FAQ

These FAQs are designed to provide you an overview of useful background knowledge and of what to consider when traveling with NOSADE to Morocco. Be perfectly prepared!

 

Facts & Morocco’s TOP 25

TOP FACTS ABOUT MOROCCO

You are interested in all hard facts about Morocco?
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TOP THING'S TO SEE IN MOROCCO

In search of the highlights in Morocco?
Don't miss anything.

TOP THING'S TO SEE IN MARRAKECH

In search of all highlights in Marrakech itself?
Here are our favorites.

Top 25 things not to miss in Morocco

1) Riding on the back of a camel into the sunrise or sunset in the desert of Erg Chebbi
2) Walking on top of the dunes in the desert of Erg Chigaga watching the breathtaking starry sky
3) Drinking a “Berber Whiskey
4) Practicing yoga in the absolute tranquility of the desert after spending the night in a berber tent
5) Enjoying the colorful labyrinth of Djemaa el Fna in Marrakesh
6) Strolling through Marrakesh’s Medina, one of Africa’s biggest!
7) Being enchanted in Marrakesh’s Majorelle Garden, maintained by Yves Saint-Laurent
8) Being overwhelmed by the impressive formations of the High Atlas
9) Breathing knightly flair in Aït Benhaddou, a traditional mud brick city on the edge of the High Atlas Mountains
10) Being close to heaven within Chefchaouen‘s blue washed walls
11) Getting kind of a French Bretagne feeling in Essaouira with its fortress walls, its fishing harbor and the screaming seagulls
12) Gazing at the beautiful, red mud walls while flowing with Taroudannt‘s mystic maghreb flair
13) Drifting away in the ultimate labyrinth of Fes‘ medina
14) Enjoying the best dates of your life and breathtaking gorges in Draa Valley
15) Being awaited by numerous pink Berber villages, an exceptional mountain panorama and palmeraies, Tafraoute offers twice a day a gorgeous amber-coloured light show
16) Surfing along the Atlantic coast
17) Being swept away by Cascades D’Ouzoud‘s flash floods
18) Standing infront of Rabat‘s splendid gate Bab Oudaïa
19) Walking along the Todra Gorge – right in between its 3000 meter high Canyon walls
20) Enjoying the pretty, breezy forfeited Sidi Ifi
21) Examining graffiti art in a new way: Asilah offers a rich spectrum for art lovers – and a beautiful beach
22) Revealing the traces of the Romans of Volubilis historic archway and its mosaics
23) Admiring architectonical delicacies in the old French colony Casablanca
24) Breathing multinational, cosmopolitan flair in Tangier
25) Celebrating the joyous rose harvest on Kalaat M’Gouna Rose Festival close to Ouarzazate

 

Morocco tips & tricks here

Visa regulations

Travelers from most Western countries (EU, North America, Australia) only require a valid passport for a stay of up to 90 days, valid for 6 months at the date of departure. Additional information can be found at the consulate websites of your specific country of origin. German travelers do not need a visa for visits up to 90 days.

Entry form Morocco

Entry form Morocco Einreiseformular Marokko_Source NOSADEWhen entering Morocco you will be asked to fill out this entry form that is usually provided by the cabin staff on your airplane. If this is not the case, you will find such forms lying out before the passport control. A pen is recommended here. This form is required when entering the passport control, as well as at the departure.

A small hint: Take directly two forms when you enter Morocco, that saves your time at the departure day.

Languages

The official language is Moroccan Arabic. French is the recognized business and higher education language. Berber language is also spoken by a large majority of the Moroccan Berbers also known as Amazigh people (native Moroccans). Use a little French, such as “Merci” or “Bonjour”, as it is widely understood and generally perceived as you making an effort.

Vaccinations & health

There are no mandatory vaccinations for entering Morocco. The German Foreign Ministry recommends hepatitis A and, for longer stays in the region, hepatitis B, typhoid and rabies immunization.

Travelers should only consume bottled water and avoid swimming or bathing in bodies of standing water. Mosquito protection is recommended for stays at oases and near rivers or lakes. Medical care in Morocco is generally adequate, but does not comply with Western standards, particularly so in rural areas.

