The authenticity of Morocco is also expressed through the nine venues it has listed as UNESCO World Heritage sites and its six UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage designations. This intangible heritage can be found throughout the country and manifests itself in various, often festive, ways.
A land of abundant culture
As you travel across Morocco, you will discover it is a land of art and history. Everywhere you go, influences mingle to comprise a rich, diverse heritage that is preserved, showcased and offered up for your appreciation by museums and art galleries.
The medina is the heart of any city
Morocco's mysterious, well-preserved medinas lend themselves to exploring. Right in the heart of certain Moroccan cities, treasures lurk behind tall ocher walls: this is the real Morocco. People still live in them, infusing these ancient quarters with life and passing down their wisdom from generation to generation. The medinas of Fez, Tetouan, Essaouira and Marrakesh are all recognized as UNESCO World Heritage sites.
Rabat is rife with landmarks and monuments, but it is also known for the vitality of its intangible heritage, such as the craftsmanship of its artisans. See for yourself by heading to the medina. This is where generations of artists work with fabric, leather, gold, silver and, of course, the celebrated Rabat carpets, each of which is a masterpiece of finesse and harmony. In nearby Salé, pottery, metalwork and weaving are stand-outs with an entire complex is devoted to these crafts.
Meknes is awash in an aura of enchantment. The ramparts that guard it seem to protect the city from the world around it. Walking through its gates is like returning to the era of the sultans.
Bathed in the pink glow of its adobe walls, the lovely Marrakesh throws open its doors to all culture lovers. Architectural masterpieces and traces of the human experience stand within these walls. Marrakesh is composed of an array of influences that defy eras, a mosaic of colors where the wonders of the past and the present come into focus.
Saïdia and Oujda are two places that complement each other perfectly. Saïdia, the blue pearl of Morocco, welcomes you to its cutting-edge hotels that are as comfortable as they are environmentally friendly.
Oujda, meanwhile, has a different feel altogether. Going to this inland city removed from the Mediterranean and pacing along streets with a thousand years of historyis like entering an ancient town. Get a glimpse of "Old Morocco" in the medina, a neighborhood ringed by high walls that seems to have been forgotten by time.
Tall battlements, imposing towers and old canons that still point toward the ocean are what define the war-ready silhouette of the Kechla in Safi. Itisanimpressive sight: the fort overlooks the Atlantic Ocean, whose waves lap its foundation, giving the impression it is built right on the water. It is the largest remnant of the Portuguese occupation, though elsewhere in the city, you can see the vestiges of Africa's first Gothic cathedral which also evoke the colonial period.
Much of Agadir's reputation is built on its bay and its inexhaustible backcountry, but it is also a city of culture, where historic treasures coexist with contemporary events.
Step back from the ocean front and slip into the medina. Lose yourself in alleyways lined with zellige-adorned walls, walk through ornate doors and get acquainted with the craftsmanship of Agadir's artisans. Then head to the Kasbah, which is perched on a rock 775 feet above the ground. After standing watch over the city for over five centuries, not even the 1960 earthquake could topple it.
Casablanca is a well-designed modern city with all the conveniences you can think of: comfortable hotels, a multi-mode transportation system with great coverage and comprehensive infrastructure. But, above all, this is a great place to experience life. The city buzzes with curiosity and offers year-round entertainment.