Once upon a time the city used to be called Mazagan – it was due to the Portugese invasion in the region. Nowdays El Jadida is a Moroccan city but the locals call it “The Portugese city” sometimes.
El Jadida has very good connection with Casablanca – you can reach it within an hour from the train station. There are some local buses going to other big cities like Marrakech. Alternatively you can travel by taxi kbira (the collective taxi) but there is no schedule so you may lose lots of time waiting for the car to go.
Shark, calamars and fish
One of the things I love about El Jadida is the seafood! The city is famous for great friture and calamars and a very nice place to taste is is the restaurant called Pesca Mazagan just by the port and the beach. Lots of locals go there as well as tourists. The place is not that cheap, but the food is really great and the view from the restaurant is nice. You may also go to other, smaller bars and stalls in the port if you don’t feel like eating in a restaurant. One thing is for sure: the fresh seafood is worth tasting!
How long to stay in El Jadida? Should I go at all?
Lots of people ask me if there is anything at all to do in this city. There is, and I think one or two days are pretty enough for sightseeing. El Jadida has a very nice vibe, is way less crowded than Casablanca and way less stresful than Marrakech. It reminds me a little bit of Essaouira, maybe because both cities used to be ruled by the Portugese ages ago. If you need a place to slow down and relax, El Jadida should be on your list. There aren’t many tourists, the promenade by the beach is very nice and the old town makes perfect getaway for long walks. Ah, and the sunset seen from there is amazing!
Where to stay in El Jadida
I have been to El Jadida five times, but most of that time I stayed with my friends. Last time I attended TEDx event and the organizers booked Hotel La Place for us. I was positively surprised by the great service, friendly staff and the cleaniness. The hotel has a great ocean view from the rooftop bar and is just 2 minutes walk from the beach. Big plus: low prices.
El Jadida is a small, not very touristy city so there are not many hotels to choose from. There are some riads and ocean view hotels to choose from. Browse Booking and you will surely find something nice!
Have you been or planned to go to El Jadida? What are your thoughts on this city?