Agadir is a city in the southern part of Morocco. It is of interest primarily because of its location, as it is surrounded by the Anti Atlas, the Sahara Desert, many natural parks, and secluded beaches which are all easily accessible from Agadir.
The city of Agadir is primarily a tourist resort that is popular with European travelers. It has a beach with all the appropriate facilities for beach-tourism. The city is especially attractive, it is clean and orderly with very friendly locals.
Agadir-Al Massira Airport (IATA: AGA) . Agadir has an international airport with direct scheduled flights coming in major cities in Europe as well as many charter flights arriving from all over Europe. If you are flying from the US, Canada, Asia or elsewhere, you'll have to change planes in Casablanca.
Airport to city centre
- Airport taxi: 200 dirhams during the day and 300 dirhams during the night (if you arrive during the evening, the change is about 8PM). There is a company that can bring a taxi to your hotel at any time of the day or night and costs the same as taking the taxi in the street. They speak Arabic, French, English and German.
- Bus: from the main road junction just outside the airport, bus number 22 goes by to Innezgane (4 dirhams) every 40 minutes or so. From there you can get directly to Agadir (see below). Grand taxis also wait at the junction and will happily take you to Agadir for 200 dirhams.
There is no train connection to Agadir, you can only use the bus as public transport.
Agadir's bus station is at the Sahara hotel's parking, and it is possible to take grand taxis there. Inezgane is around 10 km away and is the region's bus hub. It is very usual to arrive there and not at Agadir. The grand taxi to Agadir costs from 4 Dh/person, regular buses go there for 3–4 dirhams/person.
- Taxi: Most of the Agadir's petit taxi are quite legal and use the taximeter (you can ask the driver to do it without any problems). If you go around the center, they will ask you normally from 10 to 30 dirhams.
There are also some buses but, as usual, they are very crowded, slow, and pass with low frequency. The touristic city is small enough to go walking instead of going by bus.
- Bus: There is a bus service which is quite reliable. Maps can be obtained from the Tourist Office which is along the Boulevard Mohammad V near the Miramar Hotel. Fares are usually less than 10 dirhams.
- Museum Municipal du Patrimoine Amazigh. The museum which exhibits a small collection of Berber objects from 18th and 19th century the likes of old Berber music instruments, Berber jewelry, traditional clothing and old manuscripts.
- Museum. Another Museum is located on the corner of the Avenue des F.A.R. and Avenue President Kennedy, unfortunately the sign is missing but you go through iron gates on the corner. Mostly photographic exhibits which concentrate on the Agadir earthquake on 29 February 1960. Cost is 20-30 dirhams each and there is a guide who speaks Arabic, French and English. After you have browsed you can walk around the super Jardin Olhao, where there is a cafe, toilets and children's playground.
- Ensemble Artisanal. is situated on the corner of Rue Yacoub Al Mansour and Avenue du 29 Fevrier downstairs is a shop selling all the co-operatives wares, up a few steps you can see artisans working, painted furniture, ironwork, embroidery, ceramics, etc.
- Coco Polizzi's Medina. A labour of love, Coco Polizzi has been recreating a traditional Moroccan Medina on route N1 in Bensergao. Out of town you will need to take an orange Petit taxi, and arrange a time for the taxi to return to collect you, but its well worth the effort for the architecture alone. Amble along the cobbled alleys amongst artisans and chatty shop keepers and take a traditional souvenir or two home.
- Fortress. There's part of the original fortress which is at the top of the hill beside the city, over the huge painting. It's possible to go there by taxi, bus or even small mopeds that are for rent around of the Hotel Kenzi (they are expensive, more than 100 dirhams an hour).
Agadir is primarily a resort and as such has a limited number of attractions
- Beach. The main attraction is the beach, which is very big, without wind and not very crowded.Edit: The beach is very windy, at least in February.
