Algiers – capital city of Algeria
A casual stroll beside the arcaded harbour of Algiers will reveal timeless Kasbahs, ancient walls, towers and colonial hotels nudged by the aquamarine Mediterranean. Hundreds of small yachts moor in quiet respect for one of North Africa’s newly emerging tourist destinations that vibrates with history.
Hotels range from luxury to cheap and accommodating, with many providing spacious and beautifully decorated rooms, often with superb health and recreation facilities. Algiers’s many friendly and inviting restaurants offer a wide range of cuisine that reflects the city’s Asian, French and African traditions.
Many travel to Algiers for the city’s rich culinary preparations. A host of inviting roadside diners, cafes, restaurants and quality coffee shops offer the hungry traveller everything from fine dining to rustic local fare. Couscous and spicy kebabs are Algeria’s comfort foods, competing with fresh figs, goat’s cheese and succulent seafood. Alcohol, however, is only served in a few plush hotels.
Algiers is considered by travellers to be one of North Africa’s most romantic destinations. A leisurely stroll through its maze of alleys and whitewashed houses will lead you to the picturesque harbour that was once the chief seat of the Barbary pirates and the scourge of the seven seas.
When to Go?
Temperatures reach the upper 80s between March and October, but cooling Mediterranean breezes keep it comfortable. Algiers enjoys mild winters with rainfall heaviest in the winter and early spring months. Travel 70km to the Blida Province in winter and you’ll find snow and skiing in the mountains!
How to get there?
Houari Boumedienne Airport is located 12 miles from Algiers. Fly direct from the UK, most European cities, West Africa, the Middle East, Asia and North America. Many ferry companies offer services to Algiers, including France and Southern Spain (the shortest route). Airfares remain fairly constant throughout the year.
Don’t leave Algiers without visiting the popular area, Bab El Oued, ‘the gate of the river’, famous for its markets and Ottoman palaces. The National Museum of Fine Arts, Bardo Ethnographic and Local Art Museum can precede an amble up to the Hauts Plateaux to discover the Grand Mosque and historical city of Tiemcen. The adventurous can travel south from Algiers into the breathtaking Sahara desert. Closer to home, the Chrea National Park is a spectacular mountainous area famous for its rare species of flora and fauna, Atlas Cedar Forests and unusual Barbary Macaque.