By Ali Kamel
Agadir – In Berber, the word Agadir means,”wall enclosing a fortress or town.”
No one can deny that Agadir is a mixture between modernity and traditionalism. Agadir is being considered as one of the best touristic destinations in Morocco if not the whole continent of Africa for numerous reasons. It certainly does meet everyone’s needs, starting with those who want to enjoy sunbathing on the golden sand beach, enjoy oil massages and relax in a fancy five star hotel, and for those looking for a low budget motel, want to enjoy sightseeing in the city and make some charming local friends.
Obviously, we Agadirians look at our city as the embodiment of all that is modern, traditional and sophisticated.
Marrakech – Agadir highway
The Marrakech- Agadir highway (220km) is a completely successful investment. An agreement between Hassan II Society for Economic and Social Development and the Moroccan operator of Expressways ADM in 2004 made the project possible, and construction began in 2006. Since 2010, the highway has had a positive impact on the trade and has greatly reduced accident rates.
One can’t talk about Agadir without mentioning its amazing weather. The weather in Agadir compared to other Moroccan cities is sunny all year round, warm during winter and autumn, and cool during spring and summer. In addition, any newcomer enjoys breathing in the fresh ocean air coming from the Atlantic Ocean.
There are plenty of activities to do in Agadir. For instance, surfing in Taghazout (17 Km north of Agadir), quad racing, riding camels, riding jet skis and sailing. Each evening is a beautiful opportunity to witness the picturesque and fascinating sunsets from the shore of Taghazout.
Diversity of Language
Concerning the linguistic diversity, the vast majority of residents in Agadir, speak Arabic and Tamazight. Being bilingual in Agadir is a necessity, in order to communicate with the huge amount of tourists from all over the world who visit the city every year. Moreover, most sellers, waiters in restaurants, and taxi drivers speak many languages. Despite the fact that the majority of the population in Agadir is Berber, there are Arabs and a minority of foreigners from France, Germany, Spain…etc, who have chosen to settle in Agadir, because the housing and rental properties are reasonably priced. Consequently, the locals are used to foreigners and friendly with them.
Agadir City, Morocco
In general, Agadir is a “melting pot” and a symbol of multiculturalism, where you can find people from around the world, from different backgrounds and different ethnics and races and different people living together peacefully and happily, in harmony.
Agadir the Choice of Amazing Music and Cinema Festivals
Undoubtedly, Agadir is very musically rich. Due to its location, it has become the gathering point of music genres from the south and the north of Morocco, such as (Hassani, Gnawa, Ahidous, Ahwash…etc). Thus, two of the most important music festivals are held in Agadir.
The first one is Timitar [Timitar means "Symbols" in Berber language]. This festival takes place annually in June, in Al Amal Square in downtown. Locals wait all year long to attend Timitar, which lasts for six days. Famous artists participate from many Moroccan regions and many countries from around the globe.
The second festival is Tolerance Festival, which takes place yearly in November. This festival is another proof that Agadir is a city of peace and acculturation. It is crystal clear that the festival is a serious attempt to close the gap between religions and encourage amicable discussions among peoples.
Besides musical festivals, there are very important cinema festivals. The first, The Film Festival for Immigration, is dedicated to Moroccan immigrants. This festival is held every year in November. All the competing films (featured at the festival) discuss a different difficulty faced by Moroccan immigrants overseas. The second one is, The International Documentary Film Festival, which takes place annually in April. Every year, this festival focuses on a specific topic, for instance, last year’s topic was “The Syrian Revolution”. The third festival is, Amazigh Film Festival. This event is very special for the audiences of Agadir. In this festival, they show films only in Berber language, and it is host to Berber participants from the following countries: Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya and Egypt.
The Beach of Agadir City, Morocco
Tourists who come to Agadir will notice the Argan trees surrounding the city from all destinations.
Agadir is well known for producing non-chemical beauty products from the Argan tree. Don’t be surprised if you see goats climbing Argan trees like monkeys. Personally, I have met many tourists who were surprised and kept telling me how funny and unusual that view was, as it is an uncommon occurrence for them.
It is worth noting that Agadir has a variety of hotel types, depending on how much money one wishes to spend. Here, they can choose between booking a room in a five star hotel or a more affordable one, apartments are also an economical choice.
Unforgettable Shopping Experience
For the visitors who yearn for pleasurable and memorable shopping experience, I advise them to go to the largest and most famous traditional market in the city, called Souk El Had. In this market one can find handmade decorations, clothes, vegetables, books…etc. Some items are ridiculously inexpensive but others are not. Shoppers only should ask for a discount or argue about the price.
A Famous Monument
I would like to talk about the most important historical monument in Agadir and in the south of Morocco, which is the hill of Agadir Oufella (Casbah), one of the few monuments which survived the earthquake of 1960. The hill is well known of the three holy words (God, Country and King) that are engraved on it. The three words are illuminated at night. And from above the Casbah, one can see the whole city and the long busy seaside, such a glamorous panoramic view.
Club World Cup honor
On the whole, no wonder that this city has been chosen to host the 2013 FIFA club world cup alongside with Marrakech. This city has the potentialities that big and famous cities in Europe and USA have.
Agadir is a highly recommended city to visit. No doubt, anybody that visits will surely, vividly remember the wonderful time they spent in this fabulous city.
Whoever you are, rich or poor, young or old, male or female, I guarantee you will come away with everlasting and unimaginable memories. A return trip will already be in your mind as you take this treasure to heart.
Agadir is spreading its arms to welcome everyone from around the world.
Welcome to Agadir!