- Beach / Seaside Resort
- Place or Religious Monument
- Place or Historical Monument
When I arrived in Rabat, I have to admit that I detested it on first sight! At the time I was travelling by car and stopping in town was always a bit of a challenge. On that day the traffic was madness! I think we were bumper to bumper for 2 hours. Once we escaped the hell, only to manage the incredible feat of losing ourselves and ending up back in the traffic! At that moment I would have given anything for the powers of teleportation! So I have to admit that my first impression of Rabat wasn't great. I also have to say that the capital was the first big town that I visited during my stay in Morocco.
Anyway, once I had got out of the car and found the hotel I was already more inclined to discover the capital's beauties. And in the end I found lots! There were its architecture, the flowers, its clean centre, the old medina, and the kasbah, but above all, the incredible boulevard that runs along the edge of the Atlantic Ocean. These are my favourite souvenirs of Rabat.
If you can visit the town without driving there you will definitely love it!
I really like Rabat. For the majority of travellers during a stay in Morocco, it's a large hostile town from which you must leave quickly to get to the more authentic places. Yet compared to its neighbour Casablanca, I found that Rabat is a city full of charm.
Laid out along the Atlantic Ocean, it's a very pleasant capital and relatively windy so you can never be too cold nor too hot. Its battlements which overlook the ocean are absolutely wonderful.
I keep an extraordinary memory of my visit in the Oudaias kasbah in Rabat, of striding across the superb gardens and admiring the breathtaking view from the terrace. Don't miss, during your stay in Rabat, also visiting the Chellah necropolis.
Unlike some of its neighbouring cities, such as Casablanca, you can look around Rabat very quickly. Nevertheless, this city offers calm and serenity. Personally, I spent my stay inside a riad that immersed us more in the Moroccan world than a stay in a hotel would have done.
During your stay in Morocco, I advise you to go to Chellah, which contains the country's most beautiful Roman ruins. You can also go to the medina of Rabat (old quarter); it gave me the impression of not being too overrun with tourists, which made it more authentic. You can find the best Moroccan rugs there, especially in the covered path on the street with the consuls, just beside the Es Sebat souk, which is also full of other shops.
And not far from the kasbah, you can find the museum for Moroccan art and superb Andalusian-style gardens, which are worth the trouble of the walk. In order to discover the many seafood specialities, I went to "La péniche": a small restaurant moored to the port of Rabat that offers a most pleasant view of the ocean.
As I said, Rabat is pleasant, but I think that it is more a city to pass through and not a place where you can stay for a long time because you can see it all quite quickly. However, if rest and relaxation are what you are looking for, Rabat is a destination I recommend. Like a large number of Moroccan cities, there are several well-being centres that provide hammams, argan oil treatments, and other traditional Moroccan treatments.