First, let me start with that 3 weeks in Morocco are not enough! However, if it’s well planned a 3 week Morocco trip itinerary will take you to the highlights of this fascinating country.
Morocco, I believe is a place like no other, so colorful, so beautiful, so crazy, so diverse…
When I was planning my trip to Morocco, my plans were constantly changing almost until the end. I bought my tickets one week more or less before my departure. This was also my first trip abroad ever with friends! This, to be honest, was the biggest challenge for me during my 3 week Morocco trip. From Sofia, I flew to Eindhoven in the Netherlands, where I meet my friend, Denis and his friend, Edita. And the adventure began!
Denis and Edita stayed for about 10 or 11 days. After that, I was on my own again (I released the beast – that’s how my brother is joking with me). For the time being with them, I’ve made a plan for our trip, where to go, how long to stay, etc. Ever since they left and I was just on my own again, my plans started changing every 5 minutes.
So, my first 3 weeks Morocco trip itinerary was planned as follows:
Marrakech – Taghazout – Essaouira – Marrakech – 3 days Sahara trip – Marrakech – Toubkal – Marrakech – Casablanca – Rabat – Chefchaouene – Fes
You were wondering why I’m mentioning Marrakech so many times? Simply, because all the routes lead there, seriously! It’s the most convenient place to get around from (for central Morocco). Anyway, on the way, I decided to skip Casablanca and Rabat, not because I wanted to, but because I didn’t want to rush – ideally, my idea was to spend at least two nights at any place. So, at the end my 3 week Morocco trip itinerary looked like this instead:
Marrakech – 3 nights
Taghazout – 2 nights
Essaouira – 2 nights
Marrakech – 1 night
3 days / 2 nights trip to Merzouga (Sahara desert)
Marrakech – 2 nights
Imlil / Ait Souka – 1 night
Marrakech – 2 nights
Fes – 1 night
Chefchaouen – 2 nights
Fes – 2 nights
Of course, if you don’t want to spend that much time in Marrakech as I did, you can then include Casablanca or Rabat in the itinerary. I would choose Rabat, in any case. So, now let’s get to the 3 week Morocco trip itinerary and look at each of these places individually.
For each place, I’ll share some of my experience, my best tips, and recommendations where to stay. Unfortunately, though, I won’t recommend almost any place where to go to eat. Sadly, I was expecting that I would love the Moroccan cuisine, but almost everything that I ate there was tasteless. Please note, that I might not have found the right places where they serve good and delicious food and not that it’s bad in general. I’ve had the best meals in some local people homes when I was invited to for dinner and lunch.
3 weeks in Morocco – Marrakech, the heart & the soul of Morocco
Marrakech is a unique and amazing city without any doubts. It’s so colorful, diverse and crazy! The Medina, the people, the atmosphere – you can not find them anywhere else, even in Fes, both have so much in common and yet are so different at the same time. We arrived in Marrakech after midnight and the first thing that made a huge impression on me was how many people were out at that time, there were more people out during the night than during the day.
Marrakech has so many things to offer. It’s split into two parts – the old part, where the Medina is located and the new part, which is a very European style. Of course, the old part is where most of the tourist attractions are located and is ways more authentic. The new part is very lively as well, it’s filled up with shops, cafes, restaurants and even some bars that serve alcohol. And even though 3 days in Marrakech can be enough to cover the main things, if you want to explore more of the city, you can easily end up staying there for a whole week or even more!
One of my favorite moments in Marrakech was drinking a bottle of wine secretly in one of the parks and getting a Vespa ride around the city. Marrakech is a great base for exploring other amazing places in the central part of the country, that’s why I ended up getting back there so many times. Simply, all the routes in this area lead to Marrakech.
Things to do in Marrakech
- A trip to the Ouzoud Waterfalls – This one should be a must! The Ouzoud Waterfalls are amazing and definitely worth the day trip from Marrakech. You will also find cute monkeys there, which will climb on your head (but that’s part of the fun). Also, make sure to get the boat ride to the other side of the waterfall. It’s awesome!
