House | 3 bedrooms | sleeps 6
Tangiers is a fascinating Moroccan city to visit. It has many of the things that travellers love--a sense of exotic mystery, interesting history, beautiful vistas, unspoiled beaches, and friendly people. It is an interesting mix of north Africa, Spain, and France and is separated from Spain only by the 20 miles of the Strait of Gibraltar.
Frequent ferries make the short crossing from Europe each day which takes 30 minutes to one hour depending on the season.
The house is 5-10 minutes walk from the port, close to the Musée de la Kasbah and within walking distance from all the city attractions. It is very close to the Socco, where you can browse all the wonderful Moroccan crafts, and a 15 minute walk from the nearest beach.
The Kasbah lies at the top of the Medina market place. I chose this residence because it has a lovely bohemian feel and you are right in the heart of the bustling Tangiers culture. As you may know Tangiers is famous for being the hideaway of numerous celebrated artists as poets such as Paul Bowles, Cecil Beaton, William Burroughs, Joe Orton, Jack Kerouac, Truman Capote and Allen Ginsberg,
The house is located half way down a small dusty alley-way so you are right in the heart of the real Morocco. It is old, traditional and rustic in style with coloured and white-washed walls throughout. Please note that this house is not in a tourist area and your neighbours will be Moroccans. This house suits someone who would like to be immersed in Moroccan culture. Please ensure you know what the Medina is like in Tangiers before you book, as this location is not for everyone!
The house has two double bedrooms (4.5m x 2.1m), one bedroom with two single beds (4.1m x 2.1m), a main bathroom with bath and shower (2.5m x 2.1m), a second bathroom with toilet (1.55m x 2.2m), a dining room/living room (4.5m x 2.1m), a kitchen (3m x 2.1m), a balcony (1m x 4m) and a roof terrace (5m x 5.2m). There is also a flat screen wall-mounted TV with satellite broadcast. And an extra double sofa-bed.
Please note that two of the bedrooms do not have windows (which is common in Moroccan town houses to keep the rooms cool). There are quite steep stairs between each floor (see photos) - the house is not recommended for those with mobility problems or very young children.
The house will be thoroughly cleaned for you before arrival. My agent Abdellah, a charming Moroccan man who is studying at university can meet you at the Hotel Continental which is very close to the house- and accompany you to the house to explain how everything works. If you would like Abdellah to meet you at the port or airport there is an extra charge of 100 dirhams or 10 euros (for meet and greet at port) or 300 dirhams or 30 euros (for meet and greet at airport).
If there are any questions or problems during your stay, Abdellah can sort everything out for you. I am also available by phone or email..
|Size||Sleeps up to 6, 3 bedrooms|
|Nearest beach||On seafront 1 km|
|Will consider||Corporate bookings, Long term lets (over 1 month), Short breaks (1-4 days)|
|Access||Car not necessary|
|Nearest travel links||Nearest airport: Tangier-Ibn Batouta Airport (TNG) 12 km, Nearest railway: Tanger Ville 1 km|
|Family friendly||Great for children of all ages|
|Notes||Pets welcome, No smoking at this property|
Features and Facilities
|Standard||Kettle, Iron, Hair dryer|
|Utilities||Cooker, Microwave, Fridge, Washing machine|
|Rooms||3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms of which 2 Family bathrooms, Solarium or roof terrace|
|Furniture||1 Sofa beds, Single beds (2), Double beds (2), Dining seats for 4, Lounge seats for 7|
|Other||Linen provided, Towels provided|
|Outdoors||Balcony or terrace|
|Further details indoors|
Although the house has a quaint and rustic feel, it is also very comfortable many basic mod cons. There are doors with glass panes full of different colours, beautiful Moroccan tiles, coloured walls and Moroccan carpets throughout. It is ideal for a couple (if you want lots of space) or a small group of people who feel creative, artistic and want to get away from modern tourist properties.
Already supplied for your visit are the following:
All bed linen including sheets, covers, pillow, pillow cases and blankets;
All cutlery including knives, forks and spoons;
All kitchenware including bowls, plates, mugs, glasses, cups, kitchen tools and place mats;
Basic condiments for use in the kitchen;
Towels for all the family;
Hot water available from water heater. From cold, the water takes 30 minutes to heat up. Once heated it lasts for a few days.
Digital TV with many channels.
All utility bills are included in the price.
There are two double bedrooms (4.5m x 2.1m), one bedroom with two single beds (4.1m x 2.1m), a main bathoom with bath and shower (2.5m x 2.1m), a second bathroom with toilet (1.55m x 2.2m), a dining room/living room (4.5m x 2.1m), a kitchen (3m x 2.1m), a balcony (1m x 4m) and a roof terrace (5m x 5.2m).
Note there is no Wifi in the house, but there is an internet cafe less than one minute walk from the house.
The house is located up an alleyway where there are other houses owned by mainly Moroccan families. There are plenty of establishments to buy food nearby.
