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Morocco in 10 days: help!

Travel Forums Africa and The Middle East Morocco in 10 days: help!


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11. Posted by markwillen (Budding Member 78 posts) 7y

There are no restrictions on anyone who is not a Moroccan Muslim, but...

99% of the local population cannot eat, drink or smoke during daylight hours. And that includes water.

Most of the cafés and local restaurants will shut during the day. Tourist venues will normally stay open, but you'd have to have a thick skin indeed to enjoy eating and drinking in front of hungry, thirsty waiters.

At night, things get back to closer to normal, but bars, clubs and some of the restaurants will remain shut.

Alcohol can be harder to find. In Marrakech, you can buy alcohol with a foreign passport in the supermarkets; in Fes, you can't.

The roads can be rather too exciting as concentration wanders... and arguments and disagreements are more common.

Against all that, it is a very sociable time of year. You'll be frequently invited to ftou, the first meal after sunset, which is often a mini feast.

12. Posted by robertobcn (Budding Member 16 posts) 7y

Thanks for the tips. Indeed, it seems that we will stick with the "classics" and do Fes, Casablanca (our flight arrives there), Marrakesh, the typical desert tour (camels included ;) ) and maybe one day at those wonderful desert towns. We haven't decided our return date, but at the most we will see only one day of Ramadan.

Has anybody been there in August? Is it really something crazy (for the heat, I mean)?

13. Posted by markwillen (Budding Member 78 posts) 7y

August is very hot. It's a dry heat, but still enough to make AC an essential rather than a luxury.

Expect up to 52 °C in the Sahara (that's 125 °F); up to 48 °C in Marrakech (118 °F). In Fes today we are at an official 39° - a mere 102 °F! It's unusual to find it much below late 30's in the day in summer.

If the heat gets too much, you have the options of the mountains or the beaches, both of which stay comfortably cool - though the better know coastal towns will be crowded.

14. Posted by robertobcn (Budding Member 16 posts) 7y

Oh my... my girlfriend's from Canada (that should tell you how well she handles heat )... I'm only hoping that the fact that is dry heat means that if you are not directly under the sun you can handle it? Here in Barcelona we've had 34º, but with the humidity you cannot take 3 steps without being totally wet... plus, you feel like suffocating.

I do not have "dry heat" experiences myself.

And about A/C... don't all the places to stay have that? How much should I expect to pay for a room with A/C (which is the ONLY luxury I want)...?

15. Posted by Redpaddy (Inactive 1004 posts) 7y

Cheers for that. I've had some incredible adventures along the North Africa coastline and beyond, but never been there during a religious festival. I'm not of any faith myself, but at the same time - find all that stuff fascinating. Love the sound of the calling, from the minarets - but struggle a bit with the animal slaughters in the streets.

16. Posted by Redpaddy (Inactive 1004 posts) 7y

By the way.... A/C in Tangiers. I was there mid summer, just cooking in a pretty OK hotel. Can't remember what I paid for the room, but it was nice. Double bed, lovely carpets on the floors (and walls!!), a bath, shower and WC, TV (no use for it - but it was there anyway), minibar, lovely views over the city - and.... No A/C. I struggled a bit, but managed OK. The chilled beers helped somewhat.

17. Posted by markwillen (Budding Member 78 posts) 7y

Even in the bigger cities you can find a room with decent AC for about 400dhs.

CTM and Supratours coaches have it; 1st class carriages on the train have it.

Taxi's, even the 'tourist' class, never seem to have it (or if fitted, it doesn't work).

Drivers of tourist 4x4's and minibuses often need a lot of 'coaxing' to switch it on - and will switch it off again at the first opportunity!

According to the net, Barcelona has 74% humidity today. It's a really bad day here in Fes (we've had thunder and a shower)and we are 16%; Marrakech is 12%. So you should find it easier.

Put simply, in a dry heat the sweat evaporates and you don't feel sticky and uncomfortable. But you do have to remember to drink! If you are in the shade, you are normally comfortable enough.

18. Posted by markwillen (Budding Member 78 posts) 7y

Hi Redpaddy - Tangers is cool! North facing, beach, cool Atlantic current just around the Cape...

Don't worry about all the 'rivers of blood' stories about Eid.

It is true that almost every household slaughters a sheep or goat (it's according to your means. If you are poor it could be chicken, if you're rich it could be a camel - though both are unlikely), but they don't do it in the street.

The children often start a brazier in the street to do the heads, but it's been separated from the animal by then! It's nothing more than you'd see every night on Jma el Fna.

19. Posted by Redpaddy (Inactive 1004 posts) 7y

It wasn't that cool when I was there, around 32c in the shade. mind you, I agree - compared to some places it's not so hot. I was in Zambia and it was 42c. We did a bbq in the bush and the heat and flies were just evil.

20. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5595 posts) 7y

Was in Morocco in June and like markwillen said: the dry heat is extremely bearable.

We had around 42 degrees (shade temperatures that is) in the desert near M'hamid (erg chigaga) and I sweated less than the 28 degrees at the coast near sidi ifni! Really, I liked the 42 way better.

Michael...enjoying 20 degrees and showers in the netherlands;)