from my address book for the north of the country:
sleep: Dar Nour. The first and still the best riad in the city. It is like being a privileged guest at one of the city’s most desirable addresses.
shop: Laure Welfling boutique in Kasbah. 3, Place de la Kasba.
shop: Bizaar Tindouf. 64, rue de la Liberté.
or else: Boutique Majid. 66, rue des Chrétiens.
for fish: Saveurs de Poisson. Tiny. 2, Escalier Waller.
family dining: Casa d’Italia, the 50-year-old Italian dining club (it’s private but open to the public). An expat favorite.
books and art but also thé: Libraire Les Insolites.
people watching: Gran Café de Paris, of course.
wi-fi: Cinema Rif, one-time cinema now a refurbished coffeehouse.
read: Mohammed Mrabet.
Orientalism on the canvas: Delacroix and Matisse both painted the city.
excursion: Asilah, an hour south (see below)
stroll: the whitewashed, seaside medina. So quiet you can hear the sea.
join expats for lunch: Casa Garcia. On rue Moulay Hassa Ben el Medi. Call ahead for reservations: (212) 039 41 7465.
look for: Andalusian-style fritura of fresh seafood.
the difference, though: the pureed tomato sauce (with a pinch of cumin) that comes with.
visit: Aplanos Gallery, by the Moroccan-Belgium artist couple Anne-Judith Van Loock and Ahmed Benraadiya.
in winter, drink: mint tea with fresh absinthe leaves and dried rosebuds.
stay: skip the hotels and email Aplanos about the apartment above the gallery in the medina.
worth visiting during: it’s annual art fair. Read this piece in the Guardian for more.
what they’ve been saying for years: “It’s going to become another Essaouira.” Not yet.
colors: white and blue.
stay: Auberge Dardara (outside Chefchaouen), charming rural guesthouse with best kitchen in entire region.
do: the owner can arrange mushroom hunting in the nearby hills.
what to do with the spoils: the chef will cook them up for you back at Dardara. Best are as open-faced omelets with local wild herbs.
also in the kitchen: kid goat tagine.
don’t miss: the lovely terracotta cookware in the local style.
stay: El Reducto. Charming riad. Once the residence of the Grand Vizier of Tetouán. Next to the Royal Palace.
eat: El Reducto. By far the best restaurant in the city.
order: the stuffed vegetables and the spicy shrimp tagine.
get lost: in the marvelous medina, one of Morocco’s best. A UNESCO World Heritage Site.
traditional flavors: couscous with tfaya, a honeyed onion and raisin topping.
a sweet with your mint tea: m’hancha, a sugar-coated serpentine cookie, or gazelle-horn cookies.
for dessert: seffa, sweet couscous and a glass of lben, buttermilk.
another sweet treat: m’halbi, a milky pudding.