What interesting facts about Morocco do you know?

Are you aware that this North African country borders both the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea? What about the fact that it’s home to the largest desert in the world? Do you know you should only eat Moroccan cuisine with your right hand? Could you guess what the national sport is?

If these three facts about Morocco are blowing your mind, you’re going to want to keep reading to find out more about this little independent country in the middle east.

Historical Morocco Facts

Cool facts about Morocco

1. The country of Morocco is officially recognized as the Kingdom of Morocco. While it’s not referred to by this name as much these days, it is still considered a parliamentary constitutional monarchy located in North Africa.

2. The king at the time of writing is King Mohammed VI. He is part of the ‘Alawi dynasty and took the throne in 1999 after the passing of his father, King Hassan II.

3. The country’s official name, Kingdom of Morocco, originated in 1956 after French rule ended. Prior to that, Morocco was a French protectorate for much of the 20th century. Looking further back, the region was ruled by various dynasties and empires. Some of the most prominent included the Almoravids, Almohads, and Marinids.

4. Morocco was the first country to recognize America as an independent nation in 1777. This was a big deal at the time and helped the United States gain legitimacy in the eyes of other countries and establish itself as a sovereign nation.

5. The relationship between Morocco and the USA didn’t end there. The two countries signed the Moroccan-American Friendship Treaty in 1786. Today, it’s the longest-standing agreement of its kind.

6. Morocco has a rich history, which is why it has numerous cultural, historical, and architectural attractions. There are currently nine UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Some of the highlights include the medinas (old towns) of Marrakech, Fez, and Essaouira.

7. One of the oldest Morocco facts refers to the University of Al Quaraouiyine. It was first established in 859 in Fez and served as the leading institution for Arab education for many years.

8. Morocco’s University of Al Quaraouiyine is one of the oldest existing educational institutions in the world and is responsible for producing many famous scholars over the centuries. Today, it is a center for Islamic legal and religious studies.

9. The Venus of Tan Tan is one of the oldest human sculptures. It was discovered in 1999 along the north bank of the Draa River. The tiny figurine is made of quartzite rock and dates back to around 500,000 years ago. The sculpture is named after the town of Tan Tan in southern Morocco.

10. The Moroccan city of Fez was founded in the 9th century. It’s not just the world’s largest active medieval city, it’s also one of the oldest. The city is also considered the cultural capital of Morocco.

11. Fez was once the capital of Morocco before it changed to Rabat in 1955. Despite its age, Fez has many well-preserved historic buildings, including mosques, madrasas (Islamic schools), and palaces. The city is also famous for its tanneries, where leather is dyed using traditional methods.

12. The territory of Western Sahara is considered a disputed territory. It is only partly occupied and was first annexed by Morocco in 1976.

13. There is a significant meaning behind the Moroccan flag. The pentagram represents the seal of Solomon and the pillars of Islam. The color green is a reference to the Islam religion, and the color red symbolizes unity and the blood of the ancestors.

14. The country was once considered a cultural hub for Islamic scholars. People gathered from many parts of the Arab world to debate everything from religion to science. Islam plays a significant role in the country today.

15. Morocco is a member of the United Nations, African Union, Arab League and is considered a Major Non-NATO ally by the United States.

Interesting Facts About Morocco

Facts about Morocco

16. One of the largest wind farms in Africa is located in southwestern Morocco. It has been generating power since 2014 using the gusts from the Atlantic Coast.

17. The Moroccan government plants thousands of acres of forests yearly. Some of the most popular include the Argan tree. The oil from the tree is used in skincare, haircare, and food.

18. Morocco is the only African country exposed to the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. The only other European countries that share these waters are Spain and France.

19. The Western Sahara hosts the second-largest wall in the world. It is 1600 miles long and made entirely of sand.

20. Morocco’s population has two official languages; Standard Arabic and Standard Moroccan Berber. Moroccan Arabic is considered by many as the native dialect. Due to its historical ties, you’ll also hear French and Spanish spoken throughout the country. However, they are not considered official languages in Morocco despite about a third of the country speaking French.

21. Another fun fact about Morocco’s population is that they love a celebration. Moroccan culture includes three different New Year’s celebrations. You can ring in the Gregorian Calendar New Year, the Amazigh New Year or Yennayer, and the Islamic New Year, Fatih Muharram.

22. The second largest functioning mosque in Africa is in Morocco. The Hassan II Mosque is located in Casablanca, which is also Morocco’s largest city.

23. The Oukaimeden, located within the high Atlas Mountains on one of these glorious peaks, is the highest ski resort in Africa. It has an altitude of over 10,000 feet.

24. The tourism industry is huge in Morocco. It employs approximately 5% of the population as of 2019 and contributes 7.1% of the GDP.

25. During holy days or celebrations is when citizens will wear traditional Moroccan clothing. The most common is a unisex overall that comes in multiple stunning colors. During the colder months, these garments will include a pointed hood to keep the individual warm while outside.

26. One of the facts about Morocco you might not expect relates to the symbol of love. According to Moroccan tradition, a healthy liver promotes well-being and is considered the ultimate symbol of love. If you hear the phrase, “you’ve conquered my liver,” then it means you have a special admirer.

Fun facts about Morocco

27. The Noor Power Plant in the Agadir district of Morocco is one of the world’s largest concentrated solar power plant projects. The facility covers an area of 2,500 hectares, which is bigger than Morocco’s capital city of Rabat.

