After the fortress, this cistern is the greatest Portuguese edification in El Jadida. And it is an interesting and cool visit.
What will the teachers tell about us, the portuguese, to the many scholar children that we noticed visiting it? Will they mention that the cistern was made in 1514 by the Portuguese, as part of the fort, and later used as cistern, with one thousand square meters, and beautiful arcades?
Will they tell that its beauty attracted the cinema, from Orson Welles to Coppola, and other?
They should, because... it's true.
Sidi Bouzid id 3 km away from Eljadida. You can get to it by taking the bus, which will cost you around 3 dh. You can catch these buses next to the fort (see the picture). These buses operate until 7 pm
The beaches are very nice. There are few restaurants, grocery stores and a pharmacy. You can rent a room in the hotel or rent one of these little villas on the beach. The going rate was 500 dh per night.
This is one of the original structures built with the fortification. Initially it was used as a stable and later on as a prison. When water became scarce it was used as water storage facility. You can still see a thin layer of water and you can see beautiful light and sky reflection.
The vaulted ceiling is stunning. All in all this is a must visit if you are in Casablanca. Expect to pay 20 dh entrance fee
This structure was built on the Atlantic coast in the early 16th century. It represent an early example of Renaissance military design. This city was the one of the early settlements of the Portuguese explorers on the long road to India. The city was liberated by Sultan Mohammed Ben Abdallah in 1769 and he renamed the city "El Jadeda" which means the new in Arabic.
Today the city is on the UNESCO world Heritage list since 2004. The castle has a nice atmosphere and you can walk through it. It is considered a residential neighbourhood with people living within the houses and alleys. As you enter the castle you'll find plenty of souvenir shops and a very nice restaurant. Make sure to walk over the ramp which encircles the fort. It has a very nice view of the port and the city.
Beside the fortification you can see some of the surviving original building like the cistern and the Church of the Assumption, both built in late Gothic architecture style.
There are 3 churches, one Synagogue and few mosques. The Synagogue has the star of David below an Islamic crescent. I was told that you can get in but I couldn't locate the person who has the key. May be you'll have a better luck. All 3 churches function as an administrative buildings
Houzia Beaches are an extension of the nearby Azmmore beach. It has very little in terms of restaurants and facilities. You have to have your own transportation to get there. It is way less crowded than the other beaches in the city which is a big plus.
Jadidah beach has the advantage of being in the Down town area, with all the restaurants and few hotels near by. There is plenty of cafes. There is a little park with swings for the little one to play with. The Portuguese castle and port are also within a walking distance.
All these beaches are crowded during summer time as people flock to it from Casablanca and Marrakech
It is worth checking out as there are various exhibits for local artists. When I visited the town there was an Exhibit about Moroccan plants and gardens
This theatre is located on the main square in town. between the for and the El Jadeda beaches, within a walking distance of both places.
El Jadida is a small enough town that you probably won't miss anything even if you're only staying a short while BUT, if you can only visit one spot - spend an hour or so wandering through the Cité Portugaise. Built in the 16th century by those seafring Portuguese merchants, the walled city (within a city) features ramparts, a small Spanish chapel, gracious if not decaying homes and its glorious cistern - made famous in Orson Welles' "Othello".
An underground cistern to keep cool water available. Worthwile if there is water to reflect the ceilings. A very nice piece of architecture, world heritage of UNESCO.