Guide for dating in North Africa helps you to meet the best girls. This dating guide gives you tips how to date North African women. You will learn rules where and how to flirt with local North African girls. We advise how to move from casual dating to the relationship and find the real love. We also tell the best dating sites in North Africa. In this article below you will find more information where to meet and date girls in North Africa, Africa.
Girls in North Africa:
- Looks of girls: 3.5 - 4.5 / 5
- Attitude of girls: 4 - 4.5 / 5
- Loyalty of girls: 4 - 4.5 / 5
- Education level of girls: 2.5 - 4 / 5
Dating in North Africa:
- Chance of arranging dates: 2 - 3.5 / 5
- Casual dating culture: 1.5 - 3 / 5
- Online dating popularity: 2 - 3 / 5
Sex in North Africa:
- Women's sexual activity: 1.5 - 3 / 5
- One-night stands: 1.5 - 3 / 5
More about North Africa:
- Nightlife in general: 2 - 4 / 5
- Locals' English level: 1.5 - 4 / 5
- Budget per day: US$100 - $600
- Accommodation: US$50 - $350
- 1 Dating
- 2 Women
- 3 Sex
- 4 Best Places to Meet Single Girls
- 5 Relationship
- 6 Love
- 7 Marriage
- 8 Regions
- 9 Cities
- 10 See Also
North Africa is a region encompassing the northern portion of the African continent. While there are many definitions of what makes the region of the continent known as North Africa, one of the most widely accepted description includes Sudan, Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Western Sahara and Mali. The countries of North Africa share a common ethnic, cultural and linguistic identity with the Middle East or West Asia such as Islam being the main religion and various Arab dialects being the predominant ethnic group in the countries. In some classifications, the term Sub-Sahara is used to distinguish the rest of the continent from North Africa.
In Muslim society, you can understand that a girl likes you if she stays in one room with you alone. If she wears traditional Muslim clothes, she would express her interest in you by letting you see her face and her hands. The first thing you need to realize is that Muslims can be different. It means that even in the same country, people who call themselves Muslims can live according to different rules and believe in different things. It would be useful to know where particularly the object of your interest is from so that you can monitor the situation there.
"Dating" as it is currently practiced in much of the world does not exist among Muslims. Young Islamic men and women (or boys and girls) do not enter into one-on-one intimate relationships, spending time alone together and "getting to know one another" in a very deep way as a precursor to selecting a marital partner. Rather, in Islamic culture, pre-marital relationships of any kind between members of the opposite sex are forbidden.
Dating in North Africa can be a bit tricky due to not knowing if you have a solid connection, so your best bet is to sign up for a dating site before you venture to the night club or bar, so you can meet a few locals ahead of time. AdultFriendFinder.com lets you meet local members in North Africa and get to know them on a personal basis before you meet in person. Take advantage of site features like live chat and member to member webcams so you can begin flirting before arranging a face-to-face meeting.
The countries that make up North Africa have unique educational environments because of their relative wealth and strong Islamic faith. Gender norms and roles are very strictly defined to protect a woman's honor and modesty, which have inadvertently become barriers to women receiving equal education as men as women are expected to stay at home and raise a family. These gender expectations devalue women's education and bar girls' access to education. As a result, North African countries such as Egypt and Morocco have higher illiteracy rates for women than other countries with similar GDPs.
Similar to sub-Saharan Africa, women are disproportionately over-represented in the professions of teaching, medicine, and social welfare. Gender stereotypes are further reinforced by the fact that only 20% of women are part of the labor force. This creates a negative cycle wherein women are expected to stay at home, barring them from further educational opportunities, and creating barriers for women to gain the education and skills necessary to find gainful employment.
North African Girls (age 18 - 29)
North African girls, especially those from Egypt and Tunisia are known to be some of the most beautiful girls in the world. Some of the most famous models come from Egypt. Almost all Egyptian girls are fair to olive-skinned and have beautiful almond-shaped eyes. Most of these girls also have long and beautiful black hair. These girls have luscious lips, seductive eyes and smooth olive skin – these are all key features according to the modern standards of beauty.
