Location on the map of Northern Morocco

Talassemtane National Park: Hiking in the Rif Mountains

Morocco is a country full of charm and history. From the bustling medinas to the majestic Atlas Mountains, there are countless reasons why this country is a must-visit destination.

One of the hidden gems of Morocco is the Talassemtane National Park, located in the Rif Mountains. The park offers a unique opportunity to explore the natural beauty of the Northern Morocco while experiencing the local culture and history.

Rif mountains under Chefchaouen

Photo: Rif mountains under Chefchaouen.


Chefchaouen, also known as “the blue city of Morocco”, is a picturesque city placed in the Rif Mountains. The city is famous for its blue buildings and streets, which create a surreal and tranquil atmosphere. Chefchaouen’s medina is a maze of narrow alleyways and streets that lead to hidden squares and corners. The medina is actually the heart of the city, and it is where the local culture and history come alive.

Getting to Chefchaouen is relatively easy. The city is at about 110 kilometers from Tangier, so it´s easy to get to. You can get by bus or take a private car, or hire a driver to get you there. Each of these options will be a good one.

Chefchaouen: The Blue Pearl

Chefchaouen is often referred to as “the blue pearl of Morocco” due to its blue-painted buildings and streets. The city’s blue color may have its origin from the Jewish community that lived there in the 1930s. This community painted their buildings blue to symbolize the sky and heaven, and the tradition has since been adopted by the rest of the city.

Chefchaouen’s blue buildings and streets are one of the main attractions here

Chefchaouen. Morocco

When in Chefchaouen, you can explore the city’s medina, hike in the surrounding Rif Mountains, or visit historical landmarks such as the Royal Palace Dar El Makhzen. This city is known for its traditional crafts, such as pottery, weaving, and embroidery, which can be found in the local markets and shops.


The name “medina” comes from the Arabic word “madina”, which means “city”. This term is commonly used to refer to the old, walled part of a North African city or an old city in Morocco. The medina is typically the historic center of the city and contains important landmarks, such as mosques, palaces, and markets. In Chefchaouen, the medina is one of the main attractions and is where you will experience the local culture and history.

The medina in Chefchaouen is a very good example of traditional Moroccan architecture and design. It is located in the center of the city and you can get there by several entrances.

Medina is the old part of a city in Morocco that has a fortified wall and a maze of streets

Medina in Morocco


The Rif Mountains are a range of mountains located in the Northern part of Morocco. These mountains are known for their stunning natural beauty, with lush valleys, rivers, and forests. They are also home to many small cities and villages, each with its own unique character and charm. The region is known for its traditional crafts, such as pottery, weaving, and embroidery.

With an elevation of nearly 2,000 meters above sea level, the trails winding through these mountains offer expansive views and are predominantly adorned with cedar trees. Diverging from the more frequented Atlas Mountains, these peaks lack heavily trodden paths and an abundance of visitors, giving you the opportunity to witness an unexplored landscape of grand proportions. If you are an avid hiker, you will experience a truly back-country side of the North Morocco.

Since they are close to villages and cities, you can venture far away but without departing from the comforts of Moroccan culture and hospitality.

As the Rif Mountains lie close to villages and cities, embarking on an adventure in this region gives you the possibility to explore distant landscapes without departing from the familiar comforts of Moroccan culture and the welcoming hospitality.

If you are keen in hiking, include the Rif Mountains in your travel itinerary for an immersive experience in Morocco

Mount Toubkal Trek

Hiking in The Rif Mountains

The Rif Mountains offer some of the best hiking opportunities in Morocco. The region has a variety of trails, ranging from easy walks to challenging treks. One of the most popular hiking trails in the region is the Rif Valley Mountains Hike. This trail starts in Chefchaouen and takes you through the park’s most beautiful spots, including Ras el Ma and the Khandak Semmar.

Of you are a more experienced hiker, the Rif Mountains 20 may be a good option as it is a challenging 20-kilometer trail that takes you through the park’s most remote areas. You´ll enjoy some breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and valleys while you experience the wilderness of the park.


Ras el Ma is a small city from the Rif Mountains, near Chefchaouen. This city is famous for its natural springs and it became a popular destination for hikers and nature lovers. Besides, Ras el Ma is home to the Khandak Semmar, a historical site that played an important role in Morocco’s fight for independence.

Another popular hiking trail is the Ras el Ma Hike, which starts in the city of Ras el Ma and leads you through the park’s stunning natural landscapes, including waterfalls and forests. The trail is good for any hike level, so why not give it a try?

Hiking in the Rif Mountains means passing through small cities and villages and enjoy the traditional Moroccan life

Mount Toubkal Trek


The Talassemtane National Park is a protected area from the Rif Mountains, in Morocco. The park covers a very big area and it is home to a variety of wildlife, including Barbary macaques, wild boars, and gazelles, and for its stunning natural landscapes, including waterfalls, valleys, and forests, with many trails leading to the park’s most beautiful spots.

Hiking is one of the most popular activities in Talassemtane National Park, with numerous trails and routes available for any hike level. Some of the most popular trails include the Akchour Waterfalls Trail, the God’s Bridge Trail, and the Mount Toubkal Trek, which is the highest peak in North Africa. The park is open year-round, although the best time to visit is from May to October when the weather is milder.

Talassemtane National Park is a popular destination for hiking and trekking, and also for camping, birdwatching, and mountain biking


Discover the breathtaking beauty of the Rif Mountains in the Talassemtane National Park! Lace up your hiking boots and embark on an unforgettable adventure with lush forests, waterfalls, and stunning mountain views. Immerse yourself in nature’s wonders and experience the thrill of hiking through many diverse landscapes.

Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or a nature enthusiast, this is your chance to explore the untamed beauty of the Rif Mountains. Step into the wild and let Talassemtane National Park be your gateway to an extraordinary hiking experience!

Medina in Morocco

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