Regal Rabat (City Snapshot)

What: Morocco’s commercial and administrative capital has its own little surprises.

Where: West coast of Morocco.

Language: Moroccan Arabic, Standard Arabic and French (multilingualism is both popular and prestigious in much of urban Morocco).

Currency: Moroccan dirham (MAD).

Highlights: Kasbah des Oudayas (a great place to watch the sunset), the walled Chellah Town (with its well-preserved Roman and Berber ruins), the Medina, Hassan Tower, the Mausoleum of Mohammad V (so much gold), Royal Palace Dar Al Mahkzen, the coast, and catching a ferryboat to neighbouring Salé. Finally, last but not least, a cab with a working meter (!).

Snapshot: Distinctly more corporate and commercial than its popular counterparts, Rabat initially appears to lack the traditional Moroccan character of Fes and Marrakech. Its seaside climate is noticeably cooler; its city centre is westernised, modern. But dig a little deeper and you’ll uncover hidden gems such as the blue-walled houses and panoramic seaside views of the Kasbah Des Oudayas, the time-travelling and historic Chellah Town, and a walled Medina as exotic and chaotic as the rest.

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