I’m sorry to inform you, but packing for Morocco is about as tough as it gets!
Yup having everything you need for this hugely diverse North African nation can be a real suitcase struggle if you’re planning to do and see as much there as I did!
Because from hiking in high altitude (and possibly snowy) mountains to basking on the beach (and possibly surfing the large Atlantic waves) Morocco’s diversity is off the scale.
And that’s not to mention the Sahara desert trips you can do here, the ancient UNESCO listed cities you can tour and the amazing traditional valleys and villages you can while away days at too.
Yes Morocco sure does cram a lot into its borders and with such a range of climates, altitudes, terrains and activities on offer, it can be really hard to pack for.
Plus we also need to remember the more conservative levels of clothing you may feel more comfortable wearing in parts of the country too.
However if all this has you feeling slightly overwhelmed about what to pack and what to wear in Morocco, fear not – this post is for you!
Written by someone whose been there, done that (and all care of a 40l backpack too by the way) I’m happy to bring you my complete guide to ensuring you are properly prepared, dressed and packed for an epic trip to Morocco.
Let’s get stuck in…
- 21 Top Things To Do in Morocco
- Solo Female Travel in the Middle East : What To Expect
- Morocco Itinerary : The Best 2 Week Plan
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What Female Travellers Should Wear in Morocco
The general rule for female travellers when it comes to what to wear in Morocco is layers.
The changes in temperatures across the country, plus its variation in seasons, make layers, which can easily be taken on and off, the best option here.
The other thing to remember is the Islamic culture in Morocco.
While no way near as conservative as other countries I’ve visited, such as Sudan, the vast majority of women in Morocco still dress very modestly.
In terms of what to wear in Morocco (and if you’ve already travelled in the Middle East and are looking for a benchmark), I’d suggest Morocco is less conservative than Jordan, but more conservative than Lebanon or Turkey.
Female travellers in Morocco certainly do not have to cover their heads (in fact many local women don’t either), but I’d certainly advise packing many clothes that extend to the knee or below.
Having your arms exposed is ok, but I’d aim to have your shoulders and chest covered by most of the clothes you pack.
The exception here is at the coast, which is far more liberal and relaxed.
As a result, sarongs or thin scarves are a great option when travelling in Morocco as they are so versatile, compact and light. They are also perfect for throwing over a strappy top to ensure your shoulders and chest are covered… plus your head too if needs be.
Evening wear certainly isn’t a must for Morocco as alcohol drinking and partying is not a big thing here (although it’s not illegal, it’s not common) so you’re unlikely to be going out or needing many smart clothes.
At least that’s one thing you don’t have to worry about!
Ditto heavy make-up, which is rare among women here and will be a nightmare in the heat.
In terms of shoes, when it comes to what to wear in Morocco, I really do think you can limit yourself to 3 pairs:
- 1 pair of comfy trainers / runners that can be used for exploring cities or on short walks / sightseeing trips
- 1 pair of good support sandals like Birkenstocks that can be worn in villages or at the coast
- 1 pair of hiking boots that can be worn on big walking days or in the desert at night
In my opinion, pumps, dress sandals, evening footwear or anything with a heel are definitely not required when travelling in this country.
Learn more in my top 9 tips for female travellers in Morocco; otherwise, read on to discover my complete packing checklist below…
1x Windproof Rain Jacket
While Morocco is certainly warm for most of the year, during the spring / autumn / winter months it can get a bit fresh, especially in the north.
You’ll also need a jacket if you’re heading to the mountains at any time of year and ditto the desert, where evening temperatures plummet no matter the time of year.
As such, I definitely advise bringing a good rain jacket with you – ideally one that is windproof as this will come in very handy at night.
Something compact but practical when it comes to rain jackets is best when considering what to wear in Morocco and this North Face Venture 2 is perfect for the job, especially as it comes in black meaning it goes with anything!
1x Thick Hoodie / Sweater
Ditto the thin sweater or hoodie you’ll need when it comes to keeping warm in those desert or mountain regions of Morocco.
Here, temperatures can drop at night at any time of the year and this is especially true if you’re camping out there.