- Get lost in the Medina
- Check out the new part of the city
- Find some peace in one of the Marrakech parks
- Go out for a night walk at Jemaa el-Fnna
- Shopping (but always bargain the price, for everything, all the time)
- Watch the sunset
Where to stay in Marrakech
This is the hostel that I stayed at in Marrakech, all the times when I was passing from there. It has an excellent location close to Jemaa el-Fnaa and at the same time is located in a very quiet street. The people working there are lovely, smiley and helpful and their breakfast is nice as well. I was making jokes with them when I kept on coming back ”Hey! Surprise, it’s me again! Did you miss me?”. This hostel was like my second home in Morocco. Also, every evening they prepare dinner (for the ones who signed up for it) and organize tours all over Morocco.
3 weeks in Morocco – Taghazout, the laidback fisherman’s village
Taghazout is definitely one of my favorite places in Morocco. Taghazout is a laid back, relaxed village close to Agadir. It’s well known by surfers as it’s a great place to surf. Since I can remember myself, I have always wanted to learn to surf and I tried it for the first time in Taghazout. It was very challenging and difficult and I couldn’t find a balance on the board not even once. In other words, I was awful at it, but practice makes perfect, so one day I might go back to Taghazout and stay there for longer learning to do it. Sounds like a perfect plan to me. I do highly recommend everyone planning to visit Morocco to make a stop there!!
Things to do in Taghazout
There are not many things to do in Taghazout except for surfing (for dirt cheap). You can rent the board with the suit for as little as 50 Dhs per day (this is less than 5 euros). Of course, you can also just enjoy the beach and swim in the ocean.
If you’re into surfing, then Taghazout definitely should be on your list! The good weather and conditions are one of the top reasons to visit Morocco.
Where to stay in Taghazout
Great place with super kind, polite and helpful guy who runs it. It’s located a few minutes walk from the beach and has an awesome terrace (well, actually all the terraces in Morocco are awesome!). Houcine, the guy who owns it came to pick us up, made us a tea, shared some tips and was also a nice company. The room was great. With Denis and Edita, we’ve had a room with two single beds and one ”master bedroom”, which I took. We also had a kitchen. Oh, yeah, and on the terrace, in the indoor room, there are also a table football, a guitar, and some other games.
3 weeks in Morocco – Essaouira, the bright and buzzing Atlantic Pearl
Essaouira is another place located on the Moroccan Atlantic Ocean coast. It’s a fisherman’s town, which is getting more and more popular due to the fact that the Game of Thrones has been filmed there. Despite being sick when I was in Essaouira, I really enjoyed the city and my time there. The beach is lovely, the Old Town is beautiful, the sunsets are amazing!
Things to do in Essaouira
- Surf – Essaouira is also a great place for surfing
- Enjoy the amazing sunsets
- Visit the Jimi Hendrix cafe for a portion of fresh orange juice
- Explore the ruins in the middle of nowhere (you’ll find them if you’re going to the cafe from the beach)
- Check out the fishing market and port
- Get lost in the maze of the Medina
- Essaouira Ramparts – Game of Thrones location, the entrance fee is 10 Dhs (less than one euro)
Where to stay in Essaouira
One of the funniest places that I stayed at in Morocco. The owner is hilarious and he’s very open-minded and communicative. The moment you step inside, he welcomes you with a big smile. Despite being sick at the time staying in Essaouira, I still enjoyed my time there and had fun. They also do parties on the weekend evenings? (or maybe not just on the weekend, idk)
3 weeks in Morocco – The trip to Merzouga, first time in the desert!
I was very excited that I’ll be going to the desert for the first time but to be honest, after the trip I was a little bit disappointed. Maybe I had bigger expectations because the desert was awesome, really, but one thing still bothers me and it’s even breaking my heart.. the stars. But let’s start from the beginning… After booking our hostel in Marrakech, I found out that they are also organizing trips to the desert and I thought that it will be easier to book our trip there with them.
