Blue Streets of Chefchaouen

March 15, 2013 by

Things to Do, Travel Tips

Chefchaouen. photo courtesy of Csörföly D via Wikimedia Commons

Chefchaouen. photo courtesy of Csörföly D via Wikimedia Commons

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The blue streets of Chefchaouen, Morocco, have made the city one of the most striking and photogenic destinations in North Africa. Indeed, reliable travel tips can be difficult to find for Chefchaouen, as the vast majority of information online is dedicated almost entirely to pictures of the beautiful cerulean accented architecture and surroundings.

That said, Chefchaouen is quite possibly the ideal Moroccan tourist destination. It has everything—a prototypical medina, a respectable Kasbah, nearby nature excursions (Talasemtane National Park and the mountains around Akchour being chief among these), a profusion of narcotics (take them or leave them, but be aware that they’re there), and the daily calls to prayer that occur four times a day with clocklike regularity. It is also a good deal calmer and less populated than more famous destinations like Fez, Casablanca, and Tangier.

There are plenty of affordable places to stay in the city, though you’ll want to be a little bit choosy, as prices vary in a manner that is seemingly unrelated to either quality or comfort. The Hotel Guernika is a little hard to find, but it has Wi-Fi, hot showers, and spacious double rooms at a reasonable rate.

Some additional factors to keep in mind are similarly variable prices on offer at restaurants in the area, and the benefits of hiring knowledgeable local guides when venturing into the Rif Mountains (lest you happen upon a marijuana growing operation by accident, for instance).

-John Reality

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