Cape Malabata, magic and beauty by the sea in Tangier
Cape Malabata is situated 10 kilometres to the east of Tangier and as a tourist destination receives a large number of visitors throughout the year, owing, in addition to the exceptional setting, to its lighthouse and castle, which, despite their medieval style, were built in the early twentieth century.
Tangier’s most exclusive, chic and ‘powerful’ neighbourhood, where the most influential people stay when visiting the city, takes its name from the cape. The area overlooks the sea and is a haven of peace and quiet where you can hear the sound of the ocean and where the sun shines allowing you to enjoy this unique place, far from the hustle and bustle of Tangier city centre.
- Cape Malabata’s location and background
- What to do and see
- How to get there from Tangier
- Where to stay close to Cape Malabata
The famous Irish-born artist Francis Bacon (1909–1992) was so impressed with the place that he depicted it in one of his prized works, Landscape Near Malabata. Incidentally, the London-born journalist Walter Harris had a residence in the vicinity of Cape Malabata (Villa Harris), as does king Salman of Saudi Arabia.
Cape Malabata’s location and background
Malabata is the neighbourhood with the highest income in Tangier and also its most modern. The city’s most striking and cutting-edge buildings are found in the area in addition to mansions that will leave you captivated just by looking at them. Large international hotels are also situated in Malabata, which is why important business people and celebrities often stay in the quiet neighbourhood that looks out over the Mediterranean.
It’s not hard to find armoured cars on the seaside promenade when walking around the Malabata area, since it is the destination of princes, wealthy heirs and powerful people, who come to enjoy a beautiful area away from the hustle and bustle.
In 2003 a plan to build a tunnel crossing the Strait of Gibraltar from Cape Malabata to Punta Paloma in Spain was tabled.
What to do and see
Protruding above the skyline of Cape Malabata is a vertical construction that guides boats travelling close to Tangier. We are of course talking about Cape Malabata lighthouse, which is on the Tetouan road and has spectacular views of the Rock of Gibraltar. The lighthouse is managed by the port authority of the Moroccan Government and, if you get closer to it, you will soon see some military facilities from where ‘illegal’ boats setting sail for Spain are monitored. Very close by is an unusual castle built in mock medieval style, even though the construction dates from the early twentieth century.
Next to Cape Malabata there is also a spectacular casino. And it’s no wonder, since the area is overflowing with money, which gambling entrepreneurs are well aware of. The Casino Malabata Tanger is one of the largest in Africa, housed in an elegant building with panoramic views of the Bay of Tangier and the Strait of Gibraltar, with over 200 slot machines, an executive floor and 30 card tables ready and waiting for wealthy tourists and businessmen. The exclusive floor for VIP customers boasts bars and restaurants.
How to get there from Tangier
Cape Malabata is approximately 10 kilometres from the city of Tangier and can be reached by private vehicle in under 15 minutes along Avenue des Forces Armées Royales.
Direct buses also depart every hour from Tangier railway station to the neighbouring Mnar tourist complex. Buses are operated by Alsa Morocco.
Where to stay close to Cape Malabata
The best and most reliable place to stay close to Cape Malabata is Tangier. The best accommodation option in the city, due to its unbeatable location, outstanding service and excellent value for money, is the Barceló Tangier hotel. Situated in the city centre, the most modern, tourist-oriented part of Tangier, it boasts panoramic sea views and is just a two-minute walk from the beach. The hotel has 138 rooms equipped with all mod cons, while dining options include a restaurant serving international cuisine, a snack bar and a café. What’s more, it boasts a large outdoor swimming pool and a pub that usually offers a programme of live music. At the Barceló Tangier you can enjoy the city to the fullest with your friends and experience an unforgettable holiday by the sea. With the hotel as your base you can plan some day trips to the neighbouring Cape Malabata and discover its beautiful landscapes as well as its lighthouse and castle.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where is Cape Malabata situated?
Cape Malabata is approximately 10 kilometres to the east of Tangier.
How do you get there from Tangier?
From Tangier, in a private vehicle, you can get to Cape Malabata in under 15 minutes along Avenue des Forces Armées Royales. You can also get there by taking one of the buses that departs from the Tangier railway station.
What is there to see at Cape Malabata?
In addition to enjoying the spectacular setting, you can visit the lighthouse and the castle, which date from the early twentieth century.