I spent two months in Morocco a few years ago and the majority of the time, I traveled alone. I had a wonderful time as a solo female traveler, but do wish I’d known a few things before my trip, like:
- How to dress in Morocco
- How to get around Morocco
- Where to stay in Morocco
- What language to use in Morocco
Prior to departure, I researched what solo female travel in Morocco would be like and could not find a definitive answer. Across every travel blog, online publication, and social media, the reviews were mixed.
Of course, no two people’s experiences will be exactly the same, even if they’re both female-identifying and in the same country. But I really arrived in Marrakesh more confused than I had in previous solo travels abroad. In general, whenever I landed somewhere new, I had some idea of what my comfort level would be.
Much of what I read online seemed quite alarming and nearly scared me out of going on the trip. On the other hand, some of the posts read laughingly dismissive of any precautions.
After finally just going there myself, I can assure you that yes, as in any solo adventure, caution is important, but fear is unnecessary. It’s a fine line, and I hope the tips below can aid you in developing a nuanced idea of traveling to Morocco as a solo female traveler.
“…caution is important, but fear is unnecessary.”
1. What to wear in Morocco: Dress Appropriately
There are no strict laws regulating what you wear in Morocco, unlike some other conservative countries. However, just like anywhere else you go, matching the local dress, no matter what that looks like, is always a good idea. It helps draw less attention to yourself — an important safety precaution for all solo female travelers and makes you less of a target for petty crime.
In Morocco, dress modestly. Wear pants or long skirts well below your knee and make sure your chest and shoulders are covered up. Favor loose-fitting materials over anything resembling “form-fitting” and keep the crop tops at home. It’s also a good idea to always have a scarf on hand, for emergency coverage and protection from the sun.
2. How to Get Around Morocco
Research and plan your transportation. There are four main ways to navigate Morocco:
- renting a car
- taxi (short and long distance)
I didn’t rent a car, so I’ll speak to the other three.
As a solo female traveler, I would recommend that you plan ahead. Most of the time, the long-distance bus companies, either Supratours or CTM, will be your best bet. Those two offer services between most main cities and towns for quite cheap, with multiple departures a day.
The Moroccan train system is also a good option, should it suit your route. Just note that it only really operates between Marrakech and Casablanca, and Casablanca to the northern point of the country. If you want to visit Fez, the desert, or most beach towns, you’ll need to choose another mode of transportation.
However, when the train does work for your itinerary, it’s the most comfortable option by far, and even first-class tickets aren’t too expensive. If you do opt for second-class, just note it’s best to sit in a car with other women or a mix. And if you are one of the last stops, conductors will often come through and move any single females to first class for the rest of the journey. This is for your safety, so don’t worry if you’re asked to move!
Finally, if you want to visit somewhere more remote and don’t want to hassle with renting a car — taxis are a great alternative! For long-haul trips between towns, there should be a set price, for short trips around a city, make sure to ask for the meter or agree on a price beforehand. If you’re staying at a hotel or airbnb with a host, you can also ask the front desk or your host ahead of time what to expect for fares, so you know you aren’t being scammed.
3. Where to Stay in Morocco
Choose your accommodation carefully. This is a good tip for all solo female travelers, no matter the country.
For Morocco specifically, choose a central location near restaurants, tourist centers, and a lot of activity. Most riads and hostels targeted towards tourists will meet this requirement easily!
4. Learn the Languages of Morocco
Morocco’s colonial history means that French, as well as Arabic, are the main languages. And while English (as well as Spanish and many indigenous dialects) are also spoken, French and Arabic are the most useful in navigating the country. So if you don’t already know a bit, it would be worth brushing up on one of the two prior to your trip, as well as carrying around a phrase book.
5. Be Aware of the Time of the Day
One of the reasons I’d advise any solo female traveler to stay somewhere central is to ensure your accommodation is easy to find — no matter the time of day. It’s important to be able to get your bearings in the evening, especially when the windy medinas of Moroccan cities can easily make you lost. Seriously, a lot of it all looks the same.
Always mark your accommodations on a downloadable map (like maps.me) so you can always find your way back. When you’re out alone in the evening, try not to venture too far, or if you do, don’t hesitate to take a taxi back if you can!
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