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Spanish North Africa - Big Changes in Ceuta

By Sue Richards last modified Sep 27, 2011 11:39 AM

Published: 2011-09-27 11:39:00
Countries: Spain

Reports from two cruising yachts who visited Ceuta Summer 2011.

Our thanks to Jean Dupont for this latest update on the situation for visiting yachts in Ceuta.

Due to the economic crisis 2010-2011, Ceuta has changed dramatically in the past 2 years. Prices at the only marina, Marina de Hercules, have increased dramatically, as well as common life in the city, which remains busy, thanks to the visitors from Morroco.

You can now expect to pay the same fees as most of the famous southern Spain marinas, such as Marbella. A monohull under 15m long and under 4.5m wide is charged 43.50 Euro per day as of Sept. 2011. You must add 1.50 Euro of mandatory water and 3 Euro of mandatory electricity. So an amount of 48 Euro for a 15m boat per day, which is more than twice the price you pay in Gibraltar, on the other side of the straits. Charges decrease for stays over 6 months. The marina website is not up-to-date and they don't intend to correct it.

The quality of service is at a minimum. Showers and toilets (total of 2 men, 2 women) are open from 8.30 in the morning to 8.30 pm and are cleaned only once a day. There are no toilets open after this time. If you rent a car or have a bike, you must pay a fee for the parking as well. No internet connection, only at the Mc Donalds close by.

Poor English spoken at the marina reception, but people willing to help. The marina is renting its parking to the general public and both are administered the same way, you park, you pay. As the parking is now public, the space is open to everybody. Security don't seems to be an excessive concern as there is a guard.

There is a fuel dock, but prices are now higher than in Gibraltar or Morroco: 1.07 Euro/l on the 15th of Sept 2011. In Morroco, 0.87 ct/L and 1,02 in Gibraltar. Diesel. No other service.

There are 3 main supermarkets, well provisioned, the first and the best is a 15 minute walk. Very good restaurants, but again, now more expensive than the Spanish mainland.

General prices in town are now more expensive than on the Spanish mainland, despite the fact that Ceuta is tax free. As a consequence, there are less and less traveling yachts stopping and only local yachts from Gibraltar or Algeciras dock for the night.

The below cruising update is from Mark and Amanda of SY Balvenie who visited Ceuta from 09 to 14 Jun 2011

Ceuta Marina : 35 53.46N 05 18.93W
(Spanish enclave on Northern African Coast opposite Gibraltar)

Plenty of room in outer harbour for dealing with sails but stay to the east side to keep out of way of fast ferries. There is some current at final turn for marina due to through flow of water in the moat.

Fuel dock on left at entrance Diesel €.97c a litre (cheapest for a while).

We called on VHF 9 first and they waved us straight into a berth on the wall, bow to with one stern line. If you are too far in there is some noise at night from Spoons Bar which is on the wall (it does however have a wifi signal!) Cost for 12-15 metre incl power, water & IVA 35.56€ p/n (a big increase to rates in latest Cruising Guide). Showers and toilets by office. No marina wifi.

McDonalds with free wifi is just outside marina complex on the left. Lidls Supermarket, can see sign from marina to west. Morning fruit, veg van; fish market in indoor Central Market. Cross road from marina and walk uphill, just there (its a small town), another supermarket in behind here.

Bus No 7 to border (frontier) goes from outside market €.75c each, very regularly, takes about 15 minutes. Our Gymsim international mobile and Vodafone Spain both worked here. ATM’s closeby.