kissing and leave it to when you’re both alone and no one is around. But it’s safe to say, that with this new generation a lot of norms and traditions have changed. Nowadays teenagers hug and might steal a kiss in public from time to time. So, if you might steal a kiss every now and then from your partner without feeling ashamed or being afraid of offending people. Usually, tourists are treated better than locals and thus can get away with these kinds of things. But do not make out in public! That’s a big no-no in Morocco and it’s not appreciated at all by the locals.
You might find some boys holding hands sometimes or even girls, but that doesn’t insinuate that they’re romantically involved, it’s rather purely platonic. Morocco does not encourage nor accept homosexual relationships and they’re even punished by law. So, if you’re engaged with someone of the same gender, avoid kissing at all in public.
Is Marrakech good for couples?
Is Morocco a good honeymoon destination?
Morocco welcomes thousands of honeymoons every year, thousands of people from around the world come to Morocco hoping for a nice honeymoon trip. And they’re right to think so! Morocco, aside from all the landscapes and scenery it has, offers many romantic experiences worthy of a honeymoon.
Is it safe to visit Morocco?
Morocco is the most stable country of all the ones in North Africa, and thus the safest one, especially for tourists. Since one of the main factors of Moroccan’s economic growth is tourism, the police do a very great and efficient job of keeping the security to a maximum.
Morocco does its best at keeping its losses to a minimum, terrorism is abhorred in the country and any act of terrorism is stopped before it happens. Morocco is quite tolerant of all cultures due to the cultural differences in each region.
Some cities like Casablanca and Marrakech have a great number of foreigner residents which makes them the most tolerant cities and the most liberal ones as well. The cities whose main economic activities are dependent on tourism are also quite liberal like Essouira, Tetouan and so on. So, don’t worry about visiting Morocco, it’s a very welcoming country.
Can I book with my partner in the same hotel room?
This question is a very common question for tourists whenever they visit a Muslim country. And the answer is yes. You can book with your partner in the same room as long as you’re both foreigners. You do not have to be married or even engaged in a relationship, as long as you show your passports to prove to the hotel/riad/flat owners that you’re foreigners, then you’re good to go.
What if my partner is Moroccan?
Now that’s quite complicated. The Moroccan law applies to both foreigners and Moroccans, but Moroccans have it harder. If your partner is Moroccan and has a Moroccan identity then no, you can not book the same room if you’re not married. If you’re married then you can simply show that one of you has the other’s last name or a marriage certificate.
If you’re not married and try to book a room, then don’t be surprised if the police show up and start investigating your Moroccan partner and keep on asking questions. A Moroccan whether it’s a male or a female can not book the same room with someone of the opposite gender even if they’re foreigners.
If you’re involved in a relationship with the same gender, then that’s another story. Hotel owners won’t even think much about your relationship if you don’t show signs of affection in public, they’ll believe it’s just a simple friendship so they will let you book the same room.