The first thing that arises when we mention Tangier is the gate to Africa. The city is on the edge of the continent where the Mediterranean sea meets the Atlantic ocean. Another thing is Tangier Morocco has mysterious attractions, Hercules’s caves, and Roman history.
Tangier is perhaps a city that is different from all the other Moroccan cities, and this has its explanation. Until the late fifties of the twentieth century, there was an independent international territory under the political control of France, Spain, and Great Britain. Having gained independence in 1956, Morocco also got back northern corner. Even though, Tangier still got some spirit of those times.
Now, Tangier is the business center of the north of the kingdom and a transport hub connecting Morocco and Africa to Europe. The large port in Tangier receives ferries with travelers from all over the world.
Although tourism is an important part of the city’s economy, Tangier can hardly be called a tourist city. It’s relatively calm and modern here, it is perfect for those who want to spend their holidays in contemporary cities and enjoy its luxurious style. It is easy to fall in love with Tangier, as it is quick to merge with its environment.
Best time to visit Tangier
Tangier is usually cold during winter since its location in the north of Morocco. Therefore, the best time to visit Tangier is from April to October, during this period, you can swim in its beautiful beaches. Also, the city is well prepared for the visit of guests.
How to get to Tangier?
You can travel to Tangier in many possible ways, you can reach the city by ferry specially if you are in one of the European countries. Tangier is considered the northern gate of Morocco as it has one of the largest ports in north Africa, through which travelers get from Europe to Africa.
The city has an airport that accepts regular flights from anywhere in the world. In case you are already in Morocco, you can choose local transportation (Taxi, buses, train) to reach the city, or use a high-speed train TGV especially when you are in Casablanca, Rabat, or Kenitra.
Where can I stay in Tangier Morocco?
Of course, Accommodation should be carefully chosen when you are traveling. You need to take into account the location, read reviews, and consider scores in all the features in the house or the room. Tangier is a big city, and there are many choices to have an overnight in the town.
As in any other Moroccan city, Tangier has two central territories.
The old Medina
A historic downtown with an ancient fortress called Kasbah, has many narrow streets but is full of life. There are many Riads and private hotels in Medina. but to my taste, it is better to find a place in a quieter place.
The City Center (Ville Nouvelle)
Extends along the shore between the two main streets of the city – Mohammed V Avenue and Mohammed VI Avenue. You can find different types of Accommodation in this area from budget to luxury.
The most convenient location will be on the territory near the railway station and France Square. In this place, you can walk to the beach, and it’s easy to catch a taxi and different malls. The cost depends on the type of accommodation you selected.
If you are renting an apartment from a private person, it is necessary to make sure that everything works well. – electricity, water supply, and gas cylinders are filled. Hot water is heated by gas or in a boiler, ask for an explanation of how to use them.
If you wish, you can book a tour and focus on enjoying your holidays only. We take care of your accommodation and transport and we plan for places you will visit on your tour. Contact us for more information.
Things to do in Tangier Morocco
Tangier will primarily appeal to those who prefer urban tourism. There are beautiful sights, and places for entertainment, In addition, its beautiful beach attracts many travelers during the summer. When you are in tangier, you need to visit the following places.
Explore the Tangier old Medina
First of all, you should visit the Old Medina of Tangier. If you have already visited other Moroccan old cities, it is unlikely to impress you but it is worth walking around the narrow streets that look like a maze. Of course, don’t forget to visit the fortress.
In Medina, There is a tomb from the XIV century where the famous traveler d’Ibn Battouta is buried. He was born in Tangier and traveled around the Arab world.
Well, fortunately, it is impossible to get lost in the Tangier old medina. So help is unlikely to be needed. However, if you are afraid of wasting your time wandering in the medina or maybe you need a narrated tour, it is better to hire a tour guide.
The Famous Cafe Baba in Tangier Kasbah
In Tangier Lays the Legendary cafe Baba. Located in the heart of the Kasbah, this unique cafe got wold stars visitors. Till today, cafe Baba is still loyal to its original design and a little sign at the entrance which is not convincing to walk through its door. For it, some people, the smell of the coffee is enough to get them convinced, for others might be the location and its history.
Tangier is an amazing city with many hidden gems, cafe baba is one of them. Since its opening in 1941, this place attracted tourists from different countries as well as celebrities over the years. The photos only witness the presence and the story of this cafe as a meeting point for worldwide celebrities.
