Geography of Morocco
The Kingdom of Morocco, “the farthest land of the setting sun”, was considered the westernmost point prior to the Voyages of Discovery. Located in the north western corner of the Africa, it is at the crossroads of Europe and Africa.
To its north lies the straight of Gibraltar and the Mediterranean Sea; to the south it’s bordered with Mauritania; to the east by Algeria and to the west by the Atlantic Ocean. The country covers an area of 710, 850 square kilometers (Including Western Sahara), including the scenic coastline along the Mediterranean Sea and Atlantic Ocean, majestic mountain ranges and the vast stretches of Sahara Desert.
The terrain of Morocco is largely mountainous. Atlas Mountains runs through the central and southern part, and the Rif Mountains lie in the north. At 4,167 meters, Mount Toubkal is the highest peak in the North Africa. It is located in the Toubkal National Park in southwestern Morocco.
The country has 12 administrative regions:
|Tangier – Tétouan – Al Hoceima||Tangier|
|Fès – Meknès||Fès|
|Rabat – Salé – Kénitra||Rabat|
|Béni Mellal – Khénifra||Béni Mellal|
|Grand Casablanca – Settat||Casablanca|
|Marrakech – Safi||Marrakech|
|Drâa – Tafilalet||Errachidia|
|Souss – Massa||Agadir|
|Guelmim – Oued Noun||Guelmim|
|Laâyoune – Sakia El Hamra||Laâyoune|
|Dakhla – Oued Ed-Dahab||Dakhla|
Culture and History
Multiculturism is the cornerstone of its identity, thanks to the influence of various civilizations throughout its history, from the native Berber culture to Roman influence then to Byzantine culture, Arabic civilization to French and Spanish influence in the first half of 20th century. For this reason, tourists will find remnants of Roman ruins such as those at Volubilis in the north as well as Kasbahs, mosques and madressahs scattered across the country.
The Arabic language and Islam were introduced to the region during the Muslim Conquest in the middle of 7th century. Ever since, this land witnessed the rise and fall of several Islamic states and dynasties. During its peak period, Morocco controlled the Maghreb, much of present-day Spain and Portugal and the western Mediterranean region.
From 1912 to 1956, Morocco was ruled by French and Spanish Protectorates. It was under the leadership of Sultan Mohammed V that Morocco gained its independence in 1957. Sultan Mohammed was enthroned in 1957. His son Hassan II became the King upon his death in 1961. King Hassan II died in 1999 and was succeeded by his son, Mohammed VI, who continues ruling the kingdom today.
Religion and Language
The dominant religion is Sunni Islam. Although the official languages are Arabic and Berber, French is widely used as well, and official documents are written in French because of the influence from the French Protectorate.
Mineral industry, tourism, fishing, agriculture and automotive are some of the key economic sectors.
- The mineral industry is the leading foreign exchange sector. It is dominated by phosphate mining as the country holds 75% of the phosphate reserve of the world.
- Thriving on its cultural and historical heritage as well as diversified landscape, tourism has grown into is the second largest foreign exchange earning sector.
- The country is the top fish producing country in Africa.
- The country also exports high quality agricultural products, such as fruits, vegetables and olive oil, to European markets. It’s worth noting that its Argan trees and Argan products are well known around the world.
- Morocco is the top car-manufacturing country in Africa.
- In recent years, the government has made it a high priority to develop solar power. Ouarzazate Solar Power Station, also called Noor Power Station, is the world’s largest concentrated solar power plant. It is being built in three phases and in four parts. By storing solar energy in the form of heated molten salt, the plant can produce electricity even into the night.
Morocco boasts a phantasmagoria of culture, an abundance of settings and unbeatable destination with something for every visitor, from soaking up the culture by scrolling down the alleyways of medina, to surfing in crystal-clear water and sunbathing on the beach, to hiking in the Atlas mountain range, to camel ride in Sahara.
From the desert to the sea, you can see all the best bits of Morocco with our amazing tailor-made tours. Please select from the selections below: