Visiting the Gorgeous Blue City // Chefchaouen, Morocco

February 28, 2018 Chefchaouen, Morocco

Chefchaouen Morocco Guide

Visiting Morocco's gorgeous blue city? Here a few things to keep in mind when visiting Chefchaouen.

Chefchaouen, Morocco.
Chefchaouen or also known as Chaouen by the locals, is nestled in the Rif Mountains within the northwest region of the country. It’s a pretty remote town– the biggest cities nearby are Tangier and Fez, which can take two and four hours, respectively, to get to. Chefchaouen often is skipped by travelers who focus on ticking off the more well known cities of Morocco such as Marrakech and the Sahara. Chefchaouen is growing in popularity, due to the exposure on social media in recent years. Although, I still found it to have that authentic charm and it's less hectic compared to the popular cities. There are a few riads and hostels available to stay in but no big chain hotels.

So I've seen a few travelers visit this place prior to traveling to Morocco myself. I was intrigued in seeing this city with my own eyes one day and I'm so happy I had the opportunity do so on this trip. Finding out that Chefchaouen was located only two hours away from Tangier, I couldn't wait to take a day trip here. I would definitely recommend if you get car sick easily or nauseous in general, eat something or have fluids on you when going heading to Chefchaouen.

I didn't have anything in my system and all the windy roads just made me feel uneasy for a bit until we got there. I quickly found a spot to have some breakfast and just take in the beauty. Over here they serve you two types of cheeses, one home-made goat cheese and the regular cheese you're accustomed to. After putting something into my system, I felt more alive with energy and ready to explore the town!

One thing to note if you're coming here in the summer months, stay hydrated! Chefchaouen is located in the mountains and during the summer, there's not much of a breeze. Unlike in Tangier because it's surrounded by water you don't feel the heat as much. But here in Chefchaoen, when it hits mid day you feel the sun beaming on you and it's very dry out there. It's easy to get heat exhaustion if you're walking around this city and forget to hydrate. But lucky for you theres ton's of vendors all around. Don't forget to apply sunscreen as well, I for sure got sunburned while exploring the area.

You can totally just spend the day here like many do. If I could do it all over again, I would definitely stay a few nights here. I just feel in love with this town and it's hues. It's honestly a photographers paradise. Whenever I go back to Morocco, because I know for sure I will make my way here again, I will make sure to spend the night here. Don't forget to check out my other Morocco blog posts - Tangier, Asilah, and Tetouan!

Getting Here.
There are many ways to get to Chefchaouen but it all depends from where you're coming from. Like I mentioned before Tangier was my home base during my eleven day Morocco trip. The way I got to Chefchaouen was through a local taxi. Something to note if you're going to travel the local way especially with taxi's it works a bit differently from what you maybe used to.

So in Tangier there is taxi meet up point where you'll find all the taxi's that are available and that's also where they take off.  You can either go there to a get private taxi or get into a taxi and wait for it to fill up with people to then leave to your end destination. Usually the people who end up in your taxi are going to the same end destination so there's no making multiple pit stops along the way. Also the earlier you go, you'll find local people there so you don't have to wait a long time to fill up the taxi as opposed to later on in the day. If you hire a private taxi obviously it will cost more than going the local way. It's totally up to you on which kind of taxi you prefer taking. You're dropped off a few blocks away from the actual blue city so keep that in mind as well.

Taking a bus is another mode of transportation to get into Chefchaoen. This option is affordable as well but this also depends from what city in Morocco you're departing from. CTM bus company is quite popular with tourists for getting around Morocco. They have great comfortable buses and safe drivers. I've heard the tickets sell our quickly, so I would recommend getting tickets in advance. There are other private bus companies that cover pick ups and departures from other areas of Morocco that CTM does not.

Why is the City Blue?
You may be wondering why Chefchaouen, the blue city in Morocco, is actually blue. The whole city has many pretty hues of blue and no, it's not just one particular area. I have never seen anything like this before so I was intrigued as to why they chose to paint everything this color. After asking around I did hear a few different stories as to why this is so here they are:

  • The Jewish community are thought to have been the originators of the blue concept. They introduced the distinctive blue color in 1942, once they took refuge here and they painted everything blue to replace the green of Islam. The Jewish community relocated to Casablanca or Israel after Morocco claimed independence.
  • Another story I heard was that the blue color helps cool off the city and the houses from the high mountain sun. In the summer months I can attest that it gets really hot here so if you're not a fan of heat, I would recommend coming during another season!
  • And the last story i heard was that color blue helps keep the mosquitos away. Looking back I didn't get bit by any mosquitos while I was there. I'm  always getting bit no matter where I go so many there is something there with this story.

