We came to artistic Asilah to do nothing. ¬†Seriously, that was the plan. ¬†We really needed some true relax days – to stay in bed all day if we so desired. ¬†We chose Asilah because of its location, sur la mer, without knowing much more about it. ¬†And it’s perfect.
Only an hour south of Tangier, this teeny ancient town is nestled on the beach on the Atlantic Ocean. ¬†In November it’s very quiet. ¬†I mean really quiet. ¬†In fact the year round population is about 20,000, with significantly fewer inside the medina perched on the ocean surrounded by Portuguese walls and ramparts. ¬†During the summer months the population swells to more than 120,000, especially on the weekends, as Moroccans flock here
for the cool ocean breeze.
But November – how lovely. ¬†The sun is shining but we need a sweater and at night the temperatures really dip. ¬†Our Airbnb¬†sits right on the sea, comes with a full-time maid and cook and we are only paying $72 a night. ¬†There is very little to do here, but that’s okay with us. ¬†Exactly what the doctor ordered after the past two months of constant motion. ¬†Peace and quiet except for the crashing waves – like a lullaby.
Annually Asilah hosts an art festival (in July) where murals are painted on the whitewashed walls and buildings inside the medina. ¬†This began ¬†in 1978 as a children’s art event and now defines Asilah. ¬†The small town is known now as an artist haven, with galleries and working studios as well as the murals that are painted fresh each year during the festival. ¬†The festival also includes music and dance and other arts, and draws about 200,000. ¬†Too many for me. ¬†Glad to be here in quiet November.
The murals are a treat. ¬†Some done by children, but most done by Moroccan artists. ¬†My favorites are the ones that incorporate parts of the buildings – such as doors or windows or the ever present historic grates on the windows.
The murals have certainly made Asilah¬†a popular stop for visitors, many bus tours from Casablanca will stop for a couple of hours on the way to Tangier. ¬†But in November we have only seen perhaps a half -dozen tourists. ¬†And that’s the way we like it.
So we get up and do some Yoga and then maybe take a run or walk on the beach. ¬†Our cook Latifah then serves us breakfast on the seaside terrace. ¬†The rest of our day is free – maybe we read. ¬†Or blog. ¬†Play scrabble and chess. ¬†Maybe we nap. ¬†Or walk through the quiet medina and enjoy the murals. ¬†Latifah then serves us a midday Moroccan meal – sometime around 2:00pm. ¬†This is our choice to eat at this time. ¬†Later we might have fruit or a snack or step out for some tapas. ¬†Who knows? ¬†We have no plans. ¬†We are relaxed in artistic Asilah sur le mer.