Visitors to Morocco have no shortage of historic, scenic and exciting cities to visit. Many start in Marrakech, others opt for the film-famed city of Casablanca and others choose the authentic and exotic city of Fez. This guide will show you what to do in another exciting city to visit in Morocco, Tangier.
This Tangier city guide will give you the highlights of what to do in Tangier using our countdown method:
- 5 Things to do in Tangier
- 4 Food and Drink experiences in Tangier
- 3 Tangier hotels to consider for your trip
- 2 Perfect Tangier instagram spots
- and 1 insider Tangier travel tip
Read on for all this and more so that you can book the ultimate Tangier holiday.
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5 Things to do in Tangier
Even though Tangier is one of the most culturally significant cities in Morocco, it’s not as popular with tourists. This makes it a great destination to visit for a more authentic Moroccan holiday. As you start to plan your Tangier itinerary, here are five things to do in Tangier that you should include. Where possible we even provide links to help you book tours and experiences during your stay.
1. Visit the Grand Socco
One great Tangier attractions to start with is the Grand Socco. The interesting name is actually a Spanish adaptation of the word souk or market. It’s been described as the nerve center of Tangier and is located in the new section of the city. The famous Tangier tourist attraction is busy almost all hours of the day and you’ll find a lively atmosphere in a market where you can buy fruit, spices and bazaar and marketplace items.
Once you do a little shopping (and most likely a little haggling), stick around to explore the nearby cafes and open areas to rest and do some people watching. The views are simply spectacular! The area was once dodgy and downtrodden but you’ll find nothing but charm today.
Do some shopping, take a few photos and linger for a Moroccan tea in the enchanting Grand Socco.
2. Marvel at the City of Chefchaouen
If you have an instagram account, chances are good that you’ve seen photos of someone exploring the blue city of Chefchaouen, Morocco. It’s simply marvellous to see in person and easily reached from Tangier. The best way to get to Chefchaouen yourself is to book a day trip and guided tour from Tangier.
A full day trip includes an Arab-Andalusian guide that is well-versed in the history of the city. It includes transportation high into the Rif mountains to see Chefchaouen. The day trip includes stops at the kasbah, souk market, grand mosque and the Jewish Quarter.
The 9 hour day trip is about $80 at the time of publishing and you can book this unforgettable Morocco experience HERE.
3. See the American Legation
Okay, maybe we’re biased about visiting the American Legation because it’s our country of origin, but Morocco and America have a cool history. Morocco was the very first nation to recognize the existance of the United States of America in 1777, only one year after the States declared independence from England.
The American Legation is a museum honoring the historic relationship between the United States and Morocco. It’s also the first piece of overseas property of the country and a worthwhile thing to do in Tangier, so check it out!
4. Visit the Cave of Hercules
The Cave of Hercules are a stunning natural attraction that you have to visit while in Tangier. As you might imagine, it’s steeped in mythological lore and is known as the cave where Hercules once rested during his 11th labor. There are to caves entrances, one land and one sea entrance. The sea entrance has the shape of the African continent and is believed to have been created by early Phoenician settlers of the area. They also left carvings on the interior of the caves, adding to the intrigue of the site.
The cave natural sea cave complex is located about 14 km (9 miles) west of Tangier in Cape Spartel. This makes it possible to reach and explore on your own, but it’s also a stop on most Tangier guided tours. Click HERE to review a six-hour Tangier tour that includes a trip to the Cave of Hercules.
5. Tour the Incredible Sultanate Palace of Dar el Makhzen
The wealthy Sultans of Morocco have peppered Morocco with opulent palaces and there’s no way you can visit Tangier without seeing the city residence of the Sultans, Dar el Makhzen. Today it’s a museum that explores Moroccan art and archaeological items from history. Still, the main draw is the ornately decorated and historically important palace.
Dar el Makhzen was built in the 17th century on the ruins of the English “upper castle”. It’s also worth your visit because of the sweeping views of the Strait of Gibraltar and the Medina below.
4 Places to Eat and Drink in Tangier
Tangier is full of delicious culinary delights, and while it’s hard to narrow down a list of things to eat, here are a few top picks of this to eat and drink in Tangier.
1. Café Hafa
Address: Rue Hafa، Tangier, Morocco
Come for the views and stay for the drinks. Also referred to as the hidden café, the Café Hafa has one of the most astounding views in Tangier. Its design is a mix of modern intricacy with vintage ambience.
Its remarkable view is born of the fact that it’s located along a cliff, and you’re always guaranteed an adventure on its grounds.
2. Café A L'anglaise
3. Le Nabab
4. Anna and Paolo
3 Places to Stay in Tangier
Finding a place to stay in Tangier may be easier than you’d think. There are an almost endless number of hotels, riads and flats available for rent on AirBnB. You can use the Airbnb search widget below or browse our other recommendations for Tangier hotels.
1. Classic Moroccan - Palais Zahia
If you’re looking for a traditional hotel with fantastic service, you’ll be right at home at Palais Zahia. The property offers a lovely restaurant, yoga classes and guests rave about the service.
2. Modern Ambiance - Der Tanja
For a well-appointed room in an updated hotel, you’ll love staying at Modern Ambiance. It’s ideal for business travelers, couples or anyone who wants to stay in a safe, residential area. There’s also a spa, swimming pool and restaurant at the property.
3. Luxury - Marina Bay
Do you want to stay in a property that exudes luxury? Then Marina Bay is the place for you. It’s a five-star hotel with marble floors, a private beach and a trendy restaurant.
2 Instagram Spots in Tangier
1. The Tangier Medina
Make sure to spend some time walking through the Medina. This labyrinth of streets is full of bazaars, shops and residential structures. You’ll love seeing locals selling their products and you can even dosome shopping. Overall, the streets of the medina are full of life and it’s this that makes it exciting and a place to showcase on your social media feeds.
2. Café Hafa
The famous hidden Café El-Hafa is a wonderfully appealing place with terrific view – making for some remarkable, Instagram-worthy shots.
Famous guests have also stopped here, including the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. Its terraces overlooking the sea have everything it takes to elevate your Instagram page to the next level.
1 Insider Tip for Tangier
If you have never visited a Muslim nation, you may be surprised by the call to prayer. You’ll find this in Tangier, a city full of minarets, where at certain hours of the day and night you will witness the call to prayer. It’s a beautiful experience and incredible to be a part of, especially if you stay in the old city.