Asilah, Assilah or Arcila is a city located on the Atlantic coast of northern Morocco, 40 km south of Tangier, and is well known for its beautiful medina, where the houses are painted every year white and indigo blue and decorated by murals of different artists who visit the city. If you have been to Chefchaouen and liked it, you probably will love Asilah too.
But... what is so interesting about this city?
Well, Asilah is a quiet city in comparison to other Moroccan cities like Marrakech or Fez. You will find the exotic Moroccan flair without feeling followed like a tourist. You will feel as a local in Asilah. You will be able to relax and to enjoy Morocco at the same time.
We have chosen 10 things that you can do here if you plan to stay in Asilah a few days. Even in winter, Asilah is a great destination to visit.
1. Get lost in the Medina
This is a must see attraction for all Asilah visitors. The heart and soul of the city is enclosed by 14th century Portuguese walls. There are three gates to enter the Medina: Bab el Bahar (gate of the sea), Bab Homar (gate of the land) and Bab el Kasbah (gate of the fortress). Once inside the ancient city, you can choose to visit the Big Mosque, Borj Al Kamra, Sidi Ahmed El Mansur cemetery with his tomb, the Raisuni Palace, the viewpoint of Krikia or just to take a walk along the ramparts and sea walls stunning Asilahs infamous street art.
2. Make surf
When it comes to surf, you can choose to surf in all beaches of Asilah and find amazing waves in the sommer and in the winter months. The most famous beach for surfing is Briech Beach. If you need more information about surfing in Asilah, please do not miss following link:
3. Visit a typical Moroccan hammam:
Hammams in Morocco are the place where a lot of locals enjoy the weekly bath. There are two hammams in Asilah. If you plan to go to the hammam, do not expect it to be like a normal spa. It is really a different experience. We invite you to discover it by yourself and offer you tours from 50 MAD to the local hammam from our hostel. Ask our staff about it.
4. Eat seafood
As a good Sea city, you will find the local fish market already at early hours where you can buy fresh fish and let it cook it by locals or go to a restaurant and enjoy the food. We recommend you Restaurante Oceano Casa Pepe.
5. Have a sunbath at our amazing beaches
There are beautiful beaches around Asilah like Paradise Beach or Briech Beach where you can relax. The nearest one is the town beach only a few meters from the promenade. To get to Paradise or Sidi Mghayet Beach you can walk 1 hour or 1 hour and a half respectively. Otherwise, you can take a Taxi. Another funny option would be to rent a typical horse cart that will cost you 20 MAD per person.
6. Visit the local market
Thursdays is local market. Beginning in Avenue Mohammed el Hassani you will find local and fresh vegetables, fruits, cheese and of course a lot of people. The flair is really nice and you will enjoy watching Moroccans screaming prices and dribbling.
Asilah is well known for being a quiet city. Especially in winter months, you can enjoy lonely beach walks under the sun and blue sky. You won’t have to worry about tourists everywhere. Even the city is really calm.
8. Enjoying live music
In summer is unavoidable. Make sure you stop by the harbor on Saturdays when it comes alive as fisherman gather to listen to and play Andalousi music.
9. Riding a camel
Riding a camel is an unforgettable experience. You will find them in all beaches and can negotiate an hour ride or even just having your picture taken on the camels.
10. Watch the sunset
One of the more beautiful sunsets from the city is the sunset from Krikia Tower in the south-west of the medina, where the sea crashes against the ancient walls beneath you.
So, what are you waiting to visit us?