Cruises: 2500

Melilla, Spanish Morocco

The Spanish enclave of Melilla, on the African continent, is a city by the border of Morocco. It's a relatively quiet and peaceful place, which means that a shore excursion won't necessarily be full of activity but will still be memorable and enjoyable. Many people don't realise on their first visit to Melilla that they're actually travelling to Africa. As it's a Spanish city, it's easy to assume that you'll be in Europe. In reality, the city is influenced by both continents and is an interesting mix of the two.

Sightseeing in Melilla

Once your cruise ship has docked in Melilla you'll be free to explore a wealth of small local attractions. The city has historic buildings in abundance, with medieval architecture being particularly prominent. Tourist information offices can provide you with telephone numbers that connect you to audio tours. Each section of the city has its own audio recording, which allows you to use your phone to learn more about the most interesting landmarks and features. Many people choose to fill their time by taking a walk to the beach and enjoying swimming, snorkelling or fishing, though you'll find a range of other places to spend your day too.

Las Cuevas des Coventico

The Caves of the Convent are open six days a week for guided tours, and are closed on Mondays. Historically these echoing catacombs have been used as hiding places and storage facilities, and make a fantastic way to see a different side to the port and its rich history.

Cuidad Vieja

The fortified Old Town includes the original city walls and fort, all beautifully maintained and offering panoramic views of the sea and the surrounding town. Visitors are able to see the port from the hill, or ride the elevator up to the top of the wall to enjoy the vistas.

The GASELEC Foundation Museum

This fascinating educational museum is filled with Egyptian artefacts, a wonderful place to make a stop during your tour of Melilla. The items on display here are a mix of originals and reproductions, with more than eight hundred pieces to view in the collection. Here you can gain fascinating insights into ancient Egyptian life, including the use of hieroglyphics and burial traditions. There's even a reproduction of Tutankhamen's tomb here, which is a particular favourite with visitors.

Shopping in Melilla

You'll find a fantastic choice of places to browse if you're shopping in Melilla. Despite the city's relatively small size it's full of shops selling electronics, souvenirs, clothes and gifts. The markets are bustling and lively, with fresh groceries on offer if you'd like to try some local seasonal fruit. Local crafts include hand-made jewellery, leather goods and beautiful painted ceramics.

Eating out in Melilla

Mellila's restaurants serve authentic Spanish meals, as well as fusion dishes due to the influence of other African countries. You'll find many tapas restaurants here where you can share a meal with friends and family, and the city also has an abundance of bars serving fine wines and cold beers. Seafood dishes range from paella to anchovies, squid and sardines. You can enjoy lobster, prawns and clams here too, boiled or fried and served with a variety of fresh sides.

Herbs and spices are commonly used by the city's best chefs, reflecting the influence of Arab culture. Couscous and Mediterranean vegetables are commonly served with meals – and often accompanied with a glass of refreshing mint tea.

Cruise Lines

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