Blogs from Marrakech, Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz, Morocco, Africa

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Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Marrakech November 17th 2015

After two years of planning we have finally made it to our first destination. The flight took a bit longer than expected as we couldn't travel on a dented plane and had to wait for a replacement. On arrival to Marrakech airport we met with our driver who totally put us off hiring a car this week. The roads are total chaos and lanes don't seem to have any significance here. Were staying at the atlas targa aqua club. Unfortunately the water park is just for kids :-( Were chilling by the pool today enjoying the sunshine (26*c) and all inclusive hospitality. I hope hurricane barney isn't causing too much trouble back home. I think we may be taking a trip into the old town of marrakech tomorrow. ... read more
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Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Marrakech October 9th 2015

Zas sa mi moc nedalo spat. Zatial je dost teplo tak deky resp plachty ani na zakrytie nepouzivam. Rano ma cakalo prekvapenie, v posteli boli uplny iny ludia ako ti co tam sli vecer spat. A volaky dement mi vytiahol nabijacku z jedinej zastrcky na izbe a supol si tam svoju. Som zvedavy teda kolko mi dnes vydrzi baterka. Z postele sa vykopovam o 7/30 a smer na prizemie na ranajky. Tu uz bola stara zena co si mysli,ze este dnes su roky woodstocku. Nevim ci som to spominal ale je to o hodinu menej ako u nas. Na ranajky kava s mliekom, obe tekutinu v zvlast kanvicach. Mlieko mi neslo nacapovat, som to volako zle mackal, tak recepcny mi s tym musel nakoniec pomoct. Dalej mi recepcny doniesol dzem, maslo, placku, chleba a neaky zavitok. ... read more

Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Marrakech October 8th 2015

Po super spanku pobalenie a behnutie na ranajky co boli v cene. Bageta, maslo, dzem, dzus, sladke pecivo a neaka placka + kava alebo caj. Nakoniec sme boli na izbe traja. Nemec, ktory hrozne rychlo rozpraval s otrasnym nemeckym prizvukom, tak som mu skoro nic nerozumel ale ani nic zaujimave nehovoril a potom este jeden chalan ale s nim som ani nebol. Inak zatial som ani moc turistov nepostretal. Na zel.stanicu casa voyagers sa da dostat aj elektrickou, ktora ide od brany mediny na juhu ale ja som sa rozhodol ist pesi nech si este trochu obzriem casu. No ale cestou nic zaujimave, budovy, niekde spina, kopa ludi a aut. Na mini stanici kupujem bezproblemov listok a smer blizky parcik. Pred stanicou kopa taxi ale ziadny otravovia. Toto som fakt prekvapeny, cakal som viac otravnych ludi. ... read more


Upon arriving in Marrakesh it was immediately evident we were in a larger, more modern city. On the ride from the train station to our riad we passed night clubs, fancy restaurants, and billboards advertising alcohol and cigarettes. It felt like we had pressed fast forward on the remote and arrived in the modern world. The Medina felt distinctly different as well. The streets were wide enough that cars and motorcycles could drive on them, which lead to more traffic and congestion. There were also larger monuments and distinguishable landmarks within, which in theory, should have made it easier to navigate (this didn’t actually end up being the case). Our riad, located in the southwest corner of the Medina was run by a sweet, young French woman. It was adorably decorated with a mixture of Moroccan ... read more
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Days have been a bit more relaxed, visited a number of museums, the highlight was the Koranic school and library building. It is very ornate with more lovely delicate stonework and tiles. Lots or rooms upstairs where the once 900 students were accommodated. Enjoyed sitting in squares, drinking mint tea and watching the world go by. Outside of the city walls we walked to the Jardin Majorellle that was designed in an art deco style in the 1920s. Yves San Laurent and Pierre Berge bought and restored it in the 1980s and their trust keeps it going. Although quite small it is beautifully laid out with colour and order carefully maintained. The paths are shiny red and there are strategically arranged pots in only one shade of blue, yellow or orange. The house/ art studio is ... read more
Souq
Jardin Majorelle


Journey here is was very long, leaving Doah at 3 am and arriving here equivalent of 10pm. But all the plans fell into place, train straight from the airport in Casablanca. Taxi into the Medina area and arriving at our riad hidden in a warren of narrow cobbled streets through a souq. First impression of the ‘biggest square’ in north Africa was not overwhelmingly good. Reminded us of Krakow but much grubbier. Lots and lots of eating places around the square and in the middle of the square. How so many carts selling orange juice for 4 DH can possibly make a living or so many barbeque stalls in the evening is hard to tell. Lots of tourists. Clearly Ramadan is not the issue here as it is in Doha. We had our first meal just ... read more
Souq
Badia Palace
Mosque


In the crazy chaos of colour and culture that is Morocco, it hard not to find inspiration in every moment of the day. The adventures of my travels that have led me here have been a combination of everything from stirring to strenuous and from pandemonium to peaceful. The last time I updated this blog I had just started my adventures in Ireland . Fortunately, since I am not very good at maintaining a blog on my own, my amazing travel buddy Abby and I started a combined one, which can be read here . Documenting the 8 months traveling, living, and working together in writing was certainly one of our brighter ideas along the way. We have now said goodbye to each other and the entire time feels like a crazy dream in an alternate ... read more
American Village adventures in France
Wonderful memories created around Europe
Moroccan marketplace


Marrakech is a city of wrenching contrasts. Broad avenues and boulevards lie almost next areas of narrow alleys and souks. A square filled with buskers and charlatans and snake charmers and monkey grinders open onto an avenue to takes you within a couple of minute to an avenue with chic shops like Fendi, Gucci, and Louis Vuitton. A city of modern large buildings and American-looking suburbs also has a 14th century madrassa. The streets are broader by far than those in Casablanca, and uncharacteristically have well marked lanes, and yet traffic seemed to be worse here than in the larger city. But the souk here in the medina is much better organized than in Fes or Meknes, with shops selling similar goods tending to be grouped near to one another. The alleyways are a little wider, ... read more
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Our pleasant stay in the riad near Ait Ben Haddou gave us the chance to expunge several layers of sand and get back to some semblance of cleanliness. We started off this morning much more easily than the day before. Our first stop was the nearby Ait ben Haddou. This 400 year old ksar climbs up a steep hillside, and is built with a mud bricks, similar to adobe, but with a mud stucco rather than whitewash. It requires frequent repairs after any rain. The old ksar was located on the caravan route be tween Sudan and Marrakech. Although 4 families still live there, it is mostly abandoned. It is maintained as UNESCO World Heritage site, but you can see crumbling, particularly in buildings that no longer have any cultural significance to current local residents, such ... read more
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