Best Cafes in Tangier, Morocco
Cafe culture in Tangier
You’ve been hiking the hilly streets of Tangier for the better part of the morning; you’re thirsty, dusty and not a little sweaty. You need coffee.
Moroccan mint tea gets the most press on travel websites, as well it should. The sugary, minty refreshment gives you just enough caffeine to keep you going (and enough sugar for about 6 days, so be ready!). The beautiful silver teapot and little tea glass make it a real experience.
But if it’s coffee you’re searching for, your best bet is the cafe au lait, or nuss nuss, in Arabic. With a shot of espresso and warm milk, it’s the perfect smooth drink after a long morning.
Now remember; all cafes in Tangier are not created equal. The two must-visits are Cinema Rif and Salon Bleu. While Cinema Rif doesn’t boast a great view–it’s in the heart of Grand Socco–it’s got a lot of history and local color. An old movie theater, Cinema Rif shows mostly Arabic and French movies in neat old theaters. The service is pretty slow in the cafe, but it’ll give you a chance to rest your feet and enjoy the Moroccan teenagers chatting around you.
Salon Bleu, located in the Old Medina, offers a beautiful view of the ocean. The view’s what you pay for, with some of the most expensive coffee in town, but it’s absolutely worth it.
La Ghiralda is on Boulevard Belgique, just around the corner from Tangier’s very well-known Cafe Paris, which was featured in the Bourne Identity but doesn’t make the top five list for cafes. La Ghiralda offers one of the best views of both the city and the ocean, as long as you can snag a table by the window. They also have great juices of you’re looking for a different kind of energy boost.
Rounding out with #5 on this list is Cafe Baba. While the place may be a little hard to find on your own if you don’t have a tour guide, it’s well worth a few wrong turns. Once you’ve found the Kasbah Museum (definitely a must-see, especially in the spring and summer when the garden is in full-bloom), head through the large parking lot and through the arched doorway on your right. Follow the stone path down the hill to the left, and you’re nearly there. Keep your eyes peeled, and just before you reach the second set of stairs, you’ll see it on the right. The layout is simple and traditional, with tile tables and old arched doorways. Cafe Baba also boasts an amazing view of the city and isn’t too popular with tourists, which gives it a nice, Moroccan feel. Between the friendly banter from the street below and the young men rolling dice on their parchi (parcheesi) boards, you’ll get a real Moroccan cafe experience.
Written by Lyla Lux