North African girls wear the hijab and other loose clothes to hide the prominent features. In most North African countries, it is considered immoral for you to be in tight trousers and dresses or short skirts. While a few progressive parents may allow their daughters to step out like this, which is rarely the case for the majority. The more progressive girls here put on tighter pants clothes though some opt to use a scarf to cover the bulging features.
North African Women (age 30 - 45)
Women's labor force participation rates in the North African countries are among the lowest in the world, standing at 25.5% in Morocco 16.9% in Algeria, and 25.1% in Tunisia, due to the lack of equal access to education and training. 42% of women are illiterate in Morocco, 33% in Algeria, and 28% in Tunisia. Women farmers own only 2.5% of utilized agricultural land in Morocco and 4% of agricultural lands in Tunisia.
In three Maghreb countries, women's representation in the Parliament and local government has improved, thanks to electoral quotas. In Morocco, women hold 13% of ministerial portfolios, 20% of the seats of the Lower Chamber of the Parliament, and 11.7% of the seats of the upper Chamber. In Algeria, women hold 13.3% of ministerial portfolios, 31.6% of the seats of the Lower Chamber of the Parliament and 7% of the seats of the upper Chamber. In Tunisia, women hold 31.3% of the seats in the Parliament and 23.1% of ministerial portfolios.
North African Ladies (age 45+)
Post-Independence, North African ladies enjoy many more human rights than their counterparts in neighboring and other African countries. These women can inherit property, obtain a divorce, retain custody of their children, gain an education and work in many sectors of society. North African ladies make up 70 percent of Algeria's lawyers and 60% of its judges. They also dominate the fields of medicine, healthcare and science. Increasingly, women contribute more to household income than men. As of 2019, 65% of university students in most of the countries are women, with more than 80% joining the workforce after graduation.
When it comes to owning land, women are at a major disadvantage. Their access to owning land is limited by the traditional laws of North African countries. Even though women by law have the right to access bank loans and are free to negotiate financial or business contracts, these actions are usually restricted by their husbands. Women in the workforce accounted for 37% versus men who accounted for 80%.
Foreign Girls (tourists, expats, students, etc.)
With its rich history, North Africa receives many foreign girls visiting the country as tourists. Tourism has become a salient sector in the economic development strategies of North Africa, although the states of the region have met with varying degrees of success in their attempts to expand and develop their tourism sectors. In addition to tourists, some of the countries especially Egypt and Morocco have well-established universities that attract many foreign girls every year who come to study.
As mentioned before, Islam is the dominant religion in the region and its influence is felt in the way of life. The chances of having sex with North African girls are very slim. It is easier to pick up the younger girls in the various institutions of learning in the city as these are more open-minded. Due to the strict Islamic law, these girls are often afraid to be seen in the company of men in public and can only do so discreetly.
Casual sex is still not allowed though it is still practiced in many parts of the city albeit under the cover of darkness. The locals are always shy to be seen in compromising situations in public but once you penetrate the cover, you can have a good time with the ladies. As mentioned earlier, this is mainly because Islam is the main religion practiced by more than 80% of the population in North Africa.
North African girls can be quite hard to hook up for a one-night but remember that they are also loyal so you may want to stay away from her after your one-night or else you will find yourself inadvertently getting married. This has led to a slower uptake in one-night stands and casual sexual affairs.
Best Places to Meet Single Girls
North Africa is traditionally said to be made up of eight countries: Egypt and Sudan, through Libya, Tunisia and Algeria to Morocco, Western Sahara and Mali in the west. Historically, it was made up of the areas of the Maghreb in the west and the Nile Valley that have been ruled and fought over by Phoenicians, Egyptians, Romans, Islamic Caliphates, Ottoman Sultans, and French and Spanish colonists.
For a continent that is vast, vibrant and teeming with wildlife, North Africa has stayed amazingly true to its origins – a place that hasn’t changed much for centuries on end.
