If you want to experience an extraordinary place, I recommend a visit to Morocco’s seaside resort of Essaouira.
Sample itinerary for a fantastic and fun filled one day trip to Essaouira starting from Marrakech.
– After breakfast at your hotel, depart for Essaouira.
– The journey to this former Portuguese fishing village offers up only a few roadside towns and the occasional Berber village. In the 1960s and 1970s, Essaouira was a pitstop on the hippie trek from Marrakech. Jimi Hendrix made the pilgrimage, as did Bob Marley and Cat Stevens. Essaouira was the inspiration for Hendrix’s song “Castles Made of Sand”. Are you experienced?
– Essaouira is a sea-side medieval town filled with lovely white-washed and blue-shuttered houses, colonnades, thuya wood workshops, art galleries and perhaps the best seafood in all of Morocco.
– Once called Mogador (do you hear it Led Zeppelin fans?) by European sailors and traders, Essaouria is known for its annual Gnaoua Music Festival and attracts 300,000+ people each year in June. It also has one of the better surfing beaches in Morocco which is called Plage de Safi.
– A visit to Essaouira is not complete without a stroll along the town’s sunlit pedestrian main square, Place Prince Moulay el Hassan. Also required is a visit to Skala du Port, the fishing harbor where you will have jaw-dropping views of the ancient Portuguese ramparts. Be sure to take time to explore the ramparts and wander through the aromatic and sparkly spice and jewelry souks of the medina.
– The medina of Essaouira (formerly “Mogador”) is a UNESCO World Heritage listed city and is one of the world’s best examples of a late-18th century fortified town.
– You must have lunch at the fish-grill cafes, with wooden tables and benches laid out overlooking the sea that was once- in the 19th century- the only Moroccan port south of Tangier.
– Did you know that Orson Welles is revered here? Find out why with a visit to Orson Welles’ Square and memorial, designed by Samir Mustapha, one of the towns artists. Essaouira’s history is a reminder of the times when Spain, Portugal and England fought to maintain control over its coasts. It has a typical Portuguese harbor that is a stunning example of Moorish and Portuguese architecture.
– One of the coolest side trips in Essaouira Morocco is a visit to Ranch de Diabat, located in the small village Diabat. Ranch de Diabat offers quads on the beach, camels or horses – and it can be for 2 hours or it can be for several days.
– A word of warning…once you are here you will probably be extending your stay to try kayaking, kite surfing, wind surfing, or just regular surfing. Essaouira is the wind capital of Africa and the world.
Here are some day tour specifics:
One Day Tour Essaouira
Duration: 9:00am – 7:00pm
Morocco Travel: In Luxury 4×4
English, French Speaking Driver, Guide
Starting & Finishing Point: Your Hotel In Marrakech