Tangier in a street: Rue de la Kasbah
The city starts here
Tangier, Morocco © Alamy
Time does not pass behind the door of the Kasbah. There are streets where only silence is heard, the birds first thing in the morning or the odd child running fun. However, once crossed the arch that separates it from the Medina (the newest area of the city center), the streets are hot with local passers-by who rush to finish their purchases before the sun goes down, they trade from their stores or talk on the mobile while they travel with determined step the curly alleys of this multicultural city.
The Kasbah, which served as Alcazaba in the 10th century (the oldest part of Tangier) and the Medina are connected by the Rue de la Kasbah, which flows into Rue de l'Italie (named after its Italian population at the beginning of the century). Strolling through it is one of the best ways to immerse yourself in the Tangerine culture and discover a few treasures that do not usually appear in travel guides.
Our tour awakens the five senses and continually tests them (you cannot choose here, all are used from when you get up until you lie down). We begin by crossing the Rue d'ltalie, one of the most lively and busy arteries of the Medina, with the Kasbah.
It starts at April 9 Square (which, in this case, would work for "Rome", because all the roads in the city lead to it) and ends here, at the intersection where the old intersect Alcazar Cinema (which still retains its light) and the Colon coffee. The terrace of the latter is occupied, most of the time, men drinking coffee and smoking (if it is in the morning) or men and tourists drinking tea if it is in the afternoon. This authentic aftertaste of 60s awning and methacrylate table, It gives way to endless bazaars, hairdressers and date shops (one of the basic ingredients in Arabic cuisine).
It is an order within the disorder that, as we go along the steeper slope, is dissipating to splash a few places on one side and the other of the street that call our attention. The smell of almond (another raw material of the Moroccan pastry thanks to its national surplus) and toasted sugar is the first, and comes from the Patisserie Rouas, where you can taste the famous “gazelle horns” or the chebakia, one of the most typical sweets in the area. We try one of each and take them in boxes.
With our appetite happy for the moment, we give free rein to our curiosity in some of the craft workshops that follow each other on the left, from local ceramics (Moroccan tiles are also among the most coveted) to pieces of leather or wood. Everything, from the same place, is manufactured or fixed.
Our view is also amazed to see the amalgam of objects that accumulate in some of the stores on the top of the street, which are joined by those of merchants and children who, during the day, sell from traditional hats to wallets, although also some of the most unexpected goods.
In this variety we are surprised by the sobriety of Les Singulier, at 49 de Rue de la Kasbah. This sober atelier sells from hand-designed clothes and accessories (eye to t-shirts and totes from Rock Du Tanger, which are creating a trend) to lamps, photographs, ceramic paintings and other contemporary pieces of Moroccan manufacture.
When hunger squeezes (they say that even the air in this city arouses appetite), we carefully look for the entrance of Café À L'Anglaise. Located at number 37, this small restaurant occupies the main room of a house and is run by a mother and daughter that delight the most exquisite palate.
Offer tajine of chicken with lemon, grilled fish and the famous chicken or vegetable couscous, in addition to other dishes such as quiche of vegetables or Moroccan tapas, and they are so tasty that make it more than once to get there is almost an obligation. In addition, its affordable prices - less than five euros per dish - make it a highly recommended option of home cooking in the city.
After a traditional mint tea (here, mojito size), you want to rest. So we cross the door of the Kasbah and go down some small stairs where, just around the corner, a Mozarabic wooden porch will welcome us to one of the best kept secrets of the city and also surely the best bed in the have you ever slept: La Maison Blanche. They are nine unique rooms that combine, exquisitely, all the charm of tradition and the luxury of modernity together. Tangier starts here.
The tangerine sunsets are unique © La Maison Blanche