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Chefchaouen or Asilah??

Los Angeles...
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Chefchaouen or Asilah??

We are planning a short side trip to Morocco from Sevilla, perhaps 3 days only. Thought we would take the ferry to Tangier from Tarifa and either visit Chefchaouen or Asilah by bus or shared taxi straight away. This is our first trip to Morocco, but we hope to avoid the aggressive touts that have been described in Fez, Tangier and Marrakech. Are we missing seeing the "real Morocco" by avoiding staying in Fez, Tangier and Marrakech? Also, which of these two cities would be best for two travelers who enjoy interacting with the local residents, a little shopping (without too much pressure!), hiking and sightseeing?

Thank you very much in advance for any information that you are able to share!

1. Re: Chefchaouen or Asilah??

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Removed on: 01 October 2012, 15:40
Castril De La Pena...
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2. Re: Chefchaouen or Asilah??

Touts are a fact of life everywhere that tourists visit, so you will need to confront your concerns. A confident attitude, a smile and polite "no" is all you need.

Asilah is a pleasant place but if you have to choose between Asilah and Chefchaouen, it would be the latter for me. Brilliant hiking in the mountains, see post #6 at morocco-knowledgebase.net/forum/…

I'm not a city person, much prefer the countryside and smaller towns. Fez is certainly worth a visit however travel in Morocco is slow (Chefchaouen to Fez is 4+ hours) and with only 3 days you don't have the time, so I suggest you spend your time on a mix of Chefchaouen and Tanger.

Edited: 07 August 2012, 13:33
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3. Re: Chefchaouen or Asilah??

Thank you both for your helpful responses. Looking forward to seeing Morocco.

Best regards,

Katie

cork
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4. Re: Chefchaouen or Asilah??

Just back from a trip in morocco and have stayed in both asilah and chef. I would def pick chef! It's so beautiful, you don't get hassled as much and there is hiking/walks in the area, although I didn't look into properly. We stayed at Dar Echchaouen, which was really nice, reasonably priced and had a pool with a great view!

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5. Re: Chefchaouen or Asilah??

Thank you Nars85!! Chef sounds like the winner!! Glad to hear you had a nice vacation! Thanks again for sharing your experience!!

Marrakech, Morocco
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6. Re: Chefchaouen or Asilah??

both are beautiful , believe me , but i liked the chefchaouen more than assilah .

regards

Los Angeles...
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7. Re: Chefchaouen or Asilah??

Dear Sharkittab:

Many thanks for your recommendation of Chefchaouen! It is so helpful to hear from someone who has traveled there before us.

Appreciate your help very much!!

Thank you again,

Katie

Leicester, United...
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8. Re: Chefchaouen or Asilah??

As with other responses I would fully recommend Chefchouan. There is no denate for me, as I explain below. I have been there this summer and spent a delightful two night/three day stay in a great little hotel - see my review of Hotel EL Kelarr - by far the cheapest, cleanest and friendliest hotel in Maroc that I have stayed in. If you speak a little French or Spanish (esp Spanish) you'll get on well here. Itis better because:

1) You get no pressure or attitude here - aside from the main square there are no touts at all, and even then they are very relaxed and friendly

2) Great crafts and so much cheaper in the markets and souks than other cities such as Marakech - also authentic - no faux goods here - you can see people working making the items.

3) Great views, sunsets and a wide raNGE OF LOVELY BRESTAURANTS

4) A great base for trekking and to hire guides for the Rif

5) Undervisited - so no feeling of being part of a tour with the masses - equally no guides carting round parties of tired tourists following umerallas

6) So photogenic

7) The souk - ditto - see above!

8) Friendly and uncynical locals - no scams and no dangers - despite dark streets at night

9) Easy to get there by local bus or chartered bus or taxi from Tangier Port

10) TRhe balance of opinion from other contributors can't be wrong

I can recommend an organisation called "In Morocco" as a decent guiding/travel agency, but depends on what you want. Also worth a visit to Tetouan whilst you're there. Make sure you get out into the mountains - although this area is densely populated compared to the Atlas Mountains - it is remote in terms of other visitors and tourist saturation. We visited 10 villages over 8 days and few of our hosts had met British people before - amazing.

I have travelled extensively in Maroc over the last 6 years and would not say that you are losing out at all. It is a very different landscape to the Atlas Mountains - and these too are worth a visit but will be hotter, drier and more geared up to formal tourism. Make Marakech a base for this if you go. I am happy to advise further on customs, language, food or activities.

Good luck and enjoy your trip!

9. Re: Chefchaouen or Asilah??

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