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Sidi Ifni

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1000 m² of Spain

Sidi Ifni, Morocco

Sidi Ifni, Morocco

Sidi Ifni, Morocco

Sidi Ifni, Morocco

Sidi Ifni was one of the last places that the Spanish left, in 1969, 13 years the rest of Morocco got its independence. And then quite involuntarily: The Moroccans closed all overland transport, and made it difficult for the little town to survive by itself. Unlike Ceuta and Melilla, Ifni had been Spanish for only a short period of time, only since 1934.
Sidi Ifni feels almost as isolated now as then. The roads to Tiznit and Goulimime are narrow and winding, and the hamlets north of Sidi Ifni are modest. Sidi Ifni is by itself a quiet place, friendly yes, but the speed might be too slow for many travellers.
The guide book series for Morocco, Rough Guide calls Sidi Ifni "...the finest and most romantic Art Deco military town every built". By itself, that should be more than good enough reason to visit, even if it is a clear detour.
On the next page, you can visit Place Hassan 2, which is the best, but there are many other nice houses around town as well.
Sidi Ifni is a great place to discover how Morocco was in the time of Spanish colonialism. The main centre for this is the round square, Place Hassan 2 or Plaza de España as it was know before, is really beautiful, and which competes with most of French architecture of Morocco.
But the square is small, and you will have to enter into slow investigations in order to fill an hour of walks around Sidi Ifni. Around the square you will see some private homes, the Spanish Consulate (now closed), a church converted into a Law Court, the Hotel Bellevue (overlooking the beach and port), the town hall and a royal palace.
While the beach of Sidi Ifni has a nice location, it is unreliable for tourist purposes. The water can at times turn foamy, and sometimes a bit dirty.
But when it is clear and clean, it is quite beautiful. Should you be unlucky, there are plenty of alternatives in especially northern direction, or southern if you have a good car.
The journey you have to make is really not that many kilometres, but the Spanish never built good roads, and Moroccan authorities have done precious little since then. The road going from Goulimime is unrealistically narrow — when I came this way, it was just about wide enough for a Fiat Uno, and I had to be alert all the time. Fortunately, there is a roadside ditch, which you use when meeting other cars or trucks.
The image above is from the road going to Tiznit, which is radically much better.

Sidi Ifni, Morocco

Sidi Ifni hotels

Bellevue (t. 048 875072) Good value for money
Ere Nouvelle (t. 048 875298) Good value for money
Houria (t. 070 523836) OK value for money
Ifni (t. 048 875807) OK value for money
Suerta Loca (t. 048 780003) Excellent value for money
Wejan (No phone) OK value for money

Ait Ba Hamram Near beach. (t. 048 780217) Good value for money

Hotels and alternatives
There is a handful of nice, charming hotels, which all have a friendly price level. You should not have any problems finding a place which catches well the former Spanish colonial ambience.

Restaurants and alternatives
Few restaurants, which never reach further than lunch style food.

Change Money
A few banks, that will change cash, and give you money over the counter against your credit card (VISA is preferred)

Some few buses a day, and more taxis. Taxis are cheaper, and leave after you have had your breakfast.

Sports and Activities
Sidi Ifni has become popular with tourists doing surfing and paragliding. The starting point for surfing is from the town beach, while paragliding is mainly done from the mountains north of town.
To our knowledge, there are no forms of rentals of either sport.

The beach is quite unguarded, yet there are dangerous undercurrents. Ask locals, if there is no form of guard around, whether a swim is safe or not.

By Tore Kjeilen