Morocco - Essaouria
With her first throws in the
8th century as a Phoenician Trade post to the 21st century as
a leading musical and cultural meeting point, this Imperial
City has had a long and colourful history. For a change of pace
head to the peninsular town of Essaouria - a completely different
flavour to other destinations on this coast of Morocco. Protected
by the trade winds and with a year-round temperate climate,
this city filled with cultural and architectural heritage and
surrounded by flowers is a must on any visit to Morocco.
A visit to the white walled city is a must. But take the time
to take a walk along the Atlantic coastline and if you've got
the legs make your way to Sidi Kaouki to the south. Fishing is also one of the main industries of
the town and fresh catch is a specialty of the many good town
Essaouria is the centre of artist, music and craftsmen of this
region of Morocco and is a centre for International and National
Each invading army has left
their imprint until the Madrid Agreement and the withdrawal
of the Spanish in 1975. The Spanish have given a major part
to the cities architecture from the walled city to the deep
water harbour which was an old haven for the Spanish Fleets.
This was the last stop before the Canary islands.
The people of the city are
used to the passage of different cultures, with the hippies
of the 50s, 60s and 70's leaving the last scar on the cities
colourful history when it became a favourite refuge for rock
stars including Cat Stevens and Jimy Hendrix in need of rest
and relaxation away from the pressures of their fast moving
worlds. You will be able to talk to the older generation over
a few cups of tea on the topic, they all will give you stories
of wild nights and beach parties.
"Les Faux Guides" are
still a small problem confronting the tourist to Morocco. You'll
be approached, with offers to show you the sights, good hotels, campsites,
restaurants and much more, all you have to say is no, as it's
a commission game and they've had over a 1000 years of training!!
Wood carving is one of the main
products that you will find for sale in Essaouria check out
the souk and the many bazaars, here you will spoilt for choice.
The small streets between the city walls will give you a full
afternoon as you check out the different objects for sale in
this city where you will find a strong ex-pat network has settled
down to the relaxed pace and friendly vibe.
Mostapha Cafe is a must. Sit down and watch the world go by.
The "Cafe au Lait" is a good one..