Morocco Travel Information, Health & Safety Tips
Morocco is one of the few countries in Africa where it is not necessary to get vaccinations in order to travel. Nevertheless, if you have not received Typhoid or Hepatitis A shot in the past, it is advisable to get them. Please also inquire with your doctor to make sure you are up to date with your polio and tetanus vaccines. If you are from a country where cholera is prevalent, an anti- cholera vaccination certificate may be required. Morocco is a country where your health is not in danger when you travel. As long as you follow Discovery Sahara Tours Morocco’s instructions with regards to traveling safely in our About Morocco section the worst you can anticipate experiencing is an upset stomach or dryness, due to weather conditions, if you have sensitive skin.
With the exception of a few rare cases near Mauritania, Morocco is a malaria free country. Malaria is present in the northern, coastal areas of the country but is not a major problem. Take the usual precautions against being bitten (light colored clothing, insect repellent, etc) and if you are really worried see your doctor about anti-malarial medication before your departure.
Morocco Travel Tips For Food and Water
Make sure to drink bottled water only during your travels in Morocco. It is important to be careful with what you eat or drink because many travelers in Morocco get diarrhea at some point during their trip.
Although Discovery Sahara Tours Morocco recommends trying Morocco’s street food to enhance your cultural experience, please be aware that there is risk in purchasing food from local street vendors as it may not always be cooked in the sanitary conditions your stomach is accustomed to. Safe places that many tourists frequent to try exotic foods are Djemma El Fna Square in Marrakesh, the Skala du Port in Essaouira and Port in Agadir. They are typically a safe bet as long as what ever you eat is thoroughly cooked.
Avoid uncooked fruits and vegetables when traveling in Morocco that you can not peel. Also, make sure to inform your guide regarding all restrictions, especially if spending time in a village, outside of major cities that any meat or fish you consume must be cooked thoroughly.
Avoid any food that is not prepared when you order it (i.e. buffets, etc). Usually fried and boiled foods are safe. Some travelers have also had problems with unrefrigerated condiments (such as mayonnaise) used in fast food outlets.
It is also advised not to drink tap water and especially encouraged that you stay away from the south’ s oueds (rivers) and do not buy from itinerant water sellers because bilharzia and schistosomiasis have long been a problem in south. Unless your guide let’s you know its okay, never drink from the mountain streams or swim in them. Also, you may want to keep purification tablets on hand.
If you do experience diarrhea, it is suggested that you only consume simple foods such as fresh baked bread, couscous and large amounts of bottled water. It is advisable to drink bottled water (check that the cap is sealed – some people might try to sell you tap water in recycled bottles). Be wary of ice or cordials that may be made with tap water. Some hotels provide free bottled water to guests and it’s wise to keep a supply in your room so as not to be tempted with tap water.
Morocco offers excellent bottled water such as Sidi Harazem, Immouzer and Sidi Ali. If you prefer sparkling water try Oulmès water. Oral re-hydration salts are good to take as well. Usually diarrhea is nothing to worry about and you can alleviate your symptoms by purchasing the equivalent of Imodium from a local French pharmacy. However, if symptoms persist for a week or get worse, you should seek professional help at on of Morocco’s local clinics or hospitals.
Morocco Travel Health Tips
The current health system is comprised of three sectors: a public sector consisting of both the Ministry of Public Health and the Health Services of the Royal Armed Forces, a semi-public sector, and a private sector. The World Health Organizations and UNICEF have helped prevent eye disorders and venereal diseases in Morocco.
As a traveler in Morocco you should understand that health conditions in Morocco are only somewhat better than that of a third world country. However, rest assured that the Moroccan health system is generally well developed in Morocco’s larger cities. Morocco’s urban areas and imperial cities have private hospitals that offer good doctors. However, for Moroccans living outside the large cities, it is more challenging to acquire medical attention as they must travel long distances to visit a doctor.
Morocco Weather and Climate
Morocco’s weather and climate conditions can sometimes make travelers sick due to the extreme heat in the summer months. It is possible that in the same day you will experience a bitter cold morning, followed by scorching hot afternoon and a chilly evening. To avoid getting sick always carry an extra warm layer of clothing with you. If you suffer from asthma, rheumatism, or liver problems you should consider avoiding the cities located on the Atlantic coast because the extreme range of climates there may aggravate your health problems. Regardless of your current health condition or where you are traveling within Morocco, make sure to drink plenty of water.
Dangerous Animals In Morocco
Snakes, scorpions and palm rats can attack if you are trekking, hiking, or camping. While it is rare to see these animals, upon preparing for your trip determine if these deadly creatures live in the area you will visit and read up on any necessary precautions. You can also ask your guide about these details and if you will be participating in a trek, your guide or Discovery Sahara Tours will let you know what to bring in advance of your travels.
Sexually Transmitted Diseases in Morocco
If you think you may have sex while you are in Morocco, be aware that AIDS, hepatitis and other sexually transmitted disease do exist. Please take all precautions and make sure to bring your own condoms.
Morocco Health Insurance
Although few travelers experience any severe medical problems in Morocco, full health insurance is recommended as it is better to be safe than sorry.
Morocco Travel Tips, Precautions During Your Vacation
Refresh yourself with the excellent bottled spring water: Sidi Harazem, Imouzzer and Sidi Ali are still waters, while Oulmès is sparkling.
If you are prone to intestinal problems, take an appropriate medicine with you. Make enquiries before swimming in a oued (river) or a lake.
Take precautions against insect bites and sunburn. If necessary, tourist offices and major hotels can put you in touch with doctors who speak English, French or other languages.
No vaccination certificate is required for visitors coming from Europe or America.
An anti- cholera vaccination certificate may be required of visitors coming from areas where this disease is prevalent.
Anti-malarial treatment is not necessary.