About the Owner
Debbie Winterbourne is an English woman living in London who has always had a passion for the city of Tangiers. She first visited the city as a teenager and was mesmorised by the amazing sights and sounds of this wonderful place. Over the years she has visited Tangiers many times and four years ago she decided to buy a house in the coveted area of the Kasbah, the old walled city of Tangiers. She has now completely renovated the house and it is a simple, clean, beautiful and artistic residence ready to rent to anyone wanting a holiday home in Tangiers.
She works in partnership with her business partner Abdellah who lives in Tangiers. Debbie lives in London and is happy to help with all email, calls and queries about the house.
|Further details outdoors|
The house is accessed through a pedestrian alley way. It is possible to park a car two minutes walk from the house, and will cost you around 1 euro per night. The Kasbah area has magnificent views across the sea. There are plenty of small shops around for you to purchase food. There is also a wonderful cafe a stone's throw away where you can have a mint tea whilst looking at the sea.
Note that the famous Café Hafa is within walking distance of this house.
There are four flights of stairs which can be a bit steep so the house is not so suitable for those with difficult mobility or very small children unless they take the rooms on the first floor only.
The Tangier/Rif Mountains region
Please note that this property is brand new on the market, and that is why there are no reviews yet!
Tangiers lies at the crossroads of Africa and Europe, the Mediterranean Sea and Atlantic Ocean and is one of the oldest cities in Morocco. The Phoenicians and Carthaginians established trading posts here and the Romans made it a capital city. It was occupied by the Arabs and invaded by Vandals and Visigoths. Before the Spanish, the Portuguese controlled the town. In the early part of the 20th century, Tangiers was an international city whose tax-free status and cosmopolitan image attracted European and American artists and writers.
The town beach is a several kilometre long curve framed by the white houses of Tangier and ending in the barren mountains. There are several Atlantic beaches west of Tangiers, which all offer a good alternative to the town beach. The setting of these beaches is gorgeous, with mountains on all sides, wide and clean beaches with all necessary amenities.
The medina of Tangier is full of mystery: there are narrow streets and houses in many different styles. The gate to the medina near the Great Mosque connects directly to the beach. It is also the easiest entry to the most fascinating parts of the old parts of Tangier, and you will immediately find yourself walking in narrow streets which ends up in the Petit Socco.
Morocco was the first power to recognise the United States of America as an independent country, and in response an American embassy was erected in Tangiers in 1777. It now serves as a free museum where every visitor is guided around by the friendly and knowledgeable staff. There are art collections by local American artists.
Socco is the Spanish version of the Arabic word for market: suuq. But with the Spanish long gone, the word Socco survives in Tangier. The Grand Socco is located north-east of the medina, and is no longer a market place. Today it is a meeting place and a transport junction, principally for taxis. The Grand Socco is also the point where the modern part of the city meets the narrow streets of the old city.
The Kasbah fronts the former sultanate palace which now has been converted into a museum. It is dominated by its fortifications which are still in very good condition.
The Kasbah these days is still a nice area, quiet and in good condition. But the real wealth is behind often anonymous facades, and there are many luxurious houses here. Most of them are fairly old though, because most rich people of Tangiers now live further away from town centre.
Walking is perhaps the best way to see Tangiers. Petit taxis are common, but if it is unmetered make sure you agree on a price first. Tangiers is very easy to navigate; the two main roads are Boulevard Mohamed V which runs from near the Medina through the ville nouvelle and Boulevard Mohamed VI which runs along from the beachfront from the port to Malabata. The Medina area is a complex array of alleyways some of which can only be accessed on foot. Boulevard Mohamed V has a whole range of clothes shops, pharmacies and cafes as well as many hotels.
Half an hour's drive outside Tangiers will take you into beautiful countryside and beaches perfect for walking and admiring the views.
What to See
The Kasbah – see the tomb of Ibn Battouta, a 14th century famous traveller who was born in Tangiers.
Teatro Cervantes, rue Salah Eddine et Ayoubi. An old theatre, closed and falling to pieces but take a photo from outside the gates as you pass by on the way up to the Grand Socco.
The American Legation, 8, Rue America,. The Tangier American Legation Museum (TALM), a thriving cultural centre, museum, conference centre and library in the heart of the old medina in Tangiers, is housed in the only historic landmark of the United States located abroad. The museum exhibits a large collection of art and historical items. It also has a Paul Bowles Wing dedicated to the writer and composer who lived most of his adult life in Tangier.
Musée d'Art Contemporain de la Ville de Tanger
The Kasbah Museum, the former Sultan's palace deserves to be seen not only for its collection of artefacts from the Phoenician to modern times, but also for the building and garden. There is a small fee for entrance (10 Moroccan Dirham or about $1USD) and varying opening times winter and summer.
What to Do
Try people watching on the Terrasse des Paresseux, boulevard Pasteur or on Sunday along the beachfront Av. Mohamed VI.
Drink a mint tea in the famous cliff top rustic café of El Hafa and enjoy the view of the ocean .
Mnar Park - aquatic park with an amazing view of the coast. Open in 2005 it costs 5€ for children and 10€ Adults and has aqua slides, karting circuits, cafés and a romantic restaurant.
Get happily lost in the medina, which is most active in evening and night.
