Welcome to Morocco

Morocco is an amazing country. It has many vibrant and historic cities, where there's lots to see, like the famous markets of Marrakesh. The countryside is beautiful and we film around Ait Ourir, at the foot of the Atlas Mountains. We also show you some of Morocco's delicious food, often made in pots called tajines.

Climate

Africa is a massive continent, with a range of climates. Some regions are hot and dry, like the Sahara, Kalahari and Namib deserts. Other parts are wet or covered in tropical rainforest. Conditions also vary by altitude, from the dry salt pans of the Danakil Depression (one of the lowest points on earth) to the snowcaps (at certain times) of the highest mountains. Weather-wise, Africa has it all!

History & Politics

A religious country

Morocco was invaded by the Arabs in the eighth century, when its Berber population converted to the Islamic faith. Modernisation and the ‘Arab Spring’ movement are leading towards greater political reform.

Welcome to Morocco

Hi, we are Rafik and Fadoua. Welcome to Morocco.

We've been making videos about life in Morocco. As well as visiting the markets of Marrakesh, we show you the countryside at the foot of the Atlas Mountains. You can see some of the local produce, such as olives and blossom water, not to mention examples of our delicious food. We hope you enjoy learning about our country and culture.

Children

Around one in six children born in sub-Saharan Africa don't live to see their fifth birthday and life can be tough for those who do.

What are the common challenges facing African children and how do their lives compare with those of children in the UK?

Morocco Map

Explore Morocco

Find out a little more about some of Morocco’s most popular destinations, including the ancient cities of Fez and Marrakesh and the coastal cities of Casablanca and Tangier.

Markets

A shopaholic's paradise

Fadoua visits the markets of Marrakesh, they are a shopaholic’s paradise. You can buy almost anything, from souvenirs such as leather goods and textiles, to spices and animals. There are hundreds of tiny lanes filled with people – but watch out for the mopeds whizzing past.

Women

A woman’s status varies by country and region across Africa. In many parts, women struggle against inequality in laws, education, pay and domestic responsibilities.

Women’s health is also at risk from traditional practices such as early marriage. But with better education, girls can make more informed choices, leading to the greater development of African nations.

Call to prayer

Call to prayer

A loud sound can be heard throughout Morocco at certain times of the day. This is the call to prayer, Arabic words ringing out from the speakers of mosques calling Muslims to pray together.

In this video...Fadoua talks about the importance of her faith.

Cafe culture

Cafe culture

Cafés are a big part of Moroccan culture and Rafik enjoys meeting up with his friends. But there aren’t any women enjoying a coffee. In Morocco, it’s men who fill the cafés.

Climate & Agriculture

The coastal plains

Morocco’s coastal plains and northern regions enjoy a Mediterranean climate, with over 330 days of sunshine each year. These are the main agricultural areas, since the rest of the country is made up of mountainous areas and desert.

Children's stories

'La Liberte' and 'Changement'

Children got the opportunity to make their very own film. They took part in a film-making workshop to learn the skills they needed. Watch the video stories they came up with.

Couscous Friday

Friday celebrations

Every Friday, Fadoua and her family celebrate the end of the week with a delicious couscous meal. Take a look at how food in Morocco is traditionally prepared. Your mouth will water.

History

The first humans are thought to have lived in Africa and powerful African empires formed from the medieval age onwards.

However, today's African nations were shaped by the European powers who colonised this vast continent. Having gained their independence, many African countries are still coming to terms with the legacy left by their colonisers.

People & Culture

Arab and Berber culture

With its rich trading history and the arrival of many skilled craftsmen to its shores, Morocco is well known for its crafts. Carpets, textiles, ceramics, jewellery and leatherwork are just some of the handmade goods produced in typical Arab and Berber styles.

Foods

Africa has some of the most distinctive cuisines and flavours in the world. Food varies widely, but there are commonalities across regions. Depending on what's grown locally, dishes are also influenced by the traders, immigrants and rulers who settled across the continent. Arab, Asian and European elements blend in with traditional African cooking.

