Final Thoughts: One of my least favorite cities and the only city where I can’t point out one major postive. Many women wearing burkas. I find it unsettling because it’s as if you’re supposed to treat them as ghosts. These women treat you as a ghost as they are not allowed to even look at you. I prefer a city which treats women as equal and encourages communication. I find it odd that this place is supposed to be very religious (2% say religion does not matter), but I have never been so blatantly and routinely ripped off (taxi’s, ordinary citizens, and street sellers/entertainers).
Food: Pastilla, Couscous, Tajine
- Ubers are 1.5x the cost of Petit taxis. That is, if you manage to not get ripped off. They should have an electronic fare counter turned on. Also, sometimes, they’re hard to find. Reminds me why Uber will eventually win out everywhere. MUCH better experience. The Petit taxis pick up extra passengers on the way if headed in the same direction. The cars and seats are disgusting.
- Air pollution is high at 75 µg/m3 PM2.5. You can see the sky is very hazy, greyish, not blue. For reference, San Francisco is 16 and Beijing is 108. Towards the end of my trip, I noticed I was wheezing with semi-clogged nose. (UPDATE, 4/4/19, Compared to come cities like Mumbai, this is not bad. Mumbai is regularily above 100 and near 150).
- Religion touches all aspect of life here: clothes (considered indecent to wear less clothes so most people are wearing pants and often long-sleeve shirts), social (many people do not drink), people pray in public, music plays when it’s time to pray
- Not wearing pants and a t-shirt (in 30C/90F+) poses an issue in getting into malls, libraries, etc. Generally, considered rude/inappropriate to show lots of skin.
- Not many English speakers
- Gyms are not big here. Even at $200/mo the actual gym is mediocre with no wifi (owner goes not want to provide guests with it) and no access to cardio equipment which costs extra.
- Butchers in grocery store will cut your meat for you, super convenient
- Nonexistent transit system, though, they’re building one
- Cars do not stop for pedestrians, they’ll only slightly turn to avoid you by a couple feet
- People in reflective vests help you park and in exchange you pay them. Even the locals couldn’t give me a clear answer of who they are, but it seems they are jobless and help keep the parking organized. They do not work for the government.
- Driving lanes are a suggestion
- Almost zero asian people
I also visited Marrakech for two nights which was an equally shitty place where the locals try to rip you off to an extreme degree. I had a bad feeling in this city, very seedy. I will never return.
Known For: Hammams, Futbol