Rabat Travel Guide
Mohammed V Avenue, Rabat © Nawalbennani
Rabat, Morocco's capital, is a modern city with wide boulevards and well-kempt gardens, and is for the most part a far cry from the frantic alleys of Marrakech and Fez. It is, however, no less steeped in history, once serving as a haven for the ruthless Barbary pirates, while its neighbouring city, Salé, dates back to Phoenician times.
The King of Morocco now lives in Rabat, making it the administrative capital. As a result the city is somewhat conservative and serious, but there is still colour to be found in the old part of the city, the Medina, and the Kasbah, where there is a more relaxed atmosphere and many of the chief tourist attractions can be found.
Recreational opportunities abound, with a world-renowned golf course (Royal Golf Dar Es Salam), a few lovely beaches, and some ancient ruins nearby. Rabat sits on the Atlantic coastal plain at the mouth of the river Bou Regreg, opposite Salé.
As Rabat is the capital of Morocco it tends to be the centre of any public dissatisfaction and visitors are advised to avoid any political gatherings or street protests while in the city; however, in recent years anti-government rallies in Rabat have tended to be peaceful and the city is currently considered safe for tourists.
Rabat has a mild and temperate climate: warm in summer (June to August), and cool during the winter (December to February). The average high in summer is 82°F (28°C) and winter temperatures drop to an average low of 46°F (8°C). The highest rainfall generally falls in November and December, with July and August being the driest months. The best time to visit Rabat is between April and November.