Blogs from Essaouira, Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz, Morocco, Africa - page 5


Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Essaouira September 28th 2011

The Atlantic Coast – Essaouira This was the most relaxed of all Moroccan towns. Essaouira is a magical place of whitewashed streets, wide sandy beaches and a chaotic fishing port, famous for its craftsmen with local thuya wood. The town attracts artists and photographers, as well as windsurfers who consider Essaouira’s surf the best in Africa. Souirah means “beautifully drawn”, and the town has a definite European feel, designed by a French slave of Sultan Sidi Mohammed in 1760. The fishing port is the focus of the town. Tourism rivals sardines as the major industry. We had to have lunch in the port where you go to a stall and choose your lunch. The fish stall vendors were so loud and boisterous waving and coaxing you in every language possible to eat at their stall. Once ... read more
The narrow streets of Essouaira
Skala ramparts
Sunset and a mojito

Photos taken in 2010 and 2008, in various locations in Morocco. Follow the slide show and travel from The Riff to the desert doors in the Western Sahara. Photographs on the official Michel Piccaya website: read more

Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Essaouira April 28th 2011

As the Grand Taxi drops us back in Marrakech from our hiking trip in the High Atlas we agree that our first priority should be to buy bus tickets for the next leg of our journey - a couple of days in the coastal city of Essaouira. Two years ago when we were here, a transport strike thwarted our plans to travel to the Atlantic Coast, so this time we were sure not to miss out. Supratours buses operate quite a few services a day between Marrakech and Essaouira so we had assumed we had a pretty good chance of choosing when we wanted to leave. At the counter we find out that first two buses of the day are fully booked; there are only five seats left on the 2:30pm bus; and for reasons beyond ... read more
Medina walls and seagulls
The narrow streets of the medina
Doorway, Essaouira

The seaside town of Essaouira is hippy central man. So if you're hoping to peace out away from the hustle and bustle of the Medinas in the big smoke, why not mosey on down to this gorgeous little place to chillax, and get some much needed rest and recreation. The pearl of the kingdom is waiting to welcome you, and chances are the only hassle you may face is some rasta brother asking if you wanna get high man! Travel is all about light and shade, where intense experiences are juxtaposed against relaxing ones. They all get thrown into the mix here in Morocco, to make for a memorable travel destination. So yo, dear reader, peace and love as you get back in the loop. We left off in marvelous Fez, with the Medina pouring out ... read more
Centre square, Marrakech
Essaouira beach
Looking out to sea

Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Essaouira March 13th 2011

Friday 11th March: switched on the TV this morning to hear about the big earthquake in Japan and look at some amazing pictures of the tsunami that followed the quake. Back in Essaouira: it had rained overnight but the weather was clear in the morning so we took advantage of what may have been a temporary situation and headed down the beach to the ruin of the Portuguese fort in the sand. A lovely walk in bright sunshine and another close-up look at the ruined fort, then a sit down on the nearby sand dunes to absorb the view and the sunshine. Then back to the hotel as we wanted a buy a particularly nice bottle of wine from the local off-licence/liquor store and I wanted to transmit the last blog having had some difficulty the ... read more
Heading for safety
Jenks back in Bahrein.....almost
Medina (old town) ramparts from Harbour Fortress

Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Essaouira March 11th 2011

Beginning with a brief recap of the previous night. We were marooned in the hotel. Not by civil disturbance, war, pestilence or anything dramatic but by rain. Just as we were leaving the hotel to head into the medina for dinner it started raining. We hung around for 15 minutes waiting for a taxi but, in common with the rest of the world, when it rains the taxis disappear. As the rain was showing no sign of letting up and maybe getting heavier we decided that room service was the prudent option. Tuesday 8th March: fortunately a bright sunny day so we were up early to go on the eco-walk through an argan forest that we'd booked on Sunday. At 9am we were collected from the front entrance of the hotel by a local named Othman ... read more
Saint's tomb
Goat up a tree
Jenks and tree climbing goat

Saturday 5th March: we checked out of the Riad Balthazar at 11.30am, walked to the nearby taxi stand and asked a taxi driver waiting there for his fare to the bus terminal. His first quote was 100 Dirhams, and I offered Dhs40; as instructed by our hotel manageress. The second quote was Dhs60 and I again offered Dhs40. The third quote was Dhs50 and I again offered Dhs40; with Jane now starting to move away to look for another cab. Noticing this the cab driver agreed to Dhs40, and seemed quite happy to accept that amount without further haggling when we arrived at the bus station. Such is life in Marrakech. We had no trouble confirming our reservation with the bus company but had to order some food from the adjoining cafe in order to get ... read more
Look, that's our room
Essaouira, entrance to the Medina
Essaouira Ramparts 1

Vorig jaar was een weekje Marokko zo goed bevallen, waarom dit jaar dus niet nog een keer! Met Ryan air weer goedkoop richting Marrakech........Leuke mooie drukke stad, vooral de Medina is super. Luxe hotelletje geboekt via internet (een keer wat anders) en lekker2 dagen genoten van deze levendige stad. 20 februari bijna in een opstand/ demonstraties terecht gekomen, maar toen een aantal jongeren begon te rennen, konden wij gelukkig een andere kant op! Daarna een restaurantje in en toen we 's avonds weer buiten kwamen was het hele plein leeg, alleen nog wat ME busjes en een spoor van wat vernielingen wat straten verderop. Wij hebben hier verder weinig van mee gekregen en na 2 dagen Marrakech lekker richting de kust. Essaouira, een leuke vissersstad met mooie straatjes, een leuk strand.....maar met veel te harde wind. ... read more
smalle straatjes van de Medina
Binnen tuin van oud paleis

Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Essaouira February 25th 2011

Only about 160km for Enis to drive today. At least he was earning his keep one way. I was very happy about that. Not so happy about all the money I loaned him to buy carpets for his shop in Selcuk, Turkey. I'd begun to realize just how difficultu it would be to get it back. But I digress. We had breakfast at Yacout in Agadir. Yep, bread again. And some kind of strange soup that was not good. It was like watery grits. If you're from the South, you know what grits are. Yacout is listed as 'the' breakfast spot in the Lonely Planet. Sorry LP. You are one of my dearest friends but I think you got this one wrong. We were served bread and more bread with little jam and butter, strange soup, ... read more
En Route to Essaouira
Cooperative Amal
Process of Extracting Argan Oil

Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Essaouira December 5th 2010

In the morning we headed into Essaouira Martin found a tortoise while gathering firewood, which he brought back for everyone to have a look at. He put it down outside his tent and went to get the camera... and then got distracted for a few minutes... absent a total of maybe 3-4minutes maximum – but on his return the little blighter had vanished! I mean seriously... a tortoise the size of a rugby ball managed to vanish with an average speed of .5km per week... amazing. The drive from our bush camp to town was only a couple of minutes and afforded glorious ocean views the whole way – it’s easy to see why Cat Stevens (sorry.. Yusuf Islam) chooses to live in this lovely spot. We were staying about a 15 minute walk along the ... read more
Moroccan sunset
Great coastal drive Southern Morocco
Camping in the desert, southern Morocco

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