The alleyway to the Riad is a challange in terms of smell and a gloomyness. So can be the whole town, especially in the morning. The trash is decomposing in the streets, cats are everywhere. BUT: Once you get into the building, everything changes and a peaceful, quite and clean place welcomes you. So Keep Walking but brace yourself. CAUTION-CAUTION-CAUTION: Regarding the souk/vendors, make sure you know what you are doing. These folks are nice but very pushing at best and really ugly and aggressive at times. They can be gentle and caring in one moment and become brash and obnoxious in the twinkling of an eye. And they know all the TRICKS to MAKE YOU buy their stuff. A good tip: the REAL price is between 30-50% of the Initial price (i.e. Initial price 100 Dirhams, real price 30-50 Dirhams). Make sure, you push it towards 30%. Then push more and leave without buying. They come after you and will agree with the price. Make sure you rule the situation and they don't own you. Make sure you don't fall for "I have one in the shop with better quality", it's the same stuff, just more expensive. From personal exerience: a pair of sandals cost 70-80 Dirhams, scarf 50-60 Dirhams, top 70-90 Dirhams, leather backpack small: 200-250 Dirhams. Don't Forget: it's you who has the money and they are the ones who want it! You are the Client and they have to serve you! If you go up to the vendor, not knowing what you want and what to do: you are going to be fooled. Beware: Lying and d
deception is a proper means of business over there. Don't display enthusiasm or joy, they will use it against you. Be said about the high price, be depressed. Tell them you would never pay that, you don't really need it (which is absolutely true of most of the stuff you can get there). Do bargain EVERYWHERE!! Food, camel ride, gifts, clothing, etc. Their whole world is built on bargaining, so don't give in too soon.
The Riad is great: nice and clean with some fantastic staff: helpful, funny, open, caring. The house itself is also very worth visiting (Although breakfast could be a bit more varied. The place is clean and very well kept. You will like it! Essaouira particularly and Marocco in general is an awesome and wonderful place: the sea, the medina, the souk, the food, the People, the streets and the atmosphere, the sunset, the Palm trees, the sand at the beach, nature and the buildings... You can make some wonderful vacation for a good price there. I do recomend the month of Ramadan: less tourists, lower Prices as result. Take a walk at the beach early in the morning, enjoy the joy and the fun in the evening. Try the different Foods: you will dive into a wonderful experience. Beach: very windy! Make sure you have appropriate clothing with you. If you don't want the wind: go to Agadir. The water is warmer and less windy. Food cleanliness: ask in the Riad what they recommend: I did so and didn't regret it at all!