Midalt, Morocco

Reading Time: 7 minutes

Midalt, Morocco

Region: Midalt is located in the region of Drâa-Tafilalet, Morocco


Geographic Coordinates: 32.680000, -4.730000
Climate: Data not available.
Population: 55304
Language: Arabic

Midelt is a captivating city nestled in the heart of the Middle Atlas Mountains, Located in central Morocco. This picturesque town is situated at an elevation of 1, 508 meters (4, 948 feet) and offers visitors a unique blend of natural beauty and cultural heritage. Midelt serves as a gateway to the Sahara Desert and is known for its stunning landscapes, Friendly locals, And traditional Berber culture. One of the main attractions in Midelt is its awe-inspiring mountainous surroundings.

The city lies between two major mountain ranges: the High Atlas Mountains to the north and the Jebel Ayachi range to the south. These majestic peaks provide a breathtaking backdrop for outdoor enthusiasts who can indulge in activities like hiking, Trekking or simply enjoying panoramic views from various vantage points. The region surrounding Midelt also boasts several verdant valleys that are worth exploring. The Ziz Valley is particularly famous for its lush palm groves, Riverbeds dotted with small villages and ancient kasbahs (fortresses).

This valley offers visitors an opportunity to witness traditional agricultural practices still being carried out by local communities. In addition to its natural wonders, Midelt has preserved its rich Berber heritage over centuries. The town’s vibrant souks (markets) are bustling with traders selling traditional handicrafts such as carpets woven by skilled artisans using age-old techniques passed down through generations. Visitors can also immerse themselves in local culture by attending lively festivals featuring music performances and traditional dances. Food enthusiasts will find delight in sampling authentic Moroccan cuisine while visiting Midelt.

The town is renowned for its mouthwatering tagines cooked with locally sourced ingredients like lamb or chicken combined with aromatic spices such as saffron and cumin. Traditional mint tea served alongside sweet pastries provides a perfect ending to any culinary experience here. For those seeking spiritual solace or historical insights into Moroccan religious practices, There are several mosques scattered throughout Midelt. The most notable is the Mosque of Sidi Yahya, An ancient religious site that attracts pilgrims from far and wide. Midelt’s climate is characterized by hot summers and cold winters, Making it a year-round destination for travelers.

Whether you visit during the blooming spring season or the snowy winter months, Midelt promises a memorable experience filled with natural beauty, Cultural immersion and warm Berber hospitality.



Important Landmarks

  1. Atlas Mountains: Midelt is located in the foothills of the Atlas Mountains, offering stunning views and opportunities for hiking and trekking.
  2. Ziz Gorges: Located near Midelt, Ziz Gorges offer breathtaking landscapes with deep canyons and towering cliffs.
  3. Tizi-n-Talghemt Pass: This mountain pass provides access to beautiful valleys and traditional Berber villages.
  4. Dayet Aoua Lake: A picturesque lake situated at an altitude of 1,887 meters, offering birdwatching opportunities and scenic views.
  5. Moulouya River: The Moulouya River flows through the region, providing a serene setting for picnics or relaxation.
  6. Kasbah Myriem: A historic kasbah located in Midelt that showcases traditional Moroccan architecture.
  7. Fossil Exploration Sites: The region around Midelt is known for its rich fossil deposits dating back millions of years; several sites offer guided tours for fossil enthusiasts.
  8. Souk El Khemis Market: Visit this bustling weekly market where locals gather to sell fresh produce, handicrafts, textiles, spices, and more.

Please note that these attractions are based on information available about potential landmarks near or within the region surrounding Midalt.


