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22 Travel Tips and advice for traveling to Morocco
Some useful infirmation worth bearing in mind:
- Morocco is a Muslim country, you should aim to dress in a respectful way.
- Avoid public displays of affection (hand holding is ok but kissing is a no-no).
- If approached by people selling things and you don't want to buy anything just politely say "no thanks" (in Moroccan "Laa, Shokran"), smile and walk on.
- If approached by beggars:
- If you don't want to give anything just say "Allah yassahel" it means "may God help you". If the request continues then just ignore them.
- If you want to give a few Dirhams, note that most Moroccans give between 1 and 5 Dirhams.
- You should avoid discussing certain subjects (Bad mouthing Religion, Moroccan, the Monarchy or discussing sex). These subjects are likely to make those around you feel uncomfortable.
- Remove your shoes whenever you see shoes by the entrance to a building.
- Do not try to enter a mosque or a mausoleum that is not explicitly open to tourists (only a few are open to non-Muslim visitors e.g. the Hassan II mosque in Casablanca).
- It is possible that Moroccans may ask you questions that appear to be intrusive, for example, if you are a couple, why aren't you married. Try to answer as politely and succinctly as possible.
- Do not give money in exchange for hospitality, rather thank your host with a smile and good humor.
If you stay several days then you can for example offer a small gift or help by doing some shopping (vegetables, fruits, meat etc.).
- It is impolite to refuse a drink of tea (it is a drink of hospitality).
- Moroccans have a very lax concept of punctuality. Be patient.
- If you want take photo of Moroccans, ask for permission first.
- You should not blow your nose loudly in public.
- If you are invited to a dinner at a Moroccan's house, when full you should say "Hamdoulilah". It literally means "praise be to God!". It is also good to say "lah iatik saha" to the person who made dinner, it means "may God give you good health".
- Henna tattoos may contain the chemical para-phenylenediamine (PPD) which can cause allergic reaction for some people.
- Keep an open mind and show empathy to those around you - this will most definitely make your trip more rewarding and memorable.
- If you visit Morocco during Ramadan (Every year and during one month, Muslims worldwide observe one month of fasting) :
- Don't eat, drink or smoke in public : in some tourist restaurants it is ok but in public it is very impolite.
- Don’t be alarmed if you hear the canons roar, it is not an attack, it is just a way of letting everyone know that they can break their fast.
- When it is time to break fast, you can really experience an unique occurrence: almost everyone is at home and therefore the city become a ghost town!
- Check Ramadan Dates and Moroccan public holidays
Good to know
More practical tips to help you plan your trip to Morocco.
- Packing List
- Food Precautions
- Preventing Heat Stroke
- Moroccan Names
- Travel Tips for Women
- Travel Insurance
- Henna Tattoos
- Morocco Travel Guidebooks
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