It was a reason for preventing navigational disasters during the 19th century.. The history of the Moroccan “Cape Spartel”
Morocco's Cap Spartel Lighthouse in Tangier / Shutterstock
On a hill overlooking the intersection of the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean in Morocco , there is one of the most attractive tourist places for tourists in the city of Tangier, nicknamed the Bride of Morocco. The Cap Spartel lighthouse has a historical story that made it placed on the Moroccan 200 dirham banknote.
This place has a special aesthetic; It combines forest and sea in a unique meeting of the waves of the Mediterranean and the ocean. The historic “Cape Spartel” lighthouse is considered the oldest in Morocco and among the oldest on the African continent.
Danger of hackers and building passers-by
The Moroccan Cape Spartel Lighthouse has an ancient history. Its establishment dates back to the year 1864, during the reign of the Moroccan Sultan Muhammad bin Abd al-Rahman. The latter has known historical stages and transformations, in addition to many modifications.
The story began with the appearance of steamships, with pirates representing the main danger in the region, in addition to obstructing Muslim mujahideen coming from the port of Salé, close to Rabat, the current capital of Morocco.
Throughout the 16th century, more and more ships passed through the region, crossing the Atlantic Ocean extending from the Canary Islands to the northern shores of Spain.
Later, the risk of sinking ships became a major threat in the area near the Moroccan city of Tangier, one of the most famous accidents that the region witnessed, after the sinking of the Brazilian educational frigate, which claimed the lives of 250 student officers in 1860.
This incident prompted the Moroccan Sultan Muhammad bin Abd al-Rahman to issue his orders in 1861 to build the Cap Spartel lighthouse, which lasted more than two years to be built by a French engineer and Moroccan labor, but its official opening was on October 15, 1864.
Years later, Morocco signed an agreement with more than 50 countries around the world regarding the costs of operating and maintaining the lighthouse. Years passed and the decision to open it to all visitors in 2020 was adopted. It has become a tourist attraction that attracts thousands of visitors and tourists every year.
Cap Spartel Heritage Lighthouse and World Title
According to the " IndependentArabia " website, the Ras Spartel Lighthouse was named the Heritage Lighthouse for the year 2023 by the Council of the International Maritime Signaling Association held in May in Brazil, making it the only Arab and African lighthouse to have won this title.
The Cape Spartel Lighthouse was preceded by the Korean “Homikot” Lighthouse in 2022, the Australian “Cape Byron” Lighthouse in 2021, the “Santa Antonio de Barra” Lighthouse in 2020, and then the French “Cordon” Lighthouse in 2019.
In order to obtain this title, Al-Manara must meet three main conditions in order to submit a nomination file.
The first conditions that were met, according to officials in the Ministry of Equipment, which is the custodian of the lighthouse, was its unique architecture, given that it resembles a Moroccan minaret, is 31 meters high, and has a spiraling circular staircase consisting of 101 steps, where the visitor can climb this ladder to the top of the lighthouse. To watch the water embrace the greenery.
The second condition that allowed the Moroccan lighthouse to obtain the title of “Heritage Lighthouse for the Year 2023” is that it is characterized by good maintenance within the surroundings of the lighthouse by those in charge of it.
Thirdly, the lighthouse is opened to the general public, including visitors and tourists, which has already been done since 2020.
When visiting the Cape Spartel Lighthouse, do not miss the opportunity to see the sign showing both the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea, in addition to purchasing some souvenirs sold next to the lighthouse and taking souvenir photos.