Destination Morocco Podcast

Destination Morocco Podcast

Join host Azdean Elmoustaquim as he takes you on an exploration of his country's distinct culture, vibrant history and stunning attractions. Azdean prepares you for the real Morocco, showing how to travel there, how to get around, what to expect and how to make the most of your time. We meet locals and guides, learn about costs and prices, safety, especially for female travellers, the kinds of scams to look out for in the bazaars, what languages to expect, and so much more. Destination Morocco plans customized travel itineraries to Morocco, including "FIT" and private tours, escorted tours and group tours. The goal is to help you enjoy Morocco like a native. Our podcast unpacks the mystery, opening up discovery of an amazing land. We invite you along for the journey.


February 21, 2024 26 mins

We conclude our cultural tour of Morocco with a performance of Gnaoua (also spelled Gnawa) music, recorded live on location at a Merzouga desert camp and at a Marrakech restaurant.

In between performances, Azdean sits down with Mohamed, a musician and member of the Gnaoua performers in Qser el Khamliya, a small village just south of Merzouga. Mohamed started playing when he was eight years old, and gives us some background...

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This episode is the audio replay of part our Destination Morocco live Q&A session, on Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2024.

You can find the full video version here on our YouTube channel.

Our live Q&A session this month focused on identifying useful phrases in Moroccan languages that travellers can use while in the country. As a very multilingual country, this means doing so in more than one language, which as we exp...

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Continuing on a bit further south from our last episode in Telouet, we follow Azdean on his summer tour down to Aït Ben Haddou, southern gateway to the High Atlas mountains and their stunning scenery and hiking. Aït Ben Haddou is a small town but is known for its traveller services, restaurants and accommodation, and its welcoming hospitality.

In this episode of Destination Morocco podcast, Azdean sits down with Mr. Mustap...

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We continue our exploration of Berber/Amazigh culture with a visit to Telouet, a small village deep in the High Atlas Mountains, known for its kasbah, trekking and beautiful scenery. Azdean met with local guide and historian Ali Ahdadi to delve into Berber influence in the area and activities for travellers passing through.

Telouet is a bit off the beaten path, hence why it was largely a secret until recently. But in reali...

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In today's episode of Destination Morocco podcast, Azdean, Hiba and Sam expand on the historical canvas and cultural fabric formed by the Amazigh, or Berber, tribes across North Africa.

Our focus is an overview of some of the more prominent tribes and communities, who have had a long and lasting impact on the region. Long before modern political borders, invaders and settlers, and contemporary languages and culture, these Amazi...

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This episode is the audio replay of our Destination Morocco live Q&A session, on Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2024.

You can find the video version here on our YouTube channel.

In this month's session, Azdean, Sam and podcast producer Ted, navigate the labyrinth of traveller scams in the bustling streets and markets of Morocco. With a focus that is as practical as it is necessary, they will equip you with the knowl...

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Who are the Moroccans?

To a large extent, the native population of Morocco are the Amazigh people, whose presence and influence date back thousands of years. Commonly known as “Berbers,” in fact their preferred term, “Amazigh,” is a more positive, inclusive name that means “the free people.” 

Speaking the Tamazight language, and pronounced similar to “A-ma-zirgh,” (with the “rgh” a soft guttural sound) Amazigh roots spread ...

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January 1, 2024 37 mins

You’ve spent a lot of money to get to Morocco, especially to see it thoroughly and comprehensively. And even more importantly, your trip is the culmination of months or years of dreaming, planning, research and preparation. 

We all know that unexpected things can happen, from getting sick to breakdowns or even just surprisingly poor customer service. But to sort out these problems, you’ll want to be in the hands of experie...

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One of the great travel stories we’ve heard from a guest on the podcast was just over a year ago now. It was with Rachel Metcalfe, for whom Morocco went from being a remote, distant idea to, a month later, sitting on the airplane on her way to Casablanca.

Destination Morocco took on the challenge of organizing her last-minute trip, and in this episode Rachel explains how that made all the difference in having an enjoyable,...

