El Jadida Travel Guide

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The  port city of El Jadida, classified a UNESCO world heritage site in 2004, stands majestically on the Atlantic coastline, an outstanding example of the interchange of influences between European and Moroccan cultures. It's fortified walls built by the invading Portuguese in 1502 hold its treasure of a beautiful yet haunting, cisterna,  where light dances across water and voices echo with ancient clarity.    Seized by the sultan Mohammed ben Abdallah in 1769 the ports main exports now include beans,almonds,hides, wax and eggs.

Although an entire day can be lost wandering the vast Souk with its intriguing and often puzzling wares you are never far from a relaxing coffee in one of the many local cafes or a distracting scandal created by a passing donkey chariot trapped with a wheel lodged in a wandering clemantine barrow. 

Entering the Portuguese Medina through its stone built archway can transport even the most cynical traveller into biblical times long gone.  Meandering in and out of artisans shops boasting the best and only creations to be found in the whole of Morocco can be an experience in itself, but be aware as a European visitor you will be paying more than the local clientelle, as the whole culture of Morocco is by barter  have a go you may find that stunning lamp you've coveted can be yours at quite a reasonable price. 

Not really on the European tourist map as yet  El Jadida's beach front with it's long sea front promenade isn't  filled with high rise hotels and ear piercing dance music throbbing from flourescently lit bars.   Not unusual to see camels being ridden along the sands negotiating  local youth enganged in a serious yet friendly game of football or a family outing where Jalabas flow in the breeze there are photo opportunities  abound. 

Part or or all of this text stems from the original article at: Kay Siddall

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