Perched on the Mediterranean Sea, Oran is an inviting coastal city with a fascinating history comprising Islamic, Spanish, Ottoman and French rulers. It now radiates a strong French influence in everything from food to architecture and language, but you’ll still find examples of its former occupants in unique districts.
Things to do in Oran
Oran has been charming visitors with its ambient, colourful vibe for generations. A stroll down the Front de Mer, the French-built promenade that’s a direct imitation of Nice’s Promenade des Anglais, is a rite of passage. Once your legs get tired, grab an ice cream or a coffee at one of the dozens of cafes and watch life go by accompanied by a stunning maritime backdrop.
In the centre of town is the Place 1er Noviembre, which is Oran’s symbolic heart and home to a dramatic central fountain and statue. Oran’s stunning French Cathedral is nearby, although these days it’s used as a library, a spectacular structure that blends European and Islamic styles.
Looking for nightlife? Oran is renowned as having some of the best nightlife anywhere in Africa, and it is in the neighbourhood of La Corniche where things really start to heat up. Join the locals and top-class DJs for some serious partying into the wee hours.
Getting around Oran
Sitting at the western terminus of Algeria’s rail network, Oran is best reached by train from the Algerian capital of Algiers. If arriving at the Oran Es Senia airport, the most efficient route into town is via a 20-minute taxi. To get around Oran, it’s advisable to use taxis and the modern tram service that operates throughout the city centre.