Today I’m sharing a guest post from Thomas, an international traveler and writer for over 3o years. This post combines two things that really highlight Morocco’s charm.
Morocco is a remarkable country awash with excitement and colour. From stunning golden sand beaches to exciting souks and all-year-round warm weather, the country has something to offer every type of traveller. It is located on the North coast of Africa fringed by the Sahara desert and the Atlantic Ocean. Boasting exotic Moroccan food and folklore and an immensely rich cultural heritage, this land of colour and contrasts doesn’t know how to be dull.
Morocco is a predominantly Muslim nation that has been invaded many times in its history. In the seventh century, Arab invaders introduced Islam to the nation and later Arab architecture, art and universities. During the 15th and 19th century, different European nations controlled the country and in the 20th century the country was a protectorate of France. On March 2, 1956, Morocco gained independence and has been ruled by a constitutional monarchy headed by the king ever since.
Ancient imperial cities like Fes and Marrakech are steeped with medieval history from the countries glorious past. There are so many things to do in Marrakech which boasts Medina walls that are hundreds of years old. Strolling through these cities is like walking back in time where life continues much like it has for the past thousand years. Merchants pack the streets plying their wares of spices, wool, steel and livestock. Modern influences can, however, also be felt around the souks where modern wares are sold to tourists.
Authentic Arabian food with traditional Moroccan folklore
Travellers to the country get the opportunity to enjoy authentic Arabian food with traditional Moroccan folklore at spectacular restaurants like Bab El Jdid and Chez Ali in Marrakesh. Fantasia dinners comprising of slow roasted lamb meat (Mechoui), Harira soup and a platter of fresh vegetables and fruits are served by waiters and waitresses who also double as entertainers dressed in tribal costumes.
Fantasia is a traditional Moroccan performance practiced during cultural festivals that draws its inspiration from historical wartime attacks of desert knights and Berbers. Folklore troupes sing, dance and animate the evening during the dinners that take place in massive Caidal tents under palm groves of popular resorts. Fantasia dinners culminate in a fitting finale of the Fantasia show.
The Fantasia show consists of equestrian performances traditionally done in Morocco during seasonal cultural and religious festivals called moussem, but also staged for entertainment in tourist resorts. Experience the thrill of watching horseback acrobats fire rifles in demonstrations of traditional forms of military; be entertained by skilled traditional belly dancers and witness magical sights of performers gliding the desert sky on magic carpets as the show comes to its end.
Just three and a half hours away from the UK by plane, this North African country is far more than your typical African holiday destination. It offers travellers an Arabian experience like no other. Whether you are looking to sample exotic flavours, explore ancient buildings, getaway in luxury hotels and resorts or soak up some African sun, Morocco offers tailor-made holiday packages to suit your exact needs.
About the Author: Thomas Edwards has been an international traveller since the early ‘80s and has widely covered Europe, the USA and as far afield as Thailand, Hong Kong and China. He has written as both a business, individual and family traveller and a language or two has given him the opportunity to engage with people to a greater degree.
What’s your favorite part of visiting Morocco? Is it the food? Shows like Fantasia or something else?