Morocco: Essaouira, Atlantic Coast

99 Coastal Destinations Rated: Doing Well

Score: 72

This "charming historic port town" treats visitors to an old quarter that has "preserved its sprit and character." Petty street crime is the only major drawback.

Here is a representative sampling of additional anonymous comments from the panelists. They are not necessarily the views of the National Geographic Society:

"A thriving place. Your first thoughts will almost certainly be that it is much larger than you expected. The old town has preserved its character and spirit well. The fishermen still head off to sea each day, and the locals still drink in the cafes. It is now popular with kite-surfers, but this does not seem to be having a negative impact."

"Pride in culture is evident and expressed. There is a need to watch out for petty street crime, however."

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"A unique blend of old and new makes for inconsistencies with regards to environmental concern and development. Street crime is the greatest concern to visitors."

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