28. Some interesting Morocco facts for soccer (or football for purists) fans. The sport has a large following and a national team, the Atlas Lions. In 1986, they were the first Arab team to reach the second round of the FIFA World Cup in 1986. The team has since participated in the tournament six times.

29. Morocco borders Algeria and Spain. An interesting Morocco fact is that Spain is separated by only 9 miles across the Strait of Gibraltar. On a clear day, you can even see Spain’s coastline.

30. There are a lot of stray cats in Moroccan cities that are loved and cared for by the locals.

31. Some interesting facts about Morocco are just how many natural resources it produces. Phosphate is one of the most abundant. This mineral is mainly used to produce chemical compounds and plant fertilizers. Morocco is also known for its iron, zinc, copper, cobalt, silver, and gold deposits.

32. The Barbary Lion was believed to have gone extinct in the mid-20th century when the last pride was spotted. Thankfully the Barbary Lion breed is alive and well. But you’ll need to visit a conservation site to see it. To add to this interesting fact about Morocco, it’s the country’s national animal.

33. One of the most breathtaking sites in Morocco is the Valley of Roses in the M’Goun Valley. Four thousand tons of fresh rose flowers are harvested annually to create local beauty products.

34. Red City Marrakesh is one of the coolest cities in Morocco. The Red City is not just a clever name. You can’t miss the iconic red buildings and walls. They were built during the Imperial era to protect and fortify the town.

35. If red isn’t your color, you can always check out the Blue City or Chefchaouen. The Blue City is also a literal nickname. The entire medina and mountain valley are painted in pale blue.

36. The Sahara Desert is an icon of Morocco and Northern Africa. The world’s largest hot desert covers over three million square miles and is part of 11 African countries.

There is more than sand in the Sahara Desert. You can spot the Atlas Mountains and witness rivers and streams, including the River Nile. There are also popular activities like camel treks.

Fun fact about Morocco

37. While exploring Morocco, you’ll likely encounter snake charmers working for tips in populated areas like city squares. You can see them hypnotize cobras using nothing but a flute. Supporting snake charmers is not recommended. The reptiles they keep are often mistreated, and their fangs are removed.

38. Morocco is a popular destination for filming TV shows and movies in. Some famous productions shot within the country’s landmarks, such as the Atlas Mountains, include The Mummy, Game of Thrones, John Wick 3, Mission Impossible, Inception, and Prince of Persia.

39. There is some incredible architecture throughout Morocco. Instead of regular homes or apartments, traditional Moroccan houses called riads are more common. They feature heavily decorated interiors surrounded by an open yard area in the center that usually contains a garden or a fountain.

40. Another architectural wonder is the Kasbahs. These forts and citadels were used to protect the old parts of the town from attacks. The ones that survived the test of time are popular tourist attractions today.

41. If you ever get invited to a traditional Moroccan wedding, RSVP yes! It lasts three days and ends with one of the best parties you’ll ever attend. Some things to expect are the bride changing her dress up to seven times and the groom putting on a traditional jabador or a djellaba.

42. Morocco is also known for its unique goat trees. In the Souss-Massa-Draa region south of Marrakech, you can witness goats climbing Argan trees. By eating the fruit, the goats clean and soften the seed, making it usable for argan oil, which many women like to put on their hair.

43. Some of the cleanest and safest beaches are located in Morocco. Dozens of them have received the Blue Flag environmental award. This honor requires strict ecological, educational, safety, and accessibility criteria to be met and maintained.

Moroccan Food Facts

Moroccan food facts

44. Before you sit down for a meal, you must know these interesting facts about Morocco. It’s common to eat food using your hand instead of utensils. But if you’re a leftie, you’ll want to learn to use your other hand so you don’t get weird looks. Moroccans believe the left hand is reserved for bathroom duties and cleaning up. You should use the right hand for consuming food and shaking hands.

45. The country has a long history of wine-making that dates back to the Phoenician era. However, Morocco is primarily a Muslim country. That means consuming alcohol goes against the Islamic religion. Despite these facts about Morocco, the country produces 40 million bottles of wine annually. You can get alcohol in select hotels and restaurants that cater to tourists. But you’ll unlikely see any locals sipping a glass of Tempranillo.

46. Instead of fine wine, you’ll likely see Moroccans sipping on mint tea. Atia is a popular beverage in the country and is made with green tea, sugar, and mint. If you are ever presented with this version of mint tea, you should always accept it, as it’s impolite to decline.

47. In Morocco, Friday is couscous day. It’s the country’s national dish and is traditionally enjoyed at the end of the week as it’s the Islamic holy day. If you get a craving during the week, you can still find it in many restaurants.

48. There are many other foods Morocco is known for, including mandarins and clementines, many of which are exported. The country also ships more than 100,000 tons of dates each year and is the world’s only producer of Argan Oil.

How Many Fun Facts About Morocco Did You Know?

From the Atlas Mountains containing the oldest ski lodge in the world to the length the Sahara Desert spans, many facts about Morocco are astounding.

You can call it cat country due to the number of felines roaming the cities and local markets, or simply gaze in wonder at the glorious coastal regions. But no matter what attracts you to visit Morocco, this country will surely conquer your liver.

morroco fun facts

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