Known for great surf and for being the capital of chill, Essaouira is a wee gem situated on the Moroccan coastline. Let’s explore whether or not Essaouira should be on your itinerary.
From Desert Glamping in Sahara to Lobster Eating in Essaouira
When I last left you, I had just finished my incredibly cool Desert Glamping experience in the Sahara. However, I also briefly mentioned that I had managed to get a severe food poisoning… Unfortunately, this had quite the impact on my experiences and itinerary in Morocco – I can hardly even remember the days I spent in Fez and Agadir.
Upon my arrival in Essaouira, the last stop on my Moroccan itinerary, I finally got some medications, and for a few hours I once again felt like a functioning human being. Naturally, I rose to the occasion, grabbed my precious camera, and spent my day getting lost in the medina!
I can’t even explain the happiness and excitement I felt when I finally managed to leave my hotel room, and head out to explore the magical streets of the souk.
Essaouira: Where Mediterranean Culture Meats Africa
Essaouira, perched on the edge of the Atlantic coast, seems to fully embody being a cross between the Mediterranean and Northern Africa. The golden city walls, the white building and blue hues might for a moment or two trick you into thinking you have landed in Greece. But, as soon as your nose have caught the smell of spices in the air, there’s no denying that you’re most definitely not in Europe anymore. Welcome to Morocco, the gateway to Africa.
Essaouira is indeed a strange mix of cultures. In this little town, influences from the Africans, Arabs, Romans and many more have blended perfectly together into a potpurri of styles, cuisine, language and culture. Not to mention that the 300 days of sunshine a year have made into every tourists’ dream.
For many years, Essaouira has also been the go to place for surfers worldwide. It’s perhaps not a surprise, as the city is affectionately known as the windy city. Perhaps you’re a beach-goer, but not necessarily a surfer? That’s completely OK – the seaside town can still offer a stunning beach where you can spend your day sunbathing and chilling. If you’re a bit more active, you can also go horse-riding on the beach or ride a camel through the dunes.
Sounds idyllic, right?
Falling In Love With The Chill Vibes of Essaouria
The vibe in Essaouira is nothing but chill and refreshing. I immediately fell in love. Perhaps it was the fact that I for a day finally felt better from my food poisonig? Or perhaps it was because I had been able to leave the chaotic mess that is Marrakech behind?
Whatever it was, I loved it.
I spent hours walking around the medina, buying all the spice cups I could possibly fit into my suitcase. The locals were also less intense than the people working in the souks of Marrakech, I hardly ever had to haggle, the locals left me mostly alone, and – most importantly – there were no men that would simply walk up to me and rather effortlessly grab my tits (victory!).
Later, Andrea and I spent hours upon hours walking along the beach, looking at all the sufers out in the waves. I’ve always dreamt of taking surf lessons and I assume that Essaouira would have been the perfect place – unfortunately, I was still feeling crap after my food poisoning so I didn’t feel up to do anything besides gently strolling along the beach.
Besides loving the beautiful beach and oceanfront of Essaouira, I think that my absolute favourite part of the city might actually have been the fishmarket. It turns out that Essaouira – other than being famous for its medina, the Hollywood-worthy beaches, the great surf and for being hippie capitol No 1 in Northern Africa, is also world famous for its amazing fish market.
We stayed for a while, slowly walking our way through the market and the beautiful surroundings. It was a complete chaos, filled with colours, blood, freshly caught fish and loud bargaining between friends and foes.
I loved it. I loved it all.
Sadly, my visit to Essaouira was over far too quickly. But I’ll definitely be back, and next time I’ll try out the surf! Meanwhile, you can read more about the gorgeous Moroccan hippie capital in this article.
3 Amazing Lobster Restaurants in Essaouira
- O’Bleu Mogador
This is a fine dining gem, gently tucked away behind a blue door in a hidden alleyway. Does this unpromising restaurant serve the best lobster in Essaouira? Quite possibly!
- Zahra’s Grill
Despite the rather unsexy name, this restaurant/tapas place serves the most fresh seafood you’ll probabaly ever get your paws on. Not to mention, that their oceanfront view will take your breath away. Watch the sunset from here, your life will never be the same ever again.
This is the ultimate place to wolf down some amazing lobster ravioli (one of my favourite dishes ever), the more fancy amongst us can enjoy some lobster caviar. You won’t regret going to this place!