Morocco - Tetouan

Tetouan is a large town situated in northern Morocco. Located close to emerging property development hotspots and new international airport facilities, Tetouan is set to continue to thrive in this new environment.

Tetouan is slightly inland from the Mediterranean Sea, just 40km east of Tangiers, on the northern most tip of Morocco.

With a population of just over 320,000, Tetouan is beautiful town largely due to the dramatic mountains in the south and west of the valley from which Tetouan rises. The nearest airport is Tangiers but from March Tetouan will have its own airport at Oujda.

Tetouan boasts 320 days of sunshine a year with average temperatures of 35°C in summer and 22°C in winter. The fully equipped marina has luxurious 5 and 6 star hotels, along with amazing restaurants, clubs, pavement cafes, markets, snake charmers and night life.

Most sports can be found in the surrounding areas including skiing, winter sports and hunting in the Atlas Mountains. Golf, hiking, shooting, archery, windsurfing and even camel riding in the Sahara desert are some of the many attractions on offer.

Tetouan is a centre for trading in agricultural products such as grain, citrus fruit, livestock, crafts and vegetables, and industries include the manufacture of soap, cigarettes, matches, flour, textiles and other building materials together with printing, cabinet-making and fish canning.

The old part of Tetouan town is where the streets and alleys wind around under large arches opening onto small squares alive with activity. Hassan II square is situated at the point where the old and the new parts of town meet and it is the heart of the city. Each street or alley has its own trade, typical examples being weavers, jewellers, gunsmiths, leather and crafts. Country ladies wearing striped clothing and wide brimmed straw hats arrive in the early morning to sell butter, honey, herbs and vegetables.

It is a good idea to have an official guide around the town to learn something of the intriguing history which would otherwise be unknown.

Tetouan has many monuments including a fort and several mosques, fountains and the Khalifa's old 17th century palace but restored and renovated in 1948. There are also two museums, a college of fine arts and a school of Moroccan art.

The King of Morocco and the Saudi Royal family both have villas in the area and the marina is more modern than Puerto Banus in Spain. The price to berth a yacht in the marina is around £300 per year, a chauffeur driven Mercedes costs about £30-£35 per day and a maid or gardener a mere £7.50 per day.

Tetouan was founded in the 14th century but destroyed by the Spanish around 1400. By the end of the 15 th century it had been rebuilt by the Moorish refugees from Spain. In 1913 Tetouan became the capital of Spanish Morocco and in 1956 upon Morocan independence, Tetouan became part of this new kingdom.

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