Thank you for following the blog! Your friend has informed me you might get in touch so here I am, coming up with your great Northern Morocco itinerary. I have visited Morocco a bunch of times and stayed for longer periods. This 7-day itinerary involves renting a car and driving on your own in Morocco. It highlights three different and popular Moroccan cities: Tangier, Chefchaouen, and Fez. The days are very detailed and it includes a lot of information for your successful all-girls road trip in Morocco. If you want more information or other options, you can check my Morocco Travel Guide. It covers the whole country! Thanks for your support and I hope you and your girl friends will have a great time in Morocco!
Renting a car in Morocco
I opted to rent a car in Morocco not because it’s cheaper but the country’s terrain is easy to drive. Prior to landing, I already booked a car online where I had to pay a 25% reservation fee. You can find various companies on the Internet that offer rental services but below are rough estimates so you’ll have an idea how much it will cost you on a daily basis:
- Mini ($960 USD per month): Aircondition, 4-door, 4 passengers max
- Standard ($760 USD per month): Aircondition, 4-door, 5 passengers max
- Premium ($1500 USD per month): Aircondition, 4-door, 6 passengers max
Daily car rental costs on average range from $30 USD – $45 USD. I drove Morocco for a month so I am showing you the monthly costs. Of course, the more days you rent, the cheaper. This is ideal for people traveling in groups as the bus/trains can cost the same (individually).
Car rental in Morocco includes Collision Damage Waiver with Excess (CDW) and Insurance for one (1) driver. Free cancellation, no credit card fees, toll, gas, and extra fees not included. If you are traveling as a group and more than one person can drive, I strongly advice for you to get the additional driver insurance that costs $6 USD per day.
Other modes of transport when traveling in Morocco
Compared to my visit six years ago (visited in 2013 and stayed for 90 days), Morocco’s transport system has been better and more impressive. I don’t know if I am saying this because it’s the second time I’ve been so things are more familiar but if you are not up for renting a car, you can go around Morocco by:
Bus: No, no, no… This is not the old school buses you are picturing in your head. Morocco’s busses are very efficient and comfortable. There are three major bus companies in Morocco but most tourists use CTM. On their website, you can see the availability of each trip together with trip duration and ticket prices.
Train: Trains are also a favourite but let me tell you that bus and train ride durations (even the scenic views) are the same. In fact, going by train can delay you a few minutes than taking a bus. Not all Moroccan cities have access to trains so I suggest you only do this if you are not in a hurry or didn’t make it to the bus schedule. ONCF is the most popular train website in Morocco where you can see all the timetables and prices of each trip.
Shared taxi: Shared taxi or grand taxi is famous in Morocco if you want to cut a little cost. For as low as 15 MAD, you can go from place to place sharing with other people. Please take note that the taxi only leaves when it’s full. This mode of transport tends to be very crowded and uncomfortable so if you want a little comfort, feel free to pay extra.
Is Morocco safe for female travelers?
Despite all the failure of not being able to practice my rights as a woman activist and the annoyance of how backward they are, I felt very safe traveling in Morocco.
Please don’t interpret my stories above like I was harmed. These stories happened as they are but I didn’t feel sexually harassed if that’s the word you are looking for. Harassment can come in many forms but more often than not, when women are traveling, they are incorporating it with sexual assault.
Moroccans are very friendly and are well-rounded with tourists. Safety shouldn’t even be in question. As harassment can be defined in many ways, safety can be, too. The problem is how it is synonymous with all things related to women. Traffic, clean drinking water, street cats flocking like a gang on the streets, theft, etc: safety is everyone’s issue and can go down to many dissertations and arguments.
As this is a question from a woman traveler, I will direct the tips and advice to her: Morocco is very safe but if you are going alone, you have to ask yourself if you are ready to face all the hustlers who will drag your ass to their shops or talk to you even if you are not in the mood. Seeing a woman alone is an opportunity to conduct small talks (mostly business talks actually. They are really good at selling) and to find a way to make you pay (whether be it asking for directions or accompanying you in the huge Medina). Moroccans are just finding a way to earn a living. They don’t mean to harm you even if their methods clearly says so. The way they do it may not be agreeable to you but know they mean no harm.
That being said doesn’t mean you have to keep your guard down. I know some girls who felt harassed (sexually) because they are being followed in the Medina but I don’t want to question that. As a woman, remember that we are all different and can interpret different actions with our gut so one can never question when you feel harassed or not. It is a question of feelings. It’s the same way as questioning our friend’s feelings when they are in love with a man we hideously hate (just because we feel they are not right for them) but none of us can really tell how people feel.
I wrote about solo female travel in Morocco. You can read the article here.
Some tips for female travel in Morocco
- When walking in the Medinas, sellers and merchants will always force you to come “take a look” in their stores. They will not force you to buy but they can physically drag you to see their stores. If you are not interested, say no.
- When saying no doesn’t work, avoid eye contact. Don’t even say hi. I got tired of the small talks with the sellers on the street so, in the next days, I treated them as non-existent. I totally ignored them even if they were saying hi and trying to be nice. I acted like I wasn’t hearing anything nor I understood English. It worked!
- If you want to meet locals in Morocco, only go to Couchsurfing to find people. Moroccans who are signed up on CS are real travelers. Most of my best friends in Morocco are guys and I met them through Couchsurfing even without staying in their homes!
- I wrote about funny ways to avoid hustlers in Morocco. You can read it here.
- Drinking inn Morocco is not common but some establishments serve alcohol. In most Moroccan cities I’ve been to, there are a few specialty shops that will sell you alcohol. However, you have to bring your passport for identification. They only sell to foreigners. As for the “non-Muslim” part, I have no idea how they determine that.
- I don’t mean to scare you or anything. This is just a precaution. On December 2018, Louisa Vesterager Jespersen (24, from Denmark) and Maren Ueland (28, from Norway) were found beheaded in the High Atlas mountains in Morocco. This is a horrible horrible story of female travel so be alert. Do not go to places where there are fewer people (like the High Atlas). Stay in crowded places and join tour groups.