Overnight in Tanger, Morocco--is it worth it??

May 11th, 2019, 07:50 PM
  #1  
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Overnight in Tanger, Morocco--is it worth it??

My husband and I are heading for a trip to Europe and possibly North Africa this coming December/January and are in the early stages of planning. We'll be spending some time towards the end of the trip in the very southern part of Spain (Seville as well as a small town about an hour and a half south of it called Rota). We realized that Tangier, Morocco is a short drive then ferry away from where we'll be and that from point A to point B we could get there in about 3 hours or just under. So we have become quite interested in spending at least 24 hours in Tangier.

Is Tangier worth a visit? I've seen some mixed opinions on this. On one hand we would love to see a new city and get a taste of Morocco, since we'll be so close. We're not averse to rougher cities---we were advised against Naples for that reason but absolutely loved it. We are also not averse to 24 hour trips to a new country as we have driven from Bordeaux, France to San Sebastian, Spain just for the night before. I'm a little worried about the touts and harassers I've read about. We encoutered it quite a bit in Rome and it was definitely uncomfortable--assuming it will be tenfold here. I'm really just wondering if its a good place to get a taste of Morocco, worth us spending some time and money visiting, generally safe to visit, etc. I am also wondering if anyone has recommendations of what would be high on the list to do and see, especially since it may be a quick visit.

Any insight is appreciated!!

Last edited by ericarenee427; May 11th, 2019 at 07:53 PM.
ericarenee427 is offline  
May 11th, 2019, 08:11 PM
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Short answer: no.

Longer answer, see discussion in this thread: First & Likely Only Trip to Spain
thursdaysd is offline  
May 11th, 2019, 08:30 PM
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Thanks, that thread was very helpful. I definitely see where a lot of people were coming from in that post. However our trip is a little different, theirs seemed to be focused mainly on Spain and for ours we'll be all over anyways. We'll also be in different places throughout England, Belgium, and France before we hit Spain and possibly Morocco. It seemed like a lot of people were saying to skip Tangier for that person's particular trip and make Morocco its own trip. But we are fine with getting just a taste now and doing another trip in the future where we explore that region further.

The comparison in that thread to a Mexican border town was helpful to understand what kind of atmosphere we can expect. I will say though, I've been to Tijuana and loved it so that makes me less concerned for Tangier if we do go haha.
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May 11th, 2019, 09:01 PM
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How recently have you been to TJ? Years ago it was fun -- now not so much.

I think the main point is the Morocco is really wonderful - Tangier is not.
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May 11th, 2019, 09:57 PM
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I'm going to disagree with both opinions above, but not to say they're wrong, just different from my experience. I'm fond of Tangier but in the context of long stays in Morocco & won't venture a guess how it would be for so short a visit. But will say I see utterly no resemblance to Mexican border towns.

I suggest you go, why not see for yourself? For some reason Tangier seems to be a place people love to hate. I'm just not among them.

Last edited by MmePerdu; May 11th, 2019 at 10:04 PM.
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May 11th, 2019, 10:24 PM
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Here's another recent thread asking more or less the same question, 2 opinions, one of which you already know:
To Tangier or elsewhere or not?
MmePerdu is offline  
May 17th, 2019, 02:42 AM
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I recommend you!! I am from south Spain, and I was travelling around Morocco for one month last year. I went by ferry to there as well, and to see Tangier you only need a few hours or one day.
For me, is the less beautiful city in Morocco, too busy and dirty, but it is a good way to introduce yourself in a very very different culture, altought it is so near to Spain and Europe!
isaa94 is offline  
May 17th, 2019, 08:50 AM
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isaa94 Thank you! Yes I understand it may not be the prettiest or cleanest city in Morocco but would still like to go as there are some sights there I'd like to see. Busy and dirty does not bother me---I was told to avoid Naples for the same reasons and so far its been my favorite city visited.
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May 17th, 2019, 10:10 AM
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Tangier, like any city, has areas that are pretty, some less so. I always marvel at the way Tangier is sometimes described and wonder if those with such negative opinions have ever been there. Or more than off the ferry, a quick tour of tourist shops then back on the ferry. If you spend a night or 2 you'll be able to find the real Tangier and enjoy this historic city. Be sure to read up on it's past and it will become more to you than the day trippers' very limited impressions, an international city and home to artists & writers. You'll enjoy your visit, I have no doubt.
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May 17th, 2019, 10:15 AM
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MmePerdu Yes I have looked into the history of Tangier and it's very interesting to me. A while back I also saw the Parts Unknown (Anthony Bourdain) episode on Tangier and learned a bit about the history of it being an Interzone and the hotspot for writers and artists. The fact that it has been influenced and controlled by many different cultures and regimes over the years makes it an interesting place to me. Also, my family is Sephardic Jewish and while we are not sure where exactly, we know we have ancestry in North Africa. There is a historic Synagogue in Tangier that I'd love to check out.
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May 17th, 2019, 10:38 AM
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Then you have more reason than the average person to visit Tangier, and the information to have it be an informed and enjoyable experience. Do let us know how you like it & help others who may not have the benefit of positive information. Have fun!
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