Amongst the stars who visited the cafe, was the famous Rolling Stones rock star, Keith Richards. His picture hung on the walls. He enjoyed his afternoons at cafe Baba. M. Aoufi the owner of the cafe also attracts big names and personalities like the former Secretary General of the United Nations Kofi Anan as well as his wife. They have a picture of them in the cafe sipping a traditional Moroccan team.
The cafe is mostly visited by Moroccan people during the day. The owner of the cafe refused to set entrance fees for the great number of visitors he got daily because he wants the client to feel comfortable, and he is proud of having Moroccans, tours, and even celebrities at the cafe with no differences.
The simple decoration of the cafe, its old design, and the big smile on the face of the owner M. Aoufi are the key to success for this beautiful cafe. It also played an important role in making not only musicians but also politicians and famous authors like Tennesse Williams, and Jean Genet visits this gem.
The owner of the cafe has a magnificent role in the success of his family business. He kept the cafe filled with excitement, attracting famous clients while remaining simple, original, and authentic as Tangier.
Shopping in Souks
The city market exists in the streets of the Medina overlooking the Grand Socco, it is also called Place of April 9, 1947, named after Mohammed V’s speech on the independence of Morocco.
At the market, you can buy fruits, good meat, sweets, and nuts. In some shops – household goods, you can find fabrics, in others, a mix of different stuff.
There are few tourist shops in Tangier compared to Fez and Marrakesh, but each shop tries to have a variety of products that can be bought as a souvenir from Morocco. Many items can be brought from Morocco – carpets, scarves, leather goods, and decoration souvenirs.
Get a Tangier Shopping Guide
Private business is flourishing in Tangier, so almost every neighborhood has two to three shops where you can buy essential goods – groceries, scratch cards to refill your phone credit, household items, and even souvenirs. In addition, there are several large chain supermarkets in which you can buy almost everything you need.
Recently, a modern shopping center “Megarama” was opened opposite the train station. It has a lot of boutiques of well-known brands, a supermarket, a cinema, a playground, and restaurants.
The mall immediately became a busy place that attracts an important number of visitors daily.
In addition to the bazaar in Medina, you should look at Casabarata. It is a flea market that can be reached by regular bus, or by a small taxi. This is the flea market, full of household goods, souvenirs, and gadget repair. At a minimum, you can fully enjoy the trade spirit of Morocco.
Visit Tangier Kasbah & Dar el makhzen
The Kasbah is one of the main attractions of Tangier. A castle-like place overlooking the harbor from above. Among these beautiful bright houses lived the heiress of the Woolworth Empire Barbara Hutton, who bought the Sidi Hosni palace Tangier from General Franco, where she started organizing luxury parties for her rich and famous guests.
Along Bab el, Aissa is Roayl Palace called The Dar al-Makhzen or Sultan’s Palace, built by Moulai Ismail in remembrance of the departure of the British from Tangier. Today, the Palace becomes an interesting museum for expositions.
Among the exhibits are pieces of local ancient Roman monuments, ceramics, carpets, and a bone attributed to a whale that swallowed the biblical Jonah. Perhaps the coziest part of the palace is the Andalus Gardens, aromatic and shady, from which the gate leads to a stunning view.
Musee de la Kasbah
While walking around the fortress, you should visit the Kasbah Museum which has a beautiful Sultan’s garden, a good place to meditate. Entrance fees $1 only. The museum is located in the Kasbah, open from 9 to 16 except Tuesday.
Antiquity lovers will like the Museum of Moroccan Art and Antiques. It is located close to the Kasba Museum, on the same square as The Dar al-Makhzen Palace.
The palace itself is worth attention as a wonderful example of Moroccan culture and Art including the mosaics, Arabic patterns, and all kinds of architectural delights. If you are lucky, you will find the hall of the museum open in which you can admire old carpets, old weapons, national costumes, and household items. Official opening hours are from 8.30 to 18, Monday-Thursday.
Tangier beaches stretch along the entire city center from the port to the hotel district in Malabata. Since the beach is located in the heart of Tangier, it is easy to walk to it. You can find your favorite place in its vast territory. For example, I like to be near the cafe La Veranda, there are good waves, quiet and calm.
Just away from the center, west of the port is Merkala Beach in Tangier, it can be reached by Taxi along the picturesque Dam. The beach is located in a gorge, it’s quite beautiful there.
