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Should I be nervous?

Liverpool, United...
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Should I be nervous?

First time travelling here with my partner,

Will be arriving on the 07th June for 10 nights and for some reason I'm really nervous about not liking it.

Is the beach clean and safe?

Are the locals friendly with tourists?

Is there going to be a lot of sea mist?

I wanted to try something different and experience different cultures but not sure if I'm regretting it now

Any advice is greatly appreciated

Thanks

Manchester, United...
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for Morocco
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1. Re: Should I be nervous?

Is the beach clean and safe? - Yes, it is cleaned daily early in the morning.

Are the locals friendly with tourists? - Yes, most are friendly although some will bug you to go into a particular shop or restaurant, particularly so at the port resto's.

Is there going to be a lot of sea mist? - It varies and doesn't always manifest itself. There are many posts so do a check on sea mist using the search bar above the forum posts.

Agadir is very easy going. If you have been to one of the Costas in Spain this is very similar but without the badly behaved or drunken tourists. However, it does not represent a true vision of Morocco, for this you need one of the Imperial Cities such as Fes or Marrakech.

Edited: 5:17 pm, April 06, 2014
Dublin, Ireland
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for Dublin, Agadir
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2. Re: Should I be nervous?

Hi Kezjoh, I hope I can help somewhat.

Is the beach clean and safe? ..... The beach is very long and wide and is relatively clean. Your hotel might have a reserved part of the beach for you to sunbathe and these are usually kept very clean and well maintained. It is safe but you need to take care with the water/waves as there can be strong undercurrents.

Are the locals friendly with tourists? ..... The locals can be very friendly with tourists but as normal when you are abroad, you need to take care and be weary of people you do not know. There will lots of people offering you services (trips, excursions, massage, sunglasses etc) but a polite and firm 'no' should be fine if you are not interested.

Is there going to be a lot of sea mist? ..... From my experience, there could be some mist in the mornings and this generally clears up by noon. The weather in Agadir is generally very good with clear blue skies.

I wanted to try something different and experience different cultures but not sure if I'm regretting it now ...... You have nothing to regret, seriously, Morocco is a wonderful country and you should embrace the culture and go with the flow. You will enjoy it much better then. :)

Taroudant, Morocco
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3. Re: Should I be nervous?

No, you should not be nervous.

Agadir, Morocco
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4. Re: Should I be nervous?

Greetings from the south.

It’s normal to ask this kind of questions as it will be the first time to visit Morocco.

From my side I say welcome to Agadir as a one of the locals.

Agadir has 10 km sandy beach in home town 7 km are already managed and well equipped , they clean it every early morning and each hotel has a private beach , that depend on the hotel you have booked.

The locals are very friendly and helpful , in the hotel or in the street you will heard some words like hello ,Good morning , Bonjour , Salm , and it’s a greetings words.

In every destination across the world the vendors try to sell their goods a simple no with thanks is enough.

As you can read about Agadir it’s a bit modern city , and if you want really to explore the suburbs , Tagazout is a Heaven of Surfers and you can book a daily excursion via your agency such us Imouzzer , Marrakech 1 day , Massa ( little Sahara)…

Hope you have a good idea about Agadir.

Liverpool, United...
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5. Re: Should I be nervous?

Thank you for your replies.

Now feeling excited about my holiday :)

What do tourists/locals wear in the bars and restaurants near the beach?

If a kaftan or shorts and top ok to wear or do you need to be covered up?

Thanks again

London, United...
Destination Expert
for Agadir
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6. Re: Should I be nervous?

Kezjoh: Here my usual advice to firs timers:

WEATHER IN JUNE

Historically June is usually a hot in Agadir. Daytime temperature would average around 30 or 35 degrees, with some even hotter days hot days when the sun is out in its fully glory. As Agadir is exposed to the Atlantic ocean, it can be breezy and cool during evenings and at night time.

MONEY

The local currency Moroccan Dirham is a closed currency. It means that it can be only exchanged within the Moroccan territory. Exchange rates against international currency are fixed by the Government which means that you get the same amount of dirham to your own currency wherever you go change your currency.

As you will be arriving from UK, the £ sterling is good enough to exchange into dirhams. There are bureaus of exchanges at airport and town centre. Local banks, post office and Western Union shops are also handy for money exchange. Always keep receipt in case you want to change any leftover dirham back to sterling upon departure at airport.

Current rate : £1 would roughly get you around 13 dirhams.

Change money little by little as you go along so you don’t up end up with many left-over dirhams.

