Morocco Festivals Blog Post
- While many festivals are free to attend, some may have a small fee to pay for entrance.
- Many festivals in Morocco are held outdoors, so be sure to dress accordingly.
- Bring along your phone or camera so that you can capture the amazing artwork and details of the festival.
- Most importantly, be sure to be respectful of the artists and do not touch or damage their work.
Dates vary so please inquire with Chasing Street Art for more info!
Sbagha Bagha (Casablanca): Sbagha Bagha was started in 2015 by French artist MehdiQ Benyamin and aims to promote positive social change through art. This festival has produced incredible murals throughout the city.
Yennayer (Morocco & Algeria): The Berber community of Morocco celebrates the Amazigh New Year on January 12th and 13th. This is the most traditional Morocco festivals occur in the middle Atlas, where Berber tribes sing, dance, and prepare couscous in hopes of a prosperous agricultural year ahead. Other cities across Morocco also organize events and celebrations to mark the occasion.
Almond Blossom Festival (Tafraoute): Morocco’s almond-producing capital, Tafraoute has historically held a small agricultural gathering every year to sell almond products and celebrate the year’s harvest. The location celebrations include traditional Berber music, dance and theater. There are tons of market stalls and stage performances throughout the city, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the local culture.
Nomads Festival (M’Hamid El Ghizlane, 60 km south of Zagora): This free open-air event celebrates all aspects of nomadic culture. Local, national and international artists are all invited to share their poetry, dance, music, storyselling, and handicrafts.
Festival Jazzablanca (Casablanca): This festival is held every year in Casablanca and presents many jazz fusion concerts, including both Moroccan and international jazz singers. In addition to the concerts, they also offer jazz initiation workshops, meetings with artists (for VIP guests), improved music sessions and parades throughout the streets. At the end of the concerts, there are often after parties which can last until the late hours of the night.
Credit: Jazzblanca Facebook.
The Festival of Roses (El Kelaa M’Gouna, 80 km north of Ouarzazate): This is one of the prettiest celebrations in Morocco, dedicated to commemorating the season’s rose harvest. Along the narrow streets of the souk in El Kelaa M’Gouna, also known as the Valley of Roses, you’ll find delicious food stalls, Berber dancers and singers, and even a parade of floats.
Marrakech Festival of Popular Arts (Marrakech): Founded in 1960, it is one of the oldest festivals in Morocco. This festival is a cultural event that reflects the richness and diversity of folk arts in Morocco, but also an artistic event that has always been open to the international audience through the participation of groups from all over the world in the spirit of sharing cultures. It showcases dances, songs and costumes including Atlas dances, Gnaoua dances, Saharan dances, and more.
Alegria Festival (Chefchaouen): Over the course of 2 days, this festival celebrates culture and diversity throughout Morocco. Musical performances, photography exhibitions, local talent shows and traditional foods fill the streets showcasing the best of Moroccan and international culture.
The Moussem Moulay Abdellah Amgha (El Jadida): This is a fascinating religious and cultural festival honoring the Sufi Saint Abdallah Abou Lmahasin Mohammed Amghar. During this festival, you can see Moroccan folklore art including fantasia performances, traditional orchestras, songs and dances.
Oasis (Marrakech): The Oasis festival is the first to set the bar so high on the African continent. It showcases the best of house, disco and electro music. Facing the Atlas Mountains, you can enjoy a beautiful landscape and dance to lively music all night long. The lineup features international talent and famous DJs from all around the world, as well as from the burgeoning Moroccan music scene. It is held every September for three days.
The Dates Festival (Erfoud): This highly recognised festival attracts thousands of visitors to Erfoud every year to taste the fruits of the harvest, attend processions and concerts. The Guetna or date festival is intended to close the harvest. There are folklore shows, camel races and other fun performances. They also elect the queen of dates and she is awarded with traditional jewelry and a crowd of admirers will ask for her hand in marriage.
Saffron Festival (Taliouine): Held in the heart of Morocco’s saffron producing region, Taliouine lies south of Marrakesh and east of Taroudant. The city itself is small – just under 6,000 people – but produces more saffron than any other place in Africa. Every November, a festival is held at harvest time and people from around the world come to watch and celebrate.
Credit: Arab News
Tan Tan Moussem (Tan Tan): This festival brings together more than 30 tribes from southwestern Morocco and other parts of northwest Africa to worship, exchange stories, dance, and compete in camel races.
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Check out these other resources to learn more about Moroccan culture and festivals.