Touring Morocco by Bike (1) : Tangier – Tetouan – Chefchaouen

Cycling Route from Tangier to Chefchaouen

Tangier – Tetouan  – Chefchaouen

Tanger Mad – Tangier (45km)
It took only 1.5 hour travelling from Algeriras, Spain to Tangier, Morocco by ferry. Tanger-Med ferry port is only 40km from the city center, I cycled on the N16 National Road, which, goes along the coastline. I was really unlucky to cycle on this dangerous road in Morocco on the first day, the road was narrow and curvy, the surface was broken, and the worst thing was that there was extremely high traffic because many Moroccans headed to the coast for the beach during the summer.

Boat from Algeciras to Tangier, FRS

the boat from Algeciras, Spain to Tangier, Morocco

On the road, you can see many women dressed in traditional clothes with typical Rif mountain hat selling things. The scenery was pretty good on both sides, the deep blue Mediterranean sea was very close and it was possible to gaze into Spain. It was surprising to know how close it is between Africa and Europe! There is a small but busy town – Ksar Sghir, you can find ATM machines or exchange shops there. I tried my card but was unable to withdraw any money. Even though I passed by many restaurants for every few km, without any cash, I could only ride straightaway to the city center of Tangier. Mind you, there are many beaches on the way.

You are able to see deep blue mediterranean sea and gaze Spain on the other side

deep blue Mediterranean and a gaze into Spain

Locals head to the beach during summer time

Locals head to the beach in summer time

seaside road

Seaside Road

Tangier is a main gateway to Africa from Europe, and it is quite touristic. Similar to Marrakesh and Fez, there are many hostels costing only 7-8 Euro a night. But I decided to stay in campsite because I was used to camping. Of course, the standard of camping faculties cannot compare to what you get in Europe, but I only need a safe flatland with hot shower.

I moved super fast in the previous month in Europe, so I just rested in Tangier for most of the days. The first impression for Morocco was, cafes were always full, streets were always packed like everyday was festival.

Tangier Information

  • Camping Miramonte(50MAD, hot Shower:15MAD, small kitchen available)
    • GPS:35.79123, -5.832658
    • Email:mounir.stephan.dick@hotmail.com
    • Tel:672207055 / 634260386 / 534423322
  • Other Information
    • DECATHLON(GPS:35.746461, -5.843143):Bicycle and basic parts
    • Several supermarket such as Carrefour, Marjane and Acima

Tangier Photos

No photos

Tangier – Tetouan (71km)
It was very different to the road between Tangier Med and Tangier, Your impression for the road condition in Morocco would probably be changed. Although it is a main road connecting two big cities, there is not too much traffic. There are two lines in each same direction and there are road shoulders (most of the road is dirt road though). You can find some restaurants in every 30-40km, which is similar to many other areas in Morocco, it costs you only 3-5Euro for a meal in such restaurants, but usually with limited choices, Tajine (traditional Moroccan cuisine), grilled chicken, or Sandwiches.

Road condition is pretty good, give a strong contradiction with those woman dressing in traditional dress and riding on donkey.

Good Raod, with Moroccan traditional dressed lady riding on donkey

ceramics is important for Moroccans daily life, you will see this kind of highway shop all over Morocco

Ceramics is a important housewares for Moroccan, you may find similar shops on many highways

Not difficult to find restaurant on the highway, but usually there is not many choices.

little choices on the highway restaurant

Tetouan

  • Accommodation:
    • No campsite in city center but seems available at Martil, a seaside town, about 10km from Tetouan.
    • Tetouan Martil Youth Hostel(80MAD Dorm, hot shower:15MAD, with WI-FI)
      • GPS:35.589138, -5.321056
      • Website:http://aubergetetouan.com
      • Email:info@aubergetetouan.com
      • Tel:0539974647
      • 5km from the center, there is nothing around this hotel, although it is not so convenient, but hotels in Tetouan are more in mid-ranged level, so this hostel becomes a good budget choice.
  • Other Information
    • Some parking places with guard near “Bab el Okla”, 5MAD, but it seems that price is not fixed.
    • I will highly recommend visiting this city. Medina (old town) of Tetouan is UNSECO Heritage, it stays very authentic because it is not a popular tourist destination like Marrakesh and Fez, and the locals are much more friendly too. The cemetery of the hill at the north of Medina is a good place to see the paranormal view of this white city.
    • Acima Supermarket(GPS:35.580395, -5.353543)

Tetouan Photos

Tetouan – Chefchaouen  (70km)
Among many mountains in Morocco, RIF mountains in the north is not high, but it is also quite hilly. The total climb of a 70km road in a day was more than 1000m. It was a two-lane road with little few traffic. Manner of drivers was friendly, so it was still a easy day. The road condition is typical like other places in Morocco: two-lane road with very few cars.

typical road condition in Morocco

It looks pretty similar to Central and Southern Spain

Scenery is quite similar to Southern Spain

There was no place for food other than a restaurant located about 20km from Tetouan. It is quite common to find some kiosks/restaurants in every 30-40km in Morocco, but it is also possible that there is nothing on the road for a whole day, especially during festival, shops also close at certain time, so it is a good idea to keep some food in your luggage.

Chefchaouen is a hill town. The last few kilometers to the town is very steep, especially the section close to the campsite. It was a pretty hard climb in a hot summer day.

Chefchaouen Information

  • Accommodation:
    • Camping Azilan(50MAD,WIFI)
      • GPS:35.175706, -5.266618
      • Website:http://www.campingchefchaouen.com
      • Email:CampingChefchaouen@gmail.com
      • Tel:0539986979
      • located at the mid-level of the mountain, it takes about 20 minutes to walk to the center. Campsite is quite basic, they don’t even have hot shower, but it has good shades from the sun, so it is the prefect place to camp in summer.
    • There are many hostels in the town, price is not high compare to staying in campsite, but windows are usually very small in these traditional houses, which make it is very hot to stay in summer, I stayed for two nights, then I had to move to the campsite…
  • Other Information
    • For Moroccans, Chefchaouen is probably the most beautiful town in their country. In fact, if this blue city is located in Europe, I guess it would become a world famous destination. This blue-washed town is amazing and the atmosphere is relaxing. You are in a yotally different world that is good for doing nothing, and many tourists come here for Hashish.
    • Jebel el-Kelaa: Maybe Chefchaouen is too relaxing, almost no tourist will climb this peak, at 1616m. It is a great place to have a great view of RIF mountains. (the starting point is just next to the campsite)

Chefchaouen Photos

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1 Response

  1. August 2, 2017

    […] ** Road condition from Tangier Med to Tangier, you can see from here. […]

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