MOROCCO IN 10 DAYS – FROM NORTH TO SOUTH

I’m going to be honest with you, Morocco was not my first choice of trip but Jorge insisted so much that I ended up giving up to his “emotional blackmail”… (sometimes he can be really convincing) And I have to tell you… I LOVED MOROCCO. I just loved visiting Morocco. Morocco is that destination that we want to return to again one day later, without a doubt!

Jardin Majorelle in Marrakech

Before we travel, we always do our itinerary (basically as everyone does or should do). When we were doing our research we realized that public transport … um … how to say? There were not many options, and we realized that it was a bit more expensive and apart we were going to take a lot of time from city to city. The itinerary that we will describe in this post, includes the trips by car.
(Just to have an idea, the rental was around € 600.00 for 5 days, it includes the rate of leaving the car in a different city, local taxes and the cost of the option to have the 2nd driver)

FEZ

We landed in Fez in the morning (low cost flights from Barcelona), when we left the airport we met several taxi drivers. Just an advice, do not accept the first price at once, try to bargain and try to get 2 more people to share the taxi. Unfortunately we accepted the first taxi driver and along the way a couple ask us if we can share a taxi because they went to the same place as us and the taxi driver did not accept … Well just a personal advice 😉

In Fez we stayed at Riad La Source Bleue. SUPER recommendable. The staff is super friendly. As soon as we arrived we were welcomed with an amazing and delicious green tea with mint..

Lobby and Restaurant of Riad La Source Bleue

Famous Tea of Mint

When we got there, we asked for a map to get to know the Medina of Fez. Can you imagine that the Medina consists of 9500 streets and 15km of Wall? Incredible right? We were soon advised that the odds of getting lost there were quite high, and because of that we hired a local guide, the price varies between 40-60 €.

Points of interest:
Chouara Tannery – is one of the 3 tanneries of Fez and the largest one. It is located in a neighborhood of the oldest medina in the city, near the Saffarin Madrasa along the river. The tannery industry, nowadays, is considered one of the main tourist attractions of this city. Tanneries are made of round stone vases filled with dyes and white liquids to soften the skins. Tip: prepare for the smell, it is super super intense … but do not worry the entrance give a bit of mint, for the visit be more enjoyable.

Tannery Industry


Bab Bou Jeloud – is an ornate city gate and the main western entrance to Fes el Bali

Al-Attarine Madrasa – this is a historical monument, takes its name from the Souk al-Attarine, the spice and perfume market. 

Sahrij Medersa – we were only able to find this historical site with the help of our guide.
Ornaments of Al-Attarine Madrasa

Markets in the Medina – Just enjoy. Enjoy every color, textile, smell of these markets, believe us you will end up finding fantastic things in every corner.

After 2 days in Fez, we drive to the capital of Morocco ..

RABAT

In Rabat we stayed in the Sale Medina at Riad The Repose, they say that this medina is unsafe, but we didn’t feel any  insecurity on the streets.
Points of interest:
Hassan Tower – is the minaret of an incomplete mosque in Rabat
Mausoleum of Mohammed V – is a mausoleum located on the opposite side of the Hassan Tower, on the Yacoub al-Mansour esplanade in Rabat, Morocco. It contains the tombs of the Moroccan king and his two sons.
Mausoleum of Mohammed V
The Kasbah of the Udayas- is a Kasbah in Rabat, Morocco. It is located at the mouth of the Bou Regreg river opposite Salé. In this place, it seems that we have entered a completely different city. It’s a place very much like Chefchaouen, all the streets are blue and white.
The streets of The Kasbah of the Udayas
We had an unexpected event that made this visit a bit “uncomfortable”, so we advised to you to be careful of the people who are at the front door offering his availability to show this location. So our story was, we entered the Kasbah and a gentleman came to us to ask if it was the first time we were there, we said yes and he said he showed the place because as he lived there he knew that place like nobody else, at first we loved his availability but then we started to find a little bit strange. The visit went very well, and in the end, we appreciate his availability. He started to say that we had to pay for the service and showed his identification as a local guide, and then we said that at no time did he say that he was a local guide and that we had to pay. Conclusion, if you visit this place and if a person offers their availability to show the local ask first if they are local guides and how much is the service, so there are no surprises at the end 😉
We spent 2 days in Rabat, next stop Casablanca.

