A Travellerspoint blog

Departure

Day 8

sunny

Today we left Morocco with memories of a really enjoyable trip. Our flight took off at 12.05pm and we reached Gatwick ahead of schedule at 3.10pm. We took the coack back to B'ham at 5pm and arrived back at home ar around 9.30pm.
For us, we didn't feel like it was just the two of us but felt like Dad was with us the whole time.
We were touched by the kindness and the generosity of the local woman who helped us on a first trip into the Old Town and the friendliness of the locals.
I really didn't think much of Morocco before I went there and was surprised by the beauty of the various landscapes that we saw.

Posted by travelbug_ 10.05.2010 01:52 Archived in Morocco Comments (0)

Our Final Day

Day 7

sunny

We got up later than normal as we had done all of the main sight seeing.

Today we decided to take a taxi to Menara Gardens which is nearby the airport (have to barter the price but we ended up paying 30 dirahms). The area is big with olive groves and a pavillion in the middle with a large 'pool'. the water is really murky but sometimes you could see large fish jumping out. On a good clear day you can see the Atlas Mountains behind the pavillion but today it was foggy so couldn't see it clearly.

P1020280.jpg
P1020283.jpg
P1020285.jpg

After a while we decided to walk back to the New Town and we had lunch at Millenium Cafe. Then we walked and followed the walls of the Old Town back to our hotel where we rested for a while before heading back to Majorelle Gardens to have our final mint tea and pastries :-)

1P1020289.jpg
P1020291.jpg
P1020292.jpg

Posted by travelbug_ 10.05.2010 01:41 Archived in Morocco Comments (0)

Back into Marrakech Old Town

Day 6

sunny

Today we headed back into the square and on to the saddian Tombs. This is the cemetery of the saadian Sultans and their entourage ( take Rue Riad Zitoun from the square and head straight. The acess is through a narrow passage on the corner of the mosque - entrance: 10 dirahms). It was quite interesting to see the different styles of tombs.

P1020185.jpg
P1020191.jpg
P1020200.jpg

Afterwards we went to El Badi Palace which is a ruined complex ofcrumbling walls with stork's nests perched on top of it. It was sooooo hot on that day and so we took it easy and relaxed a bit there before heading back into the square.

P1020205.jpg
P1020206.jpg
P1020209.jpg
P1020210.jpg
P1020219.jpg
P1020225.jpg
P1020230.jpg
P1020238.jpg
P1020245.jpg

We had our last freshly squeesed yummy orange juice from the man where we had our first orange juice from.

P1020249.jpg

On the way back to the hotel we stopped off at Cyber Park which is a garden with olive,mimosa, acacia and fig trees and has free open air internet stations.

P1020254.jpg

Mid-afternoon we took a walk into Gueliz which is the New Town. This is where all the modern cafes, restaurants and posh hotels are. We strolled into Jardin el Harti which is very tranquil and pretty. seems to be where the locals hang out.

P1020264.jpg
P1020268.jpg

Posted by travelbug_ 10.05.2010 01:23 Archived in Morocco Comments (0)

Essaouira

Day 5

sunny

The other day when we were walking in the square we happened to come across a tour company down the alleyway next to Cafe France (have to walk up about 5 mins) which was attached to a Riad. We noticed the trip to Essaouira and figured this would be good to do as the monuments in Marrakech would be closed on a Sunday. The price was about £25 per person excluding guide and lunch which didn't really matter as could wander round ourselves and get our own lunch.
Essaouira is a coastal town about 110 miles west of Marrakech.

We left at 8 am and picked up another couple before making our way to Essaouira. It was a nice drive through the countryside. Stops were made for photos. We could see many Argan trees along the way. The oil is extracted from the 'fruit' to make creams, oil for cooking, oils for cosmetic purposes etc.

P1020102.jpg

A stop was made at a Women's co-operative where they showed us the procedure of extraction. Everything is done by hand by the local women. It was interesting to see and it looks like a lot of hard work!!

P1020100.jpg

After this we carried on to Essaouira and arrived at around midday. It was pretty breezy but hot. You could see a lot of kite surfers. Moroccon people go there in the height of their Summer to escape the intense heat of the cities.
It's a sleepy town with a harbour and medina with many stalls which we weren't anticipating.

P1020111.jpg
P1020113.jpg
P1020128.jpg
P1020129.jpg
P1020130.jpg
P1020134.jpg

We walked through alleyways which led to smaller squares which led to other alleyways. It was like a maze.

P1020145.jpg

We had lunch in a restaurant recommended by the New York Times which we stumbled across by accident. We had a 3 course lunch for 95 dirahms. The fish is fresh as they catch it from the sea. The lunch was delicious.

P1020143.jpg
P1020138.jpg

After lunch we wandered around some more and relaxed by the sea until it was time to go back at 4pm. we arrived back at the hotel at 8pm.

P1020145.jpg
P1020151.jpg
P1020160.jpg
P1020161.jpg

It was a long journey there and back but was very enjoyable. The driver was excellent and he also told us stuff along the way.

Posted by travelbug_ 22.04.2010 09:35 Archived in Morocco Comments (0)

Ourika Valley

Day 4

sunny

Today we joined a tour which takes you to the foothills of the Atlas Mountains. Ourika Valley is about 42 miles South-East of Marrakech. We booked the tour through Moroccan Views. We paid £40 which included pickup and drop off, traditional berber breakfast, camel ride, hike up to a waterfall and 3 course lunch.

Our fist stop was to have breakfast in a traditional Berber house.

P1010999.jpg
P1020011.jpg
P1020013.jpg

We watched a tea making ceremony before eating Moroccon bread with honey/olive oil/butter washed down with delicious mint tea. It was all delicious and the Berber family were very hospitable and friendly.

P1020021.jpg
P1020022.jpg
P1020023.jpg

Afterwards we drove furthur along the valley witnessing beautiful views of mountains, gushing rivers and wooden bridges, one of which we crossed for pics. There were quite a few wooden slats missing which we had to cross and we only had rope to hold onto. It was very wobbly!!

P1020044.jpg
P1020051.jpg
P1020052.jpg
P1020053.jpg

Then we had a 20 min camel ride which was fun. It was very bumpy but highly enjoyable. The camels looked cute :-))

P1020027.jpg
P1020031.jpg
P1020032.jpg
P1020034.jpg

We then drove on furthur into the valley and hiked up to see a waterfall ( 1 3/4 hr round trip) in the area of Setti Fatma. It was very slippery in places, so if you ever do it, do wear proper shoes. The waterfall was nice and the area was very peaceful and scenic.

P1020063.jpg
P1020065.jpg
P1020068.jpg
P1020073.jpg

At 3pm we were rewarded with lunch, we were all hungry after the hike. We had salad. cous cous, chicken and a meat tagine, orange, mint tea and moroccon cookies. All were delicious.

P1020081.jpg
P1020082.jpg
P1020083.jpg
P1020084.jpg
P1020075.jpg
P1020088.jpg

There were 9 of us on the trip and they were a friendly bunch. It was a very enjoyable day and I would fully recommend this tour company. We got back at 5.30pm.

Posted by travelbug_ 22.04.2010 09:09 Archived in Morocco Comments (0)

(Entries 1 - 5 of 8) Page [1] 2 »