Morocco is a diverse and unique north African country that offers something for nearly all types of travellers. Find out when it’s best time to visit Morocco.
Morocco is a year-round destination with everything from breathtaking coastlines and idyllic beaches to mountains and desert where you can ride atop a camel. It’s also renowned for its mouthwatering cuisine that you’ll appreciate no matter when you go, but like just about anywhere else, depending on the areas that you visit and what you hope to do, there are months that are better for visiting than others.
The seasons in Morocco as far as tourism are different from other countries in that they’re determined more by religious occasions and festivals than the weather.
The low season, which runs from May through September, is a time when there are likely to be fewer tourists, cheaper airfare and accommodation rates. This is when there are two major religious festivals, including Ramadan, which affects services that are available with opening hours limited and traffic particularly busy. Locals visit their mosques more frequently, fasting during daylight hours, but nights bring an especially festive atmosphere with residents breaking their fast by heading to large hotels, sporting clubs and coffee shops. The most important holiday for Muslims around the world, Eid al-Adha, occurs during this time as well, two lunar months after Ramadan ends. It’s a bit like America’s Thanksgiving, but with lots of feasting over multiple days, starting with the slaughter of the sheep, or “sheep festival,” which is not for the faint of heart.
During the peak summer months of June, July and August, it can get uncomfortably hot, particularly in Fes, Marrakech and southwest Morocco. Of course, the closer you are to the desert, the hotter it gets. Coastal destinations like Essaouira and Rabat, will be more comfortable thanks to the ocean breeze.
April and October are considered the shoulder season, with either months often bringing pleasant, mild weather and plenty of sunshine. The tourist crowds won’t be as thick as they will in the high season, which makes it easier to find accommodation. This can be one of the best times to visit Morocco, but if you’re hoping to surf the Atlantic waves, you’ll need to visit during the winter months which are part of the high season. For hikers, it’s a great choice, with the Atlas Mountains experiencing some of the best weather of the year, bringing mild temperatures and plenty of sunshine.
If you’re planning to visit the Sahara Desert, going in early April or October will allow you to avoid summer’s scorching temperatures which average around 115 degrees, as well as the freezing nighttime temperatures of winter. The only downside to April is that the Sirocco winds can whip up sandstorms.
The high season is from November through March. Many feel this is the best time to visit Morocco, with lots of sunny days, although accommodation can be a bit more difficult to find, especially during the holiday season around Christmas and New Year’s Eve in Marrakech and Morocco’s south region. If you visit at Christmastime, you’ll need a jacket. The south is drier but colder, particularly at night, and while the coast is mild, it can also get quite wet. A dusting of snow isn’t unusual in the northern part of Morocco, and heavy snowfall can occur in the Atlas Mountains during the winter, which are absolutely stunning with snow-capped peaks.
As mentioned, this is when avid surfers should come to Morocco’s coasts to ride the waves, with the surfing season peaking between December and March when swells from the North Atlantic arrive to the country’s shores.
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