Morocco is an absolute beauty — and we’re not just talking about the ever-popular Marrakech. Those who venture beyond the well-worn streets of the Red City are in for a real treat as everything from towering waterfalls and world-class beaches await. Your only issue is deciding where to start…
1. Make a splash at the Ouzoud Waterfalls
Look no further than the Ouzoud Waterfall if you want to add some seriously dramatic scenery to your itinerary. Standing at a whopping 330 feet (110 meters), this three-tiered waterfall is arguably Morocco’s must-see natural wonder. It’s located 93 miles (150 km) northeast of Marrakech, making it easy to reach for a day trip. Once you’ve filled your camera with snaps of one of Africa’s tallest waterfalls, take a dip in the Al Abid River before exploring nearby Berber villages.
2. Sample the laid back vibes of Essaouira
Essaouira is ready-made for those looking to swap the hustle and bustle of Marrakech for more laid-back vacation vibes. Situated on Morocco’s west coast, this traditional seaside city offers a heady mix of beautiful beaches, tasty seafood, and age-old ramparts that are ripe for exploring. Add some highly instagrammable souks and ideal surf spots, and you have all the ingredients for the perfect vacation destination.
3. Discover the Hollywood of Morocco
A visit to Ouarzazate and the ancient clay city of Aït-Ben-Haddou is somewhat of a pilgrimage for film buffs. Known as the Hollywood of Morocco, the two locations have provided the backdrop to some of the world’s biggest films and TV shows, including “Lawrence of Arabia,” “Gladiator,” and “Game of Thrones.” The cinematic scenery isn’t restricted to Ouarzazate and Ait Ben-Haddou as you’ll arrive here via the spectacular Tizi-n-Tichka mountain road.
4. Wander Chefchaouen’s famed blue streets
You’ve probably stumbled across Chefchaouen on your Instagram feed without even realizing it. The name might not trip off the tongue, but its famous blue-washed medina is hard to forget. Located in the Rif Mountains, Chefchaouen is a charming blend of cultures and customs from North Africa and Andalusia. Spend your time here by wandering through the maze of narrow streets that burst with curious souvenirs to buy and new flavors to taste, especially at Plaza Uta El Hammam.
5. Feel the need for speed in Agadir
The city of Agadir is one big playground. Thrillseekers can take their pick from high-speed buggy adventures, adrenaline-pumping jet ski rides, and fast and furious dune boarding experiences. And if you’re more of a sun worshipper, Agadir has plenty of spots to keep you entertained. Unwind on the picture-perfect beaches that line the city or escape to Taghazout Beach, which is just a 20-minute drive from Agadir. Alternatively, head to the more secluded sandy shores of Souss Massa National Park. When you’re not getting your kicks on Agadir’s coastline, you’ll find a city that’s brimming with tasty restaurants.
6. Souk in all the Fes-tivities
Fes makes Marrakech look calm. Its bubbling medina is a non-stop wave of organized chaos that assaults the senses in every way imaginable. That might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but those who do venture to Morocco’s second-largest city are rewarded with a truly authentic experience in a one-of-a-kind destination. Fes’ narrow alleys are home to all kinds of handicraft while the Chouara Tannery is just one of many must-visit locations that transport visitors back in time.
7. Explore the picturesque Ourika Valley
You’ll feel like you’re a million miles away from Marrakech when you start exploring the Ourika Valley. Yet this picture-perfect slice of nature sits just 31 miles (50 km) from Morocco’s main tourist hub, which is great news for day trippers. The valley really springs into life when the winter chill ends. Head there between March and May to see the valley in full bloom. You’ll also enjoy clement weather for exploring the many waterfalls near Setti Fatma.