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Cities: Agadir, Morocco

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is a major city in Morocco, located on the shore of the Atlantic Ocean, near the foot of the Atlas Mountains, just north of the point where the Sous River flows into the ocean, at a distance of some 508 km to the south of Casablanca, 173 km south of Essaouira and 235 km southwest of Marrakech. It is the capital of the Agadir-Ida Ou Tanane Prefecture and of the Souss-Massa economic region. A majority of its inhabitants speak Tashelhit, a Berber language, as their first language.morocco

Agadir feels unlike anywhere else in Morocco. A busy port and beach resort sprawling beneath its kasbah, the city was completely rebuilt following a devastating earthquake in 1960. It is now the country’s premier destination for sun, sand, pubs and pizza. Laid out as a large grid of downtown streets, surrounded by spacious residential suburbs, Agadir’s concrete-covered inland quarters are ugly and sterile. However, the city hits its stride on the beachfront promenade, where Moroccan street life comes with a refreshing sense of space. Arching south of the shiny white marina, the sheltered sandy beach offers clean water and 300 sunny days a year.

Agadir caters mainly to package-tour holidaymakers, and will appeal less to independent travellers with an interest in Moroccan culture. Families will also enjoy relaxing on the beach and wandering around the handful of sights. If you do not have children in tow, however, we recommend heading elsewhere to make the most of a visit to Morocco.

The city spreads over a large area, both along the coast and inland from the huge swath of beach. From the northern end of the beach, near the marina and port, three parallel streets – 20 Août, nearest the ocean, Mohammed V and Hassan II – run through the main tourist area.

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Soak up the sun on the well-maintained beaches of Agadir, southern Morocco’s most-visited city. Palm-lined boulevards and beachfront bars add a decidedly Western-resort feel, amplified by the large number of Europeans who flock here in the winter months. It’s all about laid-back relaxation in Agadir, so ride a camel, rent a beach buggy, check out the Suq al-Had market or take the 20-minute walk up to the ruins of the Agadir Kasbah for expansive city views if you’re taking a break from the beach.

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