Even the Rif Mountains in the north can call for some thick layers of an evening at most times of the year so be prepared!
3x Cotton Long-Sleeved Top
Morocco is a conservative country and while women travellers certainly aren’t expected to wear a headscarf (it’s not that conservative), I’d definitely advise at least taking a few tops that cover your arms for when you’re walking around cities, towns or in more traditional villages.
I did occasionally wear T-shirts when I was travelling in Morocco, especially in the more touristy areas such as at the coast, but generally always felt more comfortable with longer-sleeved tops in city and town areas.
Longer-sleeved tops are a must if visiting any religious buildings.
Given the warm climate in most parts of Morocco, thin layers are best and cotton (or other natural fibres) are a great way to go if you want to stay cool and sweat-free.
Make sure none of the tops you pack exposes your cleavage or stomach.
7x Singlets / T-Shirts
Choose a range of colours and styles that match the trousers you’ve selected, including more T-shirts which cover your shoulders and your cleavage.
Generally I didn’t feel comfortable wearing sleeveless singlets in Morocco except under a longer-sleeved top / sarong wrap, or when at the beach.
7 tops is a good number if you’re travelling in Morocco for a 1 to 2 weeks as, given the heat in many regions, you’re unlikely to be able to wear them twice without a wash!
2x Thin Trousers / Hareem Pants
While T-shirts may be ok to wear in Morocco, I certainly didn’t feel comfortable wearing anything above the knee and, as such definitely recommend you bring 2-3 pairs of thin trousers or hareem pants when considering what to wear in Morocco.
For men, hiking pants might be a good option – thin and versatile is really the key.
You’re likely to wear thin trousers / pants most days in Morocco when sightseeing, in towns or cities or in the desert.
Steer clear of skinny jeans or anything thick or heavy in my opinion – the temperatures here are too high and you’ll feel uncomfortable.
1-2x Pair Leggings
One of my travel essentials, especially ideal when you’re exploring out in the beautiful nature of Morocco, such as hiking in the Atlas Mountains, the Valleys and Gorges.
Leggings are also good for female travellers in North Africa because they can be worn under a casual dress, which is a great option when sightseeing or enduring any bus rides.
A thin black pair of leggings will easily match most things and keep you cool.
As always, I recommend bamboo leggings from Boody, which I literally wouldn’t travel anywhere without these days.
If you’re male and / or not into leggings, pack extra trousers instead.
1-2x Pair of Shorts
The number of shorts you’ll need to pack for Morocco, or indeed if you’ll need to pack any at all, will depend entirely on how long you are planning to spend at the coast.
If the answer to this is no time at all, then leave out the shorts altogether.
If you’re spending a lot of time (or nearly all your time) at the coast then 2 pairs of shorts, or possibly more, might be a good idea.
If you’re hitting the coast for 3-5 days, then 2 pairs should do it.
Anything less than 3 days and you can potentially get away with just 1 pair of shorts and the summer dress I recommend below…
1x Summer Dress / Tunic
A great item if you choose to go to a coastal area in Morocco such as Essaouira, Agadir or Taghazout.
Ladies, I suggest packing 1 dress for your travels in Morocco because it can also be worn over the leggings for sightseeing as I recommend above.
You should never travel anywhere with a sarong in my opinion, especially as they are so light and versatile, and Morocco is no exception!
Perfect for using as a beach towel at the coast, a scarf in the desert, a shoulder wrap in a city, or a headwrap if entering any religious buildings … the list goes on and on.
Check out my post about the 20 reasons why you should always take a sarong travelling for more ideas about why a sarong is certainly on my list of what to wear in Morocco.
Consider bringing 2 if you have the space, or swapping 1 out for a scarf that can be worn around the neck or on the head to cover your hair.
7x Pairs Underwear
Small and compact, 7 pairs of underwear is a good number if you’re thinking about how many to pack for Morocco!
2x Bras + 1x Sports Bra
I’d advise a sports bra for any hiking you may be doing or more active adventures too – think camel riding in the desert!
