While visiting Tangier in the north of Morocco, we were planning for a chilled day trip when my best friend suggested: “Why not take a trip to Chefchaouen?”. No sooner said than done!
You can rent a car for a reasonable price in Tangier. There are as well tons of tour packages available which allows you to get your personal driver/guide, including a comfortable and air-conditioned four-wheel vehicle for a day trip.
Chefchaouen and Tangier are both beautiful towns in the Rif Mountains, it will take approximately 2 to 3 hrs to reach one destination to another. While traveling keep your eyes out for beautiful Riff Mountains and greenery. If it happens you have enough time, think of stopping by Tetouan city and visit the Archaeological Museum and its old medina, a Unesco World Heritage site.
Chefchaouen is known as Morocco’s blue city and is surrounded by spectacular mountains. Well, its one hell of a colorful and artistic city which you must at least visit once in a lifetime. It has blue painted houses and a medieval atmosphere. Now, are you not going to ask me why it’s blue?
There are several theories about it, as per Wikipedia following popular beliefs are:
- The city was painted blue to keep mosquitoes away.
- Jews made it blue when they took refugees from Hitler in 1930s.
- Blue is the symbol for sky and heaven and serves as a reminder to live the spiritual life, well I kind off like this one, cause the first one, I just don’t want to believe it. LoL!
The town itself is very Historic, there’s almost a story behind everything so take help of a guide. Look at neverending walls that run through hillslope town, the seven gates to the medina, narrow lanes that get you to your destination and sea-washed houses. There are areas with the stunning waterfall where you can see people gathered and children play. In the medina, the mosque at Place Uta Hammam is a must-see for its outstanding architecture.
Visit Al Makhzen market for easy bargains. You can get native handicrafts, woven blankets and garments exclusively available in Chefchaouen and nowhere else. There is also the Ethnographic Museum in Kasbah showcasing traditional outfits and artifacts.
If you are a person who likes having new adventures, a hike to the Rif Mountains is something for you. You can get the wide and mind-blowing view over the whole town from there. But keep in mind it may get hot in the afternoon up there. Now, when you get hungry after doing so many things comes meals. As a visitor, you must try local Moroccan cuisine. There is a variety of tajine and couscous you can try out. If you are not fan of it, many restaurants also provide an international menu. Aladdin Restaurant is one of the most famous places for food and to see the sunset.
A comprehensive travel guide to Chefchaouen, Morocco.
Things to see and do in Chefchaouen
Lat: 35° 10′ 10.20″ N
Lon: -5° 16′ 6.60″ W