Morocco: Africa Top tourist destination in 2018
According to the July issue of Africa Tourism Monitor 2018, recently published by the African Development Bank, the continent earned $36.2 billion in revenue from 62.9 million international visitors in 2016, compared to 17.4 million in 1990 – a sign of a significant upturn. This issue analyses the most recent data on the impact of tourism on the economies of Africa.
Morocco topped the list, with more than 10 million arrivals for the fourth consecutive year since 2015, a symbolic threshold that South Africa crossed for the first time in 2016. These two countries, located respectively at the northern and southern tips of the continent, are the undisputed leaders, clear ahead of the rest.
Morocco’s Attraction To Travelers
Moroccan society is still steeped in its Muslim identity, but is tolerant of various types of people, cultures, and religions. It’s Berber and Jewish past help to keep the minds of the people open and Morocco is the only country in the Muslim world with a Jewish Heritage Museum in different areas of the country.
Hospitality in Morocco is legendary and the young generation are more open minded than ever; shifting a traditional mindset in favor of a more open, western point of view while still holding dear to family, art, craftsmanship, and religion.
Regardless of the major cities and their worth-visiting places mainly: Marrakech, Fez, Meknes, Casablanca, Rabat, Tangier, Chefchaouen, Essaouira, Agadir … etc; There other attractions to travelers to name but a few:
Merzouga: Merzouga is a small Saharan town located in south-eastern Morocco, 35 kilometers from Rissani and 50 kilometers from Erfoud. Merzouga is famous for the highest dunes in Morocco located the Erg Chebbi region. It is a main destination for tourists who wish to ride camels into the dunes and sleep in a Nomadic-style tent for the night.
Ziz Valley: The source of the water that feeds into the Ziz Valley lies in the Eastern High Atlas. Although intermittent along its bed, the rivers were used to facilitate commerce through this mountainous region. What most travelers do is admire the view from some upper angles available from the road; what more should do is venture into this lush oasis to learn about the people and their way of sustainable agriculture that has been supporting life in the region for a millennium!
Todra Gorge: Fifteen kilometers from the center of Tineghir, the area is home to a rising number of visitors and bus tourists that can make the location not as appealing as it once was.
Ait Ben Haddou: This location dubbed a World Heritage Sight by UNESCO, in the province of Ouarzazate, has been used as a backdrop for several famous films and is a worthwhile stop for photo enthusiasts.