Living In Morocco As An Expat part 2. You can see part one here.
Pros and Cons of Living in Morocco as an Expat
Living in Morocco has plenty of perks, as well as disadvantages. Although you’re probably aware of many but in this article, we will walk you through the pros and cons of living in Morocco as an expat. However, if you need a reminder or some new inspiration, then why not read our list below.
Moroccan Health Care Is World-Class
The World Health Organisation (WHO), which looks at factors such as ‘fairness, equality and overall quality’ when, deciding its rankings, has rated the Moroccan health care system as one of the best in Africa. This is also due to other factors like compulsory social insurance for all workers and universal coverage (the only country in Africa to boast this).
The Weather Conditions
The climate in Morocco is rather diverse. Not only is that, but in some parts of the country you can experience four seasons throughout the year. This means that in winter there’s a good chance of seeing snow on top of the mountains between December and March, while coastal areas usually have mild temperatures with fresh breezes off the sea.
Morocco Is Safe
While it’s true that many expats in Morocco experience problems with robbery and theft, the country is still safe compared to many other countries. The crime rate has been steadily decreasing over the past few years, and expat home insurance in Morocco will keep your belongings covered if they’re stolen.
Morocco is one of those places where you can indulge your passion for good food and wine. Since the country has a fine selection of wines and an abundance of traditional alcoholic drinks. You can even buy alcohol at many supermarkets and corner shops.
The culinary options in Morocco are endless: couscous, pastilla (a savoury pie), harira (a popular soup), tajine (Morocco’s national dish), mechoui (roast lamb) and much more. You’ll find that most Moroccan food is made from simple, everyday ingredients with only a few spices added for flavour.
Morocco’s Local Culture
As well as exploring Morocco’s past through its fascinating mosques, temples, palaces and archaeological sites, you can also get to know the country’s arts and crafts by visiting local souks (markets). Here you’ll find jewellery, clothes, spices and much more created locally.
Harissa Hot Sauce
The red harissa hot sauce – made from chillies, garlic, olive oil and coriander – is a Moroccan favourite and you can use it as a condiment for meat, fish, salads and tagines. We’ve all heard of harissa, but did you know that there’s also white harissa (a milder version), green harissa (made without garlic) and orange harissa (made with caramelised onions)? The hot sauce is even used as a marinade for meat and fish, adding flavour to meals with minimal effort.
Easy to Get Arrested
Morocco is known for arresting tourists even when they did nothing wrong. If someone like a tourist steals something, the police will go after any white skinned people that they can find and arrest them without even thinking about it. This makes life extremely difficult for the innocent tourists who are visiting Morocco, because they could get arrested at any time despite not breaking any laws.
Expat Can be fined without Committing a Crime
If you commit any sort of crime in Morocco, you will soon find out that they have an extremely high fine system. The government generally calculates fines by taking the crime’s cost of how much it would cost to hire someone to do the job that the criminal was doing. This system is very new, and has been designed specifically to take money from tourists that are visiting Morocco.
You Can Get Ripped off in Many Ways
When people visit Morocco, there are many stores that will try to sell you clothing. A lot of the time they will overcharge for these items, only because the tourists only have so much money. People who can’t afford this high price may be forced to buy the item even if it is very overpriced just because they don’t want to spend more money at that moment.
Tourists Are Seen As a Resource to Take From
Many people who visit Morocco want the experience of seeing how this country works for them. Unfortunately, there are many people here who see expats as an opportunity to get money out of them in any way possible.
This includes overcharging for food and other goods. Neither the people nor the government have any interest in changing this mentality, making it impossible for anyone to know how much things really cost before they buy them.
No Freedom of Speech or Press
A lot of citizens that live outside of Morocco don’t understand why there are so many problems here because most of them don’t see it. Meanwhile, the Moroccan government silences most people who speak out against their dictator and the press cannot write anything negative about Morocco without getting arrested for it.
The country of Morocco has such a high amount of corruption that no one can really say anything about this unfair system unless you want to be punished by the government. People who visit Morocco can get arrested for saying anything bad about this country, even if it’s true.
In addition, there are many reasons why people cannot travel to morocco and enjoy their time here. The country has a very strict system regarding freedom of speech and press, which is one reason why foreigners have a hard time enjoying their time in morocco.
This system is so strict that it’s almost impossible for someone to say anything about their experience here without getting arrested or fined. Therefore, if you’re interested in traveling to Morocco, you need to be aware of these laws before you decide whether this country is right for you.
Top-Rated Outdoor Activities in Morocco
Morocco is a country rich in natural beauty and cultural heritage. And it’s no wonder that the locals enjoy a variety of outdoor activities. The following list will give you an insight into some of the most popular outdoor activities available in the country for expats to explore.
Hammam/ Hammamat Al Massira – Outdoor bath
The hammam is accompanied by a Hammamat (hammam garden) on site. Also, the hammams are quite popular and you will find many of them in the old quarters, whereas the hammamats are usually not as authentic and more touristic. Some travellers opt to visit both types of baths out of curiosity – but there is absolutely no need to visit both kinds.
Camel Rides In the Desert
Morocco is home to some of the most beautiful and ecologically rich deserts, famous for its vast stretches of sand, palm groves and arid mountains. Camel riding is a popular activity among tourists, especially during saint festivities where all other accommodation capacities are usually fully booked.
Mount Toubkal – The Highest Peak in North Africa
Mount Toubkal is the highest peak in Morocco at 4,167m above sea level. It is also the tallest mountain of Northern Africa and one of its most prominent landmarks. Mount Toubkal towers above the city of Ouarzazate near Western Sahara on the edge of the Anti-Atlas mountain range.
The word Toubkal means “mountain of snow” in Arabic. The summit is an easy hike for most hikers. On the flip sides, this site has become extremely popular among tourists mainly due to the height of the peak and accessibility of the area. Hiking Mount Toubkal can be a great way to capture amazing photographs and videos of the sunrise, but caution should be exercised when hiking this mountain.
Camel Trekking – A Unique Way to Explore the Sahara Desert
Trekking is very popular among tourists in Morocco. Meanwhile, camel trekking has been gaining popularity lately because of the views it offers and a more eco-friendly method of transportation. It is an unforgettable experience which allows visitors to explore rock formations and natural landscape that wouldn’t be accessible by car or foot.
Camels have been a major form of transportation in North Africa for centuries and they continue to play a key role in the Moroccan economy. In fact, they are used as work animals and can carry up to 400 kg. Moreover, they are also widely used for racing especially during the Royal Camel Festival which takes place every year in January.
This tradition dates back to the 12th century and it is meant as a tribute to Mulai Ismail who ruled Morocco from 1672 to 1727. Moroccans celebrate this day by racing their camels through the streets of Fes.
Sand Boarding – A Fun Way to Explore the Sahara Desert
During summer, visitors can enjoy some of Morocco’s most popular sports such as sandboarding and camel trekking. The former is a more extreme sport which involves riding down dunes on a board with wheels. The sport began in the 1960s when surfers began using modified boogie boards to strap their feet on and ride through sand dunes.
Since then, it has evolved into a very popular way to enjoy spectacular views over the desert. Some Moroccan tour operators offer half-day trips which involve experienced instructors who teach newbies how to use the sandboard and how to ride down small sand dunes.
As said earlier, tourism is traditionally a large industry in this country. Many expats who would love to relocate to Morocco can venture into this industry or teach English in private schools. However, you need to understand the reservations to work and live in an Islamic nation. Should in case you love to know more about moving to Morocco, refer to this guide and follow our update.