Travel Planet – Morocco (part 2)






Morocco, a North African country bordering the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea, is distinguished by its Berber, Arabian and European cultural influences. Marrakesh’s medina, a mazelike medieval quarter, offers entertainment in its Djemaa el-Fna square and souks (marketplaces) selling ceramics, jewelry and metal lanterns. The capital Rabat’s Kasbah of the Udayas is a 12th-century royal fort overlooking the water.
Tourism in Morocco is well developed, with a strong tourist industry focused on the country’s coast, culture, and history. Morocco has been one of the most politically stable countries in North Africa, which has allowed tourism to develop. The Moroccan government created a Ministry of Tourism in 1985. Tourism is considered as one of the main foreign exchange sources in Morocco.
In the second half of the 1980s and the early 1990s, between 1 and 1.5 million Europeans visited Morocco. Most of these visitors were French or Spanish, with about 100,000 each from Britain, Germany, and the Netherlands. Tourists mostly visited large beach resorts along the Atlantic coast, particularly Agadir. About 20,000 people from Saudi Arabia visited, some of whom bought holiday homes. Receipts from tourism fell by 16.5% in 1990, the year the Gulf War began. In 1994, Algeria closed its border with Morocco after the Marrakech attack, this caused the number of Algerian visitors to fall considerably; there were 70,000 visitors in 1994 and 13,000 in 1995, compared to 1.66 million in 1992 and 1.28 million in 1993. In 2008, there were 8 million tourist arrivals, compared with about 7.4 million in 2007 i.e. a 7% growth compared to 2007 30% of the tourists in 2008 were one of the 3.8 million Moroccans living abroad. Most of the visitors to Morocco continue to be European, with French and Spanish nationals making up almost 40% of all visitors. Most Europeans visit in April and the autumn, apart from the Spanish, who mostly visit in June and August. In 2016, Morocco attracted more than 10,3 million international tourists and is the most visited country of Africa.
The country’s attractions can be divided into seven regions:

The four Imperial cities — the four historical capital cities of Morocco: Fes, Marrakesh, Meknes and Rabat
Marrakech
Casablanca — Morocco’s largest city; home of the Hassan II Mosque, which has the world’s tallest minaret at 656 feet
Tangier and the surrounding area
Ouarzazate — a noted film-making location; the fortified village (ksar) of Ait Benhaddou west of the city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site
Agadir and its beach resorts
Tarfaya and its beach resorts
Fez – Morocco’s second largest city and it is the science and spiritual capital of Morocco.[6] It contains an old area which is considered as the biggest area in the world where vehicles can’t get in. It is also the home of “Al Qarawyien” the world’s oldest university.
While Morocco was a French Protectorate (from 1912 to 1956) tourism.

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