Although a major industrial centre and port, Tangier’s economy relies heavily on tourism, and cruise ships are an important source of visitors, who rapidly discover an intriguing mix of east and west in the narrow winding streets of the Medina (Old Town) and the attractive broad boulevards of the newer part of the city, with their art deco architecture.
Tangier also has excellent beaches, and great opportunities for exploring further afield.
One of Morocco’s oldest cities, Tangier dates back over 2,000 years and cruise visitors will soon find that it offers a rich heritage combining many cultures, together with thriving modern development.
Tangier is a very walkable city, not least in the Old Town, which is very well preserved and very much a ‘living’ part of the city, although many of the shops and stalls cater primarily to tourists. The Kasbah, as it is known, is without doubt the main draw in the city itself.
Outside Tangier, day trip possibilities are varied – a major attraction being the Caves of Hercules, about 14 km (9 miles) west of the city, which offer not only great scenic appeal but archaeological interest too.
• The Kasbah
• Kasbah Museum
• Grand Socco market square and Mendoubia Gardens
• American Legation Museum
• Museum of Contemporary Art
• Tomb of Ibn Battuta
Tangier Tourist Office
29 Boulevard Pasteur, Tangier, Morocco
Tel: +212 3999 48050.
The souk in the Medina is a good stop for cruise ship passengers seeking clothing and souvenirs, while the Casa Barata (Cheap House) flea market can be good for bargains, but beware of fake goods. There is also a large market in the Grand Socco. Best buys include brass and leather goods, pottery, carpets, carved wooden goods and other handicrafts.
Cheap eats and snacks are readily available in the Medina area, while more plush international establishments cluster on the seafront. It’s worth trying local specialities like harira (a rich soup), couscous, tajine (fish or meat stew) and djaja mahamara, a flavoursome stuffed chicken.
When to go:
Tangier has a warm, Mediterranean climate tempered by the Atlantic. The weather is hot and dry throughout most of the year, though temperatures can drop dramatically at night, especially in winter. Rain falls from November to March.
2km (1.2 miles).