11 Super Important Travel Tips for Morocco

Hi chums!

I recently (and by recently I mean almost a couple of months ago) returned from a trip to Morocco. I was quite nervous about travelling here so I made sure to do my research before I went and even so I encountered new things which I wanted to share here on my blog.

1. Separate your money

If you happen to get money taken, you want to make sure it's not the whole lot if you can help it. I split my money up and put it in three places so that if any of it got stolen it would not be the end of the world.

2. Beware of people offering help

On a trip to Ait-Ben-Haddou we had to cross a small river/stream on stepping stones (the water was no more than ankle deep). When we arrived at the stepping stones there were around 10 children who tried to offer you help to cross - well, actually they kind of forced their help onto you. They kept trying to grab my hand even when I kept saying no. This was kind of a stressful experience and a lot of my friends fell into the trap of accepting their help and getting accosted for money on the other side of the river. This is another reason for splitting your money - make sure it doesn't look as though you are carrying much. My friends only gave them 10-20 dirham (10 dirham is roughly 1 euro), so it wasn't much but beware of this.

3. Ask for small currency

When exchanging your money I would really recommend asking for small notes and, if you can, some coins. In Morocco culture no-one seems to like to give change unless it's a restaurant/proper shop. So this tip is especially important if you are going to markets, haggling, and buying souvenirs.


In Morocco, you can't drink the water. Actually, you can't even brush your teeth in it. The answer? Bottled water, baby!

5. Wear respectful clothing

As a white, blonde girl, I already got a tonne of unwanted attention which made me feel super uncomfortable. However, I did cover up my shoulders and legs which wasn't the case for all the tourists I saw. I would recommend covering up not only to be respectful to their culture, but to not stand out because it can feel very uncomfortable when people shout at you in the street because of your hair/skin colour.

6. Ramadan

When I went to Morocco, it was Ramadan. Before I went I read that no food places would be open and me and my friends were wondering whether this was really going to be the case. But luckily, no, it wasn't! In Marrakech we were absolutely fine and also while we travelled round with our tour we went to restaurants for lunch and dinner. The only thing was that it was a lot quieter than normal because the only people eating in the day were tourists.

7. Bring all the home comforts you'll need over the course of your stay

We didn't come across any department stores or drug stores (Boots, where you at?) while we were in Marrakech. I found this super refreshing but at the same time I was glad I didn't leave any essential stuff (aka mascara) at home. So make sure you really think through what you want to bring with you before you come because it's not as easy as other countries to nip into somewhere and get something similar.

8. Be careful with backpacks

If you are in Marrakech or another busy city, make sure to keep your bag/backpack in front of you. I know the front-backpack isn't necessarily the most attractive thing in the world, but it's best to be wary of your possessions. Like any city in the world, pick-pocketers are everywhere!

9. Nothing is free

No surprise with this one, but I'm specifically talking about when you are in a marketplace. In Marrakech, men with baboons chained to them would come and try and put them on your shoulder so that you take a picture and have to pay them. One of my friends with no change ended up paying 100 dirham for a picture (roughly 10 euros) which she was not happy about.

We also came across a woman who was arguing with a lady who had just done henna on her hand - the lady was claiming that she did not say 20 dirham, but 20 euros for the henna. Needless to say, the woman was not a happy customer!

10. Bring a portable phone charger

The tour I did with my friends included a LOT of driving and we also spent one night in the Sahara Desert where (surprise, surprise) there were no power sockets. So, if you want to keep your phone charged and ready to take tonnes of photos then I would seriously advise bringing a portable phone charger.

11. Toilets, toilet paper and hand sanitiser

Make sure you pack some sort of toilet paper/tissues because toilets in Morocco does not always have this readily available! Also, be sure to throw your toilet paper in the bin instead of in the loo because the sewage systems are not the same as the UK and you do not want to be responsable for blocking the toilets!

Everywhere we went had normal sit down toilets apart from one place where there was just a hole in the ground in a cubicle.

Finally, please please please bring some hand sanitiser. This will be the best move you will ever make. Although there are working taps in most toilets, there is no soap the majority of the time, so you will definitely need that hand sanitiser!

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So those are my 11 travel tips! Like I mentioned before I read a tonne of blog posts and advice before I went and I had an amazing time.

These tips aren't meant to put you off going to Morocco, but it's best to be prepared. As long as you are cautious and aware, you will be fine and will have the most insane time.

Happy travels!

Love as always,


Term Abroad: Week 8

Hi chums!

Week 8 was possibly one of the best weeks of the whole term abroad for a couple of reasons. The first is that I got to visit the amazing country of Morocco with some new friends, and the second is that one of my uni friends came to visit me here in Leon!

This week has been insanely hectic and as I am writing this I can feel my eyes starting to close!


This week I only went to school 2 days because I spent Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday in Morocco (oops).

