Chefchaouen, also known as Chaouen, is a city in the northwest of Morocco.
It is the chief town of the province of the same name.
The city is noted for its buildings in shades of blue.
The city is located just inland from Tangier and Tetouan.
Chefchaouen was founded in 1471 as a small fortress to fight the Portuguese invasions of northern Morocco.
It is a important tourist destination because of its proximity to the Tangier and the Spanish enclave of Ceuta.
There are approximately 200 hotels catering to the summer influx of European Tourists.
The city is a popular shopping destination as well. It offers many native handcrafts that you cannot find elsewhere in Morocco. The goat cheese native to this area is also a popular product with the tourists.
There are 3 theories that explain why the city is painted blue. One popular one is that the color keeps mosquitos away.
7 THINGS TO DO AND NOT TO DO IN CHEFCHAOUEN
- Avoid night walks since it is dangerous. Instead, take a taxi.
- Do not disrespect heir cultural practices and beliefs. Instead, follow their norms and ensure you are on the right side to avoid clashing with locals.
- Do not wear revealing clothes. Instead, dress respectfully. Cover more parts of your body.
- Do not eat publicly during the month of Ramadan. Instead, find a private place where you will not provoke the fasting community.
- Do not just go to any restaurant. Instead, choose carefully where to eat. If you don’t know how to do it, go where a lot of people go.
- Do not drink tap water. Instead, always buy purified water.
- Don’t buy gifts in touristic places. They are very expensive there. Instead, buy elsewhere especially where locals buy.
8 MOST INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT CHEFCHAOUEN
- Its name Chefchaouen comes from the Berber word meaning “two-horned” which is a reference to the two peaks that the city lies between.
- The blue painting is said to be symbolic of the sky and heaven and that it reminds people to live a spiritual life.
- The deepest cave in Morocco, Kef Toghobeit (4070 m long and 722 m deep) is found in Chefchaouen.
- It has a lot of cats almost everywhere you go.
- Chefchaouen is nestled in the Rif Mountains. You can’t fly in or take a train.
- There aren’t a tone of things to do in Chefchaouen.
- In 2004, Chefchaouen had a population of 35,709, which is around 7,000 people less than the census of a decade prior.
- The blue buildings of Chefchaouen are typically repainted every two years to maintain the colour.