Many facets of the culture of southern Spain come from the Moors. As such, a day trip from Seville to Tangier will only serve to deepen your understanding of this culture, as well as provide you with an adventure! The day starts with a drive through the beautiful Andalusian countryside, passing by Alcornocales Natural Park before arriving in the port town of Tarifa. Morocco is so close to here, that even on a cloudy day you can see your destination waiting just across the Strait of Gibraltar.
The next phase in the journey is another memorable moment, you are given your tickets and shown the way to customs to exit Spain and get on the ferry to Tangier. Don’t forget your passport! The ferry crossing saves you much time in Morocco because you actually clear customs here. The long queue takes most of the journey, but you can pass the time looking at the window searching for dolphins on the water. No less than three different species of dolphin live in the straight of Gibraltar!
Arriving in Morocco
Upon arrival in Morocco, your chauffeur awaits! This is where the day trip from Seville to Tangier really begins. A local guide and driver meet you at the port and give you a quick driving tour of Tangier, passing by many palaces and mansions. The prince of Saudi Arabia, along with many more of the rich and powerful of the world have palaces in Tangier.
After passing through all the quarters of the city, you make your way to the beach. The first stop is Cape Spartel lighthouse. This lighthouse is the most northern in Africa, a fact sure to earn you bragging rights when you can say you’ve been there. Below the lighthouse, on Cape Spartel, lie the Caves of Hercules. The cave has two openings, one to sea and one to land. The sea opening is known as “The Map of Africa”. It is believed that the Phoenicians created the sea opening which is in the shape of Africa when looked at from the sea as a love letter to their homeland. This cave is such in legends. It was once believed to be bottomless and linked under the water to St Michael’s Caves in Gibraltar. What’s more, the caves get their name from the myth that Hercules stayed here whilst completing one of the twelve tasks needed to prove he was a god.
On the way back into town on this day trip from Seville to Tangier, you will have the opportunity to go for a camel ride. For many people, this is the highlight of the whole trip. Trooping along the beach by camelback. There is no better way to make you feel like an important trader reaching the far side of the desert than this! But don’t worry if you get scared, being so far out of your comfort zone fills most people with a slight trepidation.
Rock the Kasbah
Tangier used to be one of the most decadent cities on earth, and the palaces on the outskirts of the city attest to that. However, it was the old Kasbah that drew the rich and famous before. This area of town can be thought of as a Moroccan New Orleans, it’s where Monet lived and worked for a while, Keith Richards and William Boroughs have sought inspiration from its opulent labyrinth of streets, and the Clash even wrote a song about it! This former fortress citadel is today a tantalizing maze of crumbling paint and happy children running about, gently teasing at its former glories.
It’s just by the main gate into the Kasbah that our day trip from Seville to Tangier stops for lunch, in a picturesque three-story restaurant, lavishly decorated and bestowed with unbeatable views from its rooftop. Moroccan cuisine centers around couscous and tanginess. Simple, slow cooked, dishes which let the spices do the talking.
Walking Around the Market
After lunch, your day trip from Seville to Tangier progresses by continuing the walk through the old town and heading to the medina. The old town market is as alive today as it’s ever been. As you walk around the medina, be sure to take your time to take in all the sights, and sounds, and smells, which the bustling market bestows upon you.
After your guide has finished showing you around the market, you will be given free time to go off and explore and even try your hand at bartering. This writer loves a good spot of bartering, something about the challenge of trying to get what you want for is little as possible just makes good sport. As you go around, looking for bargains of your own, don’t forget to start with a price lower than you’re expecting and slowly work your way up.
Once you’re done bargain hunting around the historic market, your guide will escort you back to the port where you will hop back on the ferry, search for more dolphins and then excitedly tell your driver waiting in Tarifa all about you day trip from Seville to Tangier as you’re driven back to you hotel.
If this sounds like your kind of adventure then reach out to us today and we’ll help you organise your trip to Tangier!
Davey Womack is a tour guide and avid traveller. Read more from his adventures in Spain and around the world by visiting his personal blog.