The notes come in 200, 100, 50 & 20 Dirhams. Coins are 10, 5, 2, 1 & ½ Dirhams.

However Dirhams are mentioned when dealing with touristique places or luxury higher purchases. The vast majority of ordinary Moroccan people talk Rials (there are 20 Rials to 1 Dirham). Rials are used for purchases in small local shops, souks and paying for shared taxis.

AIRPORT TO TOWN CENTRE

If you haven’t get a pre-arranged transfer, then there is a taxi rank at the exit of the airport. Fixed transfer cost 200 Dirhams. Upon exiting the airport you will be swamped with porters offering help with the luggage to the taxi. If you accept the offer, then a tip of 5 to 10Ddirhams should be more than enough.

Journey time from airport to town centre is 40 minutes.

TOURISTIQUE ZONE

This is place is immediately recognisable by the concentration of huge modern hotels, the sea front promenade and some fancy restaurants along Boulevard 20 Aout and Boulevard Mohammed V.

The beach is within very short walking distance within this zone. Some hotels are actually on the sea front

The long sea front promenade boasts a huge selection of cafes, bars and restaurants serving all kind of food and drinks. It gets very crowded in the evening when some of the seafront restaurants play live music. On Sundays all the families seems to be out and about up & down the promenade and on the beach. Most of the seafront restaurants & cafes are full with the local and their children.

Average 3 course in this area 70 Dirhams.

Along Boulevard 20 Aout there more fancy places to eat and drink. Most notably are the Jazz, Fouquet and of course the English Central pub.

There two new sushi restaurants under construction right now. One is opposite Shem’s casino in Blvrd 20 Aout and the other Mika Sushi opposite Agadir Beach hotel.

The touristique zone also boasts casinos (Shems and Royal Atlantic) and nightclubs (Actors, Dream, Factory.. just few to name).

Casinos and nightclubs are mainly frequented by young locals. Some are of a dodgy and sleazy character. The girls in there are mainly working girls!!!

BOULEVARD HASSAN II / TOUR BABEL

This strip is very popular with people who want to see and be seen. It has arguably better cafes than the touristique area, and the prices are reasonably affordable to some extent. Most famous is Scampi. Along this street and the immediate surrounding area there also are some of best value and descent hotels like Kamal and Petit Suede.

The square of Tour Babel (off Blvrd Hassan2) also boasts some lovely affordable places to eat. One of cheapest there is Queens if you like Mechoui (Grilled meat on skewers) 35 Dhs. The only noticeable place to serve alcohol there is La Truite AKA Irish Pub (Nobody knows why it is called Irish pub. There is nothing Irish about the place). A bottle of Flag Pils (1/2 PINT) is 20 Dirhams.

THE KASBAH

This is the place for bird eye view of down town Agadir. It is also the place where to find some ruin from the earthquake of the fifties. But getting there is only by small taxi and some scrupulous taxi drivers would charge a fortune to get you there and back.

TALBORJT DISCTRICT

This is place tourists use as an alternative base to the main touristique zone for marginally huge budget difference. And it is only 20 minutes walk to the beach (8 Dhs taxi ride).

Talborjt is heaving with so many things that you are guaranteed to find something of interest. There are shops galore, supermarkets like La Vie French & Carrefour to rival the famous Marjane. Restaurants inTalborjt serve authentic Moroccan food. The best are ones that occupy that white and mosaic square Mille et Une nuit, Etiolle d’Agadir and arguably the best of them Ibtissam. You are looking at around 30 Dhs for a proper delicious tasty Moroccan meal. You pay more than a double for the same at the beachfront. Yacout is another restaurant which within walking distant, that deserves a mention.

There are other even cheaper places to eat if you don’t mind sitting around a group of Moroccans and with none of restaurant waiter code dress of white shirt & bow tie bring you the menu.

SOUK AL HAD

Chaotic & exotic, fascinating & mesmerising, unromantic but aromatic. There are so many definitions you could use to describe the place. But it must be on your agenda when you are in Agadir. You will find anything in there from a humble potato to a huge plasma TV.

Right now there was some major work going in some part of it, however is business as usual (except Mondays). Alternatively you can try Inezzegane souk (Bus no 23 or shared taxi).

THE FISHING PORT

Like Souk Al Had, it is noisy and chaotic but the food served there is worth every sacrifice you have made to get there. It is the cheapest place to eat for the freshest fish you could ever get anywhere.

