Morocco is a fascinating location with various attractions and activities to entertain all types of travellers! At the same time, the nation draws many tourists with various expectations of adventures and hobbies!
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Various cultures have various traditions! We’ve compiled the main pitfalls to avoid throughout your trip to Morocco so that you can enjoy yourself while learning about the customs and courtesies of the people there!
Morocco is a wonderful travel destination, but it has a lot of traditions and customs that you should be aware of and follow to avoid offending anyone and have the best trip ever. Knowing what to anticipate and how to act will greatly help you before you go!
These are our top 10 suggestions for things to stay away from to have a risk-free and memorable trip to Morocco!
Do not disrespect Islam
Did you know that Morocco is an Islamic nation? Yes! Islam is the official religion of Morocco, where more than 90% of the population is identified as Muslim! Most of the population is Sunni Muslim, although many adhere to various Sufi ideas. Although Morocco is one of the more open Islamic countries, disrespecting religion can irritate people. Thus visitors shouldn’t try to anger their hosts. It is acceptable to inquire about the religion to learn more about it but refrain from expressing potentially divisive viewpoints.
Observe local customs by dressing modestly and abiding by restrictions prohibiting non-Muslims from entering places like mosques and shrines!
Morocco is a Muslim nation; hence the idea of dress is quite conventional. No matter how hot it gets, you won’t see residents walking about in bathing suits or short skirts since Islam places great importance on modesty!
Women should refrain from baring their shoulders or legs since doing so invites unwelcome attention from men and shows a lack of respect for regional traditions. Plan to wear long pants, skirts, jeans, and common shirts with sleeves to cover yourself.
Do not consume alcohol outdoors
In Morocco, alcohol is legal, and only authorised hotels, bars, and tourist destinations can sell and serve alcohol. Supermarkets also feature a designated space for alcoholic beverages; this area is typically set apart from the rest of the store. The legal drinking age in Morocco is 18, and thus any attempt to purchase or consume alcohol outside designated areas could result in significant issues with the authorities!
Missing out on Souks
Morocco is renowned for its vibrant souks, also called traditional markets, where various goods are sold! The souks of Morocco are a veritable treasure trove of delights, offering everything from traditional apparel and footwear to perfumes, shisha pipes, candles, tea sets, and leather products! It’s challenging to avoid stocking up on presents and souvenirs to bring home.
Do not eat with your left hand
Moroccans typically consume a lot of their meals with their hands. However, be sure only to use your right hand to eat; the left hand is regarded as filthy since it is often used to use the restroom. While accidentally using your left hand to eat won’t likely result in any drama, it might draw a few glances, snickers, or smirks.
Disrespecting the monarchy
Making fun of, criticising, or speaking poorly of the Moroccan king is against Moroccan law and is known as lesee-majeste. A few careless mutterings may be offensive, but going too far may result in a three-year prison sentence.
Defacing anything bearing the king’s likeness is strictly forbidden. For a trouble-free journey, observe these Moroccan laws!
Offending the public during Ramadan
Do not consume alcohol in public during this wonderful occasion. Also, it is wise to refrain from eating, drinking, or smoking in public throughout Ramadan, especially in popular locations.
Do not expect everyone to speak English
While it’s usually easy to meet English-speaking locals in popular tourist and business hubs like Marrakech, Fez, Rabat, Tangier, and Casablanca, don’t expect it in less populated or isolated areas. Knowing a few Spanish or French words can be helpful due to previous colonialism. Yet, those proficient in basic Arabic can talk with people practically wherever in the nation. The majority of people who speak Amazigh also speak Arabic.
Purchasing without bargaining
It can be both frustrating and enjoyable to negotiate. Negotiating is a social interaction and way of life for Moroccans. A basic guideline is to make an offer that is one-third of the seller’s price. Don’t be surprised or upset if they laugh at your lowest offer.
The secret is to appear uncertain about the purchase; you lose as soon as you reveal how much you adore something. Be prepared to leave if the price is still too high. The seller can be adamant that you stay or even follow through in some circumstances. It is crucial to be assertive but respectful in such circumstances. Say “no thanks” and maintain your attitude!
Avoid carrying valuables
When leaving your hotel or hostel, only take what you need. Robberies and pickpocketing are common in Morocco. Leave your passport at the hotel rather than bring it with you! Always make duplicate copies of your passport, and only carry the original when necessary to purchase tickets for transportation, etc.
It’s important to understand that Morocco is a sizable nation with over 30 million people! Depending on where and who you are with will change what is and isn’t acceptable. It is crucial to remember these mistakes when you go, but also to pay attention to your surroundings, ask questions, and seek help if you need help!
Have a safe journey!