When you look at the map of Morocco, you will probably notice the low number of settlements along the Mediterranean coast. The reason are the Rif mountains making most of this region too mountainous for large settlements. Al-Hoceima lies in an area where the mountains are less wild than elsewhere.
But the main reason for Al-Hoceima being the largest of the coastal Rif cities, is tourism. Today the city is popular with Spanish coming from Melilla, Moroccans and European charter tourists.
Most of the city offers little to see, Al-Hoceima is quite young, and the buildings put up are similar to what you have seen in most other Moroccan towns. But with the nature around Al-Hoceima this doesn't really matter.
Around the city you will find a handful of beaches in addition to the town beach, Plage Quemada.
Al-Hoceima is quite lively, and offers relatively many opportunities for young people, even if young Moroccan men are running the show. The better hotels have bars, with Moroccan women. These, however, are not out for fun alone, they are working. And not as waitresses, if you get my drift.
Many travellers would prefer Al-Hoceima outside season (i.e. mid-September-April), when the beaches and the streets are not too crowded.
Place Massira hot and empty in summer days, but crowded and popular during nights.