Bars, Pubs and Nightclubs
• Le Malouf: Found in Tunis, Tunisia, the Ville's best bar is hidden behind a high wall and yellow door that give no hint of the bohemian scene that unfolds within. Tables and bar stools are scattered around a treed courtyard, DJs spin a variety of music and heavily smoking patrons catch up at the end of the day.
• Cairo Jazz Club: It is one of the oldest existing live music night clubs in Cairo, Egypt. The club is believed to be the heaven for music lovers and party-goers. It is a lively place where one can enjoy music, delicious food and bar selections. The club was established as a portal for manifesting art and expression through music. Today, it has turned as a favorite party spot of roister seekers vacationing in one of the old cities of the world.
• Maison B: As glam as Casa's club scene gets, this spot near the Anfa Place in Casablanca, Morocco has a restaurant serving Mediterranean and Asian food. It's particularly popular in the warmer months when its terrace area is invariably packed on weekends. The music is good with international DJs, the service less so.
• White Dream: This is a great venue with a relaxing atmosphere in Algiers, Algeria. In addition to the great cocktails at affordable prices, White Dream offers excellent Moroccan specialties, good music, happy hour (every day from 11:00 to 18:00), and a beautiful terrace.
• Le Byblos: Bamako in Mali is a city that comes into its own after dark, and on weekends it's a party town. Clubs don't get going before midnight and close around 06:00. Cover charges (US$9) usually include a drink, and after that drinks cost US$1.80 to US$5.40.
• Comptoir: Le Comptoir is one of Marrakesh's most fabled nights out. The glitzy ground floor is reserved for diners and packs out on weekends with Casa playboys, glamour-puss Marrakshis and expatriates veterans. Up a grand sweeping staircase, the 1st floor morphs into a club space with after-dinner DJs and dancing from midnight. The back garden, strung with star lanterns, is an atmospheric bar.
• Spitfire: One of the best bars in Alexandria in Egypt, Spitfire is a dimly lit but friendly place with a bit of a rough-and-ready feel, just north of Sharia Saad Zaghloul. Walls are plastered with shipping-line stickers, rock-and-roll memorabilia and photos of drunken regulars. It’s a great place for a fun evening out with a mixed clientele of locals, foreign residents and passers-through.
• Hôtel Suisse: A highly atmospheric bar in Algiers, Algeria where time seems to have ground to a halt in 1931. Half-drunk bottles of whiskey gather dust behind the wood and mirrored bar and old men slap cards down on the tabletops.
• Hôtel Atlas Orient: With several drinking options, the Atlas hotel is the best place for a night out in Oujda, Morocco. By the reception is a classy bar with red velvet chairs and matching chandeliers. West of the entrance, 'the Actor's Lounge' serves booze and free tapas under a kaleidoscope of lights, while a nightclub for the late-night crowd bumps reggaeton and major hits.
• Bla Bla Bar: This is Mali's most sophisticated bar found in Bamako, and though regulars lament that it has lost something since being glassed in and blasted with air-con, it's still filled with the bold and the beautiful at weekends.
Some of the malls in North Africa include:
• Morocco Mall, Casablanca (Morocco)
• Al Raya Mall, Aswan (Egypt)
• Menara Mall, Marrakech (Morocco)
• Ritaj Mall, Oran (Algeria)
• Le Palmarium, Tunis (Tunisia)
• Centre Commercial de Banakoro, Ségou (Mali)
• Taj Mall, Tripoli (Libya)
The Old Towns of Djenné in central Mali were once a key stop for the merchants taking slaves, salt and gold across the Sahara to the medinas of Morocco. The adobe buildings are made from mud bricks baked hard in the sun and structured around great log scaffolds and palm fronds that jut out from the walls. UNESCO describes the Old Towns as making up one of the most beautiful cities in Africa, with the Djenné-Djeno area dating back to around 200 BC.
Perhaps the most fantastic and best known cultural treasures of North Africa, the Pyramids of Giza are also the last remaining wonder of the ancient world. They have stood like mountains for the past 4,000 years, bearing witness to the extraordinary history of Egypt and the might of the Pharaohs who ruled it. The four most popular ones are the Great Pyramid of Khufu, the Pyramid of Khafre, the Pyramid of Menkaure and the Sphinx.
