Essaouira Mogador is a town at the Atlantic coast of Morocco

En langue française




Arabic: 'as-sawira
(eng. the well drawn or the small picture
or "fortresse")

(Souera), Tassourte
"The pearl of the kingdom"

Municipalite d´Essaouira

Coat of arms of Essaouira province

Esaouira is a city in the western
Moroccan economic region
of Marrakech-Tensift-Al Haouz

It is a city and a province (Wilayah).

Province d´Essaouira

A wilayah is an administrative division, usually translated as "province" or "governorate". The word comes from Arabic w-l-y 'to govern': a wali 'governor' governs a wilayah 'that which is governed'.

Province d´Essaouira

Map of Essaouira Province

Since 1999 Essaouira is twinned with
La Rochelle, France

Roadsign in Ghazoua  indicating the distance of 8 km to Essaouira

Road sign in Ghazoua .
There is 8 km to Essaouira and the village
is also called" km 8".

More about names
on the Search page.

Related subjects:


Eco System

The Green Belt


Old Maps of Essaouira



Medina of Essaouira

Medina of Essaouira (formerly Mogador)
UNESCO World Heritage, 2001.

UNESCO World Heritage (External link)

Justification for Inscription

Criterion ii
Essaouira is an outstanding and well preserved example of a late 18th century European fortified seaport town translated to a North African context.
Criterion iv
With the opening up of Morocco to the rest of the world in the later 17th century Essaouira was laid out by a French architect who had been profoundly influenced by the work of Vauban at Saint-Malo. It has retained its European appearance to a substantial extent.

Essaouira has since 1997 a co-operation with the French costal city Saint-Malo and with other cities in the UNESCO project "Urban Development and Freshwater Resources: Small Coastal Cities"



As the previous economic base of fisheries is in crisis, urban employment is limited to tourism and handicraft production. This has had severe repercussions on the quality of life and the environment.

Cultural Heritage

The cultural heritage has suffered degradation and continued expansion of the city inland is threatening its fragile ecosystem and the very survival of the town.
Capacity-building efforts focus on setting priorities for action, targeted human resources development, institutional strengthening, development and adaptation of tools, encouraging partnerships, mobilization of resources, and promoting exchange between cities facing similar problems.

Eco System

UN Habitat project and its partners has eveloped action plans, addressing issues such as the protection of the collapsing sea retaining wall and dilapidated city gates, a revitalisation plan for the Mellah area and development of an urban park as a buffer zone between housing estates and a dune forest.
UN Habitat Localising Agenda 21

Mogador, Essaouira Tourism Project

King Mohammed VI launched the “The Plan Azur Vision 2010” strategic tourist development program in January 2001, aiming to make Morocco one of the world’s premier tourist destinations with a target of 10 million visitors in 2010 and to create 600.000 new jobs.
In the area of Diabat this development will measure in the region of 5,700.000 m2. The main features of this development are sure to be the two Gary Player golf courses. One of 36 holes the other 18. The hotels, riads, villas, golf academy and practice course are laid out along the two spectacular courses facing the sea.It also incorporates the upgrading of motorways and roads.

Essaouira expansion to Ghazoua

Because of dune forest and the green belt there is a limit in the expansion of the city towards north and east.

Chaabi Lil Iskane,began the construction of a new city: Essaouira El Jadida in Ghazoua ( 8km south of Essaouira). The small village in the countryside has developed into a residential area with villas, small buildings and businesses.


Essaouira Mogador Airport
(IATA: ESU, ICAO: GMMI) , inaugurated in 1998,
is situated about 15 km south of the town.



Show Essaouira Mogador bigger

In 2011 the Motorway to Chichaoua was ready to take in use
connecting to Expressways to Casablanca, Marrakech and Agadir.

Learn more in Transport

Also interesting Tour Maps in the Regions

Essaouira south  east entry from Marrakechan


Extension of Essaouira town southwards.
On top to the right you see the road from Marrakech enter the town.





External links


Case study Essaouira

UNESCO World Heritage

Editing a Compact City
1994 - 2004

La Rochelle

UNESCO project
Urban Development and Freshwater Resources: Small Coastal Cities

UN Habitat
Localising Agenda 21
in Essaouira