Day Trip to Essaouria – Atlantic Coast & Ancient Fortress
From Marrakech it is a leisurely drive to the Atlantic Coast and the former Portuguese stronghold of Essaouira. Despite seeing an increase in visitors over the years, this town remains one of Morocco’s best-kept secrets. Complete with a bustling historical centre and surrounded by ancient city walls, Essaouira is a delightful destination for a day trip. Explore the atmospheric alleyways of the ancient medina, and the old ochre ramparts which now provide protection from the wind-assisted waves of the Atlantic Ocean.
|Duration||1 day (12 hours)||Tour Starts||Marrakech|
|Group Size||From 2 to 15||Tour Ends||Marrakech|
|Trip Type||Day Trip Explorer||Prices From||£37 pp|
|Operating Season||All Year Round||Private Departures||Daily|
UNESCO World Heritage Site
Originally built on a rocky peninsula and overlooking the Atlantic, Essaouira is one of Morocco’s must-see destinations. With a whitewashed medina enclosed by huge pink sandstone ramparts which is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and with a rich Portuguese and Andalusian heritage, Essaouira holds great appeal. From a long white sandy beach and dunes to a bustling fishing port with excellent seafood and colourful wooden fishing boats, Essaouira has always been a favourite retreat of hippies, sailors, artists and musicians.
Phoenicians & Portuguese
Founded by the Phoenicians in the 7th century BC, the Portuguese arrived in the 15th century and established the first fortifications and a trading post. The town of Essaouira itself wasn’t built until the latter half of the 1700’s, sanctioned by an Alouite sultan, Mohammed II. It was actually a renowned French architect who designed and built the town, harbour and fortifications in the style of a European fortress.
Medina & Atlantic Beach
Local attractions include the Sidi Med Ben Abdallah Museum, the souks, the old city gates, and the impressive sqalas – fortified sea bastions. Perhaps enjoy a meal in one of the fabulous seafood restaurants and a stroll along Essaouira’s impressive sandy beach before you make the drive back to Marrakech.
The timings below are approximate and provided as a general guide:
0800 Depart Marrakech. Coffee/tea stop en route
1130 Arrival in Essaouira. Meet local guide for orientation tour of Essaouira’s medina
1300 Free time for seafood lunch, beach relaxation or exploring the medina and ramparts
1700 Depart Essaouira back to Marrakech
2030 Arrival back in Marrakech
Prices, Departures & Essential Booking Information
|Prices||£37 pp (based on 4 travellers); £50 pp (based on 3 travellers); £65 pp (based on 2 travellers)|
|Included||Pick-up/drop-off at nearest parking to your Marrakech accommodation; travel in style in air-conditioned private vehicle with professional driver; English-speaking guide on arrival in Essaouira for short tour of medina.|
|Excluded||Lunch, drinks, entrance fees, tips and items of a personal nature.|
|Balance of Payment||56 days before start date|
|Price Validity||01 Jan 2016 to 31 Dec 2016|
|Departures||This day trip departs daily throughout the year and is subject to availability.|
|International Flights||If you would like a quotation for international or domestic flights to connect with this trip please get in touch. Typical fares from London to Marrakech booked approx. 3-6 months before travel range from £100-200 return on easyJet from Gatwick. Book early for cheapest seats!|
|Financial Protection||Marrakech Tours is a trading name of Specialist Africa Ltd. As Specialist Africa is a fully bonded member of the Travel Trust Association (TTA) all prices include TTA supplier failure insurance cover and safe seat plan insurance to ensure your monies are 100% secure when booking through us.|
|Travel Insurance||Travel and cancellation insurance is mandatory for all clients. Specialist Africa’s travel insurance partner is Campbell Irvine, experts in providing insurance specifically tailored to travel in Africa. See our insurance page for rates and further details.|