1x Bikini / Swimwear
Well you need something to wear while surfing or enjoying the beach at one of Morocco’s many fabulous coastal spots.
4x Pairs Socks
2x normal -ength hiking pairs for outdoors stuff, 2x ankle-length pairs for city / sightseeing days.
Hiking socks like these are great at stopping you getting blisters… and yes they really work!
You can always double up on your daywear here to save room if needs be!
See, those leggings come into their own again, especially in the desert and mountains where it gets cold at night and you’ll def need more layers than you thought!
1x Sun Hat
Whether you want to bring a cap or a floppy, large number, the choice is yours.
Just make sure you bring a sun hat of some description because walking all day in cities or around ruins in Morocco’s heat can be tough!
This black cap from Nike makes for a good, versatile choice for thinking about what to wear in this country, especially if you’re going out hiking.
If you’re visiting this country during the cooler months, then a warm hat for early mornings in the mountains or for any camping would be advised too.
1x Pair Hiking Boots
Essentially, if you want to enjoy any hiking in the High Atlas Mountains, boots are necessary.
They also a good idea if you’re heading out into the desert for a night – trust me!
I love my North Face hiking boots which are lightweight and super comfy.
1x Pair Trainers / Runners
Versatile, comfortable and essential if you want to see all the sights in this epic country, a pair of runners or trainers are a must on this Morocco packing list.
I highly recommend a pair from New Balance who create stylish city runners that you can still wear when doing your outdoors stuff too.
1x Pair Sandals
Personally I love my Arizona Birkenstocks, which I basically lived in during my time in Morocco.
The support they offer means you can sightsee to your heart’s content in them and never get sore soles.
1x Thin Toiletries Bag
To hook or not to hook, that is the question!
Either way just make sure it is light and thin.
This one is a great, cheap option.
1x Shampoo & Conditioner
I also go for shampoo and conditioner bars when I travel to save the plastic and keep the space down!
Although they are a bit pricey, they last for ages.
Say goodbye to mid-travel spillages and bulky bottles people, this is the future!
1x Anti-Bacterial Soap
My top tip here is to keep your soap in a ziplock bag to prevent soap slime getting on everything you own!
I suggest an anti-bacterial bar as they are great for keeping you clean in warmer climates where you’re likely to be sweating a bit!
I always pack a natural crystal deodorant as they last forever (great if you’re travelling for a few months) and are free from nasty chemicals.
1x Body Moisturiser
The climate in parts of Morocco is unbelievable dry, so slap the moisturiser on like no tomorrow!
1x Face Cleanser, Toner & Moisturiser
Great for bringing your skin back to life after days in the desert or the salty ocean!
1x Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Floss
1x Razor & Spare Blades
1x Nail Scissors & Nail File
Cotton Buds / Pads
Glasses / Contact Lenses if you wear them
1x Natural Sunscreen
Choose a 30 SPF or higher for those super-strong summer rays in Morocco and go natural if you can to keep the chemicals out of your skin.
This Blue Lizard natural sunscreen is great and really works.
1x Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera doubles as a great moisturiser, soother and aftersun – it’s a travel must for me!
1x SPF Lip Salve
Very important for those strong UV rays and dry, desert conditions.Burt Bees are always my go-to as they never dry out my lips and are full of natural goodness!
1x Tiger Balm
An ideal remedy for headaches, sore muscles and insect bites, tiger balm is super versatile.
1x Tea-Tree Essential Oil
A powerful antiseptic, anti-mould and anti-fungal treatment, tea tree oil is also great to throw in with your washing or to freshen up smelly bags / laundry etc – just a few drops will do it!
Get an organic tea-tree oil if you can.
1x Eye Mask & Earplugs
Key for sleeping in hostels or on long bus rides, especially any overnight journeys in Morocco, this eye mask from Alaska Bear is super comfy and a real treat for the eyes.
1x Box Paracetamol, 1x Anti-Septic Cream & 1x Box Band Aids
The only medicine you need to take!
There’s so many pharmacies in this country you’ll be able to get almost anything you need out there!
1x Moon Cup / Diva Cup
The best way to deal with your time of the month when travelling ladies.