All local beaches are sandy and suitable for swimming. Another amazing beach is located out of the town, it is called Achakar. It is about 15 km from Tangier. It’s a huge ocean beach, it has beautiful sand and great waves. It is usually crowded during the weekends and summer holidays. Across the street, there are different food Kiosks, restaurants, and cafes where you can have a good snack.
The taxi that goes to Ashakar can be easily recognized in the city by its green color.
The American Legation Museum
The Old American Legation is the first historical American museum outside the US. It is located in the old Medina – on Rue d’Amerique, 8. It’s a museum and a cultural center. Here you will be told about the participation of the United States in Morocco.
The museum presents many ancient maps, engravings, and documents, and exhibits contemporary Moroccan art. As part of the cultural mission, the organization holds all kinds of seminars and conferences and distributes grants to talented Moroccans. The entrance ticket is 20 dirhams ($2), and the tour will cost 50 dirhams ($5). The museum is open from Monday to Friday from 10 to 17, Saturday – until 15.
Caves of Hercules
If you want to take a break from the crowd, go 4.8 km northwest to the rocky shore, where the Mediterranean Sea meets the waves of the Atlantic Ocean. Visit the caves of Hercules, known for their hole in the rock that has the shape of an African continent.
There is a small cafe where you can enjoy the wonderful view of the ocean and taste traditional dishes while watching local fishermen unload their fishing rods. Feel the salty wind, listen to the sound of the surf, feel the sun on your face, and you will feel peace in your soul.
It is also called April 9, 1947, Square. On this day, King Mohamed V first declared a demand for independence for Morocco. Not so long ago, it was a busy marketplace in the city.
Now, it is a meeting point for tourist who wants to explore this place. Grand Socco, is where the old Tangier and the new Tangier meet. You can have a walk in this square or sit in a cafe enjoying the quietness of the place.
Cape Malabata and Ksar-Sghir
The wide arc of Tangier gulf on both sides is crowned by two impressive capes. In the east, it is Cape Malabata with a 19th-century lighthouse that protects the entrance to the Mediterranean Sea and allows you to look at a wide panoramic view, including both Tangier and the island on the Spanish shore of the Strait.
Along the way from the lighthouse, there are a lot of rocky trails covered by pine trees down to small beaches. The remains of former old buildings add picturesqueness to the place.
The road along the coast to the east is not fully mastered by tourists, although it is one of the most beautiful in Morocco. About 33 km from Tangier, the small resort of Ksar Sghir is located which can be an excellent starting point for exploring sand caves and frightening trails in the rocks with breathtaking views. Further east, the road continues to go around the coast and leads to Ceuta.
Drive 14 km west of Tangier and find yourself at Cape Spartel with a minaret like the one on Cape Malabata. Fascinating place, which attracts many photographers who love beautiful views. This is the northwestern spot of Africa, where the Atlantic meets the Mediterranean Sea.
In winter, the cape is almost empty due to the Atlantic storms in the area. However, it is one of the main attractions during the summer. Many visitors prefer this place and settle on the short. The place is known for its beautiful sea stretching 45 km south to Asilah. The beach is one of the most beautiful in the country.
For lighthouse of Cape Spartel is still active. However, it is close to the public. You can enjoy the view only from Far, which gives it a kind of mystery.
Best day trips from Tangier Morocco
Many day trips can be taken from Tangier Morocco. Depending on what you are interested in, you could visit a nearby town or take a train or bus to different cities. Some popular day trips from Tangier include visits to Chefchaouen the blue city, Tetouan, Asilah, and Casablanca.
If you are looking for a more natural setting, you could also take high-speed train to different cities in Morocco including Rabat. No matter what your interests are, there is sure to be a day travel from Tangier that is perfect for you!
Day voyage to Tetouan
Go for a day trip to Tetouan, a city on the coast where Jews lived, Jews have their neighbor in most cities in Morocco called Mallah. In Tetouan, the houses are all painted white with the addition of green. Changing the color of the facades is not allowed, the same case of Chechaouen. The place is calm, and very close to the most beautiful beaches in Morocco Fnideq, Martil, and M’diq.