- Surfing. Imesouane, Devils rock (at the town of Tamragh and with the neighbouring towns of Aourir and Taghazout), Anchor point, Cro-Cro and many others. There are a lot of surf schools and surf camps and surf shop. The best surf season from November till March - but if you are just beginner - you can surf every day all year long.
- Zoo. There is a small zoo, called "Vallée des Oiseaux" ('Birds Valley'). The entrance is totally free lately. There is a very nice cage you can walk inside, many birds from all the world, some goat-like animals from the Atlas, and even exotic mammals. The children of Agadir go there to play in a small and crowded playground. To find it, go to the Uniprix, and the main gate is on the other side of the street on the right (Av. Hassan II).
- Golf. With three top notch Golf courses Agadir can rival most countries golf facilities. Ask at any large hotel about the bus transport which collects visitors several times a day.
- Visit Souk El Had. Closed Mondays. With over 3000 stalls the souk is a must see. Everything from tourist souvenirs, clothes, leather goods, household items, to fruit and veg. If you are a tourist and enter via Gate 9 or 10 (the main gates) expect to be approached by someone offering to guide you. Which of course means he'll take you to all his friend's stalls. If you wish to avoid this, and explore on your own, enter through one of the lower numbered gates where the Moroccan's go. Haggle hard and note some stores advertise fixed prices. Worth looking there first so you have an idea of the 'right' price to pay before trying your hand at haggling. Personal favourites and the olives and spices stalls. Generally stallholders are happy to be in your photographs, but be respectful and ask permission first.
Agadir is maybe the city with the least charm to buy the typical Moroccan handcraft goods. All the souk is around a big square behind the Uniprix (Blvd. Hassan II with Ave. Sidi Mohammed). There is a concrete building called Marché centrale with many shops inside. Is possible to get in also from Ave. Prince Moulay Abdallah. All the goods are made outside the Agadir region, and it's difficult to find them at a good price. The good thing of buying in Agadir is that there are many fixed-price shops, which is good if you don't know how to haggle well. In fact, you may find that the cheap things you bought in Marrakech are not so cheap!
In the Uniprix shop it is possible to buy small typical pieces in maybe the least authentic shop in Morocco, but the prices are not so high and there is nobody pushing you to buy.
There are four main zones to eat in Agadir:
- New Talbourjt: The cheapest restaurants are here. There are menus for 35 Dh. It's one of the cheapest zones in Morocco for tourists.
- The beach: Next to the beach, there are many restaurants. You can find from international fast food to Indian food, good fish restaurants, etc. It's the most expensive and touristic zone.
- Around the Uniprix: It's the mid price zone. There are touristic restaurants and some restaurants for the local people.
If you're looking for a quick snack, keep an eye out for the pastry vendors who roam the beach carrying big plastic trays, selling sweet fried bread (a kind of African variant on the donut).
Beware, however, that these friendly hawkers will often approach you on the beach, strike up a conversation, and then thrust a pastry into your hand, whether you asked for one or not. Which, of course, you are then expected to pay for (5-10 dirhams is a fair price). If you don't want to buy, simply refuse the offer with a polite smile. They are delicious, though.
Agadir is prepared for European tourists, so you can find night clubs in the touristic zones, where you can find more tourists beside the usual locals looking for tourists.
Alcohol is found in all the touristic places.
If you are looking just to talk and drink something during the evening, you can go to the nice and big cafes that are at ave. Hassan II, like La Fontaine, La Veranda, Le Dome, etc. It's a real ritual for many Agadir citizens.
The main budget accommodation area is in the Nouveau Tablorjt. A simple double room will set you back around 150–180 dirhams although you might find a really basic hotel with crappy toilets for 80 dirhams. Arrive early as hotels tend to fill up quickly in high season.
