Morocco is one of those places that I think I’ll revisit for the rest of my life. It’s not because it was easy to get to or because I had the best trip of all time in the North African country. I’ll revisit forever because it’s one of the most inspiring places I’ve been over the course of my 32 years.
As a creative entrepreneur, it’s of utmost importance to me to rekindle this flame of creativity within myself when I’m feeling blocked or uninspired — which to be honest, is a lot more frequently than I’d like to admit. It can be incredibly challenging working in a field where new ideas and creative output are pretty much expected of you daily, even sometimes hourly, and that makes it easy to fall into a trap of feeling stymied creatively or like you have nothing left to say or offer. My solution for this has always been to travel to places that help my sense of wonder come alive.
If you can relate, I can’t recommend a trip to Morocco enough. Between the architecture, colors, textures, sights and smells, there’s nothing quite like it in my opinion. Here are just a few reasons why this magical country might just be the answer to your “creator’s block.”
1. Design and Architecture That Will Take Your Breath Away
For someone who deals with elements of design and branding on a daily basis, there’s no place like Morocco to inspire new ideas within your own life and business. I’m always in awe of the incredible design and artistry that is spilling out from all edges of this beautiful country. Step into a traditional riad or peruse the streets of Marrakech’s bustling medina and you’ll immediately understand what I mean. From the subtle architectural details to the overwhelmingly ornate tile work at places like Ben Youssef Madrasa and the Al-Attarine Madrasa, it’s hard not to stand in wonder of the years of hard work and love that has been put into so many homes and landmarks throughout Morocco.
2. The Ability to Get Lost
Sometimes in life it’s beneficial to get lost. We need to get off track to figure out where we truly want to go. And getting lost can help you stumble upon things you never even knew were a possibility. In Marrakech, getting lost within the chaotic medina is not hard to do — especially if you’ve failed to pre-download offline maps (ahem, guilty).
But getting lost is also part of the beauty of Morocco. The streets and alleys are narrow and winding and seem to be connected like some maze that takes eons to decode. Still, there’s always a sense that you’ll find your way back and best of all — there’s always something special to be discovered along the way.
I remember such a moment clearly when my friend Hannah and I took a wrong turn and suddenly found ourselves walking down an alley we were very unsure was the right path to our destination. We’d been sticking to the streets filled with locals and other tourists, the busy spots that seemed clearly on the “right path.” Suddenly we found ourselves in this quiet alley completely alone but in doing so, stumbled upon a stunning structure in the process of being built (see above) and an incredible alley awash in coral hues (which perfectly matched my dress coincidentally). We would have never known these beautiful places existed had we been so worried about staying on course.
3. Spaces to Sleep in That Inspire You, Even on a Budget
One of my favorite aspects of Morocco is that beautifully designed spaces to stay in don’t have to come with a hefty price tag. In fact, there are a plethora of chic riads, hotels and Airbnbs that are entirely affordable but still a design-lover’s dream. I love that finding inspiration in Morocco isn’t synonymous with having money, and you can easily find a beautiful place to call your home away from home that is still just as inspirational even if you’re on a budget.
4. Experiences You Can’t Find Anywhere Else
Ever strolled through a city entirely painted in blue hues? Or been served Moroccan mint tea while a group of locals bustle like bees to showcase handmade patterned rugs before your feet at about a million miles per second? Have you breathed in the smells of tagine while the prayer call cuts through the air like a knife? These are all unique experiences to Morocco and just a few of the one-of-a-kind moments you’ll have in this country that can’t quite be replicated anywhere else.
5. The Feeling That There is Always Something New to Discover
Within the heart of Morocco’s medinas, there is so much packed into a small area that it would be impossible to discover it all in one simple trip — heck, it would be impossible to discover it all in a lifetime. That’s one thing that makes Morocco so special. There’s always something new and exciting to discover, to uncover, to experience for the first time.
6. It’s a Choose Your Own Adventure Kind of Place
Fact: For every type of traveler, there is something on offer in Morocco. I tend to gravitate towards design, architecture, photography and artistry that is born out of a place. But for people that love adventure, surfing, hiking, or simply spending the day at the spa, Morocco will find a way to please your greatest desires. It’s quite varied when it comes to experiences, it’s just a matter of doing your research and finding the right activities to suit your needs.
7. All Your Senses Will Be Intimately Involved
The prayer call, the spices piled high in the market, the burst of colors, the tagine baking in clay pots, the shop owners pushing their pitch to entice you into each store as you stroll by, the local stand selling dried fruits and nuts. For every split second that goes by in Morocco, there are even more moments that put your senses through the wringer — in the best way possible. Boredom can’t exist in Morocco. There is no place for it to fester because there is so much being thrown at you at once.
8. Stumbling On a Secret
The way many of the medinas are built creates this sense of secrecy, like there is a whole new world sitting just beyond that wall or this doorway. And it’s kind of true. Take one of my favorite Moroccan hotels, El Fenn, for example. An unassuming wooden doorway accessed right in the medina might lead to any old home or shop. But step foot beyond the entrance and suddenly you’re in a whole new world of rich jewel toned hues, tropical plants, courtyards complete with lounging pools and even house turtles that cruise the premises.
Nothing kills creativity, in my opinion, like the feeling that you’re seeing or doing the same thing as everyone else around you. When you feel like you’ve stumbled upon a secret, it triggers a sense of wonder in you that is suddenly allowed to dream again. And I love anything that helps me dream bigger.
Is Morocco on your bucket list? Let me know in the comments below!
This post was written in collaboration with Travel Mindset and Morocco Tourism, but as always, all opinions are my own and I would never promote anything I don’t freaking love.