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Lonely Planet Morocco (Country Travel Guide) Paperback – February 1, 2009


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Product Details

  • Series: Country Travel Guide
  • Paperback: 536 pages
  • Publisher: Lonely Planet; 9 edition (February 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1741049717
  • ISBN-13: 978-1741049718
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 5.2 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,102,835 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

For centuries, Morocco has been drawing poets, artists, writers and travellers in search of adventure and the exotic. For many travellers Morocco provides the first taste of Africa, Islam and the developing world. It can be quite a shock, as Morocco is, and always has been, a fascinating and often bewildering place - full of contrasting images, colorful sights, strange smells and wild experiences. For those wanting a different sort of trip, full of variety and life, Morocco provides a stimulating assault on the senses.

Morocco was known to the ancient Arabs as Al-Maghreb al-Aqsa, the Farthest Land of the Setting Sun, and stands at the western extremity of the Arab and Muslim world. On a good day you can see Spain from Tangier; Morocco has long been a gateway for Europeans into Africa and for Africans and Arabs into Europe. Today the pull in both directions is as strong as ever - economic opportunity lures ever-increasing numbers of Africans into the European Union countries, while a new generation of travellers is discovering Morocco, which has again become a very popular and hip travel destination.

However, Morocco's image is changing. The old romantic notions of a conservative nation steeped in Islamic and feudal history now jars with the contemporary reality. The medieval labyrinthine medinas of Marrakesh, Fes and Meknes are what Morocco is all about for many, but don't be surprised to hear the shrill ring of a mobile phone or a sign pointing down some darkened alley to the nearest Internet cafe. The young King Mohammed VI may be a direct descendant of the Prophet Mohammed and wield absolute power, but he's also president of Oudayas Surf Club in Rabat.

Morocco has a wealth of experiences to offer, starting with an astonishingly rich architectural tradition and deep cultural history, Medieval cities, Roman ruins, Berber kasbahs and beautiful Islamic monuments await. The country's numerous mountain ranges exert an enormous pull over trekkers, climbers and adventure-sports freaks, whether they be after the icy, snow-covered ridges of the High Atlas Mountains in winter or the rocky semidesert of Jebel Sarhro.

Huge sections of Morocco's isolated mountain regions still remain the sole preserve of the Berber tribespeople and their animals. Whatever hassles may be thrown at you in the hectic towns and cities, you will never doubt the legendary genuine hospitality of these gracious people.

The Atlantic and Mediterranean coastlines illustrate brilliantly the tumultuous history of Morocco, with fortified cities constructed by a host of nationalities and dynasties waiting to be explored. The coast also offers fine sandy beaches (some developed, some not), numerous surf breaks and windsurfing spots, while the estuaries and lagoons support a tremendous diversity of wildlife - and they're just one piece in the jigsaw of habitats that makes Morocco such a great bird-watching destination.

Dropping off the back of the vast High Atlas (which lie across the heart of the country) and sweeping towards the vast Saharan emptiness of Algeria, are some of the most stunning arid and desert landscapes in North Africa. Among them are the kasbahs of the Draa Valley, the classic rolling sand dunes at Merzouga and the endless beauty of the coastal drive into the Western Sahara. Get off the beaten track and out into these places - they can be explored on foot, by 4WD or on the back of a camel.

Once off the beaten track Morocco can arguably become a warmer, more welcoming place. Get out into the unknown because for many, encounters with local communities form the most enduring memories of all.

Morocco is not necessarily a country where you can gracefully glide through and see everything with the minimum of fuss. Sometimes it's a demanding, frustrating place that confronts you at every turn. But what it offers is a unique experience of totally differing cultures and wildly varied landscape. Take a deep breath and dive in. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By deipnosophist on January 28, 2005
Format: Paperback
Despite all the bad things that people say about LP, they're still one of the best books out there. They're not totally full of glossy pictures, and not just a bland reem of text. The maps are very useful, and highly detailed, and the recommendations for restaurants help you weed through all the tourist traps. That said, I've often followed their suggestions to restuarants or cafes that don't exist anymore. If LP could find a way to update their books every year, I'd be a bigger fan than I am right now. In this book, for instance, they tell you that the Morora is the only train station in Tanier, when the new Tanger Ville station was just recently opened. It could be a confusing moment if a cabby were to refuse to take you to a station that you don't know is nonexistent. But they do cover almost everything that you could think of in terms of transportation and navigating your way around. I like that with each city they put the population, so that you know what kind of a place you're going to. The overview maps also give you a way of figuring out where you are in relation to other places. It has its faults for sure, but I've not been able to find a much better series.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Jedidiah Palosaari VINE VOICE on April 29, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When I travel, in any country, I use Lonely Planet- including the country I live in, Morocco. It is a good book, very helpful, and very popular. Perhaps a little too popular.

This is now my third Lonely Planet Morocco. I've used this particular edition to travel to Melilla, Shoofshowen, Meknes, Walili, Mulay Idriss, Shalalat d'Uzud, Marraksh, Warzazat, Ait Benhadu, Sfru, Bhalil, Taza, Ifrane, Gouffre de Friwato, and my hometown of Fes. And I have found that it helped me find some decent hotels, figure out travel plans, and where to eat. But not as much as it once did.

Others online have remarked on this- the Lonely Planet Effect. It seems to be in full force in Morocco. As soon as a transportation method, hotel, or restaurant is mentioned in Lonely Planet, the proprietor will cut out the bit where he is mentioned to post on his wall, and jack up the prices- significantly. So though the book just came out, and was only a few months old when I began using it, nearly every place I go the prices are no longer what is listed. Now, this isn't LP's fault, certainly. But it does make the book less helpful than it once was.

I've now taken to using LP just for the maps and travel suggestions. When I arrive in a new town, I look for any hotel that is *not* listed in Lonely Planet, and try to find someplace clean. Those are usually the affordable hotels. Any place mentioned in LP is far out of my price range.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Tea on June 6, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
So, I Took this book in my trip to morocco.
maps are absolutely terrible, I've been always lost. and in this book is information only of CTM Buses, not Supratour and it is notcomfortable. also, they misses some main sights in Fez, rabat, meknes.
So, it is not "perfect" book for solo traveler
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By travelmonster on September 5, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book has been really useful for suggesting accommodations- if you can find them! The maps are absolutely terrible. My wife and I travel for a living, navigating through cities every day, and these maps were misleading and incorrect at best. The book was published in Feb 2009, and we traveled in late August 2010 so it seems impossible that roadwork has changed the cities this much in 18 months. We went to about 8 different cities and had problems in all of them, climaxing with a 2 1/2 hour search for our hotel in Fes, which we never did find. In defense of the book, google maps had a lot of trouble in Fes as well- so lonely planet isn't alone- but there are basic mapping errors, like right turns when you actually need to make a left to get to a hotel. To close, giving credit where credit is due, I found a lot of useful advice and info, and write-ups about the hotels, riads, and restaurants were pretty spot on- we just never made it to half of them!
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By Rosemary Canney on December 1, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
We are going to Casablanca for 4 days while we spend the winter in Barcelona. I needed just the basic information, I already like Lonely Planet, and I got it from this book. Also in good condition for a used book.
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By Chua Ban Hoo on January 2, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I used this book to travel to Morocco. The information was very good and it is quite accurate. It was very handy and useful to carry this book for travelling. I love this book.
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