Best Beaches in Morocco and a Road Trip Along the Atlantic Coast to the Most Beautiful Beaches. Author’s Version – Personal Experience, Photos, and Reviews of the Best Places on the Moroccan Coast.
Heading straight to the point, I’ll list the beaches in geographic order, with the exception of Agadir, which I’ve included in the list solely because it has an airport and is popular among organized tourists. It doesn’t spoil the overall picture, so let it be.
In terms of beach vacations in Morocco as you might be accustomed to, it’s only really possible in Agadir. This place is purely package-touristy, with a promenade, hotels, restaurants, and a minimal touch of the Morocco you might expect. It’s been scrubbed clean to a European level and is equally boring. In general, Agadir isn’t our kind of place, though I admit that many people might like it.
Agadir doesn’t make it into my top beach destinations in Morocco. The only advantage, from our perspective, is that it’s conveniently located to start routes around Morocco. The city has an international airport, with low-cost airlines like Wizzair and Ryanair flying there. Also, nearby are the popular tourist destination Essaouira and the famous Legzira Beach.
Accommodation in Agadir >>
Morocco’s most famous beach, which is better suited for strolls than for swimming. The beach is home to several giant natural arches, the most famous of which, Legzira, gave the beach its name and collapsed on September 23, 2016, due to a tide.
Getting to Legzira is straightforward by rental car. It’s 160 km or about 3 hours from Agadir to Legzira Beach, while from Marrakech to Legzira, it’s 400 km and a 6-hour drive by car.
The closest places to stay near Legzira Beach are the towns of Sidi Ifni and Mirleft, where you’ll find a selection of apartments and hotels right on the sea.
Accommodation in Legzira >>
The number one city on the Moroccan coast, and a detailed report on our stay in Essaouira will be available soon. The old Medina, a real fishing port without any hint of touristy gloss, a fortress by the sea, and a long, wide sandy ocean beach with all the infrastructure.
Entering the water is a bit shallow, with a hundred meters or more to depth, and it’s almost always windy here, but the charm of old Essaouira, the long promenade, European beach service, cafes and restaurants, and hotel infrastructure make this place one of the top in terms of popularity.
Getting to Essaouira is easy by bus from Agadir or Marrakech, which takes just a couple of hours. It’s much cooler to include this city in a road trip and explore all the significant places in the central part of Morocco and the coast.
The distance from Marrakech to Essaouira is 190 km, and it’s a 3-hour drive by car. You can do it in a day, but it’s not worth it. The minimum time for this city is 2-3 days.
Accommodation in Essaouira >>
A little-known place to the general public. I found it in just a couple of reports about Morocco, studied the theory, and included it in our Moroccan route. I not only didn’t regret the choice but would gladly come back here for a full-fledged vacation.
From Essaouira to Oualidia, it’s a whole 200 km, with most of the journey on the highway and easily covered in 3 hours. I recommend taking the coastal route; it’s a bit longer but much more picturesque, with excellent roads and overall not tiresome.
On the way, there are a couple of transit surfer beaches near the town of Safi where you can stop.
Oualidia is a large lagoon separated from the ocean. The place is famous for its seafood – Oualidia harvests a huge number of crabs, oysters, and other mollusks that are distributed throughout the country and exported.
Here, beach relaxation can be complemented with a romantic lunch/dinner by the ocean’s edge, enjoying local seafood. In its own way, it’s a unique and atmospheric place that I recommend.
Oualidia is a local resort, with few tourists, mainly French, and locals. It’s quiet and peaceful, without parties and noise.
Infrastructure includes beach loungers, cafes, restaurants, hotels, and private houses – apartments.
You can drive along the beach with a stop for several hours, but it’s better to spend a full day here at a minimum.
Find accommodation and check prices in Oualidia >>
A somewhat funny name for a beach that made it into the top 5 best places on the Moroccan coast due to its unique sandy dunes that reach right up to the ocean. The dunes were blown in from the Sahara and now protect beachgoers from the wind.
The second feature of Moulay Bousselham beach is a sandy spit that forms a small tranquil lagoon without waves. In the lagoon, there are many small islets where numerous birds gather. One of the tourist activities here is bird-watching, for which you can rent a boat right on the shore and explore the lagoon.
On the beach, there are several restaurants and cafes, hotels, apartments, and even a small car camping area by the lagoon. All of this without a hint of pretentiousness and relatively unknown to the general public.
The ocean beach is beautiful and extensive, stretching for about a kilometer in length with the typical ocean width of around a hundred meters. The beach season starts in May, but it’s never too crowded, and prices are moderate for everything.
From Oualidia to Moulay Bousselham, it’s 430 km. If you’re interested in the larger imperial cities of Morocco, it’s worth making stops in Rabat and Casablanca along the way and spending a night in one of these places.
Asilah (Asila) is a massive fortress called El Kamra on the ocean’s edge, which was inherited from the Portuguese. The local white and blue medina is slightly smaller but cleaner and better maintained than in Essaouira. Traditionally, there are many riads (mini-hotels) here with rooftop terraces offering views of the ocean and the old town.
The city’s highlight is the large beach with yellowish sand and a marina, making it a great place to spend the day and watch the sunset comfortably perched on the rocks.
Below the fortress, there are small secluded sections of the beach protected from view by stone embankments and the fortress wall. Similar to Essaouira, this is where hippies and like-minded individuals gather, but there are fewer of them overall.
On weekends, the city center outside the medina turns into an Arab market. If you love local color, you should definitely visit.
There are fewer fish restaurants here compared to Oualidia, but they do exist, given that the town has fishing roots.
We spent two nights in Asilah and a full day – that’s enough to explore the city. The beach is nice, but it’s not a resort, so I wouldn’t stay longer than a couple of days.
Accommodation in Asilah >>
That’s it. The top 5 beach resorts plus the package resort of Agadir should be more than enough for a first introduction to Morocco, in my opinion.
Any of the places mentioned above can be combined with recognized centers of interest in Morocco, such as Rabat, Chefchaouen, Fes, Meknes, Merzouga, and Tangier.
Instead of a review of Morocco:
The optimal duration of a trip to Morocco is at least 12 days with a car; otherwise, you’ll have to remove some interesting places from the itinerary.
If coastal cities, beaches, and the ocean are a priority, it’s best to fly to Agadir or Marrakech and depart from Tangier. This way, you can traverse the country from north to south along the coast and include the blue city of Chefchaouen and/or Fes in your itinerary, for example.
How to Save on Accommodation in Morocco
We search for suitable hotel or apartment options on Booking.com.
How to Rent a Car in Morocco
Just like in any other European country, Rentalcars can help. It’s the same as Booking but for the world of rental cars. The average rental price is around 23-25 euros per day for a modest but well-reputed Dacia Sandero for 3 weeks.
Where to Find Cheap Flights to Morocco
I will write in detail about where and how to buy the cheapest tickets to Morocco. There are several airports in the country, and many airlines from Europe fly there – both traditional and budget carriers.
We bought tickets from Wizzair and Ryanair, flying to Marrakech from Budapest and departing from Marrakech to Warsaw and then to Kyiv.
We search for tickets on both airline websites and search engine websites. Aviasales has an option – a price calendar, which also includes flights from budget airlines. It’s very convenient and straightforward; give it a try.