Welcome to Morocco
“Welcome to Morocco. My name is Rafik and I am 17 years old.
When I think of Morocco, I think of King Mohammed VI, our current King. I also reflect on how beautiful Morocco is, with its mountains, deserts and beaches. I love the countryside and being outside to enjoy nature.
I want to be a French teacher when I grow up. French is my favourite language. I enjoy meeting up with my friends in my spare time and having a coffee. In Morocco, there is a big café culture.”
Rafik shows what life is like in Marrakesh and in the Ait Ourir region, around 40km from the capital at the foot of the Atlas Mountains. Watch the videos and see for yourself.
“Hello, my name is Fadoua. I'm 13 years old and I live in Casablanca. I love city life, especially the hustle and bustle and meeting up with my friends.
Men and women have different roles. For example, on our holy day of Friday, women cook a large family meal, while the men go to the mosque.
I live with my mother and brothers and sisters, whom I love very much. I try to help my younger siblings with their homework and we all get on.”
Fadoua is a very popular girl, with many friends. She seems older than her 13 years because of her mature attitude. Fadoua is proud of her traditions but also enjoys aspects of modern culture.
Morocco’s state education system consists of five years at primary level (from age six) and four years of secondary.
With its sandy beaches, long hours of sunshine and rich cultural heritage, tourism is a major source of foreign earnings, with over eight million tourists visiting Morocco in 2009. The government has ambitious plans to more than double that number over the next decade.
The warm climate and coastal rains allow for cereal production of winter wheat and barley, with vegetables, fruits, grapes, olives and pulses grown during the summer. Increasing irrigation is opening up the production of other export crops such as tea, sugarcane, cotton, tobacco, sunflowers and soybeans.
The country has four mountain ranges which add to its insular feel. Acting like huge barricades, the Rif Mountains stretch along the Mediterranean, while the Middle-, High- and Anti-Atlas mountains run in a diagonal swathe down the middle of the country from the north-east to the south-west.
Morocco’s native mammal species include foxes, jackals, genets, hyenas, panthers, gazelles and the famous Barbary ape.
The Atlas Mountains are a spectacular range stretching across the north-west of Africa.