Instead of spending the day in Marrakesh, we ended up making a day trip to a Essaouira. The day trip, which we organized through Get Your Guide, included a few stops along the way, making it a long bus ride. We ended up spending 4 hours driving there and 3.5 hours on the way back.
On the ride there, we made two stops which were approximately 10 minutes each. I think this depends on your group size and interest. The first stop was to visit the infamous goats in a tree, take photos and even hold them for a price. Once you see the goats standing there, not moving, you quickly realize that they are by no means “randomly there”. We took some pictures from afar and didn’t spend too much time encouraging it. The second stop was to visit an Argan Oil cooperative. The cooperative spent time educating you on the process and showing you how it is made locally. They encourage you to buy products and make donations.
Upon arrival, we were told we had 5 hours to explore this small coastal town. Essaouria is located on the western coast of Morocco and is a fishing town with a bustling old Medina and an artsy, Chefchaouen vibe.
We were dropped off right on the edge of town where we could either head towards the bustling old medina or head towards the beach. A bit of best of both worlds for us!
Since we only had a few hours, we knew the first thing we had to do was eat. Rain noticed this cute sign and decided to check it out. Turns out, it was small sub and coffee shop called Fish’n Mohka. When we say small, we really mean tiny. They had three bar stools on the inside! They served different types of seafood rolls and coffee made with a moka brewing pot. Stephen thoroughly enjoyed devouring one of these lobster rolls. It was one of Stephen’s favorite dishes he had that day! In typical Rainier fashion, she darted to the nearest ice cream stand before having her lunch. After ice cream, Rain finally settled on a spot called Miyame Restaurant and had her eyes set on some authentic seafood rice, which was yummy and filled lots of mini prawns!
After a much needed lunch, we started to explore the winding alleyways of the old Medina. This is a town to bring your walking shoes. The town is full of vibrant colors, especially hidden in the smaller, side streets. Bits of graffiti art every corner you look, white buildings with blue doors and windows, colorful light fixtures, area rugs and decor. The small town is great to explore for trinkets that may be a bit cheaper than the major Medina in Marrakesh, fresh seafood and experiencing the colorful culture.
After exploring the Medina, we headed towards the beach to relax. It was the town’s “off” season so there were few people around and only a handful of the beach bars open. We saw some locals playing soccer and tourists sunbathing. It was nice moment to relax and take in the lovely scenery. The beach stretches quite far with a boardwalk that wraps around it. We highly recommend taking a stroll along the water and work your way from the beach to the Marina area. We saw quite a few boats that were tied out, watched plenty of seagulls flying around and saw locals frying up fresh caught fish. It was a great spot for pictures and to eat fresh caught fish from the stands.
After all our explorations, it was time to head back to the van that would be taking us back to Marrakesh. We both plugged in headphones and relaxed during the 3.5 hour ride back home. The evening sky lit up with beautiful colors. Morocco was proving to be on our list for amazing sunsets.
Once we arrived back in Marrakesh, we went straight to the old Medina to find our last Marrakesh tagine! We chose Cafe Kessabine Medina for our last meal so we can people watch the bustling medina.