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Learn Arabic

The official Arabic of Morocco is Modern Standard Arabic (MSA), though the use of this classical form of the language is mainly restricted to official matters. The dialect of Arabic spoken on the streets of Morocco is Darija.

Brief Overview of Darija

Darija is its own unique form of Arabic, though it is very similar to the language used in neighboring Algeria. To a smaller extent, it also shares similarities with the forms of Arabic spoken in other countries of the Maghreb, such as Tunisia and Libya.

While Moroccans may find it fairly easy to understand Arabic speakers from the Middle East, the opposite isn’t always true—there may be differences with pronunciation, syntax, vocabulary, and word use.

Some Arabic words have dropped out of use in MSA, but are still used in Darija. Furthermore, Darija incorporates various loanwords from languages like Amazigh, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and English.

Learning Darija in Marrakech

While it certainly isn’t essential that you master Moroccan Arabic for an enjoyable visit, it is definitely useful for expats and people that are planning to stay for a longer period of time.

Knowing a few basic words and phrases, such as hello and thank you, are always polite and endearing when you visit any new country.

There are many reasons why you may want to learn more than rudimentary Moroccan Arabic, however, including for business purposes, better communication in a relationship, and for enjoyment.

There are a number of language centers and schools around Marrakech that offer classes in Darija for learners of all levels.

Whether you’re a total beginner or whether you want to improve existing skills, here are some of the best places to learn Darija and Arabic in the popular tourist city of Marrakech:

Study Arabic Marrakech

Study Arabic Marrakech offers a range of tailored language courses to suit anyone’s requirements. You can dip into the language and learn a few basic phrases on a one-day course, or take longer to develop your skills further. You can study on a one-on-one basis or learn as a group.

If there are more than six people an instructor can come to your home, hotel, or riad to teach you—learning has never been more convenient! For long-term learners experienced instructors carefully take you through the language step by step, building vocabulary, grammar, idioms, and all skills you need to become fluent.

If time is limited you can also learn online, and the centre provides a range of excellent resources for self study to help you learn the language faster.

Creative Interactions

Creative Interactions offers more than simply a chance to learn Arabic—you can jump right into the Moroccan culture and really get to know about the local life, traditions, history, and beliefs.

There are long- and short-term language workshops where, in a group, you can develop your skills in MSA or Moroccan Arabic (Darija). The courses are targeted at travellers with a curious mind.

Some include different activities where you can practice your new skills, such as bargaining in the souks or chatting over a glass of mint tea. There are also immersive cultural programs where you can learn more about the art of henna, cook traditional dishes, and explore with locals.

Centre for Language and Culture

Master Darija in a group and fully immerse yourself in the language to develop your skills quicker and remember new words and concepts quicker. Students are encouraged to interact with each other in Darija as much as possible, discussing a range of topics and role playing varied scenarios.

Courses run all throughout the year and there are classes for every level of learner. So, no matter whether you’re a complete beginner or whether you already know the basics, you’ll be placed with people who have a similar level to yourself.

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