On Thursday by friend arrived in Leon to spend 5 days. Unfortunately the weather was so bad and in rained pretty much the whole time except Sunday morning. It was still so nice to see her and I'm hoping that she had as good a time as I did! :)


In terms of language, this week has been a pretty good one - but not the Spanish language!

In Morocco we did an organised tour, which meant that we some other lovely traveller, including two Italians. I spent the first couple of days trying to decide whether to speak to them or to tell them that I study Italian because that would be the least Emma thing to do ever. HOWEVER, I am here to report that I did indeed venture to speak to them. The Sahara really changes you.

For some reason while sitting in camp in the Sahara, I just had a verbal spasm and blurted out that I study Italian. I am always super careful to say that I only speak a little teeny weeny teeny tiny bit of Italian but I was so lucky because this Italian couple were so so nice and patient. So I made some friends!!

In terms of Spanish, the tour we took was called Viaje en Marruecos, so all the guides spoke to us in Spanish which was super fun - and it kind of made me feel less bad about leaving Spain during my Spanish term abroad.

Also, on another note, I could not believe how many language every single person in Morocco can speak. It's honestly insane. Arabic, French, Spanish, English, Berber...?!?!?! I mean I am slightly confused as to what the main language is because the signs seemed to change language a lot as we travelled around the country. Either way, I am so impressed at all these people - they 100% need medals.


Ummm... did I mention that I went to Morocco????

This was honestly the most amazing trip and I am going to do some more detailed posts with more pictures, but I will do a rough overview.

We went from Marrakech all the way to the Sahara desert where we stayed for a night. We stopped at several Berber villages on the way and also a UNESCO heritage sight, which was so amazing! On the second to last day we drove back to Marrakech, where we spent our final evening before flying back to Spain.

I am so grateful I got to go on this insane trip and can't believe I only booked it 8 days before. Madness.

Another fun thing I did this week was to go to la Cueva de Valporquero on Saturday. It was so big and pretty inside and something super random and unusual to do. This trip was organised by the university and although the weather sucked, it didn't matter when you were underground!

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I wish I could relive this week because it was so crazy. I now have only 3 weeks left of school and a lot of travelling planned so stayed tuned.

Love as always


Road Trip: Cueva de Valporquero

Hi chums!

On Saturday it was absolutely pouring, so what better way to spend it than inside a cave? :) 

As part of my university course in León, there are trips to various places and one of them included la Cueva de Valporquero. I wasn't really sure what to expect but I was hoping it wouldn't be anything like my caving experience I was forced to have on a school trip to Somerset (it was like being in the depths of hell).

Luckily this cave experience was a lot more chilled and was so pretty. We had a 2 hour tour in the cave and other than being freezing cold by the end, I really enjoyed it!

To get to la Cueva de Valporquero from León we got on a hired coach and drove up into the mountains. It probably took around an hour to get there but I accidentally fell asleep so it could have taken way less/more time. 

The creepiest part of the cave was the smiley 'fantasma' made out of clay.

At the end of the tour our guide turned off all the lights and made us be silent. I wasn't a huge fan of this idea but I survived!

After our tour we were supposed to head to Picos de Europa but after making it to Riaño (a really small town where there were literally no people when we arrived), we decided to head back to León because the weather was so bad!

All in all, it was a fun trip though and the cave was amazing!

Love as always,


The Moroccan Road Trip

Hi chums!

My trip to Morocco was so packed with action and we made lots of little stops on the way to the Sahara Desert so I thought I would share all the pics from the road trip.

We saw lots of Berber villages along the way as we drove out of Marrakech and became immersed in the mountains. It was a very windy journey to start with and I started feeling a little bit nauseous but it was all good because the views were beautiful and were enough to take my mind off it!

One of the main places we stopped at was calle Ait Ben Haddou, a UNESCO heritage site where they've filmed things from Games of Thrones to Lawrence of Arabia.

Although I hadn't seen any of the films and programs filmed there, it didn't matter because the place itself was so impressive that it was obvious why it had been chosen for many film sets.

We climbed up the hill and turned around to the most amazing view. The green looks so strange in such a vast desert but it really makes everything start out that much more.

The view was so pretty - it took me a while to cut my photos down to just these (and there are still loads here lol).

One thing to watch out for if you ever go here - you need to cross the small stream and there are lots of young boys hanging round trying to help you across. If you accept yourself, you need to pay them, so either have some change handy or get ready to constantly tell them you don't need their help because they don't seem to take no for an answer!

As the sun was setting we arrived at our hotel which was literally in the middle of nowhere (on the side of the road below). Unsurprisingly, wifi was not one of their strongest suits although this was completely understandable!

The next day we rose bright and early to set off again towards the desert.

The road ahead was straight and in the middle of nowhere so it never felt like we were getting anywhere!

One of our last stops was in a gorge where there were several places to buy souvenirs. I bought a cute camel made of leather - it was so much cheaper here than in Marrakech, so get your haggle on!

After this stop we were full steam ahead towards the desert - check out that post here!