Exploring the Town.
The only thing to do in Chefchaouen is truly explore! This is a very laid back town, pretty easy to navigate, and filled with the most kindest hospitable people. For every turn you make you're just surprised with beauty and picturesque surroundings. Go look through the medina, do some local shopping, try out the many different restaurants, hike to get epic views at the Spanish mosque, check out a waterfall, and just take take countless photos!

Because Chefchaouen is getting more popular with tourists around the world, there are a few spots around the city that require you to pay some money to take photos there. Yes you read that right, it's a thing here. There's one specific alleyway that is perfectly "curated" for an Instagram shot that you probably of see on your feed a couple of times or a perfectly patio style area with pretty decor. But I can assure you, you'll find gems all around this city in every corner that are completely free.

When taking photos around this city keep in mind to be respectful. Not everyone wants their photo taken, so if you want photos with locals, just ask first. For the ladies, please dress respectfully. Like I mentioned before this is a more remote town and although they welcome tourism, you don't want to offend anyone with the way you're dressed. Here are a few snap shots I took during my time there.

Chefchaouen Morocco Tips

Chefchaouen Morocco Breakfast

Chefchaouen Morocco Medina

Chefchaouen Morocco Blogger

Chefchaouen Morocco Views

Moroccan Doors

Chefchaouen Morocco Henna


Chefchaouen Morocco Shopping

Chefchaouen Morocco Doors

Chefchaouen Morocco Travel Guide

Chefchaouen Morocco Alleys

Chedchaouen Morocco

Traveling to Chefchaoen Morocco for the first time

Chefchaouen Morocco Medina

Chefchaouen Morocco Locals

Chedchaouen Morocco

Chefchaouen Morocco Travel Guide

YoutubeVideo.

Comment below,
Have you ever heard of this blue city of Morocco?

88 comments

  1. That is utterly beautiful. It looks like something right out of a fairy tale! Everywhere you look, you see gorgeous blue and amazing buildings!

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  2. wow this looks really pretty. Will have to put this on my bucket list for sure!

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  3. My favorite color is blue! This would be amazing to see in person, thanks for sharing these great photos.

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  4. Wow! It is a beautiful city. I love all the photos you took, and I hope I can see it for myself one day.

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  5. Such a gorgeous city and love all of the beautiful, vibrant blue! Definitely makes me want to book a trip out there ASAP!

    Kileen

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    1. Honestly same haha, I would jump on a plane just to come here again!

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  6. Wow. This looks like the most beautiful and also most instagrammable place I think I have ever seen! *adds the blue city to her travel bucket list

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    1. It is beyond instagrammable, seriously in every corner you turn you can take a great photo!

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  7. Yes to everything on this list! Chefchaouen, Morocco looks like a MUST SEE and DO that should be on everyone's bucket list. I have added it to mine.

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  8. Oh my goodness! I’m sure the photos doesn’t do it justice! So beautiful!

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    1. Once you see it with your own eyes, you'll be blown away as well!

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  9. I kinda thought you were "joking" when you said it was the Blue City, but you're serious: it's ALL blue!! That's incredible! I love the different theories as to *why* it's all blue too. I also loved learning about how the taxi system works there. It seems like such a neat place to visit, and I'm so glad you got to!

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  10. Omg this is like a fairy tale absolutely gorgeous. This names me want to go!

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  11. This looks like the coolest place to go visit!

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  12. I have never heard of this blue city before. It's absolutely beautiful and your pictures represented the city well. I'm glad you got to include this city on your tour. Thank you for sharing something that I had no idea existed.

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    1. Thank you so much! Hope you have the chance to see it with your own eyes some day :)

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  13. you are killing me. there is snow outside my window right now and i'm freezing. this looks amazing! i want to be there right now. i love it!

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  14. Wow!This is absolutely amazing. I love all of the different shades of blue! I hadn't heard of this place before -- thank you for sharing!

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    1. So glad you learned about a new place through my blog!

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  15. This is really amazing this is the first time am hearing of this

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  16. My goodness Morocco is beautiful. And your photos are wonderful.

