Robin's Adventures

Morocco, Spain, & Portugal
A Picturesque Adventure

More Argan Oil

Argan oil is used for cooking, for dipping bread, or to drizzle on pasta. It is also commonly found in many cosmetic products.


Essaouira is a port city on the Atlantic Ocean that is known for its beautiful beaches. It is also a windy city and this attracts lots of windsurfers to the beaches. The medina is surrounded by 18th century walls lined, in some sections, with old cannons.

L'Heure Bleue Palais Hotel

While in Essaouira, we stayed at the L'Heure Bleue Palais Hotel.

Chaim Pinto Synagogue

In the mid 18th century, when Essaouira was Morocco's principal port, the sultan encouraged Jews to settle in the city and deal with trade. During this time period, Jews made up about 40% of Essaouira's population.

The Synagogue, which was on the second floor just above Chaim Pinto's home and office, is now a historic site. Nearby, there is a large Jewish cemetery where Chaim Pinto is interred. Pinto's gravesite has become a destination for pilgrimages that occur each year on his birthday.

Essaouira Medina

The medina is surrounded by ramparts that were built in the 18th century to protect this port town. Unlike some of the other medinas we have seen, this one is laid out in an organized grid pattern and the paths are wider and straighter.

Checking out the Souks

There were many interesting local handicrafts available in the souks with lots of bright colorful displays.

More Souks

We saw a variety of the staple foods on display, including olives, dates, khobz bread, pastries, and some spices and herbs that would help with libido and constipation.

Love the way foods and spices are piled up in a cone shape as if they were in a tagine dish. Not sure, however, how anyone could make a purchase and take some out of the bowl without causing a major avalanche.

Fresh Meats

Fresh meats of all kinds, including sheep heads, were available in various souks. Somehow, looking my chicken in the eye before I eat it does not appeal to me. I guess it all relates to the customs you grow up with and get used to.

Beautiful Beaches

As a port city on the Atlantic Ocean, Essaouira has many fishermen and it was fun to see the tangle of fishing boats tied up along the dock and to wander through the fish market. We also enjoyed the gentle breeze as we walked along the pathway that overlooked the beaches.


The next leg of our journey, which would take place in Spain, began in Barcelona. We spent a day exploring the city before boarding our cruise ship for the rest of our Spanish expedition. While in Barcelona, we stayed at the Monument Hotel.