Morocco is an exciting and entertaining country that lays claim to plenty of cultural, historical and religious holidays and festivals. At any given point of the year there is a Moroccan city or Berber community hosting glorious festivities. Here is a list of some of the most popular festivals and events in Morocco.
An Islamic holiday where Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset for one month. In Morocco during this month, day-to-day life moves at a much slower pace but after the sun has set the streets come alive.
- Where: This takes place throughout Morocco.
- When: May/June 2019
2. International Nomads Festival
An open-air event celebrating all aspects of nomadic culture. It invites local, national and international artists to showcase their poetry, music, dance, storytelling and handicrafts.
- Where: M’Hamid El Ghizlane
- When: March
3. Marathon Des Stables
The Sand Marathon is one of its most unique events -albeit not as much of a Moroccan festival as the others- that takes place every year over the course of 10 days. This one-of-a-kind marathon is considered the toughest foot race on Earth, covering 251 km (156 mi) in a 6-day event.
- Where: The Sahara Desert
- When: April
4. Sufi Music & Culture Festival:
This festival is in honor of Sufi spirituality and music. The festival brings together Sufi religious leaders as well as artists from around the world to showcase their poetry, films, music, dance and artworks. Scholars also gather to discuss important themes in Sufism such as human rights, cultural diversity and world peace.
5. Festival of World Sacred Music
A gathering of musicians, scholars and art enthusiasts from all over the world. The weeklong event features free concerts, a film festival and a forum where debates are held.
6. Gnaoua World Music Festival
Over the course of four days, the festival celebrates the Gnaoua people and their ancestral contribution to the world. Over half a million people attend the festival to watch dance and musical shows and connect with the artists in more intimate performances and open debates.
- Where: Essaouira
- When: June
7. International Culture Festival
Artists flock here to showcase their work and paint murals on the medina’s ancient walls. The star of the show, however, is a three-day horse festival which includes a Moroccan fantasia (a traditional exhibition of horsemanship).
8. Moussem Moulay Abdellah Amghar
A fascinating religious and cultural festival honoring the historical ancestral soil of Moulay Abd Alah Amghar, a region that saw many victorious battles against occupying forces. Over 500,000 attendees gather to watch all expressions of Moroccan folklore art including fantasia performances, traditional orchestras, songs and dances.
- Where: El Jadida
- When: August
9. Imilchil Marriage Festival
Travel back in time with this traditional Berber custom, which happens once a year and seeks to bring together families of various local tribes to meet and marry their sons and daughters.
- Where: Imilchil
- When: September
10. Aid el Kebir
Every family traditionally sacrifices a sheep and shares the meat at a family meal. The holiday is in remembrance of not only Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice his son at God’s command but also of God’s mercy by replacing the son with a sheep.
- Where: Throughout Morocco
- When: August