Primary Industries

  1. Mining: Midelt is located in a region rich in mineral resources. It is known for its mining activities, particularly phosphate mining. The OCP Group, one of the world’s largest phosphate producers, operates mines and processing plants in the area.
  2. Agriculture: Agriculture plays a vital role in Midelt’s economy due to its fertile lands and favorable climate conditions. The region produces various crops such as apples, cherries, apricots, almonds, and olives.
  3. Tourism: Midelt serves as a gateway to the Middle Atlas Mountains and attracts tourists who visit for outdoor activities like hiking and trekking. Its proximity to natural attractions like Jbel Ayachi (the highest peak in the Middle Atlas) makes it an appealing destination.
  4. Handicrafts: Traditional crafts are an important part of Midelt’s economy. Local artisans produce carpets, pottery items, leather goods (such as bags and shoes), woodwork products like furniture and decorative items.
  5. Trading: Due to its strategic location between different regions of Morocco (including Sahara desert areas), Midelt serves as a trading hub for various goods such as agricultural products, minerals extracted from nearby mines, handicrafts produced locally or from other parts of Morocco.
  6. Construction materials: With ongoing urban development projects both within the city itself and surrounding areas; there is demand for construction materials such as cement blocks/bricks or steel reinforcement bars which leads to local production facilities being established or expanded.
  7. Transportation services: As a central point connecting different regions within Morocco; transportation services play an essential role here including road transport companies offering freight forwarding services or passenger buses connecting cities across Morocco.

These industries contribute significantly to the local economy by providing employment opportunities and generating income for residents of Midelt.


Noteable History

  1. Historical Events:
    • French Protectorate: During the early 20th century, Midelt, like the rest of Morocco, was under French colonial rule as part of the French Protectorate (1912-1956). This period significantly influenced the town’s political and social landscape.
  2. Notable People:
    • Ahmed Bouanani (1938-2011): Born in Midelt, Ahmed Bouanani was a renowned Moroccan writer and filmmaker. He is known for his contributions to Moroccan literature through his poetry collections and novels such as The Hospital and The Shutters. Additionally, he directed several experimental films.

Please note that due to its relatively small size and remote location compared to larger cities in Morocco like Marrakech or Fez, Midelt might not have as many historically significant events or famous individuals associated with it as other places do.


Museums and Things To See

  1. Kasbah Myriem: This beautiful kasbah is located in the heart of Midelt and offers a glimpse into traditional Moroccan architecture. It has stunning views of the surrounding landscapes.
  2. Tizi n’Talghaumt Pass: A scenic mountain pass near Midelt, offering breathtaking views of the Atlas Mountains and valleys. It’s an ideal spot for hiking or simply enjoying nature.
  3. Ziz Gorges: Located about 30 kilometers from Midelt, these impressive gorges offer dramatic rock formations and stunning landscapes that are perfect for photography enthusiasts.
  4. Fossil Museum (Musée des Fossiles): Situated in nearby Erfoud (around 80 kilometers from Midelt), this museum showcases an extensive collection of fossils found in the region, including dinosaur bones and ammonites.
  5. Dayet Aoua Lake: About 50 kilometers southwest of Midelt lies this picturesque lake surrounded by mountains. It’s a great place to relax, enjoy a picnic, or go bird-watching.
  6. Berber Villages: Take a day trip to explore some traditional Berber villages near Midelt like Imilchil or Timahdite to experience local culture and hospitality firsthand.

While these attractions may not be as well-known as those found in major cities like Marrakech or Fez, they offer unique experiences for travelers seeking tranquility and natural beauty amidst Morocco’s mountainous region.



Sports Teams

  1. Chabab Atlas Khénifra: This club represents the nearby city of Khénifra but may also have supporters or players from Midelt. It was established in 1946 and has achieved some success at the regional level.
  2. Union Sportive de Tighassaline: This club is based in Tighassaline, a town near Midelt. It participates in regional leagues and tournaments.
  3. Club Amis des Sports de Midelt: Also known as CASM, this local sports club likely has multiple sections for different sports including football.

It’s important to note that these clubs may have undergone name changes or merged with other clubs over time due to various reasons such as financial difficulties or lack of resources.

Overall, while there may not be prominent professional sports teams with extensive histories originating from Midelt itself, locals actively engage in various sporting activities through smaller clubs and organizations within their community.