Medical checklist

This is a list of medication, which you should not forget:

  • Antibacterial hand gel
  • Antidiarrhoeal drugs
  • Paracetamol or Aspirin
  • Anti-inflammatory drugs (eg Ibuprofen)
  • Antihistamines (for hay fever and allergic reactions)
  • Antibacterial ointment for cuts and abrasions
  • Steroid cream or cortisone (for allergic rashes)
  • Deet-containing insect repellent for the skin (depending on region)
  • Permethrin-containing insect spray for clothing, tent & bed nets (depending on region)
  • Sun Block

Safety in Morocco

Morocco is generally considered a safe destination, as crime committed against tourists are extremely rare (and severely punished by Moroccan law). However, you should always check your state department / foreign ministry website before traveling abroad.

Money exchange

We recommend to either take your credit card and get money from the ATM or to bring cash with you that you best change in the Medina / city center at Hotel Ali (it is easy to find and they always have the best rates) or to go to any bank or change bureau in the city center. Avoid changing money at the Airport, as they have the highest rates.

Tipping in Morocco

A 10% tip is customary in restaurants, 2-5 dirhams in taxis, 1 dirham per drink in cafes.
Gratuities for the involved service staff of NOSADE is not included in our prices. It is customary to tip whenever you were satisfied with the service. That pleases the staff and motivates them to even more kindness and good work performance.

Internet access in Morocco

Limited public WiFis available, but Internet cafes are plentiful. And each hotel has WiFi.

Getting around in Morocco

Easily discover Morocco by train, rental car, bus or shared rides in grand taxis for negotiable rates. Personal transfer can be arranged upon request.

Getting to the desert

You can reach Merzouga, the door to the desert, by rental car or bus (CTM and Supratours operating overnight buses from Fez and a one day bus ride from Marrakech straight to Merzouga). Personal transfer can be arranged upon request. Please don’t hesitate to get in contact for recommendations, required tips or arrangements.

Climate in the Moroccan desert

Traveling to the desert is recommendable between mid September and mid of May.
From November to February the temperatures in the daytime are around 20 degrees and thus pleasant for most western travelers. The nights can be very cold in these months and temperatures can go below 5 degrees Celsius.
In September and October as well as in April and May it can get quite hot in the day already which means temperatures around 30 degrees Celsius. The desert nights in this time are at around very pleasant 15 to 20 degrees. Please see below our recommended packlist for each month and retreat. 

Accommodation

Don’t miss out on spending the night in one of Morocco’s famously inspiring typical Riads, in a Kasbah or in a traditional Berber tent right in the middle of the dunes in a desert camp.

Traveling with kids in Morocco

Traveling with kids is great fun and easy to do. Moroccans are famous for being child friendly. Medical care is hardly everywhere accessible.

Travel security note

German based tour operators have to issue a travel insurance coupon as soon as a customer’s booking occurs. The exact formulation of this document is not ideal: not the trip itself is insured, but the (pre-)payments made to the operator.

To express it in a simpler way: a travel insurance coupon is an insurance for insolvency. In case the tour operator becomes insolvent before the tour is consumed, the amount already paid is secured and will be refunded; the trip itself is cancelled.

Do's & Dont's

Do:

  • Ask permission before you take a Moroccan’s picture. In particular women and devout Muslims do not like being photographed
  • Relax. Moroccan understanding of time and punctuality is fundamentally different from Western concepts. “Europeans have clocks, we have time”, as they say in Morocco
  • Bring tissues when using bathrooms outside of Western-standard hotels. Moroccan bathrooms may often be unequipped
  • Barter when buying from the souk. It is expected and will save you money
  • Use a little French, such as “Merci” or “Bonjour”, as it is widely understood and generally perceived as you making an effort
  • Drink bottled water to avoid diarrhea. Western stomachs are usually too sensitive for unfiltered or tap water

 

Don’t:

  • Do not show too much skin. As conservative and Muslim people, Moroccans generally frown upon revealing outfits. This does not just apply to women, but also to men. Cover at least your shoulders and don’t wear shorts when you are in public. In the hotels and the desert camp, when practicing Yoga feel free to wear whatever you feel most comfortable with
  • Do not sunbath in the desert as the desert sun in the winter is quite strong and our Western bodies are not used to it and it often leads to catching colds
  • Do not accept, purchase or consume drugs. Do not let it fool you that hashish and marihuana are widely consumed and available in Morocco. Penalties are still harsh and the Moroccan police does enforce the law

Whatever situation you may find yourself in,
Moroccans are helpful and friendly people. So do not panic!