Now abandoned, Ait Benhaddou was once a ksar or magnificent fortified city in the foothills of the Atlas Mountains in Morocco on the old caravan route from Sudan to Marrakech. Built from baked earth, its high defensive walls, watchtowers and clusters of castellated houses were built from the 17th century onwards. Mosques, religious sanctuaries, marketplaces and Jewish and Islamic cemeteries now stand disused in the city that rises above the surrounding landscape.
National Museum: This museum, the best in Sudan, has some breathtaking exhibits. The ground floor covers the rise and fall of the kingdoms of Kerma, Kush and Meroe. There are some stunning royal statues and perfectly preserved 3500-year-old artifacts from Kerma. Upstairs are numerous medieval Christian frescos removed from the ruined churches of Old Dongola and elsewhere. Outside are some temples rescued, Abu Simbel–style, from the rising waters of Lake Nasser.
Sétif Museum: This central museum is one of the better museums in Algeria and it alone justifies a stop in Sétif. Displays are well laid out, lit and labeled (in French). There are cabinets filled with pottery and lamps from Roman Sétif, but the real stars are the mosaics in the ground floor central court, which are among the best you will see in Algeria.
Leptis Magna is an archaeological site in the northern part of Libya. It is located in the Al Khums region, with the Mediterranean coast on one side and the Sahara Desert on the other. Owing to its location near the Mediterranean Sea the area has a more temperate climate than the interiors of the country. The impact of the desert keeps the climate dry with very hot summers and pleasant winters. Rainfall is minimal.
The small town of El Djem in Tunisia was once the Roman city of Thysdrus, most of which now lies buried by the desert sands. What still stands is the great amphitheater, once the site of gladiatorial contests and chariot races. It was the largest of its type in the Roman Empire, smaller only than the amphitheater at Capua and the Colosseum in Rome. Historians believe that around 35,000 spectators could be seated inside.
Universities and Colleges
Some of the universities and colleges found in North Africa include:
• Cairo University, Giza (Egypt)
• Sudan University of Science and Technology, Khartoum
• University of Benghazi, (Libya)
• University of Algiers (Algeria)
• National Institute of Applied Science and Technology, Tunis (Tunisia)
• International University of Rabat (Morocco)
While the region is made up of different countries, each with its own cultures and practices, there are common traditions that transcend geographic boundaries. Marriage arrangements require that siblings are married sequentially according to age. For a man to marry, he must be able to pay a "bride price" to the bride's family. Weddings may tax family resources because of the more distantly related to the bride, the higher the "bride price." Brothers often work together to gather the resources necessary for marriage. In Bedouin society, the resources used to marry come from the family herds. In towns, men contribute a portion of their pay to a brother's bride price.
Today many of the young, especially males, select a potential mate and request their parents' approval. Girls too may have someone in mind, but it is not culturally acceptable for them to make such suggestions.
Holidays present an opportunity for us to get away from our normal schedule and head out and unwind. For many people, especially the employed, the whole year is spent toiling and saving, with the knowledge that a time will come when one will go far away and rest. It is during such times that we will often find ourselves getting into a romantic relationship with a stranger. The good thing about such unplanned relationships is that they are entered with very little expectation and so there are no unmet expectations at the end of the romance.
However, since the holiday will be taking place in a foreign land, it is important to understand the culture of the place that you will be visiting. While North Africa is a good place for a holiday, much of the region is dominated by Islam religion which influences culture. This means that some aspects such as public display of affection may not be very welcome over there.
Tips for Successful Relationship
Over time, we assume that our partner knows us so well that we don't need to ask for what we want. What happens when we make this assumption? Expectations are set, and just as quickly, they get deflated. Those unmet expectations can leave us questioning the viability of our partnership and connection. Keep in mind that "asking for what you want" extends to everything from emotional to sexual wants.
