By Meredith – Port Elizabeth, 28th December 2018. Do you know that 40% of married couples that do not honeymoon, get divorced! Don’t allow such bad omens to ruin the start of your beautiful union… Rather celebrate this new phase in your lives with an adventure filled holiday in exotic, enticing Morocco. Picture sipping refreshing mint tea while watching the hustle and bustle of the ancient markets, watch a romantic sunset over the Sahara Desert, relax on a beach in the quaint coastal towns or indulge in a couple’s massage at an opulent hammam. Morocco is the perfect destination for enjoying a honeymoon- it is close to Europe, it’s affordable, exotic and thoroughly different while still sporting modern conveniences. Planning a trip to Morocco is easy with the assistance of knowledgeable travel guides such as Desert Morocco Adventures. We provide 15 Reasons why you should plan your next romantic getaway in Morocco.
And to the desert I’ll go to lose my mind and find my soul
#1. Luxury Riads
One can stay in a fancy hotel anywhere in the world, but few places boast such beautiful and intimate accommodation then Moroccan riads. Riads are traditional Moroccan houses or palaces that are built around an inner courtyard. They usually only have a handful of rooms on various levels with a rooftop area for dining and relaxing, possibly around a pool. Unlike generic hotels, riads are bespoke and exhibit great architecture and design-usually adorned with beautiful colorful mosaic tiles. Fancier riads offer massage treatments and have numerous staff waiting to assist you. There are riads and other accommodation to suit all budgets and mention upon booking that it’s your honeymoon so they can decorate your room for you. Most riads are an oasis inside the bustling medinas of Morocco. Step off the dusty, narrow, loud market streets into the tranquil inner garden of your riad and lounge around in the rooftop to experience the city from a different angle.
#2. Relax at a Traditional Hammam
Picture yourselves relaxing in a stream room, followed by a couples massage in a candle lit room filled with rose buds. Let all the stress of wedding planning melt away as you emerge new people from an intense scrubbing at a Moroccan bathhouse. Slather yourselves in argan oil to reveal the best most pampered you and finish off with some lovely mint tea. You’ll come out walking on cloud 9.
#3. A night in the Desert
Morocco boasts really warm weather, almost all year round, making it perfect for partaking in a number of breathtaking activities. Most tourists associate Morocco with camel trekking in the Sahara Desert. This bucket list experience is a must do- there are a multitude of hotels and kasbahs in the desert towns that offer camps (bivouacs) in the desert. Pretend you’re a nomad trekking through the desert on your camel, climb the dunes to watch a romantic sunset, dance and sing along to traditional music and sleep under the millions of stars.
For adrenaline junkies get your fix 4x4ing or quad biking through the beautiful red dunes.
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#4. Feel the Blues
The blue city of Chefchaouen located in the Rif Mountains, is a lovely romantic spot for a relaxed weekend in Morocco. Stay in the pretty blue medina and enjoy exploring all the bright blue walls and doors adorned with colorful flower pots. This more restful town is perfect for perusing the souks and enjoying meals and a spot of people watching down in the main square. At night enjoy live music in the square and don’t forget to watch the sunset over the town from the Spanish Mosque up on the hill.
#5. Seaside Living
Stroll along the beach hand in hand, feel the wind blow through your hair, splash about in the water, write your names in the sand. Morocco has a long coastline dotted with towns of which the favorites include Asilah, Essaouira, Agadir and Mirleft. There are huge beach resorts along the coastline where you can live and dine in the lap of luxury. Or rent your own little apartment in one of the coastal towns for some down time to rest, read, eat and explore. For the more adventurous there are great opportunities for surfing and other aquasports.
#6. Hit the Shops
Navigating the ancient medinas and souks of Morocco is an invigorating experience. Prepare to side step both people and animals and get lost in the narrow maze like streets. Practise your haggling skills to purchase beautiful hand woven carpets, colorful painted tagines, stunning lanterns and other brass items, pretty leather slippers and handbags, among an assortment of other unique items. Tired of shopping then head up to one of the many rooftop restaurants for some refreshing mint tea and a filling meal.
