Find your partner at Morocco’s Imilchil marriage festival

Every September members of local tribes meet at the small mountainous village called Imilchil in Morocco, the North African country, to celebrate a peculiar celebration called the wedding festival. 

 

The remote Imilchil village, which lies in the Atlas Mountain range, is the home to a romantic legend of two star-crossed lovers.

 

Find-your-partner-at-Morocco’s-Imilchil-marriage-festival

 

According to the legends, a young man from a local tribe fell in love with a beautiful girl belonging to the rival tribe. But their tribes and families were against their love and they were even forbidden from seeing each other. They were so heartbroken that two lakes were formed from their tears - Tislit (the woman) and Isli (the man). They later drowned themselves in these lakes.

 

After the couple's death, their families decided to honour their love and decided to observe a day every year on which people from different tribes could meet, fall in love and get married.

 

That is how the wedding festival came into being. Though it may be just a story, the festival is celebrated in full swing even now. The festival is a major part of Berber culture. It is locally known as Souk Aamor Agdoud N'Oulmghenni - the Betrothal Festival.

 

Find-your-partner-at-Morocco’s- Imilchil-marriage-festival

 

On the day potential brides and grooms attend the festival in their best clothes. Women usually wear blue dresses and accessorise it with red and white shawls, while the men will be in white robes. The young are allowed to interact with each other, sing, dance and feast. Once they find someone who they think could be their potential partner, their families will negotiate on the topic of dowry.

 

Once the contract for the marriage is signed an engagement will be held, but the actual wedding ceremony will be held later.

 

Find-your-partner-at-Morocco’s-Imilchil-marriage-festival

 

Though it used to be a very private festival and only members from the local tribes used to participate, these days the festival attracts many domestic and international tourists. The local population fears that the rituals will be threatened due to the influx of tourists.

View More