Essaouira Morocco: Weather forecast Essaouira

How to read the forecast on windguru ?


Analyzing the surf conditions from the provided image, here’s a more detailed explanation:

    1. Wind speed (knots): Wind speeds vary, peaking at 13 knots. The wind direction, combined with the speed, can affect wave quality—stronger winds may make the waves choppier. In the example, we also can see that the combination of the wind speed plus the windguru rating (1 star) at 15:00 means that the wind will be light and good for wingfoiling and kitesurfing.
    2. Wind gusts (knots): The forecast shows gusts peaking at 19 knots, which can lead to sudden powerful impacts on wave conditions, making them less predictable and potentially challenging for surfers.
    3. Wind direction: In this forecast, we can see that the wind direction is changing over the day. Blowing from the South-East in the morning, changing around 13:00 to blow from South-West.
    4. Wave (meters) and Period (seconds): Waves on Friday are consistently above 1.3 meters, with periods around 14-16 seconds (means one wave per 14-16 seconds), indicating powerful, well-spaced waves suitable for experienced surfers.
    5. Wave direction: Every spots has their “perfect wave direction”. It depends on the coast shape. For example, in the bay of Essaouira, the best direction is West-North.
    6. Temperature: Temperatures rise through the day, peaking at 24°C, offering comfortable conditions.
    7. Cloud Cover: Increasing cloud cover might indicate changing weather patterns, possibly affecting wind and wave conditions later in the day.
    8. Windguru Rating: Windguru gives a rate from 0 to 3 stars per two hours which means the wind will be strengthened. For example, on the image, you can see that the wind strength is stronger between 15:00 and 17:00.
    9. Tide: Two significant tide changes occur. On this day, the Low Tide would be at 9:30 and the High Tide would be at 15:40. For Essaouira, the best time to go surfing is around 2 hours before the High Tide.

For beginners who go surfing by their own, this forecast suggests caution due to the wave size and periods. However, intermediates and experts could find these conditions exciting, offering ample opportunities for both short and longboard surfing. The key is to interpret these indicators in tandem, as they collectively influence surfing conditions. Always cross-reference with live reports and local expertise.

Key Surfing Metrics: Wind Types and Swell Periods

How the wind is created ? 

Imagine the Earth wearing a big, invisible blanket called the atmosphere. The sun shines on this blanket, but it doesn’t warm up every part equally. Some places get more sun and become warmer, while others get less and stay cooler.

Air likes to move from where it’s colder (and heavier) to where it’s warmer (and lighter). This moving air is what we feel as wind. When the sun heats up the land more than the ocean, the air over the land gets warm and rises up, and the cooler air from the ocean rushes in to take its place – that’s a sea breeze!

There are three types of wind:

      1. Offshore Wind: Originating from the land and moving towards the sea, these winds are highly favorable. They smooth the wave’s surface, offering surfers clean, well-formed waves that can result in the coveted barrel shape at the right surf spots. However, it’s crucial to be aware of the wind direction for safety reasons. In Essaouira, this type of wind can be dangerous because it’s pushing you away from the coast. Sometimes, it can be hard to come back.
      2. Onshore Wind: Blowing from the sea towards the shore, onshore winds can deteriorate wave quality. They tend to make the sea surface rough, leading to disorganized, bumpy waves that are less ideal for surfing. This type of wind blow during the winter especially when it’s raining. The local’s kitesurf and wingfoil school in Essaouira prefer to not give classes for beginners when the wind direction is on shore because it brings you back to the shore rather than pushing you away from it. And this can be very dangerous due to the shallow water.
      3. Cross-Shore Wind: This wind cuts across the beach and can impact one side of the wave more significantly. Depending on its intensity, it can either create challenging conditions or provide an advantage to one side of the break, affecting wave quality asymmetrically.

    In summary, while Essaouira offers excellent conditions for wingfoiling and kitesurfing, it’s essential to choose the right spot based on the wind direction and your skill level. Offshore and Onshore winds, while present, might not be the safest option, especially for beginners or those without adequate support or guidance. Always prioritize safety and seek local advice or lessons if you’re new to the area.

    Decoding the Swell Period:

    The interval between successive waves, known as the swell period, is a crucial metric that dictates the energy and size of the waves.

        • Short-Period Swell (1-5 seconds): Typically the result of local wind conditions, these waves tend to be less powerful, more disordered, and generally weaker – often described as choppy.

        • Intermediate-Period Swell (6-8 seconds): This swell is usually generated by regional weather systems and can lead to more organized waves with a bit more force and better form, suitable for an improved surfing experience.

        • Long-Period Swell (10-16 seconds): Referred to as groundswells, these are born from distant storms and carry more energy across the ocean. When they reach shallower waters, they slow down dramatically, creating larger and more powerful waves, providing well-defined sets that are preferred by experienced surfers.

        • Extended-Period Swell (16+ seconds): These rare, powerful swells are formed by intense storms far out at sea. They produce substantial, high-quality waves that only certain breaks can handle. These conditions are generally not recommended for novices due to their formidable power.

      By familiarizing themselves with these wind types and swell periods, surfers can better predict and select optimal conditions for their sessions, ensuring a safer and more enjoyable experience on the water.

      When to Come to Essaouira for Surfing and Wingfoiling ?

      Essaouira known as the windy city and as one of the best destinations for surfing in Morocco. From the 70’s, the city started to welcome surfers and windsurfers for the best quality of the wind, the waves and the great weather conditions. Today Essaouira is one of the most famous destinations in the world of surfing and wingfoiling. But when is the best time to learn surf and wingfoil in Essaouira?


      What are the best periods to learn surf and wingfoil in Essaouira ?

      Contrary to other Moroccan’s cities, Essaouira weather is unique. In fact, when it is super warm during summer in other cities like Marrakech or Agadir, Essaouira is cold because of the strong wind. On the other hand, during winter when it is colder in other parts of Morocco, Essaouira is warm and welcoming.

      Surf Season : The Surfer’s Paradise

          • September to March: This is the prime surfing season in Essaouira. The northwest Atlantic swells are at their strongest, thanks to the winter storms that churn the ocean, providing consistent and powerful waves suitable for experienced surfers. Furthermore, the beginners can have a lot of fun by surfing friendly and long white waves, offering an inclusive perspective for all surfing levels.

            • Consistent Swells: The wind direction tends to be offshore, coming from the east-southeast, which shapes clean and rideable waves.

              • Weather Conditions: While the water could be cold during the winter in Europe requiring thick wetsuit with gloves, boots and a hood. In Essaouira, the water is around 17-19 degrees which is very comfortable.

            Wingfoil Season: Embracing Essaouira’s Winds

            April to August: Essaouira transforms into a wingfoil and kitesurf wonderland during these months. The robust and consistent trade winds, coupled with the temperate climate, create the perfect conditions for wingfoilers and kitesurfers to thrive.


            Steady Trade Winds: These months witness the ‘Chergui’, a local wind phenomenon that provides strong and reliable winds. This type of wind come specially from the north of the city.
            Climate Advantage: The summer heat is moderated by the Atlantic, offering a comfortable setting for enthusiasts to enjoy long sessions on the water.

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