Oran Travel Guide

Discover the best places to visit, things to do, where to stay, and more in our comprehensive travel guide for Oran, Algeria.

Oran, located in the Northwestern region of Algeria, is a hidden gem in North Africa. This port city boasts a rich history and a diverse culture that attracts travelers from around the world. In this comprehensive tour guide, we’ll take you on a journey through the best places to visit, things to do, where to stay, and much more in Oran.

Introduction to Oran

Oran is one of the largest cities in Algeria and is known for its vibrant culture and unique architecture. The city was founded by the Arabs and was once part of the Ottoman Empire. Today, it is a bustling port city that offers a blend of old-world charm and modern amenities. Oran is also home to several historic monuments, museums, and natural attractions that make it an attractive destination for travelers.

List of Places to Visit in Oran

Culturally Important Attractions: Museums and Historical Places

  • The Ahmed Zabana National Museum: This museum is dedicated to the Algerian War of Independence and is named after one of the city’s most famous freedom fighters, Ahmed Zabana. It houses a collection of artifacts, photographs, and documents related to the war and the struggle for independence in Algeria.

  • The Santa Cruz Fort: This fort was built in the 16th century by the Spanish and is one of the most iconic landmarks in Oran. It offers panoramic views of the city and the Mediterranean Sea and is a must-visit for history buffs.

  • The Bey’s Palace: This palace was built in the early 18th century by the Ottoman Empire and is an excellent example of Ottoman architecture. Today, it houses a cultural center and is used for cultural events and exhibitions.

Natural Attractions of Oran: Outdoor Adventures and Scenic Views

  • Mount Murdjadjo: This mountain is located in the heart of the city and offers breathtaking views of Oran and the surrounding areas. It is a popular spot for hiking and picnicking.

  • The Seafront Promenade: This promenade runs along the Mediterranean Sea and is a great place to go for a walk or a jog. It is also home to several cafes and restaurants.

Hiking/Biking Routes of Oran

  • Mount Murdjadjo Hike: This hike takes you to the top of Mount Murdjadjo and offers stunning views of the city and the sea. It takes approximately 3 hours to complete and is suitable for intermediate hikers.

  • Coastal Bike Trail: This bike trail runs along the coast and takes you through some of the most scenic areas in Oran. It is approximately 18 kilometers long and can be completed in around 2 hours.

Best Things to Do in Oran: Activities and Tours

  • Explore the Medina: The Medina is the old town of Oran and is home to several historic buildings and monuments. It is a great place to explore on foot and soak up the atmosphere of old-world Algeria.

  • Visit the Port: The Port of Oran is one of the busiest ports in Algeria and is an excellent place to watch the ships come in and out. There are also several seafood restaurants and cafes located near the port.

Week-Long Itinerary for Oran

Day Activity
1 Visit the Ahmed Zabana National Museum
2 Explore the Medina
3 Hike Mount Murdjadjo
4 Visit the Bey’s Palace and the Santa Cruz Fort
5 Go on a Coastal Bike Trail
6 Relax on the Seafront Promenade
7 Depart Oran

Food and Drink Scene of Oran

Must-Try Dishes

  • Couscous: This North African staple is a must-try when in Oran. It’s typically made with semolina, vegetables, and lamb or chicken.

  • Brik: This pastry filled with tuna, egg, and vegetables is a must-try when in Oran. It’s usually served as an appetizer or a snack.

Local Beverages

  • Mint Tea: Mint tea is a popular drink in Oran and is typically served after meals.

  • Coffee: Coffee is a staple in Algeria, and Oran has plenty of cafes where you can enjoy a cup of coffee or espresso.

Where to Stay in Oran: Hotels, Hostels, and Guesthouses

  • Le Meridien Oran Hotel & Convention Centre: This 5-star hotel is located in the heart of Oran and offers luxurious rooms and suites, a spa, and several dining options.

  • Hotel Timgad: This mid-range hotel is located near the city center and offers clean, comfortable rooms and a rooftop terrace with views of the city.

  • Le Petit Village Hostel: This budget-friendly hostel is located in the Medina and offers dormitory and private rooms, a shared kitchen, and a lounge area.

What to Buy in Oran: Souvenirs and Local Products to Bring Home

  • Spices: Oran is known for its spices, and you’ll find plenty of shops in the Medina selling a variety of spices and herbs.

  • Handicrafts: The Medina is also home to several shops selling handmade rugs, pottery, and other handicrafts.

Local Culture and Customs of Oran

Oran is a predominantly Muslim city, and visitors should respect local customs and traditions. It’s recommended that visitors dress modestly, especially when visiting religious sites.

Best Time to Visit Oran

The best time to visit Oran is in the spring or fall when the temperatures are mild and comfortable. Summers can be hot and humid, while winters can be chilly and rainy.

Do’s and Don’ts of Oran


  • Dress modestly when visiting religious sites.
  • Learn a few Arabic phrases to communicate with locals.


  • Eat or drink in public during Ramadan.
  • Shake hands with someone of the opposite sex unless they initiate it.

Safety and Health

Safety in Oran

Oran is a relatively safe city, but visitors should take basic precautions such as avoiding walking alone at night and keeping valuables out of sight.

Health in Oran

Visitors should take precautions against mosquito-borne illnesses such as malaria and dengue fever. It’s recommended that visitors get vaccinated for hepatitis A and B before traveling to Oran.

Getting to Oran: Transportation Options and Logistics

Airports Near Oran

  • Ahmed Ben Bella Airport: This international airport is located approximately 20 kilometers south of Oran and offers flights to several destinations in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East.

Bus Stations Near Oran

  • Oran Bus Station: This is the main bus station in Oran and offers local and regional bus services to several destinations in Algeria.

Other Options

  • Taxis: Taxis are widely available in Oran and are a convenient way to get around the city.

How to Get Around in Oran

The best way to get around Oran is on foot or by taxi. Buses are also available, but they can be crowded and unreliable.

Where to Go Next from Oran: Nearby Destinations and Excursions

  • Tlemcen: This historic city is located approximately 140 kilometers southeast of Oran and is known for its beautiful architecture and rich history.

  • Mostaganem: This coastal city is located approximately 75 kilometers east of Oran and offers beautiful beaches and a bustling port.


Oran offers a unique blend of history, culture, and natural beauty that makes it an attractive destination for travelers. Whether you’re interested in exploring the city’s historic landmarks or enjoying the great outdoors, there’s something for everyone in Oran. We hope this comprehensive tour guide has helped you plan your trip to Oran and make the most of your time in this fascinating city.