On the first day when we went out to explore Marrakech, I was buying a Moroccan SIM card on the street and one guy approached us and was offering us a tour to the desert. He was funny and he invited us to ”his office” for more information, which was hilarious. I said to Denis and Edita, let’s go and check, we don’t need to take it, but at least we’ll get to laugh a bit. And we went. I noticed straight away that he actually took us to an official and legit tour operator office. When we entered, he left and another guy continued the conversation with us. He explained to us how the trip looked like, which places you’re visiting on the way, what’s included and what’s not, etc. In the end, I managed to negotiate a better price with him and we actually went to this tour. Before I go ahead, I want to make a note here, that everything was absolutely correct with the tour.
So, first, you need to know that the desert is very far away. I preferred the 3-day trip because you’re visiting many interesting and beautiful places on the way and because during the 3-day trip you’re going further into the desert.
The trip basically looks like this: Departing, stop here, stop there, night in a hotel. The second day, stop here, stop there, night in the desert. And the third day is the long way back to Marrakech.
However, the scenery on the way to Merzouga and back is amazing, so if you can keep yourself awake, like me, you won’t be bored. On the way to Merzouga, we visited a couple of Berber villages, we stopped to admire the wonderful Todra George, had a lot of fun with one of our guides, etc.
But if you don’t want to join a tour, it’s still possible to go on your own. Read this article to find out how to visit the desert in Morocco by yourself.
Now to the desert experience…
When we arrived at Merzouga, we prepared the things that we will need for the night and went to get on our camels (which were included) to take us to the camp. We went outside and started waiting for our turn and our camels until the moment when we were 8 people left and they told us that they don’t have any more camels for us. Of course, we were like WTF?!?! As you can imagine, we were all a bit upset and we told them ”what does that mean, we should have because we’ve paid for it”, one of them replied ”well, we didn’t know how many people would come”, then we were like ”well, that’s your job, right, not ours”.
Anyway, we quickly got over it. Instead of on camels, we got to the camp on the top of the 4×4 jeep. They gave us an awesome ride through the dunes, which was actually ways better. That way we got to the camp earlier and we had time to hike the highest dune and watch the sunset from there, which was great! Then we had a nice dinner, actually, this was one of the few good meals I’ve had in my 3 weeks in Morocco. After that there was a campfire, singing and dancing with the Berbers.
But what about my disappointment and the stars? Well, I love stargazing and I was expecting a sky full of stars in the desert, but it was not actually like that. Yes, I did see 8 falling starts but there were just not that much in the sky in general. I mean, even sometimes at home, from my terrace I can see more stars, so yes, this really broke my heart. We got our mattress out of the tent and we slept outside. Yes, it does get cold, but if you’re well dressed you’ll be fine. And of course, there are plenty of blankets as well.
On the next day, we got up at 5 am to take the camels back and watch the sunrise. I didn’t enjoy the camel ride at all. Sitting for more than 2 hours on the back of the poor animal – not my thing. After we got to a certain point, we stopped to watch the incredible Sahara sunrise. This moment was truly amazing and it was maybe one of the most stunning sunrises I have ever seen.
3 weeks in Morocco Imlil + Toubkal National Park, the highest peak of Morocco
One of the things I was most excited about around my trip to Morocco was my plan to hike Mt Toubkal. This plan, though, failed – another heartbreaking moment for me. It turned out that the weather conditions the past few days were not that good and I was not prepared for them. However, I’m sure that I was still going to make it, I was only an hour and a half before the refuge when it started raining a lot and decided to get down.
Soon after, I was already sorry that I decided to do so and I’m still trying to convince myself that I took the right decision. On my way up all the people I met were telling me to take it easy and to stay safe.
Things to do in Imlil
HIKE!!!! You can also just visit the village and stay there for a few days because it’s just a good idea, but come on, the mountain is there – hike it.
Where to stay in Imlil
This place turned out to be the best place I’ve stayed at during my 3 weeks Morocco trip itinerary! That’s in terms of comfort (I got a private room), cleanliness, the good sleep that I finally had for the first time in Morocco + the incredible terrace view and both the dinner and the breakfast. The dinner was one of the few meals that I’ve told you about that were actually good and tasty. And all this thanks to my intuition to follow this french guy to the same place where he was staying at. Haha, one of the best decisions that I made in Morocco.