Check out the best prices here.
1x 40l Osprey Backpack
This whole packing list for what to wear in Morocco should fit easily into a 40l backpack – I never travel with anything bigger and love this great Farpoint option from Osprey.
If you’re looking a good wheeled, compact suitcase instead, then check out this one, which gets great reviews.
1x Travel Towel
I recommend Latrek when it comes to the best travel towel, because they are cheap, compact, soft and don’t smell.
Love, love, love mine.
Read a full review here.
1x Day Pack
Good for hiking and sightseeing days, this one from Osprey is perfect for the job and allows you enough room to pack your water bottle too.
1x Notebook & Pen
Morocco is a country that will inspire, so make sure you’re able to capture it at all times!
1x Combination Padlock
Very useful for locking up bags and valuables when staying in hostels, these don’t have to be expensive, just reliable!
Best to get TSA-approved ones in case of any hassle at the airport.
1x Pair UV Sunglasses
A must for those strong sunny rays… ahhhh I can feel them now!
1x Filter Water Bottle
I bought a Life Straw Go Water Filter Bottle for my trip to Morocco and have never looked back!
The clever technology in this bottle means you can safely drink the tap water anywhere as the amazing filter takes out 99.9% of bacteria!
Great for your wallet and the environment, say goodbye to plastic mineral water bottles forever.
Great for doing emergency washing, such as underwear in a sink, travel handwash is always a must when I backpack anywhere.
1x Laptop / Tablet
Every hostel in Morocco has free wifi, so bring your own device and surf away!
1x Smartphone & Headphones
Taking your smartphone to stay in touch with those at home, check maps, book accommodation and upload some pics while you’re in Morocco is a great idea.
Also download some audiobooks and music onto your phone before you leave home – a great idea to be prepared if the wifi isn’t very strong.
I recommend Amazon Audible and Spotify Premium for these purposes and wouldn’t travel without either these days.
Portable Power Pack
Portable power packs are great when travelling without a solidly reliable charging source, like in Morocco, where power cuts can be a thing!
Power packs are also good if you’re out sightseeing all day and worried about your phone or camera battery lasting.
I recommend this Anker Powercore– it’s light, affordable and can charge my iPhone 7 around 5 times!
1x Camera, Lens, Spare Battery & Charger
I love my Sony A600 mirrorless camera, which I’ve used across Morocco and beyond.
Light, compact and sturdy, it’s perfect for travelling.
A GoPro Hero is also a great idea to help capture the more active adventures you might have in Morocco such as hiking, camel riding or surfing.
1x Memory Card
Take a large memory card if possible – like a 64GB one.
Might not be a bad idea to double up in case you lose it or fill it up either.High-speed memory cards are also good for better processing times.
How are you going to charge otherwise?
Morocco has the same type of plugs as Europe, so get a Skross World Adapter that won’t fail you!
1x Headlamp & Spare Batteries
Never travel without a headlamp and try to choose a product that uses commonly found batteries and has a red night light function.
I love my Black Diamond Storm, which served me very well during Morocco’s power cuts or when camping out in nature!
Passport & Photocopies
Definitely take a colour copy of your passport with you to Morocco and keep it with you at all times.
Taking a photo and storing it safely on your phone is also a good idea.
Depending where you’re from of course, this one is key is required.
Always good to have with you wherever you travel.
Travel Insurance Policy
Can’t go wrong with the excellent travel insurance from World Nomads in my opinion.
I’ve used them during my travels in Morocco and across Africa / the Middle East and love their great policies which give excellent coverage and peace of mind!
Credit Cards and Debit Cards
If you’re from the UK, the Starling Banking app can provide you with a current account and debit card that doesn’t charge you for transactions or ATM withdrawals abroad – winner!
Hidden Cash in Small Thin Purse
PIN IT TO PINTEREST!
So that’s it, my complete guide for what to wear in Morocco and other things to pack to ensure you enjoy the best trip possible in this country.
Do you have any questions about my Morocco packing list?
Please drop them into the comments box below and I’ll get straight back to you.