Unless you have committed to an asexual partnership, sex and touch such as kissing, holding hands, and cuddling are vital components of a romantic relationship. How much sex a couple has is, of course, up to the particular pair of individuals, so you must discuss your ideas about it to manage any desire discrepancy.
As the months and years roll on, we tend to slink into our proverbial sweatpants and get lazy in our relationship. We lose our patience, gentleness, thoughtfulness, understanding, and the general effort we once made toward our mate. Think back to the first year of your relationship and write down all the things you used to do for your partner then start doing them again.
Create a weekly ritual to check in with each other. This can be short or long, but it begins by asking each other what worked and didn't work about the previous week and what can be done to improve things this coming week. Additionally, use this opportunity to get on the same page with your schedules, plan a date night, and talk about what you would like to see happen in the coming days, weeks, and months in your relationship.
Life and work distractions can become paramount in our minds, and that leaves little time or energy for our partner. Barring any emergencies or deadlines, we should be fully present when we are with our mate. We truly hear what they are saying (instead of pretending to listen), we leave our distractions behind, and we don't pick them up again until the sun comes up and we walk out the door.
When conflicts come up, remember to approach them thoughtfully and with a lot of kindness toward your partner and yourself. If you see the stress beginning to escalate during a conversation about a conflict, one or both of you can call a break so that cooler heads can prevail.
In most disagreements, we communicate from the obvious emotions such as anger, annoyance, and the like. Leading from this place can create confusion and defensiveness, and it can ultimately distract from the real issue. Start communicating from the bottom layer which is the feelings that are driving your reactions, such as disappointment, rejection, loneliness, or disrespect.
Conversations quickly turn to arguments when we're invested in hearing our partner admit that we were right or when we are intent on changing their opinion. Choose to approach a conversation as an opportunity to understand your significant other's perspective as opposed to waiting for them to concede. From this perspective, you will have an interesting dialogue and prevent a blowout or lingering frustration.
It's well understood that apologizing is a good thing, but it only makes a real impact when you mean it. Saying things like "I'm sorry you feel that way," "I'm sorry you see it that way," or "I'm sorry if I upset you" are a waste of time and breath. Even if you don't agree that your action was wrong, you will never successfully argue a feeling.
Any issues you avoid, or truths you don’t want to acknowledge, will likely undermine your relationship. It’s better to face the truth squarely in the face right now and address it, rather than let it sabotage your relationship in the long run. Be intentional and figure out the truth about your relationship. Think through all aspects of it—your feelings and thoughts, the other person’s feelings and thoughts, as well as their external context.
Before the rise of Western cultural influence, finding a spouse was a task almost solely assigned to parents or relatives. But young Muslims have now taken it upon themselves to find their partners, relying on their version of dating to do so. Older Muslims continue to reject dating because they worry that a Western world will also create Western expectations of premarital sex in these relationships.
One way that some young Muslim couples are rebutting the idea of dating being offensive is by terming it "halal dating." Halal refers to something permissible within Islam. By adding the permissibility factor, some young couples argue, they are removing the idea that anything haram, or prohibited, such as premarital sex, is happening in the relationship.
Getting to know someone and making the informed decision to marry them is not an alien concept in Islamic societies. When the British and the rest of Europe colonized much of the world, they also placed social restrictions on sexual interactions between unmarried couples. These social restrictions also took hold in certain Islamic societies, with religious restrictions on sex leading some to go as far as segregating the genders as much as possible, including in schools, universities and even at social gatherings.
Before social media and the prevalence of pop culture, it was a lot easier to enforce whatever ideologies you wanted your child to follow. But as globalization increased, this changed. Young people became increasingly exposed to the rest of the world. Today, their ideologies and values no longer find a basis in what their priest or imam preaches but in what social media and pop culture influencers might be saying and doing.
How to Make Sure She Is the One
An ideal partner is someone who will do good things, not just because other men's wives do them too, but because they are the right things to do. She surpasses other women, not because she competes with them, but because she competes with herself and tries to improve every day a little bit more.
