Culture is a major tourist attraction in Morocco, even though the country has many other strong points such as its seaside, eco-tourism, entertainment and geographical sectors. Morocco has a singular culture shaped by several influences. It has also been able to showcase its traditions while developing a modernity that allows it to present itself more on the world stage.
With a population that includes Berbers, Arabs, Andalusians, Muslims and Jews, Morocco is animated by its remarkable multiculturalism. As in all cosmopolitan places, each community has its own customs, but also many shared traditions. Hospitality remains one of the common denominators that unites the Moroccan people. All tourists visiting the country of the extreme sunset will surely find that the art of welcoming guests occupies a central place in local culture.
Generally offered with true sincerity, this hospitality takes several forms, from an invitation to having one of its famous cups of tea to going out to a celebration, via a visit to a place spontaneously suggested around a succulent family tagine. Hospitality is so important that refusing an invitation can sometimes be perceived as rude. Accepting these affable gestures also increases the chances of meeting new people and learning more about the kingdom.
It is therefore logical that Morocco has relied upon its multiculturalism in order to assert itself as a spot of creativity on an international scale. It is now recognised within the fields of fashion, cinema, music and others. The major cultural events that are organized each year, including the Marrakech International Film Festival, the Marrakech Folk Arts Festival and the Mawazine-Rhythms of the World Festival, confirm this.
The cultural differences between the Maghreb and the West, however, imply that we must learn more about the basic rules of living that are to be respected during a stay. For example, it's necessary to take off your shoes before entering a Moroccan dwelling whenever you see shoes placed upon a carpet at the entrance. Outfits that are even slightly revealing, including men's shorts and flip flops, are also banned in some places. In addition, couples, even foreigners, shouldn't kiss in a public place, as this can be considered to be offensive.