Features of Moroccan Kitchen
The importance of agriculture and stockbreeding in the economy of the country shows itself in the Moroccan kitchen. So that in the Moroccan kitchen which has many varieties and a rich menu, the main food substance is meat. Goat, sheep, lamb, cow and chicken meat is used generally. Fish is also important in the kitchens of Moroccan cities that have coasts to Atlas Ocean and Mediterranean Sea. You can see many dishes are made with fish. Not only fish, but also other sea products that are served with varied sauces are similar to those in Turkish kitchen.
Actually, the most famous food of Moroccan kitchen is appetizers and fruits. In every dish, there is an appetizer necessarily with the main dish. Again, after every dish a fruit special to Morocco is eaten. Quince is the most popular fruit in Moroccan kitchen. They even make many desserts with quince. If you do not try these desserts in your Morocco trip, you will miss a lot in terms of your taste.
Pastilla, Harira and Kaliya are among the most famous dishes of Moroccan kitchen. Pastilla is made with serving thin dough with cinnamon, honey, almond, parsley and meat. Harira is a dish that different fish are used to make soups. As a very delicious dish Kaliya, is scorched with fresh sheep meat, tomato, pepper and onion, and served with proper spices and sauces. In addition to other 3 dishes, it is recommended to you to try these 3 dishes.
Coke is like the official drink of Morocco. Almost everybody drinks cold coke at dishes and in the streets. It is very cheap, only 10 dirham. If you are going to eat in restaurants, drinks are not included in the menus. They ask for extra money, so be careful about it. On the other hand, even though there are pos machines in many places, credit cards are not accepted. They are only used in big hotels and luxurious restaurants. That's why never trust your credit card, and leave your cash in your hotel room.
Transportation in Morocco
If you are going to use a taxi for your inner-city transportation, keep the taximeter running necessarily. Every driver will insist on not to use taximeter. Tell him that you will get off the taxi if he does not, or haggle for the one of third of driver's price. Because none of them will hesitate to ask you three times as much money as the normal. If you wish to have a more economical trip, you can use orange buses within the city.
In Morocco, the most used intercity transportation vehicles are trains or buses. But after you see the buses, you are definitely going to root for the train. Because the buses are too old, and almost dead. Even though the trains are faster and more comfortable than the buses, you may not be able to find tickets since they are very crowded. So, go the station early, and try to get on the train before anybody else does. Because since it is not possible to buy a fixed seat, it is highly possible for you to trip standing. If you do not want to encounter such a situation, you can make trip with 1st Class by paying %25 more.
Shopping in Morocco
No matter which city you are in, shopping in Morocco is very colorful and fun. You may not be able to stop yourself from buying lightened, fancy and splendent presents. But if you definitely want to buy a souvenir, we suggest you to buy some fabrics or clothes. Especially the long capes are indispensible clothes of Morocco. In addition to that, jewelry, French perfumes (very cheap), silver jewelries and decorative presents are in the list of buyables. You should not miss the original argan oils for your skin.
The most important advice that we can give to you is that you must haggle, you can buy one fourth of the price that the seller asks, no exaggeration. Haggle in almost every area other than food. At first they will say no, but act as if you were leaving, and you will see they reduce the price by half with the first step you take.
PRIMARY PLACS TO SEE IN MOROCCO
You can understand at first sight that this city was a capital for Almoravide Dynasty in 1062 for long years has a touristic atmosphere. This city which is visited nearly every day of the year by the tourists is one of the most important cities of Morocco. At the same time, Marrakech is one of the first capitals of Morocco. Doomsday Square that is one of the most active squares with hosting many shows is one of the most interesting places of Marrakech. With the historical buildings, modern city architecture (named as Gilize), palm gardens, palaces and coach trips, Marrakech is one of the first places to visit in Morocco.
What do "Play it again Sam" words remind you?" As many of the movie lovers will answer correctly to this question, this city hosted the famous Hollywood movie Casablanca. Actually Portuguese built this dream like city in 1515. Again, this city was first named as Casa Branca. After the Spaniards changed its name to Casablanca in 1700's, the name remained. Casablanca which is named as Casa in many places of Morocco means White House as a word. If you are planning to visit Casablanca, you must definitely visit the second biggest mosque of the world Hasan 2 Mosque. With its cornered minaret, intonated azans, and architecture that can be seen from everywhere in the city, it will definitely excite your interest.
Fez named as the cultural capital of Morocco is among the cities that have been well protected in history. It has a half a million population, and divided into two as old and new. Fez is famous with its labyrinth like narrow streets, markets, mosques, tannery workplaces, fabric manufacturing center, high and long walls and castle doors. Bou İnania Madrasah is one of the rare Islamic works that non-muslims are allowed. In spite of that, Kairouan Mosque has 15000 capacity but non-muslims are not allowed in it. You should definitely visit Kingdom Palace located in New Fez to see its historical and colorful architecture. The sentence you will remember about Fez will be "The city that symbolizes the transition from middle ages to the modern era". So that Fez was added to the UNESCO's World Heritage list in 1981.
This city is located at the Coast of Atlas Ocean, and it has history of 200 years, luxurious hotels and high walls. You will find yourself within the atmosphere mixture of Europe-Feudality as you enjoy this city. Actually, the reason why this city is famous is Gnawa World Music Feztival. Tourists come to see this Feztival every year in June. It contributes a lot to Moroccan in terms of tourism income. If you go to Essaouria, it is suggested that you should spend time at the beach, and buy a lot of Moroccan slippers from the local shops.
Rabat that was set at the Coast of Atlas Ocean is the capital of Morocco. Rabat which was first used as a settlement by Phoenicians and a capital of Moroccan Kingdom since 1956 is one of the cities that have spacious and rich appearance.
If you wish to see Gibraltar Bay, you must go to Tanca. You can even see the lights of Spain in front of the bay. You can even drink famous Moroccan peppermint tea or well-sugared and smelled coffee while you watch that wonderful view. There are a few famous mosques in the city. But to be able to visit them, you must wait for the azan. Otherwise these mosques are locked, because the Moroccans use the mosques to find a cool place to sleep.
Important Information about Morocco
Every country has some certain rules, and learning and obeying these rules or getting the benefit of somebody else's experiences can be life saver sometimes. In this context;
- If you are going to travel with a taxi, make sure the taximeter is open and running. You might hear freakish costs at the end of your trip.
- There are a lot of swindlers in Morocco. That's why you should wear your bag crosswise, and use small trip locks.
- Decline the help requests from the local people in the street. Yes, you heard it right. They literally torment the tourists. No matter what assist they give to you, they will ask for money, and if you don't give it, they will follow or threaten you. Many Moroccans do not even have any reason to ask money from you. That's why no matter what happens, don't get their assistance, and decline their offers.
- If you are going to travel on a camel, protect your tail end, because after 15-20 minutes, this trip turns into a torture. It might blister with effect of hot weather, and give you unbearable pains. You can make a cushion with your thick clothes to prevent this.
- If you are going to the south and West Sahara districts of Morocco, you should be vaccinated against some illnesses. In addition to this, make sure that you drink water sold in the markets rather than tap water, and not to eat raw vegetables and fruits in places which you are not sure whether clean or not. Again, never eat anything sold on the streets.