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This episode is the audio replay of our Destination Morocco live Q&A session, on Wednesday, Dec. 13.

You can find the video version here on our YouTube channel, with lots of visuals that go with the conversation.

In this month's session, Azdean and Sam answered your questions about Morocco's fabulous food and cuisine. You've likely heard at least a bit about tagines, pastillas, mint tea and of c...

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Over the course of many episodes of the podcast, we’ve often mentioned a certain guide based in Casablanca. He has had a lasting and indelible impact on those who have had the pleasure of meeting him. Our guests on the podcast, from Chantal to Pablo and even Ted have remarked on his knowledge, warmth and spirit.

Khalil Nejjary is his name, and when Azdean visited Casablanca and the incredible Hassan II Mosque this past sum...

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December 1, 2023 32 mins

Today's episode of Destination Morocco ponders the question of "What makes Morocco appealing?" What attracts people to Morocco, and what are their perceptions of the country before going there?

Naturally there are always stereotypes and assumptions that build up over time, and as Azdean points out in this episode, Europeans are inevitably more familiar with Morocco than North Americans due to their proximity...

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Continuing our recent theme of shopping, tipping and travelling safely in Morocco, today's episode features the Akhnif Glaoui Carpet Co-Operative, located just south of Aït Benhaddou and Ouarzazate, about 150 miles south of Marrakech.

Azdean visited this wonderful, genuine boutique back in June of this year, during the summer trip to Morocco, while on the Southern Morocco tour. It was here where he met Sarah, host an...

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This episode is the audio replay of our Destination Morocco live Q&A session, on Wednesday, Nov. 15.

You can find the video version here.

We get a lot of questions about safety and security in Morocco, once you are there and making your way through the souks, squares and even the restaurants.

Your Destination Morocco tour director is always there for guidance and advice, as well as your local guide, f...

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The culture of tipping in Morocco is something we get a lot of questions about, and indeed many people aren't sure if they should tip at all, or when, and how much. It can quickly get overwhelming and a little awkward, if you don't know what to expect.

Azdean is here today to set out a comprehensive guide to tipping when you're travelling in Morocco. The short answer is yes, tipping applies in many cases acr...

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November 1, 2023 36 mins

You've heard his baritone podcast voice for the past year and a half, and picked up bits and pieces of his story. But as we approach our 50th episode of Destination Morocco podcast, have you wondered, "How did Azdean come to live in Houston, and how did Destination Morocco get its beginnings?”

Azdean did in fact grow up in Marrakech, never imagining that he would wind up in the United States, raise a family, start business...

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Take yourself on a tour and gain new understanding for the beautiful country of Morocco on the Destination Morocco Podcast, available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and more. 

Our goal is to introduce you to the real Morocco, showing you how to prepare, what to see, what to expect and how to make the most of your time.

Join host Azdean Elmoustaquim as we meet locals and guides, learn about costs and prices, safety, the kinds of...

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One year ago exactly, Pablo Juarez and his partner Harmony were touring Morocco with Destination Morocco, experiencing incredible variety from Fès, Merzouga Desert, over the Atlas Mountains, through Ouarzazate and Aït Benhaddou, and ending up in Marrakech. 

After they got back home to Ottawa, Canada, we had Pablo on the podcast to talk about their trip, the amazing sights, and some surprising and unexpected discoveries alo...

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This episode is the audio replay of our Destination Morocco live Q&A session, on Wednesday, Oct. 11.

You can find the video version here.

In today's conversation with Azdean, Sam and podcast producer Ted, we'll focus on what's included in a typical Destination Morocco tour, how we go about building itineraries, and how we build from your preferences and priorities to shape a tour that works for ...

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October 11, 2023 28 mins

Watch the video version of this episode here:

Here at Destination Morocco, we receive questions all the time about how to prepare for a trip to Morocco and what to expect. We love being able to help out our fellow travellers and help you avoid the sense of shock, while preserving the sense of adventure, once you arrive in our homeland.

This episode is the first of a series that will an...

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