Poverty & Healthcare

Extending healthcare

Emergency and primary medical treatment is available on the state in Morocco, but many Moroccans are unable to afford longer term or specialist care. A health insurance scheme was introduced in 2005, but less than one-fifth of the population is covered.

Red City, White City

Red City, White City

Rafik and Gian look around Marrakesh and Casablanca, both popular tourist destinations. However, the two places are very different. One is known as the 'Red City' and the other is called the 'White City'. Find out why.

Development

‘People are the real wealth of a nation.’ This is the belief of the United Nations, whose Millenium Development Goals provide a framework for improving the lives of millions.

It helps when nations are peaceful, stable and growing economically. But where even the poorest countries focus on health, education and creating fairer societies, more Africans have the chance of a better life.

Economy & Industry

Mining, agriculture and tourism

Morocco’s key natural resource is phosphate, which is used in many fertilisers and pesticides. Agriculture and modern industry sectors such as tourism and services are also important to the economy.

Tourism & Communications

Tourist Destination

Over eight million people visit Morocco each year and the government plans to double that figure over the next decade. Tourists are attracted to Morocco because of its culture, beautiful weather, arts and crafts and mountainous landscape.

Education & Jobs

Language barriers

Arabic and French are the main languages of education in Morocco, although many rural children have a local Berber dialect as their mother tongue.

Facts & Figures

A growing population

Since independence in 1956, the population of Morocco has grown from ten million to over 32 million today.

Geography & Wildlife

With its varied geography and diverse habits, the African continent is home to a wide range of flora and fauna. Though famous for its 'big game' animals, Africa has huge numbers of fish, mammal, bird, reptile, amphibian and insect species, as well as many tree, plant and flower species.

Poverty

Across the rest of the world, absolute poverty has halved over recent decades, but in Africa it has barely fallen.

About two-fifths of the population of sub-Saharan Africa survive week by week on what someone in the UK earns from just one hour's work on the minimum wage.

Games & Sport

Africa is home to arguably the oldest-recorded games and sports. While some are only known through archaeology, modern-day games and sports such as Mancala/Mankala and Nubian wrestling are very much alive today.

Of course, new sports have come along to claim the attention of Africans. You may have heard of one - it's called football.

Fashion

Tradition versus modern

Fadoua likes her traditional Moroccan clothing, but maybe not as much as her mother thinks. She would probably prefer to wear western clothes.

Food & Daily life

Women’s role

While men socialise in the sidewalk cafés of towns and villages, women are often expected to fulfil a traditional role of attending to the home and family. However, attitudes are beginning to change, especially in the cities.

Geography & Wildlife

Snow-capped mountains

The Middle, High and Anti-Atlas mountains run in a diagonal swathe down the middle of the country. Jbel Toubkal reaches 4,165 metres high. With its snow cap, the mountain is a dramatic feature in Morocco’s geography.

Agriculture & Famine

A quarter of the population of sub-Saharan Africa is undernourished and famines can impact whole regions.

Land is available to grow more food locally, but investment is needed in  technologies such as irrigation for land to be used effectively. Farmers must also adapt to climate change if they are to feed the continent's rising population.

Health

Africa has a high number of communicable diseases, which place a huge burden on healthcare systems. The vast majority of malaria cases and HIV/AIDS-related deaths occur in Africa; these two diseases currently represent the greatest threats.

With low investment in healthcare and a severe shortage of medical staff, many countries struggle to meet the health needs of their people.

Morocco topics Facts & Figures Poverty & Healthcare Food & Daily life Couscous Friday People & Culture Geography & Wildlife Climate & Agriculture Fashion Call to prayer Welcome to Morocco Red City, White City Economy & Industry Cafe culture Education & Jobs Children's stories History & Politics Markets Morocco Map Tourism & Communications