Just a short 30-minute drive north of the bustling city of Agadir you will find Taghazout – a surfers’ paradise. This amazing little town is not really known as a tourist destination – this hidden gem tends to get ignored in favour of the bigger cities like Marrakech and Casablanca. Taghazout is an easy-going village with a fantastic atmosphere and the friendliest locals. This is a fishing village, which is transforming into a surfing village, has so much intrigue and is begging to be discovered. This town is not only for surfers, there is so much to do and see in Taghazout
There are so many reasons to love Taghazout. This paradise has fantastic weather all year round making it the perfect place to escape a cold winter. The locals are an absolute delight, we have never met so many lovely people who will try and help you out in any way they can. Much like many other small towns in Morocco, dining out is incredibly inexpensive which is always a nice bonus. Much to our surprise, most people in Taghazout speak many languages fluently. Although Arabic, Berber and French are the most common languages spoken in morocco, most people in Taghazout speak great English too. There is no wonder why many digital nomads choose to spend a lot of their time here!
1 – Try the local cuisine
tagine and couscous are probably what come to mind when thinking about Moroccan cuisine. There is an endless supply of these delicacies in Taghazout. Around every corner, you will find sweet little restaurants with welcoming owners. As well as traditional Moroccan food, there are plenty of western options on the menu too. If you get the chance, we recommend trying a chicken pastilla. This is another delicious Moroccan dish. It is essentially a Moroccan twist on a chicken pie which has beautifully tender chicken and spices inside and almondy sweetness on top. this dish is unlike anything we had tried before and was absolutely delicious. We absolutely loved eating these in Taghazout and we are picky eaters at the best of times.
2 – Surf The Amazing Waves In Taghazout
Many people travel to Taghazout from around the world solely because of the fantastic surf conditions. Not only are the conditions brilliant, but the whole town also has a chilled-out surfer lifestyle. Taghazout is a dream surf destination for people of all levels.
It is possible to surf here all year round however, you will find the best waves over winter. The best way to discover the best surfing spots for your ability level is to ask the locals. There are an endless amount of surf schools offering equipment hire and surf lessons for a very reasonable price.
For more experienced surfers, we would recommend opting for a “surf guiding” package. local surfing guides take to to the best surfing locations in the area such as Anchor Point which is a reef break with pretty large swells. These local guides know exactly where to take you for the best waves at any given time. Most people have grown up here so know the waves like the back of their hand.
in 2019 we spent time at The Surf Hotel Morocco (based in Tamaraght) and have only good things to say about it. The instructors were helpful, patient and lovely and the atmosphere at the hotel was impeccable. We would recommend this surf camp to absolutely everyone.
The surf camp format is mostly all-inclusive packages with board and food as well as surf and yoga lessons every day.
3 – Visit The Iconic Taghazout Skate Park
This recognisable skate park is a staple in Taghazout, it is really fun and vibrant with colourful murals all over it. This incredible skate park was constructed by hundreds of volunteers and is a real asset to the area. Even if you don’t skate, this is a brilliant place to watch the professionals do their thing. The talent of the locals is absolutely insane! There are tiered walls around the edge of the skate park which makes for a great viewing area. Every evening, many people gather all around watching the amazing tricks on display.
It is a bit of a trek to get up to the skate park. The journey includes scrambling up a rocky hill, but there are stunning city views once you get there. We recommend heading up to the skate park in the evening to catch the sun setting over the town.
If you are a beginner but you want to try skating, this is not a problem. There is a little shop located at the skate park which offers lessons and equipment. For more information click here.
4 – Day Trip To Imsouane
Imsouane is a cute little fishing village with bucketloads of charms. This village is a real hidden gem; it is even smaller than Taghazout and has an olde worlde feel to it. You can find Imsouane an hour’s drive north of Taghazout.
If you have come to this part o Morocco for surfing, Imsouane will be an absolute dream for you. You can find some of the longest waves in the country here at Magic Bay, some of which can be up to 800m long. Again, much like Taghazout beach, there are waves here for all abilities.
As well as surfing, this small village has a lot for you to discover. Admire the hundreds of traditional blue wooden fishing boats which have a very unique shape to them. Seeing them head out into the Atlantic over the waves is an incredible sight. There is a popular fish market selling the freshest produce which is straight off the fishing boats. You will find that fresh grilled fish is served in many of the waterfront restaurants and is a real delicacy here.
Speaking of food, you will find that the restaurants here are very reasonably priced which is always a good bonus. Enjoy dining at the many restaurants overlooking the water where you can see the pro surfers doing their thing.
Imsouane is a great place to visit for many reasons. The slow-moving town with friendly locals is such a delight. If you are travelling by campervan, Imsouane is a fantastic place to stop. There is a whole community of van lifers all parked up here. It is like a little van-dwelling, surfing community.
5 – Explore The Timlalin Sand Dunes
Hidden on the coast between Taghazout and Imsouane, you will find the wonderful Timlalin sand dunes.
