In Tetouan the activities are mainly daytime. Fill your agenda with cultural visits, walks, meals here and there and at the end of the day take something in a coffee or dinner at a restaurant. If you still do not have plan here I propose some.
If this is your first visit (or if not) you should take a lot of walks in the old medina, it is always very entertaining and full of life. Take a walk around it, sit down in a cafe and have a drink or photograph its corners. The medina of Tetouan is always changing and never ceases to surprise. Remember that it is a UNESCO Heritage Site, mainly because of its authenticity so don’t expect a tourist place full of souvenir stores, in fact quite the opposite. It is a place where you can see the daily activity of those who live there, the markets, the work areas of the artisans, the stores …
The medina is the ideal place to buy typical Moroccan crafts, you will have the guarantee of buying authentic products (not Chinese) and you can visit the workshops of artisans in the area.
If it is your first visit here I leave you some links that will be very useful:
To begin with, it is highly recommended that you download this free map, it will help you to locate and know the most relevant places. Along with the map you will also receive the “Definitive guide to not getting lost in the Medina of Tetouan”, I think the name says it all. Both documents will help you a lot especially if it is your first stay.
In this other article I explain the issue of guides and why it is not necessary to have one.
Where to buy handicrafts? In this other article you have all the info
Tetuaní’s handicraft is beautiful and worth knowing well. As you can see I have referred in this case to the “tetuaní” and not to the Moroccan one, since each region has its particularities and the one of Tetuán is very special. To know these arts is very advisable to visit the School of Arts and Crafts. There you will be able to see the future craftsmen learning to work the wood, embroidery, silk, tiles… with the typical Tetuaní techniques. The entrance costs 10dh ( 1 ? ) and you can make a route by the building, being able to visit each one of the classrooms. The space is very nice, with a large courtyard and see the young people learning the arts Tetuaní is worthwhile.
School of arts and crafts of Tetouan
Tetouan has several museums: Archaeological, Contemporary Art, Ethnographic, Madrasa Luqash, Dar el Oddi…
In the Museum of Contemporary Art you can find works of Moroccan artists that will surprise you. In the rest you will learn about the history of the city and its customs. The latter are smaller but have a lot of charm.
To know the location of each one you can download this map
Luqash Tetuan Museum
Other cultural activities
Find out about the events of the Instituto Cervantes or the French Institute, there is always a concert, exhibition, talk scheduled…
Unfortunately the cultural activities of the city are promoted little and badly, many times you find out about things when they have already happened so the best thing is to ask your friends, in the hotel where you are staying etc. Do not expect to see many posters or something like a guide of leisure in the streets, only some of the centers that I name above usually promote their events.
Spend the afternoon in Rincón (Mdiq)
Mdiq Tetouan Corner
If you feel like visiting the coast, you can go to Rincón ( a town 20 minutes away by road to Ceuta ) and eat sardines there. In the port area there are many chiringuitos that basically don’t serve anything else: sardines, grilled prawns, baisara and salad.
If you want more variety of fish, to sit and contemplate the views and even a beer, I recommend El Restaurante Cocodrilo. Very rich fish dishes at a good price.
Afterwards you can have coffee in any of the terraces of the avenue, with beautiful views to the sea, take a walk on the beach or the streets of the town and do some shopping.
I recommend that you read this section where I explain how to get around by cab in Tetouan and surroundings, there you have all the information about the cabs that take you to Rincón.
Go to the Hammam
Don’t stop doing it, it’s an experience and it’s worth it. There are many hammams, especially in the old medina (the most popular), but also in other neighborhoods. If you dare to go here you have an article that explains everything you need: what to bring, schedules, how they are …
The entire coast surrounding Tetouan is full of long golden sand beaches. In winter you can walk and have a drink or eat in the coastal villages like Martil or Rincón and if it is summer you can spend a real day at the beach. If you like to wear a bikini you can go to beaches like Kabila, on the road to Ceuta and then have dinner in Rincón which is very close by. There are buses and collective cabs that take you easily to that area from downtown Tetuan, but in summer the traffic is considerable so keep that in mind.
Boanan Tetouan Turret
If you go with a little more time, go up to Boanan, the mountain area on the other side of the valley. There is a very special chiringuito, do not expect great luxuries, but it is worth sitting in the dining room, see the views of Tetouan and stay looking at every detail of the establishment … because it can not be more southern. They serve good anchovy tagin, baisar, kefta tagin… they probably won’t put you on silverware, so it will be a good time to practice that “Moroccan-style eating” (in this article I explain how to eat with your hands correctly). Outside the restaurant, on the hillside, there are chairs where you can sit and drink tea and enjoy the view. It is a rural area so don’t be surprised to see chickens, goats or sheep between the chairs…
Coffee boanan Tetuan
Medina Tetuan Candy
Snacks in Tetouan are sacred and if you come here you should join the Tetouan custom and make them. You will see that the whole city is like an ode to the sweet. Cakes are sold on the street, in cafes, in bakeries… there are also many places to go for a coffee or tea, so there is no excuse!
I really like the Café Palmera ( called “El Monte” by the Tetuanians ) which is on one of the sides of the Royal Palace. They don’t serve sweets there (although a vendor may pass by with a tray offering them) so go first to a bakery, buy some cakes and take them there. It is an open air place, surrounded by palm trees, very pleasant when the weather is good. It is the place par excellence to go play Parcheesi (national sport in the shade) so you will see everyone (young and not so young) with Parcheesi on the table and giving the cup with passion. Just to see the show is worth it.
And so far a sample of things to do in Tetouan, remember to visit the Medina a lot, and mix with the Moroccans who will help you spend a wonderful stay.
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