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Where to stay in Essaouira

Where to stay in Essaouira

Whether you’re looking for a camping spot, a cheap hostel, a historical riad in the heart of the medina, a high end hotel, or a beach resort with swimming pool, there will be something in Essaouira to suit your budget and needs. The range of accommodation for such a small town is really quite impressive, but can be rather overwhelming to decide where to stay in Essaouira.

So if you need help deciding where to stay in Essaouira, we’ve done the research for you and got you covered!

Camping in Essaouira

READ OUR GUIDE: Camping in Essaouira

camping in Essaouira

If you’re thinking of wild camping in Essaouira, you may need to think again. There are regular reports of camper and motorhome owners being asked to move on by the police.

Whilst there aren’t any camping sites directly next to the town of Essaouira, there are a few options a short 15-20 minute drive away.

These include Dar El Bernicha, which is a walled parking area with toilets, and Camping Esprit Nature, which is a more upmarket campsite in a sheltered forest setting, with a swimming pool. The main carpark in Sidi Kaouki is popular for free camping.

Hostels in Essaouira

READ OUR GUIDE: Best hostels in Essaouira

Giraffe Hostel rooftop

Perhaps it’s the community vibe at hostel, knowing that you are likely to meet other travellers, or maybe you just need a cheap bed for a couple of nights, somewhere that feels safe as a base for exploring all the things to do in Essaouira?

Either way, this cosmopolitan beach town has been welcoming travellers for decades, so it probably comes as no surprise that there are some fantastic Essaouira hostels to choose from; from super clean, modern hostels (such as Hostel La Smala) to more homely, rustic hostels (such as Giraffe Hostel), to a party hostel where you’re guaranteed to meet other travellers (such as The Chill Art Hostel).

Airbnbs in Essaouira

Airbnbs are perfect for those who want to immerse themselves into the culture and everyday life of Essaouira. You are after all staying in someone’s home.

If you’re taking the Airbnb option, we very much recommend staying in the heart of the medina where there are a plethora of beautifully furnished home, often with a roof top.

Essaouira Airbnb

The beauty of an Airbnb is that this is a home from home, with a kitchen and washing machine. Self-catering is always the easier option if your visiting Essaouira with kids, as you can be flexible with your meal times and have a fridge to stock all the snacks. Plus, an Airbnb rental also gives families the space to spread out, and kids can often have their own rooms (this is often important factor for finding accommodation if you are visiting Essaouira with teens).

And if you’re planning on staying in Essaouira for a month (indeed, Essaouira is a popular base for digital nomads in Morocco), you can often get up to 50% off your stay.

However, if you feel that you need a swimming pool for your stay in Essaouira, you won’t find an Airbnb with one in the medina.

Hotels in Essaouira

READ OUR GUIDE: Best hotels in Essaouira

Hôtel Domaine de L’Arganeraie

For those seeking a sprinkling of luxury and convenience for their visit, check out our guide to the best hotels in Essaouira. Especially if it’s your first visit and you’re wondering where to stay in Essaouira, a hotel or resort provides a calm and relaxing oasis away from the hustle and bustle. This is a holiday after all! And self-catering is the last thing you want to do every night.

If you’re looking for an international resort-style hotel, there are two options:

a room at Salut Maroc!
A bedroom at Sault Maroc! One of our top recommended hotels in Essaouira and the best choice if you’re looking for something quirky in the Medina.

However, check out our recommended best hotels in Essaouira. Whether you’re looking for a luxury 5-star Essaouira hotel, an Essaouira beach hotel, or want to stay in the heart of the bustling medina in a traditional riad, we’ve got you covered.

Riads in Essaouira

READ OUR GUIDE: Best riads in Essaouira

Riad Dar L'Qdima, Essaouira
Riad Dar L’Qdima

For those visitors who want to immerse themselves in Moroccan history and culture, a stay in an Essaouira riad hotel is an absolute must.

What is a riad? Well, a riad is a traditional Moroccan home, commonly found in medinas (the old town), where rooms are situated around a central courtyard or garden. Riads were often owned by the wealthy and would house multiple generations of a family in the one place. Facing inwards, they are hidden from the main thoroughfare with only one unassuming entrance and small exterior windows, built in a way to keep the temperature cool. But once you enter, you are welcomed by an ornate central space, often open to the elements, with floors leading upwards.

Many historical riads in Essaouira have been transformed into boutique hotels. Don’t expect a grand lobby entrance and large, modern rooms with a balcony as these riads have been restored to preserve the original architecture and character. Although plumbing has definitely been updated; flushing toilets and a hot shower are now standard.

A stay in an Essaouira riad offers an intimate and homely experience, and we guarantee it will be a stay you will remember for many years.


Explore Essaouira ebook

Updated for 2024, the Explore Essaouira ebook is the only travel guide you need for exploring Essaouira. It is jam packed with inspiration on what to do, where to eat, where to stay, and also includes a step-by-step self-guided walking tour (with photos). 

This is a PDF download for use offline and on the go (and ad-free!). Save it to read on the plane to Morocco, download to your phone to follow the self-guided walking tour around the medina, or print it off at home before you leave on your adventures and highlight all the bits you want to remember for your visit.

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