CASABLANCA

For those who have seen the classic movie “Casablanca”, you create great perspectives in this city.
It is a huge city, more urbanized than the last cities we visited in Morocco. We stayed out of the city center, so to move around we used the car.
Casablanca, has large avenues full of palm trees and the sea right next to it.
Morocco, being an Arab country with many European customs, for every women we don’t recommend using a bikini on the beach. To avoid any conflict, we skip that part.
Points to remember:
Hassan II Mosque – The construction of the mosque was decided by King Hassan II, according to him, Casablanca as the capital of economic should possess a majestic emblem like this mosque. It is said that at night when its light is illuminated it reaches the capital of this wonderful country. Believe us this mosque is magnificent, unfortunately the entry is only allowed to Muslims.
Medinas – enjoy and enter the Medinas, here you see and live all the customs of this country.

Visiting time: 1 day.
After Casablanca our next destination was the famous city of Marrakesh, but on the way we decided to stop at El-Yadida.

EL-YADIDA

As you may know, we are a couple of Portuguese. And as we are so proud of our history we passed through this city. Because? El-Yadida was taken in 1502 by the Portuguese until 1769. During this period, they left historical monuments in this city, one of them is the Portuguese cistern.
Cisterna Portuguesa – was built during the Portuguese period, initially to be a weapons room, and later to be a reservoir of drinking water, to withstand the long periods of drought. The entrance is only € 2. It’s a place, without words. So peaceful.
We took the opportunity to have lunch in El-Yadida, and then we drive to Marrakesh.

MARRAKESH

On the first night we stayed, Riad Le Bel Oranger, super friendly staff and they helped us organize the tour through the desert.
As we arrived in Marrakesh on the first day, we had dinner in the medina.

The next day we woke up early to start the tour. The desert tour includes:
– Transport
– Camel ride to the camp
– Dinner
– Night at the camp
– Breakfast
– Camel ride back to the locality
What is not included: lunches or extra expenses.
Price per person € 60.00 approx.
(We made this reservation through the Riad, if you look online you will find it more expensive, and in the Jemaa el-Fnaa square cheaper.)

Jorge looks very awesome. It really looks like Ali-Baba.

We did the tour of 2 days, 1 night. The trip is long, VERY LONG, but they make stops in several locations, one of them is Ouarzazate, this is a famous place that serve as the scenario for several films and series known as The Gladiator or Game of Thrones, beyond this interesting point , is a unique place.

We take a tour and see the handcrafted articles, and the different jobs there.

We had the opportunity to see one of the most beautiful sunrise we have ever seen.

And of course, the breakfast was amazing. Don’t expect an incredible continental breakfast but was unique!


Once we arrived from the tour we stayed at Riad des Etoiles, and then we spent 2 nights there.

Points of interest in Marrakesh:

Jemaa el-Fnaa- the first impression we had was of chaos, but no doubt, day or night, this square doesn’t stop. In the morning, enjoy the delicious orange juice and at night, do not miss the night market, street restaurants with local food, storytellers, music and belly dances. This square has it all.

Koutoubia Mosque – is one of the mosques in Marrakesh but its entrance is only allowed to Muslims.

Koutoubia Mosque

Majorelle Garden – the first moment you enter this garden you seem to enter a tropical country, full of colors, delicious smells.

Jardin Majorelle

Morocco was a journey of cultural, gastronomic and interpersonal encounters that will be marked. It is a country with so many cultural splendor that 10 days seemed like 2 days.
It is a country that in general can be in the budget of a backpacker, the best season is between March-May, not only for the weather but for the mass of tourists you can find in the summer.
This journey took place on April 2016. 

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