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It’s little wonder that Essaouira is a haven for artists: the seaside location, incredible ramparts, and strong winds that keep the air very clear all combine to make it an artist’s (or indeed, amateur photographer’s) dream. Although popular with tourists (especially wind and kite surfers), the medina still exists and functions largely for locals. The fishing port with its pretty blue boats and circling gulls is very much a working port, and the spice stalls that add intoxicating colours and smells to the city are for local wives to make gorgeous tagines for their families. The thuya woodcraftsmen do cater for visitors but their wares are still of the highest quality and a worthy souvenir from a wonderful place.

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