Located along Morocco’s Atlantic Coast, between the nation’s largest city of Casablanca and the popular coastal town of Essaouira, El Jadida is somewhat of an off-the-beaten-track destination for international tourists. Filled with Moroccan tourists over the summer holidays, El Jadida has plenty to see and do. Here’s why you should visit.
Unlike more popular beach resorts, like Agadir and Tangier, El Jadida offers a more relaxed seaside experience. While the town’s main beach can become busy, visitors only need to take a short trip along the coast to reach beautiful beaches that are almost deserted. It’s easy to find a stretch of sand to appeal to almost any mood. El Jadida is a great choice for people who love swimming, sunbathing, and enjoying ocean vistas.
Several areas near El Jadida offer great conditions for surfing. Grab your board and hit the waves for a day filled with excitement. Sections of dunes make for a pleasant stroll, and ATV rides on the beach near Mazagan Beach and Golf Resort can be exhilarating. Golfing enthusiasts will be happy on the pro-designed 18-hole course. Camel rides are also available. Keen ornithologists can take a trip to the nearby town of Oualidia, where the large lagoon and wetlands attract many bird species. Autumn and spring are the best seasons to see pink flamingoes gracing the waters.
A former Portuguese colony, El Jadida has a number of interesting old buildings from the colonial era. A stroll through the old Portuguese City makes visitors feel as though they have been transported to Europe. Former churches and synagogues sit close to mosques, the UNESCO-listed Fortress of Mazagan is one of the country’s best-preserved coastal fortresses, and the Portuguese Cisterns provide something unusual on any Moroccan adventure.
El Jadida is one of Morocco’s underrated destinations. Visitors can see a different side of the country, far away from the large tourist crowds of places like Marrakech and Fez. It’s a terrific place to enjoy a vacation like a local. Another plus point is that prices are often lower than in more-touristy parts of the country.
El Jadida has a good selection of places to eat and drink. Tagine and couscous are, unsurprisingly, widely available. The town is also known for its delectable seafood and fish. Take a walk around the harbour and watch small boats bobbing on the waves and fishermen returning with the day’s catch. The fish market is a top place to peruse the diverse selection of seafood, and there are plentiful restaurants with fresh seafood on the menu. Tuck into oysters, crab, lobster, sea urchin, eel, shrimp, and various types of fish.
El Jadida has a wide range of accommodation options to suit almost all budgets and expectations. Modern apartments are ideal for larger groups and families who love to have self-catering facilities. Traditional buildings complete with striking Moroccan designs and patterns let visitors experience fine Moroccan traditions around the clock. Small family-run guesthouses offer an immersive stay full of warm hospitality, and there are boutique and luxury hotels and resorts, ideal for visitors who like to be pampered while on holiday.