Dakhla (Dajla), or ad-Dakhla is a city in the Western Sahara with about 55,618 inhabitants. It is about 550 km south of El Aaiún on a narrow peninsula of the Atlantic Coast. It is the capital of the Moroccan administrative region Oued Ed-Dahab-Lagouira. Dakhla was founded as Villa Cisneros in 1502 by Spanish settlers during the expansion of their Empire.
During the colonial period, the Spanish authorities made Dakhla the capital of the province of Río de Oro, one of the two regions of what was known as Spanish Sahara. They built a military fortress and a modern Catholic church, both of which remain points of interest for visitors to the city. A prison camp also existed here during the Spanish Civil War, at which writers such as Pedro García Cabrera were imprisoned.