Before marrying a woman, you must be sure that she will always support you in any situation, especially in the presence of other people. If she is very considerate, then you won’t have to worry that she somehow will disgrace you. For example, a tactless woman may make a toxic comment to your relatives or may comment on your shortcomings in front of the guests. It doesn’t mean that she should always agree with you. She just has to know how to gently tell you about your problems.
A healthy, stable relationship focuses on giving rather than taking. Seeing your significant other happy should make you just as happy, and she should treat you in the same way. Your joy should be her joy, too—it can be as simple as asking about your day or looking after you when you are sick. As time passes, the excitement at the beginning of the relationship will pass, but you should both be just as focused on giving each other happiness.
If you want to spend the rest of your life with someone, you must find that person intellectually challenging. Looks are fleeting but personality is forever—your conversations together should be interesting, insightful and full of depth. Your partner should be able to challenge your opinions, opening up your mind to new ideas and concepts.
There is a big difference between a wish and the ability to have children. If your girlfriend shows that she likes children and maybe even persuaded you to have a pet, then you know that her mother's instincts are active. For your children, this means that if you marry her, they will have a nice mother and a happy and healthy family. Look at her reaction when you start talking about children, she may feel afraid, but never disgusted.
In addition to supporting and encouraging you to pursue your own goals and dreams, she will have her own as well. A mature woman has a vision for her future and chases after it with voracity. A mature woman will be someone you can take on the world with. She will be your partner in crime, a teammate in your relationship, and life.
The region commonly known as North Africa is made up of several countries with both different and similar regulations concerning marriage.
In Egypt, the legal minimum age to get married is 18 years for both genders. In Sudan, both boys and girls can get married at puberty. The Personal Status Law of Muslims, 1991, allows the marriage of a girl from puberty. Ten years-olds can be married with judicial authorization. The Marriage of Non-Muslims Act of 1926 sets the age of marriage at 13 for non-Muslim girls and 15 for non-Muslim boys. In Libya, this age is 20 years while in Tunisia and Morocco it is 18 years. The minimum legal age in Algeria is 19 years. In Mali, the minimum age is 18 years for boys and 16 years for girls. However, both boys and girls can get married at 15 years with judicial consent.
Marriage in Algeria is based on its civil code and it can take three to four weeks to obtain authorization. Neither a fixed period of residence nor publication of bans is required. A religious ceremony may subsequently be performed at the option of the couple. However, only civil marriage is recognized as a legal marriage in Algeria. Same-sex marriage is not legal in Algeria.
Specially designated Notaries at the City Hall Registry Office “Bureau de l’Etat Civil a la Municipalite” perform marriages in Tunisia. Only marriages celebrated before such an official in compliance with Tunisian Law No. 57 August 1, 1957, as amended are legal. If one or both of the contracting parties are foreigners, Tunisian law requires that the marriage also fulfill the marriage requirements of the foreigner’s country. Neither a fixed period of residence nor publication of bans is required. A religious ceremony may subsequently be performed at the option of the couple.
Marriage between a Muslim and non-Muslim is not common practice in Sudan. A Muslim man may marry a non-Muslim woman, but a non-Muslim man may not marry a Muslim woman unless he converts to Islam. Sudanese law recognizes both civil and religious ceremonies, but such marriages must be properly documented to be considered legally binding. Sudanese Law provides for civil marriages for non-Muslims. Civil marriages are processed only through the Khartoum Province Judge in the court located in Khartoum, opposite the Judiciary Building.
Weddings in North Africa used to last seven days until recently. All the family was involved in pastries and food preparations; the process today remains relatively the same, albeit shorter.
North African weddings are almost always Muslim, so the rituals and customs will be derived from Islam. It’s important to dress conservatively in the Mosque for the ceremony (no bare arms or legs for both genders), and for women to bring a scarf to cover their heads. You will also be asked to remove your shoes before entering the ceremony location. A Muslim wedding will feature a short ceremony called a Nikah, which is segregated by gender. The wedding reception might be fully separated as well, with different rooms for men and women, or partially separate with a partition down the middle or men and women at different tables.