3 weeks in Morocco – Chefchaouen, the fairy blue city
Have you ever seen any photos on Instagram, Pinterest or elsewhere of Chechaouen? I have seen many before my trip to Morocco but I didn’t think even for a second that it really looks so amazing as it does in the pictures. But it does!
I arrived at the bus station and started walking to my hostel. The bus station is a few minutes away from the magical blue Medina. At first, even though it’s blue, it didn’t look like anything special. And then, I entered the fairy Medina. I fell in love with it right away!
Apart from the incredible colors, there are many other things to love about Chechaouen, like the beautiful surrounding Rif Mountains, the relaxed atmosphere, the nice and smiley people.
I randomly met this super nice and friendly local guy who even invited me for lunch on the next day. He cooked delicious things for me and we enjoyed the food with some amazing views!
I wanted to go for a day trip to Akchour Waterfall and I also wanted to hike in the mountain, but unfortunately, it rained during most of the time when I was there, so I didn’t. More reasons to be back to Morocco, hey!
Things to do in Chefchaouen
- Enjoy the relaxed atmosphere
- Enjoy the beautiful surrounding views
- Shopping – far more pleasant to do it here, because people actually let you to just watch
- Take a cup of mint tea on the roof of one of the central restaurants
- Visit Kasba
- Hike in the Rif Mountains
- Go to the Akchour Waterfall
- Hike to the Spanish Mosque for wonderful views
Where to stay in Chefchaouen
Another place that I liked a lot, because of the comfort of my private room. The location is also very good, just a minute walk away from the main square in Chefchaouen. Also, here, I had the best Wi-Fi connection at all in Morocco.
3 weeks in Morocco – Fes, the surprise
Of course, at first, I was planning to visit Fes, but then I started doubting because I was constantly hearing some bad things about it. At this point I was already traveling by myself and hearing so many things about sexual harassment, it just didn’t feel like the best idea.
I took the train from Marrakech to Fes with the idea to spend the night there and on the next morning to go straight to Chefchaoeun, which I did. This night that I spend in Fes though, I met some cool people in my hostel, we went out for dinner and the city seemed absolutely fine for me.
After I fell in love with Chefchaouen, I was thinking about staying there until the end of my trip and getting back to Fes just to catch my flight. Then, one morning I woke up and returning back to Fes was the first thing that came to my mind and so I did as I really wanted to see more of the city. I ended up traveling between both places on some local bus and the man sitting next to me just gave me bread out of nowhere (yes, Moroccans are actually very kind – it was such a sweet gesture).
Fes is a crazy city and it’s also the city in which I was ”sexually harassed” all the time, but I’m not sorry that I decided to spend some time there and besides that, I really enjoyed it.
Things to do in Fes
- Take in the smells of the Tenneries
- Get lost in the Medina
- Go outside the city walls
- Relax in the Bou Jeloud Gardens
- Get a coffee with a view at Cafe Clock
- Get some decent food at Cinema Cafe
- Even more sunsets!
Where to stay in Fes
After I decided that I’m going back to Fes, I just went straight back to this place. The location is excellent, the host is very nice and polite and there is also a nice breakfast (it’s included). This place also takes second place for a good Wi-Fi connection. There was a very strong connection even on the terrace.
Please note that all the accommodation listed here is based on my personal experience and all places were chosen to fit my budget. There are, of course, many other options to choose from depending on your own budget and preferences.
And after these 3 weeks in Morocco, I headed to spend a relaxing (more or less) week in Barcelona. But as I mentioned in the beginning, 3 weeks are simply not enough for Morocco. For first time visitors, though, I believe is a good amount of time. There are still some places that I want to see in Morocco, so one day I’ll definitely go back, if not to visit them, at least to conquer Mt Toubkal (and maybe to learn surfing).
Have you already been to Morocco? How much time did you spend there? What did you see, what do you wish you had seen? Haven’t been yet? So, what are you waiting for? Morocco is waiting for you, so start planning your trip as soon as possible.
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