Morocco

The Taghazout trail: an alternative to Marrakesh for family holidays this spring

Last updated 27th January 2024

A short early spring break in Morocco doesn’t have to mean Marrakesh as Georgina Blaskey fount out on a four-day family trip to Taghazout on Morocco’s south coast.

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Taghazout Village, Morocco

We love Marrakesh, but we’re trying out Taghazout

Morocco is a perennially popular short break escape, especially for May or October half term when guaranteed sunshine is less than a four hour flight away.

We’ve long been fans of Marrakesh, but last May, I took my family – including my 17-year-old daughter and 14-year-old son – to Fairmont Taghazout Bay for a four-night break to explore the coastline and see another side of this North African treasure. This was before the September 2023 earthquake that devastated parts of the country, but I’m happy to report that Taghazout and its closest airport, Agadir, were unaffected and the Fairmont is still open.

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Surfing Anchor Point, Taghazout, Morocco

A little bit of the Taghazout backstory

We can thank Australians for bringing Taghazout to our attention. Back in the 1960s, a group of Aussie surfers veered off the ‘hippie trail’ and put spots known as Anchor Point, Camel Point, Killers and Draculas on the map.

Over the following decades, a community of global yogi surfers slowly infiltrated the small fishing village and as a result, October 2022 saw the inaugural Taghazout Surf Expo – an event for Surf, Innovation and Business.

Now the Moroccan tourism authority is keen to champion Taghazout as the country’s first ecoresort: a more authentic, sustainable holiday than the package options available in Agadir.

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Fairmont Taghazout Bay, Morocco

The first Taghazout resort, Fairmont now sets the standard

Fairmont was the first luxury resort to arrive at Taghazout Bay, in summer 2021, and the example it has set for others is flawless.

Sitting in 45 acres of beautifully landscaped gardens, the beachfront property is made up of multiple buildings of local stone and wood, most just three or four storeys high, so the view from the lobby down to the Atlantic is unbroken.

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Pool overlooking Atlantic, Fairmont Taghazout Bay

There is no doubt that Fairmont’s scene-stealer is ever-present Atlantic

Glistening blue with an endless horizon, it commands your attention and delivers in return, right up to an unbeatably placed sunset as a nightly finale. Even communal spaces and rooms celebrate the ocean, with floor-to-ceiling windows drawing you towards it, and shady terraces capitalising on its views.

Naturally our interconnected rooms were also decorated in a soothing, coastal colour palette. And the same restful shades even spilled over into the restaurants.

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The art of High Tea, Fairmont Taghazout Bay

Restaurants to delight choosy children and tasteful teens, day and night

At The Commons you can enjoy an extensive buffet breakfast or order from a menu. For poolside lunch or dinner, Beef And Reef has a range of steak cuts, from tomahawk to T-bone, as well as fresh fish and seafood.

There’s also a ‘Champions’ children’s menu available in every restaurant, although my teenagers are firmly eating from the main menu these days. In love with anything Asian, the hotel’s flagship restaurant, Morimoto, was their favourite for its Japanese menu woven through with multicultural influences and a little deliberate drama.

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Camel riding on the beach, Taghazout

Spend days being as active or idle as you please

Days at Fairmont Taghazout Bay are calm and relaxed, with the wind as a constant companion. Ranging from gentle breezes to strong gusts, it varies with the seasons, so check the conditions before you go.

When we were there in May, the wind was very strong, but the tides and currents didn’t play ball, so surfing opportunities were limited. Sadly, we weren’t able to indulge our inner dudes and take a board out: an experience Fairmont offers from the promenade just in front.

Discover Pensacola and find your own, personal Way to Beach

The hotel also features two granite-lined swimming pools, one an infinity beachside family option, the other an adults-only pool with swim-up bar and canopy-covered day beds. To flop there, while children explore the kids club, is relaxation in a nutshell.

For teens, there’s Le Hangout, which has a basketball and soccer pitch, gaming area and mini movie theatre. Younger guests will love the Fun4Kidz Club with its bright and airy indoor playroom, and two, shaded outdoor playgrounds – perfect for kids to escape the midday heat.

Golfers can also take the opportunity to visit the new Tazegzout Golf Course. It’s just minutes from the hotel, and reception will happily arrange lessons for all the family.

Explore Taghazout town from beaches to markets and murals

Although beyond the Fairmont, there’s even more to see and do. We immersed ourselves in the local culture with a morning in Taghazout town. It’s either a 30-minute walk along the beach promenade or a short drive away, and feels truly authentic while still welcoming an influx of digital nomads, surfers, yogis and tourists like us.

Winding, terraced streets tumble down towards the beach, which hosts a daily fish market right on the sand. Humble shops selling textiles, leather goods and jewellery intersperse with mural painted buildings, and rooftop terraces make ideal spots for a sundowner.

Don’t miss the fascinating Targant Centre for Argan

After a gentle stroll and some light shopping, we continued to the Targant Centre for Argan: a museum dedicated to the history, use and production of precious argan oil. This region is the only place in the world where the argan nut grows and it’s key to the local economy. Engaging, interactive exhibits had us all enthralled and we even had a go at extracting the oil from its small kernel: harder than it looks.

I recommend planning your day around lunch here as the shady courtyard restaurant serves generous platters of local Moroccan specialities, and we left loaded with argan-infused honey and sweet, sticky amlou aux amandes.

After just four days at Fairmont Taghazout Bay we felt rested, educated, and enriched by Moroccan hospitality at its finest and although our break was short, it was a wonderful reminder of how warm and welcoming it always is in Morocco.

How to plan a holiday in Taghazout

How to get there

Direct UK flights to Agadir,  from 3 hours, 50 minutes

Fairmont Taghazout Bay is 50 minutes drive from Agadir Airport

Where to stay

Fairmont Taghazout Bay. Deluxe Family Room, B&B from £315 per night.

Find out more and book Fairmont Taghazout Bay 

Good to know

The world’s only Argan museum offers guided tours, as well as hiking tours in the Souss Massa Reserve, where the majority of area’s Argan trees grow.

Targant Centre for Argan, Taghazout

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