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Essaouira is a very culturally interesting place, with masses of tradition still remaining throughout the un-spoilt Morrocan charm of the town, port, and beaches. The fascinating culture combined with the reliable strong winds make it a great windsurfing holiday destination, that will ensure entertainment for both windsurfers and non windsurfers alike. It has the perfect balance of a relaxing holiday, and an up beat nightlife. The nearby wave spots mean you can explore the surrounding areas, and experience different conditions to really make the most of your time.
Essouira is situated on 4 Km of slightly descending beach, allowing easy launching and learning. The long gentle waves are ideal for inexperienced wave riders. Further down wind in the bay are bigger waves, measuring between 1 and 2 meters. For more wave spots it's an easy trip to visit Moulay or Sidi Kaouki, a mere 20 minute drive. There you will be confronted with big powerful waves, ideal only for experienced wave riders. At the northern end of the bay is a flat water spot great for slalom, freestyle, and general speed freaks.
The wind in Essaouira predominantly blows cross offshore from the right, directly next to the center, but due to the shape of the beach, downwind it will blow cross shore. It is here where the wind and waves are best, and definitely worth sailing down to. Between 9 and 11 in the mornings are the best time for beginners, and kids as this is before the wind has picked up, and in turn the sea is a lot calmer. After 11 the wind has really begun blowing and is when the more experienced windsurfers begin to launch. By 12 o'clock the wind has picked up significantly and continues to blow stronger throughout the day, often until sundown, so make sure that a sundown sail is high on your list as Morrocco has views of spectacular sunsets! The wind in Essaouira blows strongest from July until August, and in these months it is regularly a very, very high wind destination, yet the wind is reliable all the way from April until November.
The waves make for great surfing in Essouira and at local wave spots. The shopping in Morrocco is incredible, walking through the alleys you will discover beautiful hand crafted pots, rugs, glassware, materials, clothes, and much, much more. Other options are Kitesurfing, SUP'ing, boat trips to near by islands with bird sanctuaries, quad biking, excursions into the Atlas Mountains.
The enclosed, foot traffic only, town of Essaouira has alleys upon alleys of unique shops which stay open late into the evening selling beautiful crafts, all available at bartered prices. There are lots of restaurants, ranging from small and simple ones, to fabulous restaurants offering fantastic seafood and the traditional Tagines (Casseroles). Filled with meat, vegetables, spices, all cooked together in a small clay oven for hours. Highly reccommended is Chez Sam, a seafood restaurant in the port of Essaouira, serving fresh seafood straight from the boats! Being Predominantly Islamic, you won't be served alcohol with your meal, but you can find a few small bars.
Essaouira is not the most ideal place for young kids, mainly because of the minimal amount of activities they would be able to participate in. Although the accomodation standard in Essaouira is very good, none of the hotels offer kids clubs or a nanny service. It is a destination suited mainly for teenagers and adults looking to participate in the sports, and are interested in the traditional Moroccan culture.