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Like most countries, Morocco closed its borders back in March as the coronavirus pandemic spread across the world. However, as of September 2020, Morocco is reopening to travelers once more. Of course, things aren’t quite the same as they were before. Some popular cities, such as Fez, are still in lockdown and getting into the country isn’t quite as easy as it once was. Read on to discover all the details of where to go, what to expect and how to keep yourself safe should you decide to visit Morocco in the near future.
Disclaimer: the information in this post is accurate at the time of writing. Remember that requirements and restrictions are subject to change at any time. Check government advice before making travel arrangements.
Morocco may be (re)open for business but they’re still being very cautious. Fortunately, tourists don’t have to quarantine on arrival but entry requirements are still fairly strict in comparison to some of these countries.
Morocco is reopening its borders to nationals of visa-exempt countries, including the USA. You can double check whether your country is on the visa exemption list here. If so, then you’ll once again be able to stay in Morocco for up to 90 days without a visa.
In order to enter Morocco you’ll need to present a negative PCR test and a negative antibody test to prove that you haven’t had the virus at all. The results of both tests can be no more than 48 hours old.
You’ll also need to prove that you’ve got somewhere to stay once you arrive. Make sure you have digital and printed versions of your reservation, just in case.
At the start of the pandemic, Morocco had one of the world’s strictest lockdowns which lasted from March – July 2020. During that time, borders were completely closed. Moroccans who had traveled abroad were not permitted to re-enter the country.
Morocco reported 80,000 cases of coronavirus and 1,500 related deaths. Since the lockdown eased in July, there has been a sharp rise in cases. Currently, over 1,000 new cases are reported every day.
Social distancing measures are still in place throughout the country. The cities of Fez, Casablanca and Tangier are still operating under a strict lockdown. Tourists can’t enter these areas, so steer well clear.
As mentioned, the popular cities of Fez, Casablanca and Tangier are sadly not open to tourists just yet. However, Rabat, Marrakech and Agadir are welcoming back travelers, so long as they adhere to social distancing measures.
The capital of Morocco is an enchanting city that straddles old and new. The New Town is decidedly upscale, with wide, palm-tree lined streets and plenty of sophisticated cafes and restaurants to choose from. The Old Town, on the other hand, is a different world. It’s an amazing place to submerge yourself in traditional Moroccan culture as you explore the narrow streets and chaotic souks. And of course, there are plenty of luxurious hotels to choose from.
Marrakech is an assault on the senses… but in the best possible way. It’s a heady mixture of color, sound, smells and sweltering heat. The city feels like a maze and a piece of Arabesque artwork at the same time. There’s lots to do in Marrakech, including checking out the Badia Palace, visiting Yves Saint Lauren’s Jardin Majorelle and wandering around the Saadian tombs. You’ll find respite from the madness in one of the city’s beautiful riads – luxurious Moroccan properties with interior gardens.
The southern city of Agadir is home to pretty beaches, immaculate golf courses and luxurious resorts – my kind of place. Admittedly, there’s not as much heritage here as in other parts of the country since an earthquake completely destroyed Agadir in the 1960s. It was subsequently rebuilt and today it’s one of Morocco’s most modern cities. There’s still plenty of ways to experience traditional Moroccan culture in Agadir, however, such as visiting a Hammam bath, shopping at souks and visiting the reconstructed Medina. Nature lovers should check out the Crocoparc where you can marvel at crocodiles, snakes and other exotic reptiles.
I’ll continue to update this guide to Morocco reopening as the situation changes but please remember to check your government website before making travel arrangements. For more on where to travel during the coronavirus pandemic, check out this list of destinations or this guide to Covid-19 travel in the Maldives.
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