Recently we spent a month in Taghazout, Morocco for relaxation before starting our journey travelling, exploring and being location independent (we being myself and my partner Tristan a.k.a. Web Manager/Magician of The Woven Dream).
Taghazout is a little fishing and surfing town on the Atlantic coast of Morocco where traditional life is colliding with accelerating tourism. It's not hard to understand what draws people to this unique and inspiring place with an ever expanding community of expat creatives and entrepreneurs alike.
This vibrant little town stole my heart and the people, the ocean and the land all took me back to that place of pure joy, reminding me that my creative fire is unique, true and fuelled by love and passion.
We stayed for a month to begin our entrepreneurial journey with some much needed R&R, giving us the opportunity to embrace the beautiful Moroccan culture, slow down and unwind, travel around a bit, get in some surfing lessons and immerse ourselves in the unique local lifestyle. Our hosts were the lovely people at Surf Berbere Surf Camp in a penthouse literally on top of the rocks the waves crash against - our own little sun-drenched paradise.
The surfing was great and all we had to do is wake ourselves up - everything was taken care of and the surf instructors drove us around to the best spots every day. We were total beginners (I know, how un-Australian) but there is always a spot perfect for every skill level - and rarely any "fisticuffs", much to the surprise of some of the experienced surfers also staying at the camp. It's all really relaxed and easy going and the hosts & surf instructors make it so!
I intentionally left all my creating tools back home but this made being surrounded by so many creative people really tough! I loved getting to meet the talented people behind some of the local creative brands - be sure to check out Berber Blue and Shanti Surfboard Mandala Art (more details below). Every day I was finding new inspiration to create and I couldn't stop myself from going foraging for materials and sharing my weaving skills with others, inspiring them in turn to create.
The inspiration really is everywhere, and for those creatives planning a trip to Morocco visiting Essaouira a few hours to the north is a must do. It is such a beautiful, vibrant and very different little city full of art and culture, handmade unique pieces such as woven baskets and kilims, unusual and somewhat spooky statues, leather bags and shoes, spices and treats, musical instruments and beautiful artwork.
Essaouira is also known as the "windy city of Morocco" and earns it's name - the constant gale outdoors such a huge contrast with the stillness and atmosphere to be found in the traditional riads dotted throughout the city. Be sure to stay in one while you're there for an intimate experience of centuries-old Moroccan culture!
The drive there from Taghazout is also beautiful, with much of the journey through rolling coastal mountains, and you will get to see some local nomadic families set up in temporary camps, herding goats...and yes you will see goats in trees!
And just to the south, walking distance from Taghazout is the lazy town of Tamaraght. While it lacks the buzz and bustle of Taghazout, the entire town has such a peaceful atmosphere and while subtle is equally as inspiring. The buildings are also much newer and cleaner and unsurprisingly, many frequenters of the area choose to return to Tamaraght and we will be doing the same.
Finally, if you want a big hit of inspiration make sure you book in a trip to Paradise Valley - it's an inexpensive trip that took us through some of the most incredible scenery in the area, wandering through deep canyons and eye-poppingly steep mountains. The journey ends with a blue-tinted (and icy cold) rock pool you can jump into from dizzying heights. We were also lucky to get intimate with some of the local wildlife, spotting a wandering Chameleon who was subsequently adopted by a local cafe!
Tips for visiting Taghazout, Morocco
- If you are a creative person, bring something little along with you to work on
- Go surf with the guys at Surf Berbere even if you haven’t tried it before...
- ...and you will get told you are lazy if you don't surf every day!
- Visit Essaouira, Paradise Valley and the souk in Agadir
- Book English speaking drivers if you are going out of town
- Search for the hidden talent that locals and travellers provide the town with
- Join Facebook Groups in advance to check out whats going on there