Love as always,


Moroccan Adventure: Riding Camels in the Sahara Desert

Hi chums!

This is one of my favourite posts ever because never have I ever taken so many pictures. This was the most insane trip ever and the Sahara desert was definitely my favourite part. So, now that I have bigged this up so much, without further ado here is my adventure in the Sahara desert!

After driving all day from Marrakech and stopping at various places along the way, we made it to the Sahara desert. The roads to the Sahara are endless straight roads past sand/dirt and you start to wonder if you'll ever get to the place where the hundreds of pictures you have looked at were taken. But eventually you get a glimpse of the orangey sand and you know you are almost there!

When we arrived at the edge of the desert, we could see our camels saddled and ready to go. After taking the essentials out of our suitcase to last us until we returned the next day, we prepared to get on our camels.

Before actually seeing the camels I hadn't thought much about how I was actually meant to get on it/ how comfortable the ride would be. Let's just say I was in for quite a surprise - exhibit A:

Sitting on a camel whilst it stands up and sits down is the hardest thing ever. It's literally like being on a Bucking Bull but in real deal life. 

Once you're actually up, it doesn't get much easier! After seeing pictures online, I assumed it would be easy to ride a camel and take some shots but wooow was I wrong! The camels are tied together in groups of seven/eight max and they love to slip and slide in the sand. It was the bumpiest ride ever and I was so sure I was going to drop my phone it was unreal.

However, after getting over the shock of the ride, I became more confident with my camera and managed to get some pics. I put my phone and camera away for most of it though because I wanted to be in the moment and enjoy this amazing experience!

We rode the camels about 45 mins and then went sand boarding. This is literally sitting on a snowboard and sliding down the sandy hills. It was really fun but such hard work dragging the snowboard back up the sandy hill!

As the sun started to set it got quite windy and sand started blowing in everyone's eyes, but the sunset was so amazing it didn't matter!

We sat on the top of a sandy hill watching the sun disappear and could not believe we were lucky enough to be there.

After the sun set we wandered down the hill to our camp for the night. Camping is seriously not the word to use. It was more like a serious case of glamping and I was 10000% ok with that.

After dinner, we sat outside whilst our guides lit a fire and played us some Moroccan music on drums.

This was a seriously late night. Music was playing for hours after our guides had finished their drumming and my friends and I lay outside on mattresses, looking at the starry African sky. There is honestly nothing like it. We watched for shooting stars and spent hours chatting and chilling - it was so magical!

We ended up going to bed at like 2:30 which was interesting, considering we had to be up at 5 so that we had time to see the sunrise.

Surprisingly, we didn't feel that tired when our alarms went off - we were probably high on excitement!

The sunrise was beautiful, but it happened so quickly and before we knew it our guides were shouting for us to come and get breakfast and then we were back on our camels in a flash!

It was another inelegant mount and we were off! The sky was completely blue, without a cloud in the sky!

The guides were so amazing at taking pictures of us all as we held on for dear life so as not to fall off our camels - I guess the sand would make a soft landing but I'm glad I didn't have to find it out for myself!

So that was the end of the Sahara desert adventure! Before I wrap up this blog post I thought I would give you a bit of info on the camp. I was nervous before going because I couldn't find any blog posts that talked about the camp itself and I am admittedly not the biggest fan of roughing it - sue me!

So, the camp we stayed in was just randomly in the middle of some sandy hills. I have no idea how the guides found it because the sand makes everywhere look the same!

The picture above shows the outside tents where everyone hung out before dinner and then in the evening. We pulled the mattresses out from under the tent when we were star-gazing.

The picture below is the loo - not the most pleasant topic but it's something I wanted to know before I went, so I thought I'd include it. I don't know how but there was a fully functioning toilet and sink which was HEAVEN. The only thing you have to remember is to throw your loo roll in the bin instead of flushing it, but that's the same with every loo in Morocco. It's so hard to remember not to chuck it in the loo but it is so important to put it in the bin otherwise the toilets get all clogged and majorly grim!

The picture below shows the tents we slept in. We were a group of 8 and we were all in the same tent. There was plenty of room and they give you mattresses, pillows and blankets - not that it mattered too much because we didn't sleep much! I wasn't cold at all at night, but it was May so that's probs why. I've heard it gets super chilly in Jan/Feb so beware if you go then!

I seem to have forgotten to take a pic of the main tent, but basically it was filled with tables and chairs and the guides brought us pasta and other yummy food for dinner. 

When we arrived back to where our bus was waiting we bought some souvenirs - did someone say sand from the Sahara desert??

Our bus left to go back to Marrakech at 7:30 and we were so shattered but it was so worth it - and a 9 hour bus trip was more than enough time to catch those z's.

I know I said it before but I cannot believe how lucky I was to get to go on this trip. It was the most unusual thing I've ever done but I cannot recommend it enough! Our guides were so nice and friendly and we had the best time!

Love as always,


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