Popular events and festivals in Morocco

almond blossom©pizzodisevo (therapy – terapia – Therapie)/Flickr

With its charming medinas, scenic mountains and surf-perfect beaches, Morocco has never ceased to attract visitors from all the corners of the world. People are fascinated with the country’s history and architecture, but also with its unique combination of landscapes: desert, mountains and beaches together in one amazing country.

Morocco is also a country with a distinctive culture (or rather cultures). Experiencing Morocco means not only sightseeing, shopping and eating, it’s also about the country’s customs, festivals and manifestations. Attending some of these popular events and festivals in Morocco can show you a whole new side of this North African country:

Almond Blossom Festival, Tafaroute

Just as Japan or Washington DC have their own Cherry Blossom festivals, people in Morocco have great admiration for the delicate almond flowers. The almond tree blossoms with their pastel pink flowers have been a favorite subject for Vincent van Gogh, but here is the town of Tafaroute you’ll find yourself surrounded by thousands of such trees. In addition to contemplating the almond blossoms, people will also dance, sing and shop for almond derived products.

Fes Festival of World Sacred Music, Fes

Fes Festival ©Fulvio’s photos/Flickr

This June event is one of the biggest in Morocco, offering a unique opportunity to listen to some of the best sacred music artists. The international participation and the location within the perimeter of the Imperial City of Fes create a friendly and solemn atmosphere. Plus, the numerous open air concerts and representations offer the perfect accompaniment for visiting Fes and its fabulous architecture.

The Sand Marathon, Ouarzazate

Long distance runners and adventurers align each year for this crazy race into the heart of the desert.  The event is now a regular presence in the event calendar of Ouarzazate, a city at the limit of Atlas Mountains. The daring participants must walk (running doesn’t seem the proper term when we’re talking about sand dunes and torrid weather) for almost 150 miles and carry their supplies, which makes it almost a survival race.

Marriage Festival, Imilchil

Imilchil inn ©deunvistazo/Flickr

This is one of the oldest and most authentic festivals. It is an old tradition of Berbers from different tribes to gather one day per year in the town of Imilchil and socialize with the hope the young men and women form different parts of the country will find their half. It is also an opportunity to celebrate, and for the elders to tell  the best of stories and legends from the desert.

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