Moroccan cities between the past and the present, Essaouira is the city of wind and tourism

Moroccan cities between the past and the present, Essaouira is the city of wind and tourism

June 22, 2024
Visit morocco

During the holy month of Ramadan, dear ones, read about the history of Moroccan cities, / through a series called “Moroccan Cities between the Past and the Present,” where some Moroccan cities will be discussed to know their history and the most important landmarks in them, in addition to their most important features, whether on the economic level. Or social.

Moroccan cities between the past and the present The history of the city of Essaouira, which is considered one of the important tourist cities in the Kingdom, in addition to the city having an ancient and great history, which contributed to its international radiance.

The city of Essaouira is described as the “City of the Winds,” a name preferred by surfing enthusiasts who come to the city from all over the world to practice their beach sport.

According to some historical sources, the city was founded in the period before the birth of Christ, when the Phoenicians made it a docking station for ships traveling in the Pacific Ocean.

During the sixteenth century, the Portuguese settled there and called it Mogador. It was fortified by King Manuel I of Portugal, who built a fortress there in 1506. But the actual foundation of the city, according to historical books, emerged in the eighteenth century in 1765, when the Alaouite Sultan Muhammad III bin Abdullah rebuilt it in its current version.

Essaouira was previously called “Mogador”, and the origin of the Phoenician name “Mikdul”, which means small fortress according to some researchers, goes back to the Amazigh name “Imakdul”, which the Portuguese changed to “Mogador”. According to other research, it is a Portuguese name and means the owner of the wall. Historians connect the name “Mogador”, the owner of the wall, with Essaouira, meaning “Suwayra”, or “Tasourt”, meaning the wall surrounding the city.

The tourism sector occupies the first place in the city’s economy, due to the historical monuments the city contains, and it also flourishes during the summer, especially since the city hosts the “Gnawi” festival and world music, which witnesses a large public presence, in addition to marine fishing, where it depends. A large percentage of the population is engaged in fishing, due to the availability of many types of fish, and this contributed to the establishment of companies dedicated to fishing.

The city has many historical landmarks, including the Jewish Mallah Quarter, which was built by the Saadi Sultan Ahmed Al-Mansur Al-Dhahabi at the end of the 16th century AD, and to whom he brought an elite group of Jewish merchants to revitalize its commercial port, and Mogador Island, which is a small island located nearby. From the city, it is considered one of the most important Phoenician sites in the western Mediterranean, in addition to Moulay El Hassan Square, which is considered the most famous in the city, due to its attractive location overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, in addition to its proximity to both the port and the beach.

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