Chefchaouen’s medina is one of the loveliest in Morocco. Small and uncrowded, it’s easy to explore, with enough winding paths to keep you diverted, but compact enough that you’ll never get too lost. Most of the buildings are painted a blinding blue-white, giving them a clean, fresh look, while terracotta tiles add an Andalucian flavour.
The heart of the medina is the shady, cobbled Plaza Uta el-Hammam which is lined with cafes and restaurants, all serving similar fare. This is a peaceful place to relax and watch the world go by, particularly after a long day of exploration. The plaza is dominated by the red-hued walls of the kasbah and the adjacent Grande Mosquée . Noteworthy for its unusual octagonal tower, the Grande Mosquée was built in the 15th century by the son of the town’s founder, Ali ben Rachid, and is closed to non-Muslims. The kasbah is a heavily restored walled fortress that now contains a lovely garden, a small Ethnographic Museum , and an even smaller art gallery , currently being restored. The ethnographic museum contains some fascinating views of old Chefchaouen, including the plaza and the kasbah; the gallery promotes the work of local artists.