Essaouira, a perfect city for kite surfing and windsurfing Essaouira is situated on the Atlantic coast in the economic region of Marrakech-Tensift-Al Haouz of western Morocco. The city is also known by its Portuguese name of Mogador since the 16th century.
- How to get here : Essaouira is a 2.5-hour driving distance from Marrakech. City taxi runs anywhere from Marrakech and the price rate depend on bargaining skills. One can also avail grand shared taxi (6 passengers) at 80 DH per place.
From Marrakech's bus station coach services by CTM are available for approximately 75 DH per person.
- Currency And Language : The official currency of Morocco is Dirham (DH). 1 Dirham is equivalent to 0.27 US Dollar (as of 21st April 2013).
Arabic is the official language but close relationship with France results many people speak French.
- Tourist Season : Autumn is the best season to go around Essaouira when the temperature is down. Moreover, the city becomes crowded and busy in the month of June for World Music Festival and the average temperature is also around 30 degree centigrade.
Greatest Attractions of Essaouira
- 1. Essa-Evasion sarl has been ranked the most attracting thing in Essaouira. Marvellous landscapes with large dunes through the forests of Argan tree, Juniper, and Cedar near the Atlantic coast is adventurous, without compromising the safety of the tourists.
- 2. Medina of Essaouira is listed among the UNESCO World Heritage Cities. The fishing harbour is the main attraction in Medina. This city is famous for wind surfing because of constant blow of powerful north-eastern trade wind which is almost wave less in the bay. The water is fresh throughout the year. Ancient fishing villages near coastal area is also attracting for the tourists.
- 3. Tourists can enjoy quad biking and quad treks in the beautiful surrounding beaches of Essaouira offered by Diana Quad. Camel ride across the coastline of Essaouira is another exciting experience.
- 4. One of the greatest views from high up scariest sea is the Ramparts. Crashing high waves, sea fume, spray, blooming ramparts are thrilling.
People, Culture and Festivals
Essaouira has mainly two distinct ethnic groups of people namely the Arab Berber and African musician-warriors who arrived as slaves originally. These groups of people are the root cause of mixed culture of Essaouira.
Essaouira has an old and rich traditional culture which is the mixed influence of Imazighen mainly, together with Arabs, African and Jews.
Gnaoua is the traditional music festival of Essaouira. Colourful and exciting nights are the biggest attraction for music lovers. Musicians from all over the world come in Gnaoua , because they think that this festival allows them to express themselves artistically, spiritually and scientifically from the bottom of their heart.
Zumba dance is also famous here. For both the citizens and tourists it has been the great pleasure. Fitness, aerobic, workout, dance, stretching together with intense fun is the attracting feature of Zumba dance.
Products and Food
Argan oil, produced from nuts of Argan trees, enriched with vitamin E and other rich fatty acids is famous here for cosmetic remedies as well as for cooking. This oil is prepared by local Berber women and the process of extracting oil form Argan nuts is highly laborious.
Mixed culture over the city helped to produce some delicious dishes like couscous, tagine, and pastille. Mint green tea is famous in Essaouira.