Cultural Events

  1. Cherry Festival (Festival des Cerises): Held annually in June, this festival celebrates the cherry harvest in Midelt. It features various activities such as cherry picking, traditional music and dance performances, local food stalls, and a beauty contest.
  2. Honey Festival (Festival du Miel): This festival takes place in August to promote the local honey production. Visitors can enjoy honey tasting sessions, learn about beekeeping techniques, participate in cooking competitions using honey as an ingredient, and purchase different types of honey products.
  3. Almond Blossom Festival (Festival de l’Amandier en Fleurs): Celebrated during February or March when almond trees are in full bloom, this festival showcases the beauty of the blossoms through artistic displays and exhibitions. Traditional music performances and cultural activities are also organized.
  4. Cultural Week of Midelt: This event is held annually for a week during summer to showcase the diverse cultural heritage of Midelt. It includes traditional music concerts, dance performances representing different regions of Morocco, handicraft exhibitions, storytelling sessions by local elders, and culinary demonstrations.
  5. Date Festival (Fête de la Datte): Celebrated around September or October when dates are harvested in abundance from palm groves surrounding Midelt. The festival highlights date cultivation techniques through workshops and demonstrations while offering visitors opportunities to taste various date varieties.
  6. International Nomad Poetry Festival: Organized every two years since 2011 by the Association for Culture Promotion Talit, this festival brings together poets from different countries to celebrate nomadic culture through poetry recitals held at various locations across Midelt. These events offer unique insights into local traditions and provide opportunities for visitors to experience Moroccan culture firsthand while enjoying festive atmospheres filled with music, dance, food specialties, and artisanal products specific to the region.

Cuisine

  1. Tagine: This traditional Moroccan dish is a slow-cooked stew made with meat (usually lamb or chicken), vegetables, and aromatic spices.
  2. Couscous: A staple dish in Moroccan cuisine, couscous is made from semolina grains and typically served with vegetables and meat.
  3. Kefta: These are delicious Moroccan meatballs made from ground beef or lamb, mixed with herbs and spices.
  4. Pastilla: A savory pastry dish filled with layers of flaky phyllo dough, chicken or pigeon meat, almonds, eggs, and a blend of sweet spices.
  5. Mint tea: Morocco is famous for its mint tea tradition – a refreshing drink made by steeping green tea leaves with fresh mint leaves and sugar.

As for restaurants in Midelt where you can try these dishes:

  1. Restaurant Taddart: Known for its traditional Moroccan cuisine including tagines and couscous dishes.
    Address: Avenue Mohammed V، Midelt 54350
  2. Restaurant Kasbah Asmaa: Offers authentic Moroccan dishes like tagines, kefta skewers, pastillas as well as international options.
    Address: Avenue Hassan II، Midelt 54350
  3. Café Restaurant Al Waha: A cozy café offering local specialties like tagines along with sandwiches and pizza.
    Address: Rue de la Marche Verte، Midelt 54350
  4. La Rose des Sables Café & Restaurant Pizzeria: A popular spot serving a variety of cuisines including Moroccan dishes like couscous alongside pizza options.
    Address: Rue Ibnou Khaldoun، Quartier Ennasr – Hay Salam، Midelt 54351

Parks and Recreation

  1. Parc Municipal de Midelt: This public park is located in the heart of Midelt and offers a peaceful environment with beautiful gardens, benches, and walking paths.
  2. Tizi n’Talghemt: This mountain pass near Midelt provides an excellent opportunity for hiking enthusiasts to explore the surrounding Atlas Mountains.
  3. Jbel Ayachi: Located about 45 kilometers southeast of Midelt, Jbel Ayachi is a popular destination for mountaineering and trekking activities.
  4. Dayet Aoua Lake: Situated around 30 kilometers north of Midelt, this lake offers opportunities for fishing and bird-watching.
  5. Ziz Gorges: The nearby Ziz Gorges provide breathtaking views and are ideal for hiking or simply enjoying the natural beauty of the area.
  6. Horseback Riding: There are various horse riding tours available in Midelt that allow visitors to explore the surrounding countryside on horseback.
  7. Quad Biking: Adventurous travelers can rent quad bikes to explore the desert landscapes around Midelt at their own pace.
  8. Local Markets (Souks): Exploring local markets is always a vibrant experience in Morocco, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the local culture while shopping for traditional crafts, spices, textiles, and more.

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