1. Prepare for wind
  2. Don't expect fancy
  3. Day trip to Gibraltar

When you arrive to Tarifa you will notice that it’s pretty much like any other surfer town in the world – laid back and nothing too fancy. Don’t expect glamorous beach hotels and paradise-like beaches – this is not the place. If you like surfing, kite-surfing or windsurfing, then this is indeed the place for you. This is because it sits right on the border of the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic, causing powerful gusty winds. Be sure to look carefully at the water’s horizon, where you will see Africa (Morocco to be exact)!

Tarifa, being the southernmost point served has the gateway for muslim invasion and domination until 1292. The name of the city derives from one of its Arabic conquerers Tarib Ibn Malluk. Because it is the southernmost point closest to Africa, this is the where the center of commerce and passage between the two continents occurs.

Where to stay
We stayed at the Hurricane hotel, which is probably the fanciest and hippest hotel you can stay at in Tarifa (you must take into account what I previously said about this beach town – fancy in Tarifa would not be considered fancy anywhere else). The hotel sits right near the water, although be warned, “beach view” rooms do not actually include a beach view because the entire view is blocked by foliage. That said, the pool is gorgeous and the beach is just steps away.

What to do
Tarifa has a sweet little historic center which is worth a walk around, perhaps for dinner. Also, you may want to visit the Castillo de Guzman. Other than that, Tarifa is best enjoyed laying on the beach or enjoying the waves. The rock of gibraltar, a British territory, isn’t too far away either, so if you’re in the mood, take your passport and check it out.

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