It’s traditional for brides from this region to perform a ritual bath, called a Hamam, to purify themselves before marriage. Next, the bride and her closest will gather for a henna party, where their hands and feet will be decorated with traditional dye for good luck. If you’re part of the African wedding’s bridal party or a close friend of the bride, you might also be invited to this the night before the wedding.
In some Libyan weddings, at the beginning of the wedding dance in the groom’s home, the younger, unmarried male members of both the bride and groom’s parties form a single line to dance and sing. The songs don’t reveal explicit sexuality, but they contain some innuendo. The men’s dance involves thrusting their hips forward in rapid motion to the rhythm of a penetrating drum beat. In concert, they thrust their arms forward in a resounding clap of hands.
During a wedding ceremony in Bamako, the capital city of the West African nation of Mali, couples pledge their commitment to one another in front of family and friends. Brides wear white dresses, and ceremonies are often followed by elaborate celebrations with food and dancing. At first glance, the practice of marriage in Bamako appears similar to that of many Western cultures.
In Egypt, brides need to be ready for laughs and some tears, as there’s a well-known tradition that pinching the bride on her wedding day brings good luck. In Upper Egypt, before moving in, newly married couples used to take their furniture on a horseback or donkey parade to make their union (and their wealth) visible throughout the village. Nowadays, it is still common for women to gift their husbands a set of silk pajamas.
A typical Moroccan marriage begins with the bride and groom signing the marriage contract. Unlike in the west, the actual wedding ceremony is not attended by many people. It is usually just the couple and the guardian (wali) of the bride. Days before the wedding occurs the process of obtaining the paperwork and marriage certificates begins. This looks different depending on whether both partners are Moroccan or if one is foreign. Once the paperwork is in place the bride, groom, the wali and witnesses go in front of an imam to complete the marriage contract and sign the paperwork to finalize the wedding. The information in the marriage contract has been decided by the couple and their families ahead of time so this part is a formality that takes very little time.
On the wedding party day the bride rests during the day and in the afternoon begins getting ready with makeup and the hairdresser. The wedding guests gather at the wedding site before the bride makes her entrance. The groom comes with his family and everyone waits for the bride to come. The brides’ entrance is very important in the Moroccan ceremony. She is usually placed in an “amaria” an elegant roofed platform that’s carried by 4 or 6 guys (they usually come with the Neggafa). The groom leads the walk with the Amaria bearers.
Islam has had a profound influence on family life in some parts of Africa. It has affected not only the Arab, the majority population in North Africa, but also such non-Arab peoples as the Berbers.
Arabs who live in rural areas tend to maintain more traditional customs than the inhabitants of towns and cities. Rural Arabs live in extended families, with three generations or more sharing a residence. Marriage is regarded not as the union of two individuals but as the joining of two families, often already linked by ties of kinship. Family members are expected to stick closely to expected roles: fathers are stern disciplinarians, mothers are nurturers, and children become members of the family workforce who will one day provide for their parents in old age. Children of both genders are treated with affection, but boys have a higher position in the family and inherit more of its money and land.
The tight, traditional structure of rural Arab families is sometimes weakened when family members take on new roles—as when a son leaves to work in a city or a daughter decides not to marry the man chosen by her parents. Such breaks in traditional patterns occur most often in urban settings, where people have more job opportunities and can be more independent.
The Berbers are non-Arab peoples descended from the original inhabitants of North Africa. They have adopted the Islamic religion and some Arab customs. A traditional Berber household consists of a father, mother, and unmarried children. Family descent is patrilineal. Today, however, with many men working away from home for long periods, more households are headed by women. Both the Berbers and the Arabs permit polygyny under Islamic law, but in practice, only wealthy men can afford separate households for each wife.
New social customs and the cash economy are changing the household structure. As senior members lose control over the marriages of junior members, and as younger people leave rural households to work in cities, the household weakens and becomes dependent on money sent home by members working elsewhere. One reason the household is still important, however, is that it is often the only reliable form of security in old age and sickness in fast-paced modern societies based on wage labor and competition.