Morocco is a paradise for the senses. Sounds attacking you from all sides, noise and powerful beats of chaabi music, omnipresent honking and people cursing at each other in traffic jams, extremely sweet desserts and spicy tajine, delicious, oriental perfume and the smell of freshly picked oranges and olives immersed in hot harissa sauce, colorful clothes and dirty, shabby buildings. You can have a little bit of this mesmerizing mixture for yourself, pack in your suitcase and take it home. Here are my top Moroccan souvenirs which, no matter where I go, will always remind me about my second home, al-Maghrib.
Lovely, Moroccan slippers made of leather. They are so light and soft, perfect for hot summer. You’ll find them in all the colors of rainbow: all shades of red, pinkish and crimson, baby blue and navy, plain and richly decorated. Depending on the quality and store the prices will vary. Baboushe are available in many shoes shops, luxury stores and in the open-air market (“medina“). My suggestion for you is to get them in medina. The luxury shops usually double the price and usual shoes shops offer poor quality- the slippers are usually made of plastic.
Morocco is a culinary paradise for olive-lovers, there is no doubt about that. You will have the realest olive feast here. Olives with harissa, olives with all spices, sliced, with seeds, seedless, black, red, green… Whatever you wish you will have here! What is more, olives are ridiculously cheap. One kilo of olives costs around 15-20 dirhams. Another good news is that vast majority of bars offer olives as a starter. Free of charge.
Beauty water & oils
ORANGE BLOSSOM – it is a very popular Moroccan scent. You can smell it in kitchen, hammams and perfume shops.
ROSE OILS AND WATER For me, a fan of rose scent, it is an absolute must-have. I can’t imagine a day without using the rose water to clean my face and rose oil to remove my eye make-up. If you are a lady and your eyes are sensitive (like mine, I hardly ever find a gentle make-up remover) get yourself few bottles of this magical liquid. Rose oil works great as a moisturizer for the skin and helps to handle unruly hair and dry endings. Available in pharmacies, alimentation generale stores, open-air markets, some epiceries and supermarkets.
ARGAN OIL – I don’t have to tell you to get it when you’re in Morocco, right? ;)
Be careful, most of the oils available in touristy cities are very poor quality (30% of argan or less).
Those are super long-lasting scents, usually without alcohol. You just rub a little amount of oil onto your skin and enjoy the smell throughout the day. There are numerous stores offering Arabic perfume. I divide them in 3 categories: luxurious, ordinary and low-cost.
Brands such an Arabian Oud or Swiss Arabian offer typically oriental scents in richly decorated bottles. If your budget is not too big and you want something less pricey go for the second type, those are “perfumeries” that you will find in many places in the whole country. For the cheapest perfume ever I suggest you go on a hunt near mosques. . Personally, I ‘ve used Arabic perfumes since 2006, when I first smelled them. It was love at first smell:)
For me, Moroccans are culinary masters when it comes to baking. You will find a whole range of different cookies. If you like almonds you’ll love their pastries. The typical, Moroccan ones are: kaab ghazl, shabakya, briwat and many more. Kaab ghazl is a moon-shaped almond cookie. It is ridiculously tasty! If you like marzipan, go for it. Unfortunately, it is among the most expensive cookies in the whole Maghreb. Shabakya is a specialty baked during the holy month of Ramadhan, since it is very sweet and caloric. However, you can find it in some patisseries during the whole year.
Walking down the streets of Morocco you will see people (especially ladies) wearing those mysterious, long dresses with hoods. They are called djellabas and are traditional, Moroccan dresses. I fell in love with them and I have several ones:). In Morocco they can save you when you quickly have to go out to a shop. In Europe they can be a very comfortable solution for home and hot days.
Hand of Fatima
Khamissa is a very Moroccan pattern. You may find it on djellabas, bags, notebooks, purses and many more! I love them and always get them as gifts for my friends:)
Note that those are my private must-haves. I am trying to be as objective as possible but everyone can have different taste. Apart from all the things listed above Morocco is a paradise for designer-brands lovers who can’t afford to buy an original designer t-shirt or shoes. In Morocco you’ll find thousands of well-done fakes. Be aware, it is not legal to bring fakes to EU (especially France and Italy have strict laws about that).
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