Essaouira in Morocco reminds me of my home town of Carpinteria, California. Carpinteria is famous for its gently sloping beach, which means that you can walk out into the surf 30 yards and still only be waist-deep in water.
Essaouira's beach is far bigger, wider and more gradual. You can walk out 100 yards here and only be waist deep.
Better still, the water in Essaouira is warmer, and there's no tar to step on.
The only two downsides compared with Carpinteria is that in Essaouira you'll encounter trash in the water.
And also: camel pellets.
That's right. Some enterprising local camel and horse owners will take you on rides on the beach. Riding camels on the beach is actually a must-do activity if you ever make it to Essaouira.
You can also rent a quad bike and do donuts in the sand. And Essaouira is notoriously windy, and so it's a kite-surfing paradise.
Amira and I like to take long walks on the beach whenever we can. And Essaouira is great for walking. You can walk for miles on the sand. One curiosity along the way, just south of the town is what appears to be a rocky formation on the beach. Upon closer inspection, it looks like a man-made structure completely fused with natural rock.
The structure is called Bourj El Baroud, an 18th-century watchtower for a castle built for the Sultan Sidi Mohammed ben Abdallah. That tower was destroyed by a flood in 1856. And it was built on a Phoenician structure.
Anyway, it’s great to be on the beach here in Essaouira. It’s just like home — plus ancient ruins and camel pellets.