 

Additional information for yoga travelers

What does Retreat mean on a trip with NOSADE

Accept what is. Escape daily routines, find inner peace, inner balance and inner tranquility. Morocco will challenge you to do so – with all its sounds, smells & (for us Westerners) sometimes unusual manners. We encourage you to open up for all those impressions.

Two daily Yoga and meditation sessions in Morocco’s mystical surroundings will be accompanying and supporting this experience.

Number of participants

We are traveling in small groups not exceeding a number of 12 participants. We are doing that because we want to ensure a very personal travel and retreat experience for our Yogis, dealing individually with and support everyone and to meet our own claim of a silent tourism.

Accommodation in single rooms

Being accommodated in single rooms is possible with subject to surcharges as far as we know it in time and can prepare ourselves.

Arrival & Departure

Arrival usually also is possible 1 day later; departure from the retreat also is possible 1 day earlier. Please talk to us – we create your own individual package tailored specifically to your needs. Please note that the flight tickets are not included in the price.

Beginner & advanced students of yoga

Both types of students, the beginners as well as the advanced, are equally welcome to join. Our experienced yoga teachers are focussing on your individual needs and level of experience. Most of our trips offering the possibility to either improve your practice or even try yoga for the first time.

Yoga style

Our teaching styles range from Anusara, Hatha, (Power-) Vinyasa Flow, Iyengar to restorative and Yin yoga. NOSADE is mainly teaching Yoga styles with a focus on biomechanical movement and health while practicing skillfully and well alined.

Yoga equipment

Yoga mats and all other necessary Yoga equipment will be provided by NOSADE. If you like, bring your own Yoga mat with you. Please just let us know upfront so that we can calculate accordingly.

Participation in yoga sessions

Participation in all our yoga sessions is of course optional. Should there be one day you don’t feel comfortable in practicing yoga or joining the group you are more than welcome to just enjoy yourself. It’s your vacation!

Vegetarian food

NOSADE is offering meat, vegetarian as well as vegan meal options. Please inform us upfront about your preferred nutritional style and also about any food intolerances.

Packing list

Pack lightly!
Pack comfortable clothes that ideally show respect to the Muslim culture when leaving the hotel. Inside the hotel, you are free to wear whatever you want. It will be most helpful to pack clothes to be able to dress with several layers that you can easily turn on/off according to the temperature/weather – that we cannot predict. A scarf and sunscreen will help you to protect you from the sun during the daytime. A flashlight, a hairdryer, and a travel towel are advantageous. Sturdy footwear (sneakers are adequate) a must. If you want, bring a bikini as some of our Partner Riads do have a swimming pool.

 

For the month between November and February pack some warm cloth. We’d recommend bringing a down jacket, a warm wool hat & wool socks. A scarf additionally helps to keep you warm at night and protect you from the sun during the daytime. Bring eventually even a hot-water bottle, when you tend to struggle with getting warm by yourself at night.

In September and October as well as in April and May it can get quite hot in the day already which means temperatures around 30 degrees Celsius. For the day definitely, bring a suncream with a high protection factor and a scarf or hat that is protecting you from the sun.
In March you have to be prepared for strong desert winds from time to time. During a sandstorm, it is recommendable to stay in a fixed desert camp as the wind can cause great and unpleasant sand stirs.

 

For the Desert Retreat as well as for the Roundtrip we can highly recommend traveling with a backpacker since we are changing venues quite a few times. Baggage to the 3 days desert trip is limited to 10kg per person since the dromedary cannot carry more than a person weight plus 10kg, the rest of the luggage can securely be stored in the hotel in Merzouga.

Do not forget your (sable+robust) hiking shoes, sport cloth and a jacket for the evening for the Atlas Mountain Retreat. A raincoat might be helpful if it is rainy.

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