- Anezi Hotel Agadir, Boulevard Mohamed V BP 29, ☎ , fax: . Check-in: 2 pm, check-out: noon. The hotel has a commanding position with a magnificent view of the bay and the city. Guests can keep in shape in the gym, have a swim in one of the 3 beautiful outdoor pools, or relax in the health club with a sauna, or a massage. Your children will be entertained in the kids club, while you can unwind enjoying a cool drink from one of the three bars. Amenities of this Agadir Hotel include conference and banqueting facilities, and there is a business center, where guests can access the Internet. In the evening, the traditional Moroccan-style restaurant Fez features live folk music, the hotel restaurant serves a buffet, including salads, chicken dishes, fish tagine specialties, fresh fruit, Moroccan cakes and soups, and there is also a pizza restaurant. From 60 dirhams.
- Atlas Kasbah Ecolodge, Tighanimine ElBaz - Drarga, ☎ . Check-in: 2 pm, check-out: noon. Located 20 minutes from Agadir, this ecolodge is the perfect place to discover centuries-old Berber culture and the unesco Argan Biosphere Reserve. It features gourmet food using fresh and natural product especially ones from the organic garden of the Kasbah. The objectives of the ecolodge is to provide a comfortable and educational experience for guests by learning about local customs, food and traditions as well as the natural environment. Thus, it is a learder in the Souss region in alternative technology and high environmental standards as well as positive economic side effects for the local population. From 60 dirhams.
- Hotel Diaf. If you're on a budget this hotel is a great place to stay. It's near where the bus stops (1 min walk), right next to an internet cafe and about 20 mins walk or a 6 dirhams taxi ride (don't forget to get them to turn the meter on) to the seafront. It is possible to stay in a room on the roof with a double bed and a single for 100 dirhams! The best thing is, it has an amazing warm shower with a large showerhead. The rooms definitely have a "backpackers" feel, but its a great, and cheap, experience.
- Hotel Petit Suede, Bd Hassan II near Av du General Kettani, ☎ . , Close to the centre, rooms with shower (shared toilet), very clean, breakfast served in a rooftop eatery. Street-facing rooms can be a bit noisy. In the heart of the city: 5 min walk to the beach, 25 min from the airport, 10 minutes from the souk (al had), 5 minutes from shopping center. Low/high season: single 190/215, double 320/350, triple 430/465, quad 500/540 dirhams, breakfast included.
- Hotel Tamri. Cheap place to stay. Hot shower outside - from 7-10 am morning and 6-9 pm. The electricity plugs are "hidden" on left side of the "neon" lamp above sink in your room. Just ask receptionist. Rooms could be quite noisy as hotel is close to the street and those crazy motorcycle drivers without exhaust pipes. So if you are sensitive, don't forget about your ear plugs. 70 dirhams for single room.
- Hotel Sud Bahia, Rue des Administrations Publiques 335. Four-storey with 246 rooms 400 meters from the beach in the center of Agadir and with an outdoor pool.
- Jacaranda Golf Hotel Agadir. This 4-star hotel has great food and lovely pool and gardens
- Hotel Tiznit Beach Resort, 1 Rue des Amicales Bloc C. bungalow-style beachfront hotel built on a five-hectare site amidst landscaped gardens, 600 m from the city centre.
- Hotel Timoulay, Cite Founty F6 Baie des Palmiers, ☎ . 10 minute walk from the beach. This hotel is on the smaller side, but the rooms are clean and spacious. Has free wifi, pool, working A/C, and a restaurant. US$100-200.
- At 40 km south from Agadir, there is the Souss-Massa river national park
- At about 80 km east from Agadir, there is the city of Taroudannt, which is worth the visit if you don't plan to visit Marrakech or other big historical cities.
- The coast northern to Agadir has very nice and accessible beaches, like Taghazout at 15 km. You can get to these towns using the Zetrap bus line: 60 and 'RATAG' bus line: 12 that leave from the center of Agadir. Bus Number 32 runs every 20 minutes or so north on Boulevard Mohammend V (12 Dh).
- Imouzzer with its famous cascades is located about 60 km northeast of Agadir, although the trip through the mountains will take longer than the distance suggests.