This tranquil and splendid destination along the Atlantic coast provides a Spanish touch to the Moroccan traditions. Asilah adorned with inspiring artwork, pristine beaches and well preserved 15th century ramparts and gates will definitely enchant you. Located 31 kilometers south of Tangier, this coastal town remains flooded with tourists during the summers. You can’t help falling in love with the beguiling Asilah on your trip to Morocco and if you happen to be an art enthusiast then this is the place to be.
This fortified town on the northwest tip of Morocco was partly constructed by the Idrisid dynasty, which was later conquered by the Portuguese and subsequently abandoned. Asilah also served as a base for pirates in the 19th and 20th centuries. Today Asilah is a popular seaside resort, with all modern holiday apartment complexes on the coastal road that leads to Tangier.
- Palais de Raissouli
This historical landmark near Borj Sidi Maimoun is an architectural gem. Built by Moulay Ahmed Raissouni in 1909, this palace is synonymous to modernity and elegance. This beautifully restored building is usually open during the Asilah Festival. The palace includes a main reception room with a glass fronted terrace overlooking the sea, from where Er Raissouli forced convicted murderers to jump to their deaths onto the rocks below. Visit this piece of history on your Morocco vacation.
- Church of San Bartolome
Located at Ave Prince Heritier, this colonial Moorish style building, built in 1925 by the Spanish Franciscans forms a major landmark in Asilah. The bells of Sunday mass still rings here. The resident nuns present here can provide a little guided tour. A visit to this historic church is a must on your trip to Morocco.
Surrounded by sturdy stone fortification, Asilah’s medina was built by the Portuguese in the 15th century. The narrow alleyways lined by white houses with blue and green decorative touches appears magical. The colorful murals along the walls during festive season gives it a photogenic look. Do not forget to click those Instagram special pics when you are here on your Morocco travel.
- El Hamra Tower
Another historical landmark in this coastal town is El Hamra tower. The historic significance of this iconic tower dates back to the establishment of the ramparts, built by the Portuguese in the 15th century. This charming and elegant tower is another well preserved piece of history, and makes for simple but eye-catching photos on your trip to Morocco.
- Paradise Beach
For beach lovers, Asilah has Paradise beach which will definitely charm you by its soft sandy coastline and tranquil ambiance. Apart from summer months, these beaches are almost secluded and a stroll along the beach can be truly romantic. Morocco honeymoon travel can’t get better than this. You can enjoy a drink at a typically Spanish chiringuito, or have a traditional camel ride to complete the seaside experience.
- Centre de Hassan II Rencontres Internationales
Located in a handsome house just inside the main entrance to the medina, it generally hosts the summer festival, conferences, exhibitions and cultural meetings. Exhibitions of international painting and sculpture are held in its gallery, and acts as the hub of the annual Asilah Festival. Art lovers can visit this place and witness some great work of local art and craft.
- Asilah Souk
Moroccan souks are the best way to get the local vibe of the city. Asilah’s little souk is no different. Thursdays being the market day, the hustle and bustle of the souks will keep you enthused. You can find everything from souvenirs, textiles, and even instruments. Wandering around these market streets will almost certainly allow you to meet local artists rushing to sell you their creations. It would also excite the shutterbugs to capture various moments of the souk life.