One of the best is Layounne, but also try to go for the ones inside like Sana Youness. You need to negotiate the cost of your order before sitting down. But it is still dead cheap to eat there if you love fish.

BATWAAR DISTRICT

This a bustling place full of Moroccan daily life. Some tourists may find it extremely uncomfortable to walk around here, especially at night time. However it is the place for connecting with major places further afield from Agadir. This is where you will find the grand taxis stand and main bus stops

Food outlet around here is even cheaper than Talborjt, but rougher.

BUSES

ALSA buses looked a bid old and tired. They are regular and have illuminated destinations well display at the front top of the bus. There are no signs of graffiti in bus shelters, the fares are very good if you are planning to go areas outside the centre of Agadir. They tend to be crowded at early morning and late evening.

32 still goes from Mohammed V to Taghazoot and Ourir and 23 to Inezzegane. Fares are 6, 4 & 2 Dirhams respectively.

RED SMALL TAXIS

These are for hire only within Agadir town. There are not licensed to go outside town. The fare is normally display on the meter. If you don’t see the meter is on ask the driver to put it on.

WHITE GRAND TAXIS

These are for hire for long distance to other major cities and towns. There are also the main means of transfer to & from airport - central Agadir. Fares 200 dirhams

These taxis can be shared with other passenger all paying their share of the fare. If you are to hire all to yourself then you will pay the whole fare. This fare can be negotiable.

RAMADAN:

Not sure when this year’s the holy month of Ramadan would fall. But it could be around last day of June. Tourists are expected to show some respects to the locals during Ramadan. Females are required to dress modestly, and exposing too much flesh in public areas.

FINALY: THE GOOD, THE BAD & THE UGLY

THE GOOD

•The vast majority of the Moroccan people are very friendly, welcoming, hospitable and generous. The cuisine, the culture, the tradition and the land are just few of the many things Agadir and Morocco has to offer.

•All year around good weather.

•Some of goods you can buy here are of the best quality and best value for money in the world. The local currency exchange rate is fixed by the Government and not subject to the fluctuation of the International Market.

•The safety and the well being of the visitors are of a paramount importance to the Authority and the tourism industry. Crime against tourist is extremely rare, if not unheard of.

THE BAD (NOT THE PEOPLE BUT THE PRACTICE)

•For the first timers to Agadir (or Morocco in general) be prepared for a major culture shock. The way of life is not like home. No more evident of this than when shopping. Haggling is a must. Some may find it fun and even bag a bargain, others may find very intimidating and end up being ripped off, in which case if you start getting uncomfortable just say a polite but firm “NO” AND walk away from.

•Some taxi drivers deliberately switch off their meter, thus would try to overcharge you.

•Hotels, restaurants & bars staff are constantly looking out for tips. They tend to favourably treat the tippers than the non tippers.

•The price of brand beers and spirits are seriously expensive in bars and restaurants

THE UGLY (NOT THE PEOPLE BUT THE PRACTICE)

•Shoe polishers, individual cigarette sellers, Street & beach merchants and beggars are a unfortunate sight. But none of them would be offended if you ignore them.

•In some parts Inezzegane and Batwaar watch you valuable. Pick pocketing is very rife in these parts.

•Single female travellers would inevitably attract the attention of local young casanovas. Just ignore and they will leave you alone.

•Bars and nightclubs tend to be frequented by sleazy characters (male and female) touting for sexual services. Again ignore them if you are not interested.

Cheers

Cas

Agadir, Morocco
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7. Re: Should I be nervous?

Dear kezjoh ,

The Moroccan women wear Kaftan only in Weeding or special party.

Here is a mix between traditional and modern cloths , the remarkable thing is for Friday merely all men are wearing Tjelaba for preying and that what can you remark , along the promenade some women wearing Tjelaba also.

England, United...
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8. Re: Should I be nervous?

Ahmeeed,

In the UK what is known as a kaftan is much more like a light weight gellabaya/jellaba. It is very different to the traditional Moroccan Kaftan as you describe.

(Interestingly across North Africa although the words kaftan, jellaba (various spellings) and arbaya are recognised it seems that what one country calls a kaftan another calls a gellabaya, the same with gellabaya and arbaya! )

9. Re: Should I be nervous?

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LONDON
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10. Re: Should I be nervous?

We have just returned from a lovely week in Agadir. Had one rainy day, the rest were hot and sunny. Beach is huge, clean and very sandy! We found the Moroccan's to be the friendliest and most welcoming people we have met! Really what lovely people they are! Relax and enjoy your holiday