The Port of Safi lies on Atlantic Ocean shores about half-way between the ports of Casablanca and Agadir in western Morocco. A mix of medieval and modern, the Port of Safi imports to Marrakech to the southeast and exports for Youssoufia to the east.
Known for its pottery, this important fishing port has sardine canneries and textile manufacturers. Just south of the city are chemical and food-processing plants. Hinterland products include olives, cereals, cattle, sheep, and goats. In 2004, over 284 thousand people called the Port of Safi home.
First settled by the Carthaginians, who called it Asfi, the Port of Safi was also ruled by Romans and Goths. Muslims gained control of the Port of Safi in the 11th Century. During the 13th Century, it was a ribāt, a small fortification that housed military volunteers and protected commercial trading routes.
For over 30 years in the early 16th Century, the Portuguese held the Port of Safi and built a citadel there which still stands today encircling an 18th Century military enclave called the Keshla.
During the late 1500s and early 1660s, the Port of Safi thrived under the rule of the Sa’di sultans who migrated to Morocco from Arabia.
During World War II, the Port of Safi was a landing site for the Allied invasion of North Africa.