Essauira is situated in the middle of a large bay
with plenty of long golden white-sand beaches. Perfect
you might think, and well it would be if not for the
strong year-round wind that whips up the sand and
makes sunbathing problematic to say the least.
Being a sun-worshipper myself I gave it a good go
but…meh. Now if you’re a wind-surfer then
it’s a different story. Gnarly dude (correct
lingo?) The best spots are Essaouira Bay, Sidi Kauki,
Cape Sim and Mouley Bouzertounen.
Getting To Essaouira From Marrakech
You’ll most likely be arriving Essasouira by
bus from Marrakech. There’s no train but there
is a small airport to which and from you may be able
to get a flight.
Inside the city walls, which is where most of the
attractions lie, there are no taxi’s which is
no problem as almost everything of interest is within
walking distance. Outside the walls then a taxi is
your best option but be careful to either check that
the meter is working or use your best haggling skills
to set a price first.
- Bus companies that travel from Marrakech to Essaouira:
- Supratours Bus
- Marrakech terminal is near the train station
- Essaouira terminal is near Bab Marrakech
- CTM Bus
- Marrakech terminal is outside the Medina
Shopping In Essaouira
It’s perhaps unlikely that you came here to
do this but a wander round the Medina is a rewarding
way to spend an afternoon.
Like most of Morocco’s markets it’s an
intricate maze of small streets, alleys, shops and
stalls. There isn’t a lot you can’t get
here and one abiding memory I have is of some wag
placing a huge lizard on my shoulder when I wasn’t
looking and scaring the crap out of me!
Local craftsmen excel in wood work and in lacquer
Things to do
The Town Ramparts.
Worth a visit, these were designed by a Frenchman
and are replete with an impressive selection of cannon.
Place Moulay Hassan.
This is THE place to kick back, enjoy a coffee and
people watch. The best café is Café
now disused Berber settlement is about 5 mins walk
along the beach. In itself not particularly impressive
but it’s a great walk and Diabut is supposedly
where Hendrix wrote, “Castles made of sand.”
Palace. Now disused it’s an interesting
enough place to nose around and offers great views.
The Fish market. Very
interesting if dead fish is your thing. A huge variety
and a reminder that Essaouira is a working town and
not simply a tourist retreat.
The Harbor. Now
this is a nice place for a wander. Here you’ll
see fisherman repairing colorful boats, launching
and bringing in their catch. Again a reminder that
you’re not staying in a resort town.
All in all I think I’d have to say that Essaouira
is my favorite place in the country, but I’m
a man of simple pleasures. If you’re more interested
in an activity based holiday, then it might not be
somewhere you want to stay long but I fail to see
how anyone could feel let down after a few days here.