My name is Carolin Rupp and I am a travel journalist from Germany. Besides traveling, I am co-CEO of the company Walkntravel and organize our travel events all across Germany where we invite different travelers toshare their adventures with our audience. I also get to go on stage to present my personal experiences. From documenting the Guatemalan education system to participating in a Marine Biology Camp, swimming with sharks in the Caribbean to filming my co-worker Mitch as he travels through Europe in a roman armor, I always seek thrills, and new ways to broaden my horizons.
Chefchaouen. The word itself melts in your mouth. But wait until you lay your eyes on this truly mesmerizing town located in the Rif-mountains of Northern Morocco. What makes this town stand out is not only the incredible location, but also the blue-tinted houses. This place is known for its beauty as well as its rich history. Chefchaouen plays with all of your senses. It’s a place to get absolutely lost in. A maze that you never, ever want to escape.
Where to stay
One of the most magnificent places you can stay at is Riad Gharnata. With its red and grey brick walls, the building is a strong contrast to the blue neighbors (And easy to find 😉 ). As you arrive in the beautiful courtyard you are welcomed with a fresh mint tea. Every single room is unique and has its own style. My favorite part about any Riad is the rooftop. It is the best place to enjoy breakfast in the morning with a view that leaves you speechless.
To save some cash for shopping in Chefchaouen, my boyfriend and I also stayed at more affordable guest houses (Riad Antek and Usha Guest House). While they are not as spacious, the hosts are very friendly and both offer incredible views of the town and the surrounding mountains.
Where to eat
Morocco’s cuisine is infused with French, Arabian, and Andalusian flares – an explosion of flavor combinations from tender chicken tajine with sweet dates to delicious croissants drizzled with honey. At Beldi Bab Ssour we had Kefta (Minced meat) tajine and a Cheese Omelette. Not only was it affordable, it was also delicious and authentic. To have the true moroccan experience you should end the meal with a cup of hot mint tea (but let’s be honest: there’s tea for nearly every occasion in Morocco). Bab Ssour is a great alternative from the rather touristy restaurants that surround Place Outa el Hammam, the town’s central square.
Where to shop
Chefchaouen’s medina is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful Morocco has to offer. It is well known for its ceramics, leather wares, and carpets. Place Outa el Hammam is a great starting point for your shopping spree as little alleyways spread out in all directions from the plaza. The local venders are happy to chat with you, or even show you how they make their carpets by hand.
Bargaining is the way of life in Morocco. It’s a part of the game, and you can get some amazing deals. I wasn’t going to bring just any carpets back home – I ended up with three. My boyfriend and I stumbled upon a tiny little store called La Vie en Couleur (Rue Jamaa, Bab Sour) owned by Ibraham. He served us jasmin tea, showed us his spices and the gowns his wife makes. We totally lost track of time, and ended up talking for about three hours. The day we left Chefchaouen we wanted to say goodbye to him, and he brought lunch from home to share with us. It’s magical how easily you can connect with locals in Morocco. Not sticking to a plan and just getting lost can lead you to encounters that you’ll keep in your heart forever.
Where to go out/chill
If you need hustle and bustle, Marrakech and Fés are the places to be. Chefchaouen is more of a little getaway where time seems to stand still. The blue city has a lovely garden inside the Kasbah as well as a little museum. The best places to chill are literally any cafés that offer a rooftop. Watching the sun set, and drinking a mint tea while the mosques play the daily prayers is one of the most relaxing things you can do in Chefchaouen. Take a little walk to the Spanish Mosque built in the 1920’s to get a different perspective of the beautiful town.
Where to escape
The city of Chefchaouen completely captivated us for five full days. We wandered through the narrow, blue streets and got completely lost (in the best way possible). You have an amazing view of the entire town from the top of Chefchaouen where big walls encompass the old town. However, there are a lot of options for day trips. The surrounding mountains, and the lush green hills are well worth a hike. Locals also recommend the Akchour Falls, known as the Blue Pearl Falls.
Small escapes & possible day trips:
- “Ras el Maa” small waterfall
- Talassemtane National Park
- Bridge of God
- Jevel el Kelaa
- Mediterranean Sea
Where to take pictures
It’s safe to say that Chefchaouen is one of the most picturesque towns you’ll come across: blue and white tinted houses, Andalusian-style tiles, and colorful carpets that are presented in the hidden alleyways. There is no definite spot to take pictures. The entire town is picturesque. Take your time while strolling through the winding streets. Look left and right, and even turn around every once in a while – new angles create new perspectives.
I traveled a lot these past years, and Chefchaouen is hands down the most beautiful town I have ever seen. Both inside and out.
For more of our articles on Morocco, click HERE.