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  • Writer's pictureErin Paulsen

Chefchaouen || The Blue Pearl

Updated: Jul 21, 2020


If you've ever dreamt of visiting Morocco, I'm sure Chefchaoen was one of your must-visit locations.





Nestled cozily atop a crevice deep in the Northern hillside, this small little blue town is claimed to have been a refuge for a Jewish population seeking shelter long ago.


It's said that they painted the town blue in order to feel closer to heaven.


Winding our way through the pristine countryside on our bus ride there, I couldn't help but feel like I was traversing the hills of Andalucia or Piemonte, or some other Southern European landscape.







The scenery is so similar here, so lush, and one that absolutely takes my breath away. We arrived early to Chefchaoen and from the local bus station took a very quick like 2-minute taxi ride up to the backside of the hill where the old town is situated.


We had pretty clear directions from our Airbnb host, and despite feeling confident about following the directions, once you step into the labyrinth that is this part of town, you're almost guaranteed to get lost. Luckily our place was literally just around two corners from where we had been dropped off, and when we arrived there were two little old ladies there cleaning up the even tinier little house.


Apparently in Chefchaoen to clean your floors you just take giant buckets of water and dump them directly on to the floors making a huge pool-like puddle and then sweep all the water outside or down a drain. (Or so they did at our place.)



View from our terrace

We waited upstairs on the terrace and were promptly brought up fresh mint tea to sip on while the rest of our room and everything was prepared.


We had absolutely no plan for Chefchaoen except to wind and wander our way around the blue town ooh-ing and ahh-ing at every turn. We did this with much success, might I add.





We also got successfully lost the first day or so.


I believe Google maps works pretty well in the States, as far as my knowledge goes, but there are so many tiny, windy, back road towns out in the world where Google maps just doesn't equate nor detect really where you are. So we gave up trying to even use the map and just made our own mental map of the place instead. "After the crazy lamp shop under the bridge, we have to take the second left, where the lady weaving bracelets usually sits."


"Right at the second staircase after the really big blue door where the water fountain that doesn't work sits across from the door where we took the pictures yesterday."


It worked.





By day two we were cruising up and down and around like we knew what we were doing.


But really we were just two more tourists in a sea of other tourists mouths agape admiring the wonder of a perfectly sky-blue quiet little town.


We were in Chefchaoen for 3 days and admittedly ate at a delicious little Italian restaurant nearby for almost all of our proper meals.


I LOVE couscous and I can't imagine a life without it, but when it's basically the ONLY thing you've eaten for days, you get over feeling guilty real quick and dive right into some super tasty pizza and pasta.


One really nice thing to do while in The Blue Pearl is to make a short hike up across the adjacent hillside to watch the sunset. It was pretty hot and a pretty steep climb, but brief and easily accessible.

Once you reach the lookout point you'll find a small little mosque and a few vendors selling snacks and tea and juice for refreshment.





The sunsets behind old Chefchaeon and is a feast for the eyes.


10/10 recommend.


We didn't really do much else with our time here except relax, wander, take 1000 photos, drink tea, then coffee, then tea again, and try to get to sleep at a decent time because the absolute wildest prayer call will have you up way before dawn in the morning.


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