Essaouira, Morocco

My first day in Marrakesh was not so great, mostly because I did not like the feel of the city. Shifting to Essaouira today was thus an excellent move. The place is packed on account of the Gnawa and World Music Festival. Thankfully, I have joined a kind of caravan of backpackers. Seven us us defied the touts and the crowds and found a decent apartment for rent at the centre of town. Since then, we have been exploring and enjoying the music.

Aside from me, our caravan includes an English couple, three women from Norway – one of whom looks startlingly similar to Edwina – and a Frenchman. The combination generates odd language dynamics, based on differing overlaps. Essaouira itself is very attractive. In particular, the canons and fortification give a sense of the power this place once projected. The festival atmosphere here now also has me feeling much more at ease. I may well stick around for the weekend.

I expect that things will still be hopping with activity here very late into the night. I just hope I can find our obscure nameless alley and numberless apartment.

Author: Milan

In the spring of 2005, I graduated from the University of British Columbia with a degree in International Relations and a general focus in the area of environmental politics. In the fall of 2005, I began reading for an M.Phil in IR at Wadham College, Oxford. Outside school, I am very interested in photography, writing, and the outdoors. I am writing this blog to keep in touch with friends and family around the world, provide a more personal view of graduate student life in Oxford, and pass on some lessons I've learned here.

6 thoughts on “Essaouira”

  1. that’s too bad about marrakech. but that’s okay.

    after all, i’m probably the only person in the world (madrileños exempted) that prefers madrid to barcelona.

  2. I just hope I can find our obscure nameless alley and numberless apartment.

    How big is this town?

  3. According to my Lonely Planet book, the town has 45,000 inhabitants. Thousands more are here for the festival.

  4. The Gnaoua World Music Festival is a Gnawa music festival held annually in Essaouira, Morocco.

    The festival provides a platform for exchanges and a meeting point of music and dialogue between foreign artists and the mystical Gnaoua (also Gnawa) musicians. In this melting-pot of musical fusion, the Gnaoua masters invite players of jazz, pop, rock and contemporary World music to explore new avenues.

    Official site

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