Partying In Morocco - 10 Tips to Help You Explore the Moroccan Nightlife.
Those planning on partying in Morocco will be surprised with remarkable events for all kind of audiences, whether you’re a rave junky, an experiential traveler, a music lover, or a curious learner, Morocco will blow your mind with incredible events all year round. The country’s beautiful weather, exotic lifestyle together with the open-minded attitude towards the world, has made it one of a kind destination for travelers who are looking for an authentic experience where they can also be themselves.
Moroccans love to party and rhythm runs in their blood, don’t be alarmed if you see a Moroccan grandma dancing until sunrise at a Moroccan wedding. It’s just the way Moroccans Roll. This has been mainly due to the influence the country has since centuries from African musicians and drummers coming from the far south and later rock musicians exploring and modernising its mystical music scene.
Repetitive trance music has put the country in the spotlight for generations due to the curiosity of many Westerners visiting and partying in Morocco. Many ethnic groups of Morocco has used music to go into trance, from Gnawa music in the south to Jilala and Jajouka music in the north. In some parts of the country, the Gnawa music is still practised ritually to take over the body of the dancer. The dance is believed to give the person in a trance the ability to contact supernatural entities. The discovery of this eccentric music wave was by Paul Bowles in the early ’60s
Watch this video by Led Zepplin’s Jimmy Page and Robert Plant rocking the famous Jamaa El Fan square in Marrakech. They later recorder the MTV unplugged series in a Kasbah about an hour away from Marrakech. Secret Tip: If you want to visit this six-hundred years old Kasbah on three wheels, let us know!
The ethnic music in Morocco has also offered an excellent playground for electronic DJs, which has given rise to many festivals and events in the country exploring the fusion of the diverse Moroccan and Electronic music. If you’re a party head and you want to dance like there is no tomorrow. I’d recommend checking the ever-growing electronic music scene that’s challenging the status quo in cities such as Casablanca, Marrakech and Essaouira. Top Tip: Check these two Facebook pages for events: RAK Electronic and Plug-in’ Souls.
“Over the past three years, another kind of tourist has been visiting Morocco. Spurred by a wave of new electronic music festivals, the country’s clubbing scene has jumped into the spotlight, pulling in the kind of crowd who might usually spend their long weekends in Berlin or Amsterdam.” The Guardian
The festivals have found a way to fuse Moroccan with electronic music culture, partying in Morocco on an electronic party will also give you the opportunity to discover the culture of Morocco and its rhythms. Festivals such as Oasis, Atlas and Moga can offer a whole new way to indulge yourself in this thousand-year-old kingdom. Some of the biggest acts that played in the Moroccan scene are Nicolas Jaar, Solomun, Richie Hawtin etc.
If you’re with family:
If you’re with family, a rave might not be the thing for you, we would usually recommend a dinner and a show night in places such as Comptoir Darna, or Jad Mahal, these hotspots can be a great way to take the family out on a 1001 mystical adventure; they have belly dancers, oriental musicians, African drummers, fire eaters, and a bunch of mascots to keep the kids entertained. The venues are quite remarkable with dim lighting, and thousands of candles spread all over the place. If Aladdin invited his Disney buddies for a night out, it would probably be here!
If you’re with friends:
If you’re with friends, then it would depend on what kind of music and vibe you like. We like to start our night partying in Morocco with a drink in a speak-easy bar such as Point Bar or L’envers, then we head to Jad Mahal or Dar Soukkar around 9:30 pm (Top tip: Book a table next to the podium). Around midnight. If you’re still kicking, head to Epicurien, inside the casino, to see one of the best bands Marrakech has to offer. Then, if you have wild hair past 3:00 am, head down to Theatro – Fun tip: Try to find the secret door that takes you to the club downstairs without leaving the building.
Now let’s cut to the chase: Here are our top 10 tips for you if you want to party in Morocco like a local:
1. Plan your night out in advance, find out the places you want to go to and make sure you know what place closes at what time. Reservations are not usually necessary, but recommended.
2. Clubs and bars are abundant in cities like Marrakech, Casablanca, Agadir and some in Essaouira, however, don’t expect to find a club in smaller towns.
3. Find out what kind of party animal are you. We will mainly focus on Marrakech. So, there are different levels of places. If you’re into electronic music, then go to bar L’envers for a couple of drinks and later try to find some events by the electronic music promoters I mentioned above, however, if you’re looking for something exotic, go to Comptoir Darna or Jad Mahal. If you’re looking for something hipsterish, then hit the rooftop of Kabana and stop at Point Bar for a drink before heading out to the clubs.
4. You’ll find taxis waiting for customers outside of clubs to take them home, or to their next dance floor, however, they will overcharge you for private transfers, I’d recommend you book a car and driver during your trip in Morocco and make sure they’re aware of your partying in Morocco to include the late night transfers.
5. When it comes to dress code, make sure you’re dressed smart, some clubs wouldn’t let people in wearing sneakers or shorts, so stay classy!
6. Partying in Morocco Morocco and specifically, Marrakech can be pricey and so be ready to spend more than back home.
7. For guys, keep in mind, you may find working ladies in certain local places, and they’re not necessarily upfront about it. We don’t like to generalise but do stay alert and use common sense.
8. Some of the best parties are happening outside of Marrakech (15-20 minutes drive away) The Source & Dar Soukkar are great venues to name a few. Make sure to give them a call or check their facebook page for more info.
9. Tip well! Your waiters, the dancers, if you want attention, tip your waiter and he will make sure to take good care of you. Same with the bouncers if you tip them, they will remember you if you comeback. If you’re short on cash, a smile will take you a long way!
10. Don’t be afraid of dressing for a night out, however, make sure you’re covered when going from a club to another. Don’t worry about it too much if you arranged your transport beforehand, if not, make sure you have a long light scarf or a kimono to cover up walking from a place to another.
To sum up, partying in Morocco can be one of the best experiences you can have, I mean you can’t compare it to the likes of Miami or Thailand. However, if you would like to explore the nightlife while on your trip to Morocco, there is a chance you’re going to have a one of a kind adventure. With a little common sense and following the guidelines above, you can have a great time with your friends.
If you’re a party animal, don’t rely solely on the clubs and bars in Marrakech, check the Facebook pages I listed above and see if they have any events coming up during your visit, another great website to check events nearby is Resident Advisor.
If you’re planning to come in September, don’t miss the Oasis and Moga Festivals, if you’re planning to go in July/ August, then Atlas Electronic will leave you speechless with its fusion of electronic and Moroccan tribal and folk music.
We’re here to help if you have any questions. If you’re planning to come to Morocco and want to take your friends on a night out to remember, give us a shout, and we’ll be happy to provide you with more suggestions of what to do and where to go.
Curious of what kind of road trips you could have with us in Morocco? Check Tom’s Immersive Journey across the country. And find out why he decided to visit Morocco! Follow us on instagram to see our 3000 kms bike tour.
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