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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Chinese tourists flock to Morocco during Spring Festival

RABAT (Xinhua) -- In the Chinese restaurant of Chefchaouen, one of the top tourist attractions in Morocco, a dining area of less than 100 square meters was filled with more than a hundred Chinese tourists, with a lot more waiting outside, during the Chinese Spring Festival.

“Boss, can I have my Kung-Pao Chicken now?” “Boss, is my beef noodles ready?” Dining at peak time, some visitors were impatient to wait long for their ordered foods.

Facing the big influx of Chinese tourists into Morocco during the Spring Festival, the restaurant, which opened in May 2017, was overloaded. Restaurant operator told Xinhua that during the Spring Festival holiday, her business was much better than usual.

Another Chinese restaurant owner in Fes, Morocco’s central city, experienced “sweet annoyance.” The restaurant staff said during the Spring Festival, a large number of Chinese tourists queued up for dinning every day. 

In a five-star hotel in Fes, Hamid, a receptionist, said a large number of Chinese tourists checked in recently.

In the southern Moroccan town of Marrakech, tourist buses full of Chinese tourists can be found everywhere during the Spring Festival.

In Majorelle Garden, a famous tourist attraction, two girls from Ningbo of east China’s Zhejiang province told Xinhua they chose Morocco as their Spring Festival travel destination to taste the country’s unique Arabian flavor. They travelled for 15 days along the classic tourist route, visiting Casablanca, Marrakech, Sahara, Fes, Chefchaouen and Tangier.

In addition to the classic route that most people choose, Chinese tourists’ footprints also extend to Moroccan tourist cities such as Essaouira, Tetouan and Ifrane.

Wang Shuo, sales manager of China International Travel Service Co., Ltd., told Xinhua that more Chinese are interested in travelling to Morocco in recent years, with the Spring Festival and the National Day holiday being the peak periods.

Morocco has decided to exempt Chinese nationals form visa requirement to enter the Moroccan territory starting from June 2016. Since then the number of Chinese tourists to Morocco has increased substantially.

At the China-Morocco Tourism Cooperation Forum held in Casablanca in early February, Morocco’s Minister of Tourism, Air Transport, Handicraft and Social Economy Mohamed Sajid said it expects to attract annually 500,000 Chinese tourists by 2020.

Sajjid said Morocco is working to improve hotels, transport facilities and tourist reception. He said direct flights between Morocco and China are being negotiated, which is one of the key factors in enhancing the attractiveness of Morocco to Chinese tourists.

             

 

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