Visit the American Legation Museum in the walled city. (Morocco was the first country to recognize the United States, in December 1777 with the hope of promoting commerce with the new republic. This act by the Moroccan sultan was the first public recognition of the U.S. by a head of state.)
Go to the souk on Thursday or Saturday mornings to see the Rif mountain women in their colourful costumes selling their produce and dairy products all along the wall of the English Church.
Things to Buy
Most brasswork is made in other towns but is available here. Leather goods are also available. Stay away from the tourist traps and you may find the price quite reasonable. There is a infamous market in Tangiers called "casa barata" (the house of cheap things) - there are bargains to be had here which are sold alongside vegetables, electronics, clothing, shoes, spices, carpets, ironmongery and everything else one can think of!). There are other markets notably the souk in the medina (mainly vegetables, clothes and tourist items) and in Ben Mekada (vegetables).
Colourful leather slippers with pointed toes are great gifts to take home and cost about 600D a pair, more if they have soles suitable for walking outside. Men and women’s clothing can be bought for reasonable prices in the medina.
Where to Eat
There are many choices of restaurants and cafes. Many of the luxury hotels offer a good selection of both Moroccan and Continental food, though at prices much higher than what you will find elsewhere. There are also many restaurants along the Ave Mohamed VI (the beachfront) where you can enjoy a nice meal with a glass of wine on the beachfront.
In the evening, go to the plaza next to CTM bus station. There are several cafes and restaurants facing the plaza and the prices and service are good. Just wandering around in the medina will produce numerous Moroccan restaurants offering similar dishes, quality, and prices (main dish around 5 euros), so you can just choose one of these at random and probably feel satisfied.
There is also some fresh off-the-boat seafood restaurants for locals in the port behind the warehouses. At the port entrance, walk towards the water and keep to the right. It's on the docks towards the farthest point out behind some buildings...all outdoor seating for the most part. Order a tray of shrimp, a (big) salad and the calamari and fish tray. No menus or prices but it's quite inexpensive and authentic.
Some of the popular restaurants and places to eat in Tangier are as follows:
El Minzah Hotel (Moroccan) - located near the French Consulate at top of Boulevard Mohamed V, very expensive
Otori Sushi (Japanese) - located near the Grande Poste, Avenue de la Resistance
San Remo (Italian) - located near the town centre
Pagoda (Chinese) - located near the town centre
Sable d'or (Indian) - located on the beachfront, Ave Mohamed VI
Restaurant Al Andalous (Moroccan Deli & Fish Bar) opposite the Al Andalous Mosque, Lalla Chafia.
Oslo (Pizzas and snacks) located on the Boulevard and on the beachfront
Restaurant Populaire (Moroccan)
There are many places in Tangier to drink - people have their own favourite haunts. Much depends on the current owner who tends to give the place a certain ambiance. Favourite bars/discos with foreign (and local) clientele include Casa Pepe, Sable D'or, Morocco Palace, Marco Polo (popular with truck drivers) and hotel bars such as Ramada and El Minzah.
You could opt for a coffee instead - there are no shortage of cafes; some of which are the best in the country. Some have amazing views (like Cafe Hafa), some good coffee, some are popular (cafe Tropicana, cafe Celine Dion), some with music (cafe in the Dawliz complex), some have good cakes (cafe Oslo), some are places to relax after a hard day shopping (cafe Madam Porte, cafe Vienna) - the choice is yours.
Fresh fruit juices are sold by street vendors during the summer months. The cafes also serve fresh juices and often have what is called a panache - a mix of fruit juices often with milk, apple and almond which is delicious.
You may quickly bore of tagines and street food is a great option for snacking throughout the day. Fresh orange juice costs about 5D; sandwiches of egg, peppers, and sauce are about 10D. Yogurt mixtures can be particularly creative, such as avocado and almonds, or fruit mixtures. Tiny stalls in the souk sell cooked vegetables like eggplant, with rice, and other tasty treats and a meal there can cost 10D or so. In the early evening you may find squares of chickpea cakes sprinkled with salt and paprika.
In the morning a "locals" cafe will give you a cafe au lait for 5D. (Cafes where tourists congregate will charge you 10D.) Usually there is a bread vendor at the cafe (by the port or the medina) who will serve you bread with cheese and honey for another 5D. It's perfectly okay to buy your bread/breakfast elsewhere and eat it outside at the cafe.
Vegetarians will find plenty to eat in Tangiers and Morocco in general, but watch the vegetarian tagines which often contain lamb stock. Street food is a lot more creative and fun. If you've brought a camping stove, shop at the souk and make your own.
Generally, Tangiers is a very safe city compared with many places in Europe. The only trouble you may encounter is the persistent touts, whom you should ignore, and whom you will mainly find in the medina. There are policemen everywhere and you will probably feel safer in Tangiers than at home. Dressing like a local - as opposed to white shorts, shoes, and a backpack - will help you blend in and get good reception from merchants, who will often quote you actual prices instead of inflated tourist prices. The general dress code in Morocco is to cover your knees and shoulders which are considered to be private body parts.
The first language in Tangiers is Arabic and French is also widely spoken. Some people will speak English and Spanish too.