Tangier Mini Guide
Where Europe Almost Joins Africa
Located on the northernmost tip of Morocco just 20 miles across the Straits of Gibraltar
, Tangier is now a thriving tourist destination, mainly thanks to the low cost airlines such as easyJet and Ryanair who fly direct to the city's airport.
A “Walkable” City
Walking is probably the best way to get around the inner city of Tangier, particularly the old walled centre as some of the alleyways can only be accessed on foot. However, should you decide to travel further afield, then you may wish to hire a car and perhaps explore a little further into the “real Morocco”.
Sights in the City Itself
There is so much to do in Tangier, from taking a walk along the beach, seeing the ancient sights to exploring the old walled Medina – this is at it's best and busiest during the evening and night time. If you're into markets and shopping why not try the Casa Barata or “thieves market”. A short ride out of town, a market selling every conceivable item – you never know what you'll turn up there! There's also the souk near to St Andrew's Church (the English church), every Thursday and Sunday you'll see the Rif mountain women there selling their produce and dairy products whilst wearing their colourful costumes.
The History of the City
Perhaps you could try a visit to the Kasbah Museum, this is the former Sultan's Palace, now a museum with a vast collection of artefacts from the Phoenician to modern times. It's worth a visit, not only for this, but also for it's building and gardens. Or maybe visit the American Legation, a thriving cultural centre which is housed in the only historic landmark of the the United States of America located outside of the USA. The museum has a good collection of art and historical items, there is also a library and conference centre, together with a wing dedicated to Paul Bowles, the writer and composer who lived most of his adult life in Tangier.
A Tagine or a Burger?
There is a wide selection of places to eat in Tangier, maybe the local restaurants offering traditional Moroccan Lamb Tagine, or, as Spanish is widely spoken and Tangier is so close to Spain there is also a good choice of tapas bars. If your palate is not so adventurous there are also two branches of McDonalds and a Pizza Hut, but it would be shame not to even try some of the local delicacies.
Tangier is an eclectic city and has enticed tourists for centuries. Whilst you’re there you can visit the tomb of one of the world’s earliest tourists, Ibn Battouta who, in the 14th century travelled all over North Africa and Southern Europe. The tomb is intricately designed and fitting for this celebrated traveller.
The city, like many others in the region has a fabulous souk but of most interest there are the days when the women from the mountains, dressed in their colourful traditional clothes, go to the market to sell their handicrafts and dairy products.