10 Cool Things To Do In Essaouira, Morocco

Travelers love the Moroccan city of Essaouira for its laid-back vibe, cafes and coffeehouses, and water activities. It’s also easy to get to from more popular cities like Casablanca and Marrakech, making it a cool place for a weekend excursion. Here are 10 things to do in this charming city by the sea.

Medina of Essaouira

Medina of Essaouira(Roquai/Wikimedia Commons)

Visit The Medina

You’ll find 18th century architecture all through this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Beautiful wooden doors are one of the must see details of this destination. Ramparts give visitors a great way to view the area.

Skala du Port

Skala du Port(Jerzy Strzelecki/Wikimedia Commons)

Visit Skala du Port

This active port is a spot for watching fishing boats bring in their fresh catches. The area is also a prime spot for boat construction as well as repairs to existing ships.

Essaouira Beach

Essaouira Beach(Uploadmo/Wikimedia Commons)

Go For A Walk On The Beach

The beach may not suitable for swimming because it’s often a bit chilly except during the summer, but it offers excellent walking spots. Try an early morning trip to avoid larger crowds that are often found there later in the day. Due to the strong winds, the area has also become a hot spot for windsurfers. 

Morocco Woodwork

Morocco Woodwork(Schlanger/Wikimedia Commons)

Experience Woodworking

Woodworking is a prominent activity in the city. Shops throughout Essaouira sell woodworking crafts and demonstrations are presented by local merchants. Avoid products made with the thuya tree as it is becoming scarce in the region. 

spices in Morocco


Cook A Meal At L’Atelier Madada

L’Atelier Madada is a cooking school that shows tourists how to make local dishes. Classes are conducted in in two languages, English and French. You’ll get to taste some great Moroccan food, and be able to replicate once you get back home. 

Mogador Island

Mogador Island(Uploadmo/Wikimedia Commons)

Take A Day Trip To Ile de Mogador

These two islands and islets are a sanctuary for Eleonara falcons. You can go by boat, but must have a permit to visit the area. The permits are easy to obtain through government locations.

Phenician Plate At Sidi Mohammed Ben Abdallah Museum

Phenician Plate At Sidi Mohammed Ben Abdallah Museum(Uploadalt/Wikimedia Commons)

Visit Sidi Mohammed Ben Abdallah Museum

Sidi Mohammed Ben Abdallah Museum contains many historical items such as jewelry, weapons, carpets and photos. Roman and other cultural artifacts have been found in the nearby bay. 



Take A Surfing Lesson

Union National des Centres Sportifs de Plein Air offers lessons in surfing and kitesurfing so you can join in with the locals catching the best waves. Classes are available for all ages.

ceramics fez


Shop For Local Art

There are several galleries in Essaouira that feature local artists and their work. These locations often highlight new and undiscovered talent. Try speaking directly with the artists to learn about their inspiration as well as their painting techniques.

Enjoy The Excellent Festivals

Music festivals are prominent events all year. The World Music Festival is one of the most popular festivals among locals and tourists. Festival des Andolousies Atlantiques is another great choice that features Andalusian crafts as well as regional artists.

More from AFKTravel:

VIDEO: A Walk Through Essaouira, Morocco

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Essaouira

The Best National Parks In Morocco

This article was originally published April 3, 2015.

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