Blogs from Marrakech, Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz, Morocco, Africa - page 6


Geo: 31.6334, -7.9996We enjoyed our final breakfast in Marrakech by vowing to a) eat no more bread. Ever. And b) detox for a year to allow our insulin levels to return to somewhere in the normal range. Every breakfast we have had has been laden with sugar - sweet bread, jam, croissants, pains au chocoats, pancakes, cake, sweet orange juice and fruit yoghurt - a combination of any of these have been the mainstay of our breakfasts, while sugary mint tea has been our welcome drink in every hotel and attraction we've visited. All incredibly delicious but our digestive systems now need a good dose of protein and some simple sugar-free food!We had another mini celebration as we crammed our bags for the final time, managing to cleverly pack our belongings into contortions that resembled Russian ... read more

Geo: 31.6334, -7.9996Waking feeling a little delicate to say the least, we eased ourselves cautiously out of bed and attempted to squeeze all of our purchases into our backpacks. I've achieved some things in my time that might allow me to be proud of them. However, I don't think I've been as vocal about any of my achievements as I was when I managed to zip up my backpack containing 2 extra long woven scarves, a huge ceramic serving plate, a pill box and two ceramic bowls, plus all of the luggage I came with. I whooped and cheered like someone who had reached the a South Pole unaided, on a unicycle. By this point, we were seriously considering buying a suitcase to use as carry on baggage, but we had managed to squeeze everything into ... read more

FRIDAY 3RD APRIL 2015 (AM) - Geoff and Tom text to say they have cleared the Atlas Mountains! Traffic mad in Marrakech and going up and over the mountains was hair-raising but exhilarating at the same time. Really missing the other two teams though. Not sure exactly where they are at the mo, but the last report from Geoff and Tom earlier this morning said that they were just north of Rabat. Really hoping they can catch up soon and drive into Mhamid together. Come on guys! You can all do this! You are so nearly there! So proud of every one of you! xxxxxx - one each! Pictures posted by Sally this morning showing Chris and Ed lending a helping hand. Sally writes: "This is how they fix cars in Morocco!!!" Distance on Google maps ... read more
helping hand1
helping hand2
helping hand3

Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Marrakech March 18th 2015

We drove over the High Atlas Mountains today to Marrakech. More later. This is a very busy place. We're in a 3 star riad (inn). Left the bus. Now traveling by horse and buggy. (Like true tourists) ... read more
View of the rolling hills
Our road
Road cinstruction

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

Some additional photos from the cooking lesson in Marrakech... read more
Vegetable tagine ready for the stovetop
About to chow down.  It was delicious!
The finished vegetable tagine

Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Marrakech February 15th 2015

Like most heavily touristed cities in the world, Marrakesh, is relatively safe. The police keep a close eye on any goings-on that might have a visitor to their country return home with a report damaging the inflow of foreign money. Bad for the economy. Morocco is no different in this regard. Petty crime (theft, short changing money exchange, purse snatching, etc.) does happen but it’s rare to even hear of violent crime here. However there were several occasions where I felt my wellbeing was in serious danger. In each instance it was due to the swaggering egos of Moroccan youth and unregulated traffic of the souk alleyways. In the souk the tiny closet sized retail stalls spill out into the ancient alleyways that they line. It is an easy way to expand their space and be ... read more

Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Marrakech February 11th 2015

One of the experiences I was looking forward to in Morocco was a Hammam. I believed it to be similar to a Turkish bath. The truth I found out is: yes and no. Given I have been lucky enough to have experienced a Turkish bath in Istanbul and now a Moroccan Hammam in Marrakesh I do have some basis to make the comparison. In short, going for a Turkish bath is paying to get beat-up by a very large hairy Turkish man who speaks no English and who seems to take a delight in inflicting pain. Whereas a Hammam is paying to be flayed by a large hairy Moroccan woman who who speaks a little English and who seems to take a delight in inflicting pain. Subtle but important differences. In a Turkish bath the "loosening" ... read more

Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Marrakech February 10th 2015

After spending two nights in Fez we are off to Marrakesh! The country side in Morocco was amazing, I guess I never expected it to be so fertile and green, with rich dark soil. Farms of fruit and vegetables, and herds of sheep and goats spot the fields as we drive along. There a vast difference in living, from beautiful mansions to cardboard and tin shacks, so as we drive along I observe that all of coffee bars and restaurants are all filled with men. Uuum , sitting in the fields having a smoke or a coffee are all men, so is there way of life a choice, arrogance. Uuummm. But out working in the fields or the streets are women with babies tied to there back, sweeping, cleaning , washing , raking the field, planting ... read more
way of life
Goats and sheep spot the country
Oh and did I mention there is snow! in Africa

Africa » Morocco » Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz » Marrakech February 9th 2015

My lodging here in Marrakesh is the Riad Eden. A Riad is a merchants home usually distinguished by a centre open courtyard with a garden. They are bigger than a normal home as merchants traditionally often used their homes to store goods that they sold as well. Many since the 1980's have been purchased (mainly by Europeans) and restored to be used as B&B's. The Riad Eden is small (5 rooms) and so Arabian nights. All red velvet, arched doorways and Berber rugs, I love it. It is owned and run by Jerome and his Moroccan wife. Up until 2 years ago Jerome ran an aircraft manufacturing plant in France. He related that this career change is the best thing he has ever done. Little stress and a relaxed lifestyle. He looks happy. The taxi could ... read more

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

The name Marrakech originates from the Berber and means "Land of God". Which is all nice and good but after three flights and many hours cooling my heels in airports I wasn't exactly in a religious mood when I finally arrived in Marrakech. My mood as I headed out of the airport might have also been primed by reading about how aggressive the taxi cab drivers of Marrakesh can be. Rip off artists was how one guidebook labeled them. I headed out the door into the sea of cabbies prepared not to be taken. I would hold my own. The most recent guidebook had suggested that 50-70 dirhams should be the proper fare for a cab into the city but that cabbies would charge whatever they could get (Now let me be frank 50 -70 dirhams ... read more

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