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  17. I had no idea it was so beautiful. Thank you for the trip through your gorgeous pictures!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, I tried my best to capture the beauty of this city!

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  18. BEAUTIFUL!!!!! How is it that I have never heard of this city before? Such a marvel.

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  19. I'm always up for some blue vibes. Chefchaouen looks perfect. :)

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  20. Wow! That place looks so neat! So interesting to learn why they paint everything blue!

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  21. Such an incredible city, and you have really nice pictures here

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  22. My God this place is so awesome and beautiful. I will add this to my bucket list

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  23. Chefchaouen city is awesome. I have not heard about it before, but I can share with you one more city. It is Jaipur in India which is also famous and named as Blue City.

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  24. When I think of going to Morocco, I usually think of Casablanca and Rabat. But this gives an awesome new dimension for my future vacation planning. Thanks.

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    1. Yes those are more popular cities tourists usually go to. But if you just drive a little more north you'll find awesome places to explore :)

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  25. Nice!! I love how bright and cool it all looks despite the heat. If the blue helps ward off mozzies I might have to redecorate everything and live in a blue place too. I haaate getting bitten!

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    1. Totally, might have to paint everything blue in the summer time haha!

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  26. Wow, so beautiful. I love how colorful Morocco seems to be. I can't wait to actually make it there myself.

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    1. Honestly, you will love it! Morocco is just a beautiful country that I recommend everyone travel to.

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  27. I love this city because blue is my favorite color! I have to check this out someday!

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  28. Oh my goodness, this looks like the best place to visit! So gorgeous!

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  29. Wowww this looks like the coolest city I ever seen! Sounds like an interesting city to visit and looks so pretty!

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  30. I haven't been in Chefchaouen, Morocco! It looks like a very pretty place. I hope to see it soon with my friends.

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  31. Oh wow! I wish I would've visited Chefchaouen when I was in Morocco! This looks gorgeous.

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  32. Your photos are simply stunning - they capture the essence of chefchaouen perfectly. I loved my time their too so thank you for reminding me of it!

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  33. I like you have had this on my list for so long. I hope to visit real soon. I didn’t know about the story behind the ‘blue’ - interesting facts (or fiction) - who cares it is a photogenic backdrop.

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    1. Those were the different variations I heard from the locals but I guess it's a mixture of all stories haha.

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  34. What an amazing post, Stephanie! I love the colors of blue and all different shades. I’m definitely adding it to my list of places to visit!

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  35. Oh my word, all of the differing blues come together in one specatular design, what an amazing place to visit and see in person

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  36. It is so pretty! I always see pictures of this town pop up on my Instagram (and even had three friends visit last year). I have always wondered why it's blue so thank you for sharing the history!

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  37. Wow, those pictures are incredible. Loved the article and looking forward to future posts!

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  38. Chefchaouen looks so charming! Those blue streets look unreal - great pictures! I'll need to keep Chefchaouen in my list when I get a chance to visit Morocco.

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  39. This one's on my list, for sure! Beautiful photos!!

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  40. Now that is the neatest thing I've seen all week! Love how it's all blue.

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  41. Your photos of the blue city are gorgeous. I would love to visit Chefchaouen and explore it for myself too. I can't believe you have to pay money to take photos in certain places!

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  42. I've been dying to visit this gorgeous blue city but this is my first time finally learning about the history behind. Can't believe the blue is thought to keep mosquitoes away, but hey, I guess it works!

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  43. It is a nice guide on Chefchaouen. Blue homes looks real attractive. Morocco seems to be a very colourful country

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  44. Visiting Morocco has been on our bucket list for some time now! Seeing the incredible photos and after reading your detailed post, I'm inspired to plan a trip to Chefchaouen soon. It was so interesting to read the details in your post about why the city is blue. I would love to spend a few nights in this city to get the chance to discover it at a more leisurely pace. Thanks for sharing all these details.

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  45. GREAT post! I have been putting this bucket list! So glad I found this post!!

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  46. Wow this is stunning!!! I love how blue it all is. Great photos and great video. I felt like I was on the trip with you.

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  47. I went to Marrakech and Fez, but never Chefchouen! I really want to see more of Morrocco! Such a gorgeous country!

    xo Deborah
    Coffee, Prose, and Pretty Clothes

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  48. Looks like such a fun place to visit!

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