#7. Great Cuisine
Moroccans eat heartily and healthily- think large fresh salads, big bowls of soups, plenty of couscous, slow cooked meats and vegetables and fruit for dessert. Any trip through the souks will reveal intoxicating spice markets piled high with little mountains of colorful spices. Moroccan food is renowned for its flavorful, colorful dishes with tagine it’s most popular dish. Tagine is made in a conical clay pot slowly cooking beef, lamb or chicken and vegetables in spices, olives and lemon. Morocco is also well known for its olives, argan products, dates and delicious bread. No trip to Morocco would be authentic without downing multiple cups of mint tea each day.
Take a cooking class, sometimes offered by your accommodation, to take the taste of Morocco home with you. Purchase some spices at the local souks, maybe grab a tagine, some pretty Moroccan plates or tea sets to recreate your magical honeymoon once back home. At the very least you’ll impress your neighbors!
#8. Moroccan Hospitality
Moroccan people are friendly and accommodating. When entering someone’s home or business you’ll be welcomed with some mint tea (please oblige by enjoying their hospitality). At your accommodation, you’ll be treated like royalty. To earn a number of smiles from locals learn a few phrases in Arabic or D! Most Moroccans love learning new languages and about new places, so be prepared to whip out your phone and show them some photos of your hometown. Moroccan people tend to stay out late chatting with family and friends, join the locals at the cafes and enjoy the lively night time streets.
#9. Climb the Mountains
Nature loving couples will enjoy spending time hiking through the rugged High Atlas, Anti Atlas and Rif mountains. These beautiful mountains are best traveled with a guide. If packing your hiking gear is not an appealing honeymoon essential then enjoy nature through a day trips. Popular stops include a visit to Akchour near Chefchaouen or the highest waterfall in Morocco, Cascades d’Ouzoud near Marrakech.
#10. Hot Air Ballooning
Take to the skies to watch a glorious sunrise or sunset over stunning landscapes in Marrakech or Fez. Experience the High Atlas Mountains and Berber villages from above in this enthralling one hour experience.
#11. Stop to Smell the Roses
Romantics will swoon in the Valley of Roses, Kalaat M’gouna, in the Dades Valley (on the road between Marrakech and the Sahara Desert). At the start of spring, ie. May, the city shines pink from all the beautiful roses and an annual festival celebrating roses is held. The rose petals are harvested to make rose water. Visitors to Marrakech can enjoy a romantic stroll or picnic through Jardin Majorelle. Most cities have lovely gardens and open areas perfect for a relaxing walk or maybe take in the sites on a horse drawn carriage ride around town.
#12. Embrace Arts and Culture
Visit the ancient, well-preserved ruins, of the Roman Volubilis near Fez and Meknes. Explore the multiple beautifully tiled madrassas and other historic mosques and buildings in Morocco. Take a guided tour through the largest mosque in Morocco, Hassan II Mosque, in Casablanca. Watch local craftsmen produce beautiful rugs, ceramics and jewelry in the medinas, maybe get something custom made as honeymoon keepsake. Have tea with a nomadic family in the desert to learn more about their traveling lifestyle.
#13. Winter Wonderland
One usually associates Morocco with a hot desert climate, but in winter temperatures drop and snow is experienced in the mountains. Thrill seeking honeymooners can spend time skiing in Ifrane, the little Switzerland of Morocco. Set in the middle Atlas amongst cedar forests supporting macaque monkeys, Ifrane is a picturesque town with lovely lakes and pretty bird species. It’s on route to the Sahara when traveling from Fez and is a lovely stop, even if just for lunch.
#14. Private Tours
The idea of doing a tour can be very off-putting to some tourists- you imagine piling in and out of a big bus throughout the day to follow a guide frantically waving a flag so as to steer the tour group through the various sites. If that’s not appealing to you, in Morocco there are very reasonable priced private tours (ie. just you and your partner, a knowledgeable guide and maybe a driver). Remove all the stress of driving and navigating and simply sit back and enjoy the sites in your air-conditioned car listening to explanations from your guide. These trips are fully customizable and can range from simple day trips to multi-day cross country adventures.
#15. Home Comforts
When tagines, mint tea and souks become too overwhelming you can rest easy knowing that the larger Moroccan cities boast all modern day conveniences. Grab some McDonald’s, head to watch a movie or window shop in the malls. Dance the night away at a club or chill out in your hotel room with room service and catch up on some TV.
In the process of planning your nuptials and racking your brain for a perfect honeymoon destination…Consider Morocco- you’ll come home with Instagram perfect photos, satisfied stomachs and wonderful memories to last a lifetime. Celebrate your love in this magical country, you won’t regret it.