Hi guys, I have just got back from Morocco, where I stayed for eleven nights with my younger sister and it was truly an amazing and an unforgettable trip. However, one of the main searches before going was whether or not it was a safe place to go. Overall I would say yes, Morocco is a safe place for female and solo travelers yet, like anywhere, there are things you should be wary of. There are many different ‘types’ of Moroccan getaway, if you are worried and just want a relax, complexes are probably your best bet or nice hotels out of the medina, where Marrakech is much more relaxed. However, we stayed in a hostel in the centre of the medina (which is also fine, you just may have to be slightly warier).
The opposite sex
Of course a huge worry as a solo and/ or female traveller is how you will be treated by the opposite sex. Most men were extremely hospitable, yet the odd one could make you feel uncomfortable and this is something everyone should be aware of before going to Morocco. We were clicked at, whistled at, called flowers and countless other names. We did not mind the compliments, who wouldn’t. It was only when the line was crossed, we only had one experience where one man made us feel extremely uncomfortable but the best option is to just ignore, keep walking and not to respond. Also, if you are a younger traveller, maybe expect a few marriage proposals. Do not take my experience as gospel! The majority of men were lovely, however, I feel like everywhere you can be made to feel uncomfortable (which is so wrong and perhaps leads into a more opinionated blog post) but it is better to expect it than to be surprised.
The money cons
Morocco can be overwhelming when you first arrive. You are walking down the street and there is a man holding a monkey, a snake charmer and a lady selling balloons all within a few feet of each other. The general tendency is that every single person is trying to get money out of you. The nice guy who is asking you if you need help getting somewhere will more than likely ask you for money at the end, and local guides will ask you for way too much than the tour is worth. The best thing to do is just to get everywhere yourself, use a map and if you get lost (which you will in the bazaars) don’t panic! It is all part of the fun.
Haggling is something which I am not the best at, I hate doing it and tried to avoid at all costs, just as I have mentioned in a previous blog post about haggling in China. Yet, here it is the norm and people will charge you usually about double or three times what the item is worth, so be brave and keep offering low amounts. It can be daunting when people are yelling at you to try their shop or their restaurant, but if you don’t want to you do not have to! Just keep walking.
If you want a picture of one of the bizarre sights you see, such as the snake charmers or even something more normal (to us) such as the drummers and musicians in the street, you will most likely have to pay so have some cash ready or perhaps don’t take the picture!
These are just some pointers to be wary of when visiting Morocco, but overall I felt extremely safe, I never felt threatened or scared, I was overwhelmed at first however this feeling soon subsides and although I went with my sister I would feel comfortable going back alone! Most people are genuinely nice and those that are not are definitely fewer even if it may not feel like it at the time. I cannot recommend Morocco and Marrakech enough and I am super excited to share my experience with you throughout the next few blog posts!
Thanks for reading and I hope you found this blog post helpful!