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How to Spend 1 Day in Essaouira

How to Spend 1 Day in Essaouira

Whether you’re there on a day trip from Marrakech or enjoying a stopover along Morocco’s south coast, one day in Essaouira is just enough time to take in the highlights. Explore the UNESCO-listed medina, browse the souks, and take a camel ride along the beach. Here’s how to make the most of 24 hours in this port city.

Morning: The medina

A walking tour is the ideal way to discover Essaouira’s medina, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the heart of the historic city. Start with a visit to the old citadel, the Scala du Port—climb up to the ramparts for sweeping views of the coast. Continue into the medina, where the mazelike streets, palm-shaded plazas, and blue and white painted buildings make for impressive photos. Then, stop by the lively Moulay el Hassan square to enjoy a glass of Moroccan mint tea or a seafood lunch.

Afternoon: From the souks to the port

Essaouira’s souks stretch from the center of the medina all the way up to the northern gate of Bab Doukkala. Part of the charm is getting lost in the labyrinthine lanes, so give yourself plenty of time to wander around the tiny shops, markets, and workshops. This is the place to pick up traditional souvenirs, such as colorful handicrafts, exotic spices, and Moroccan argan oil. For a more personalized experience, shop with a private guide who can help you haggle for the best prices. 

In the late afternoon, head over to the port to watch as the fishing boats return to shore with the day’s haul—it’s a memorable sight, so don’t forget your camera. 

Night: Sunset sightseeing

A camel ride is a quintessential experience for visitors to Morocco. Set out on a scenic sunset ride along beaches, forest trails, and dunes, savoring the views along the coast. 

Afterward, return to Essaouira Beach for a drink at one of the beachfront bars. Or, attend a performance of traditional Gnaoua music and dance. Essaouira is an important center of the art form, and hosts the annual Gnaoua World Music Festival.

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2 Tours and Activities

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3 hours ride on camel at sunset

3 hours ride on camel at sunset

star-5
209
I join my clients at the meeting point of their choice, to drop them near hiking trails, A briefing is organized before each ride to prepare them better. A chick and a djellaba will be provided to protect them from the wind or the sand stirred by the legs of the dromedaries, several information about this faithful companion of the Man since the night of time, will be revealed to them throughout the course which will last three hours. A picnic break is planned after 1 hour to refuel, and savor this beautiful moment, on the menu: (a Royal Tea + homemade bread + argan oil + homemade cakes) .Recover the walk between wild beaches, forests, dunes and historical ruins. Back to attend a most wonderful show: a sun hanging on the doors of the sunset between sky and sea.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$53.32
From
$53.32

Horse Ride on the Beach in Essaouira

Horse Ride on the Beach in Essaouira

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69
Ride a horse across Essaouira’s beaches, dunes, and forest on this tour. Select a horse that’s suited to your riding experience — beginners start with a basic riding lesson — then walk, canter, or gallop across the smooth sand; clamber up steep seaside dunes to sweeping views, and wind through the shade of Essaouira’s arid forests.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$33.43
From
$33.43