Day trip to Chefchaouen
visiting Chefchaouen is a great option. The blue city is around 2 hours drive from Tangier. Once you arrive you will see why this city is called the blue city. All the houses there are in blue. There are some places that you can explore in the city. You can visit its medina, then have a walk in its narrow streets, and take pictures. In the afternoon, you can take a climb to the Spanish where you will be able to enjoy the panoramic view of the city.
Day travel to Asilah
the white city of Asilah another city that is near Tangier, which is not inferior in beauty to Chefchaouen at all, but it’s much cleaner here. All the streets look different from the other olds, which makes them unique. Plus, the city is located on the coast and there are excellent fish restaurants.
Book your ticket on TGV (High-speed train) for the early morning travel. It only takes 40 minutes to reach Rabat the capital of Morocco and one of the imperial cities in the country.
You can start your journey by exploring the city center. It is a modern place that has different malls and boutiques of many brands. Later, you can walk to Bab El Had, which is the gate of the old Medina of Rabat. The area is full of restaurants, shops, and beautiful buildings.
After you navigate through its streets, you will reach Udaya Kasbah which was built in the 11 century. The Kasbah is one the main tourist attractions as it is famous for its stunning blue walls, narrow streets, and fascinating history and pirate stories. You can visit the Andalusian Gardens, have a cup of mint tea in a cafe overlooking the Abu Ragra river, and don’t forget the museum and the mosque.
Afterward, make your way to Rabat’s famous landmark the Hassan Tower. It is a beautiful place with impressive constructions. It was meant to be the largest mosque in the world but it was not completed.
Another historical attraction is Challa, which is located outside the city center. It has impressive ruins and is a great place to take pictures.
Rabat has many museums and galleries. So, if you have enough time, visit the Mohammed VI Museum of Modern Art and Contemporary Art. It has a great collection of Moroccan art with rotating exhibits by international artists. Then, visit Kulte Gallery which does not fare Mohammed VI museum. You won’t need much time in the gallery as it is a small with a limited amount of pieces.
After you finish your tour, you can book another ticket back to tangier.
Casablanca is a modern city similar to Tangier. It has few historical places. However, it is full of modern buildings, shopping malls, luxury hotels, and luxury restaurants.
You can quickly travel from Tangier to Casablanca by TGV. It only takes 2 hrs 30 min to reach the city. You can book an early morning ticket to get most of your day.
Once you arrive at Casablanca Voyageur train station, book another ticket to Casa Port. You will start your journey by visiting Hassan II mosque. It is one of the largest mosques in the world. Few mosques allow non-Muslims to enter, Hassan II mosque is one of them. The mosque is open between 9:00 am to 2:00 pm from Saturday to Thursday. To visit the Hassan II mosque, you must wear appropriate clothes.
Next, head to the Jewish Museum which is located in the suburbs of Oasis. The Museum of Moroccan Judaism is the only Jewish museum is the Arab world. It is a small museum. However, it has some valuable treasures that represent Moroccan’s Jewish history.
Afterward, you can visit Art Deco one of the riches historical aspects of the city. Then have a luxury Hammam, to feel fresh again and remove the stress. Later, head to Morocco Mall, which is one of the largest malls in Africa. It is full of entertainment.
If you want a great place to eat, you can check out Rick’s Cafe. It is one of the best restaurants in Casablanca. There are also others in the city especially in Morocco Mall, you can find lot of choices.
To Sumup, Tangier worth a visit. This beautiful city located in the northern part of Morocco is the capital of the Tetouan and Houceima regions. It is one of the oldest cities in Morocco and has been a major port and trading center for centuries.
Tangier is a popular tourist destination, and it is known for its relaxed atmosphere. Moreover, the city has stunning architecture, vibrant culture, and friendly people.
In addition, the city has a rich history dating back to Roman Empire, which is reflected in its architecture. Tangier is home to many beautiful mosques, palaces, and gardens. Its stunning beaches of the Mediteranean sea and the Atlantic ocean are the best in Morocco and attract Moroccans and tourists from around the world.
Travel to Tangier Morocco
She & Co Travel Morocco has different unique itineraries that allow you to explore real Morocco. Our well-planned itineraries give you an overview of the country’s highlights including culture, traditions, and landscapes.
The tours that include the imperial cities take you to inspiring locations such as museums, UNESCO world heritage sites, Palaces, and more. However, most of our tours include trips to the Sahara Desert, also visits to the northern part of the country; Tangier and chefchaouen.