Driving 45 minutes north of Taghazout will take you directly to the dunes. We recommend visiting the dunes on the way back from a visit to Imsouane – hit two birds with one stone.
The vast landscape of the yellow dunes meeting the Atlantic ocean will take your breath away. Walk along the dunes and take in the view. As a warning, we must mention that the sand is ridiculously hot to walk on. Even wearing sandals you can feel the burning hot sand hitting your feet, especially when climbing up some of the incredibly steep dunes. Climbing up the steeper dunes is absolutely exhausting but so worth it!
There is plenty to do at the sand dunes to get your adrenalin pumping. In the parking area, you will find people renting out sandboards. You don’t need any experience to give this a go; it is great fun! If you plan on sandboarding, be sure to wear trainers.
It is also possible to ride a camel around the dunes, there is a small hut with a few camels outside of it in the middle of the sand dunes. What says a Morrocan holiday more than riding a camel around a sand dune?
Although this isn’t technically part of the Sahara desert, it certainly looks and feels like it. to reach the Sahara desert, a long 9-hour drive east will take you there. For all intents and purposes, the Timlalin dunes are more than good enough.
6 – Hammam
If you want to unwind and truly relax after a hectic day of surfing, try a traditional hammam. A hammam is a Morconnan interpretation of the roman baths and is very similar to a Turkish bath.
Traditionally hammams are places where friends and family gather to cleanse themselves as well as catch up with each other. It is quite a social event. There are a series of different rooms and rituals which all go hand in hand to deeply relax and rejuvenate your body and soul. Expect temperature changes, masks, and a whole lot of scrubbing, not to mention nudity.
It’s not for the faint of heart and can certainly be a bit of a culture shock but it will definitely be a memorable experience. So strip off your clothes and get ready to feel renewed!
7 – Relax On Taghazout Beach
The Moroccan coastline is an absolute dream with some wonderful beaches. Taghazout beach is a long golden sandy beach which seems to stretch for miles. The sand is lovely and soft and the beach in general is very well kept with little to no rubbish lying around. This beach is very popular with surfers and families alike.
Walking along the beach there are many vendors trying to sell a wide variety of things. Every five minutes or so you will have someone walking past offering traditional Moroccan tea or baked goods like doughnuts or churros. The prices of these products are pretty fair. For example, a doughnut will set you back 10dh (£0.80).
If you want to truly immerse yourself in Moroccan life, take a camel ride along the beach. These beautiful, tall animals are honestly quite wobbly to ride but an amazing experience nonetheless. There are many camels dotted along the beach grazing on the grass at the very back of the beach. They are essentially there for tourists as the novelty of riding a camel has definitely worn off for the locals.
8 – Yoga Retreat
As mentioned above, Taghazout is a very chilled-out, relaxed town. It is no surprise that there are yoga sessions happening pretty much at all times. Taghazout is a destination for surf and yoga camps, often combined. These camps often offer yoga classes twice a day as well as two surfing sessions. The yoga and surfing combination is essentially the heart of this town – everyone is at it. Yoga is great for balance which is very important for surfers.
9 – Visit The Traditional Shops In The Souk
Much like other Moroccan towns, there is a souk full of interesting things. A souk is essentially a market selling a variety of traditional Moroccan bits and pieces. It is not uncommon to find an array of spices, rugs, jewellery, ceramics and other knickknacks. There is truly something for everyone here. The owners of the shops in the souk are incredibly friendly and we encourage haggling for the price of any product you buy. Mixed in with these shops you will find little corner shops selling the basics like juice, bread and sweet treats.
We picked up a beautiful Morrocan runner rug for 400dh (£32) which is an absolute bargain considering it is handmade.
Take A Day Trip To Paradise Valley
If you picture palm trees and, lush greenery and turquoise water when thinking of paradise, you are in luck! At paradise valley, you will find exactly that! Located 50 minutes from Taghazout this perfect oasis is nestled into the high atlas mountains. It truly is an unexpected treat in the otherwise vast and dry landscape.
Hike through the valley and awe at the ginormous palm trees overhead. Dine at one of the many cafe restaurants positioned along the river. Many of these restaurants have their tables and chairs positioned in the water to cool off your feet. The valley is immensely hot so it is vital to take breaks, rehydrate often and relax in the shade.
Paradise Valley is a lovely place to spend the day. It is however important to mention that it is not how it looks in many of the advertised pictures. There crystal clear turquoise pools you see advertised are no longer there. Many years of little to no rain has left the valley very dry. The time of year you choose to visit the valley also affects the water levels. We were advised that late winter and early spring were the best times to visit. When we visited in March, ready to jump into the deep pools, we were left disappointed by the lack of water.
Taghazout is such an easy-going and relaxed town. Spending some time in the town will make you want to stay forever. Perfect weather, perfect atmosphere, cheap food and amazing people – what’s not to love?
If reading this post has whet your appetite for Moroccan adventures, check out our other morocco posts here.
As always, if you have to ask questions please don’t hesitate to ask.