Surfing in central Morocco: Taghazoute
"An excellent winter escape for europeans escaping the cold water back home. Various consistent worldclass point breaks, mild water temperatures, good food, and cheap living is making morocco more and more popular""
You can reach Morocco by air, there are cheap fares for Tangier, Casablanca or Agadir, hiring a car on the place. We flew into Agadir, which was about 3,5 hours from Amsterdam
The real pain in the ass is the customs, which will take you some time, remember your surfboards will be recorded and declared on your passport. This means you must leave with them, even if they're broken: if they're stolen, you'll need a letter from the police (good luck!).
Roads are quite good, and mechanics are cheap and fast in case of breakdown. There should be also good rentals and you can find cheap hotels, especially near the medina's of the towns.
Pretty much everyone understand and speak French, which is the official language along with Arab, but in the south also Spanish is common.
Winter is the most popular season with consistent swell, clean surf and warm air and water. Spring and autumn have similar conditions with hotter air and less crowd. Summer can have flat spells.
Cost of living:
Morocco is pretty cheap. we payed 12 Euro's each for the accommodation and another 10 Euro's for good food. Alcohol is hard to come by in Taghzaoute, so that will save you some â‚¬$â‚¬$â‚¬$â‚¬$
Always be careful, theft is common like in every other third world country, and if you wanna smoke hash be even more careful: moroccan prisons aren't that good and they're full of western people who came in order to smoke and have some transcendental experience .
Some surfers talk about the giant waves of Hawaii, while others dream about the tubes of Tahiti or clean waves of Fiji. But for most of them these destinations remain inaccessible. They are simply exotic places in a surfing magazine. In Morocco, you find not only superb waves that you can surf all year long but also a magnificent back country that you can explore after your watery exploits and a local population famous for the warm welcome it accords its visitors.
- Powerful Surf
- Living inexpensive
- Quality pointbreaks
- Getting sick from the food
- Hard to get around if you don't have a car
- Crowds at the major pointsbreaks
Morocco with its 3500 kilometers of coastline offers the surfer a dazzling array of opportunities. On its atlantic side, rocky bottoms alternate with sand ones, reef breaks with beach breaks for those already initiated in the art of surfing. Although Americans and Australians were the surfers who brought he sport to Morocco in the 1970's now it is the European Surfer along with his Moroccan counterpart who is indulging his passion for the wave. In the last few years, the popularity of this sport has grown by leaps and bounds on the international and Moroccan stage. Several organizations have been formed to encourage and to promote this sport. These groups have organized tournaments and contests, created surfing schools, formed ties with Europeans organizations and tried to make the country aware of the public relations and financial potentials of the sport. Surfers will find areas on the Atlantic coast for this sport.
Taghazoute is a small town about 30 minutes north of Agadir. We arrived at Agadir airport and immediately got hassled the moment we got out of the airport. Take good care of your bags, since everybody is very willing to grab them out of your hands, only to return them after you have given them some dollars or euro's. Other than that experience, the locals were chilled and not to aggressive in their sales approach.
Taxi's from the airport will take you to Taghazoute for about 30 Euro's (1 Euro = 10 Dirham).
Finding a place to sleep was pretty easy for us. We found a big apartment overlooking Hash point, it had 4 beds and costed us 25 Euro's per night for the entire place. Nothing fancy, a bit dirty but it was sufficient for us.
The surf spots around Taghazoute:
South of the village is Banana beach a mediocre beachbreak that we couldn't bother surfing since most of the waves were either too small or closing out . (Rating 4)
This right hand point break can be find just when you drive into the towns center. It only works well only mid tide, but even then it's very sectioning. When the swell gets bigger the rip gets quit strong here, so you have to maintain paddling to stay in the right spot. Entry is best north of the break from a little cove just around the break, the current will take you to the line-up very quick. (Rating 5.5)
This right hand point is just north of the town's center.It can be good on it's day, but we never really scored it any good. Entry is easy from a little beach. (Rating 6)
This quality spot that can show perfect lines is about 1 km north of Taghazoute town center. It breaks off a pier and can connect all the way into Taghazoute. This break gets seriously crowded, and the level of surfing here is high. The crowds and the fact the the take off area is small make this for intermediate to expert surfers only. Entry is either done by jumping off the rocks, or paddling in from the beach to the right, but then you have to beware of the strong current that can bring you very close to the pier/rocks. (Rating 8,5)
Next to Anchors are several break that can be descent. This place seems to pick up more swell than the other spots, but will also start closing out over 5'. Entry is from the beach. Beware that it can be shallow at lower tide. (Rating 6)
This is one of the best waves in the area. It's about 3 km out of Taghazoute so it takes about 30 minutes to walk to this place. Once there prepare yourself for a long paddle to the line-up. It will easily take a fit surfer 10-15 minutes to paddle (it took me longer). The wave is a very long right hander, and on the right day it can be almost perfect. It picks up a fair bit of swell, and can hold waves up to 12'. You need to be fit for the paddle then though. Make sure you have a good leash, because from mid to high tide (when it's best) there's nowhere to swim to when you lose your board. The spot is supposedly named after the killer whales that are sometimes seen there. (Rating 9)
Getting to Boilers takes about 25 minutes by car from Taghzaoute. Boilers is a right hand break, that breaks off something that looks like the remaining off a shipwreck. It's a relatively short but fast and barreling type wave. Getting in the water is a bit tricky since it's best done from behind the big rock that is sticking out of the water, but when you are behind it you cannot see if there are any set waves coming, so assistance from the water or land is helpfully. Getting out of the water can be tricky since the rock close to shore are sharp. The wind can be blowing force 6 offshore when there's hardly a breeze at Taghazoute only 20 minutes away. (Rating 7)
Another 20 minutes up the coast there are long stretches of beach that pick up most swell when all the other spots are flat. Getting in and out of the water is hard, since here are lots of very sharp rocks. (Rating 5.5)
Further north you can probably find more breaks, but finding access to them is the hardest bit. South of Essaouira are some more surf spots but they are often blown out.
The beaches of Agadir can occasionally be good, but water quality is questionable.
More surf travel features:
Surfing Dominican Republic | Surfing Peru | Surfing Lanzarote | Surfing Nicaragua | Surfing Morrocco | Surfing Fiji | Surfing France | Surfing Spain