Posts Tagged ‘Morocco’
February 23rd, 2012
Mark and I got married! Although Mark and I need pots and pans, dishes and duvets, we decided not to register for all that stuff. It’s just stuff – where’s the fun in that? Instead we asked for contributions towards our Moroccan honeymoon. And that’s just what we got! This post is to take us back to our good ol’ blogging/wandering days and to say thank you to everyone who supported our Moroccan honeymoon. It was unforgettable.
Morocco Take II did not disappoint. We weren’t sure how it would hold up. Our memories held up Morocco as a magical place, filled with wonder and adventure. Would it still be the same after all the other wondrous places we visited post-Morocco? Would Marrakech still be our number one destination? Well I’m here to tell you it did not disappoint. It was as good as we remembered it. It made for our idea of a perfect honeymoon. Here, let me tell you about it:
October 21st, 2009
Now that I’ve written about the chaos, let me write about the calm. The other side of Marrakesh is a hidden, quiet side, tucked away and protected by the thick walls of the city’s buildings. What a difference is discovered there! Without these balancing spaces and moments, Marrakesh would simply overwhelm and exhaust. But with them, the city transforms and takes on the character that we found so seductive.
October 18th, 2009
After spending time in Chefchaouen and Rabat, we felt ready for Marrakesh. This turned out to be both true and false. On arrival at the train station, we successfully by-passed the tourist-poaching expensive taxis and haggled a good price from a smaller one. We managed to direct our taxi to the neighbourhood of our riad, and after disembarking, managed to find the riad without too much trouble. Our time in Morocco up until then had prepared us for hassling shop-keepers, foreign languages, and culinary adventures. Our culture shock had receded. We were going to be fine.
October 16th, 2009
Warning: I gush in this post, which may inspire wanderlust in some…
My 29th birthday will never be forgotten and goes down in my books as one of the most memorable days ever. If I live to be 99 it will be hard to top this.
Marrakesh was magic.
It’s a city of ridiculous contrasts, elevating each experience above and beyond expectation. It’s an oasis in the middle of a desert with intense colours, smells, flavours, people, animals, frenzy and tranquility all rolled into one. I’ve never felt dirtier and I’ve never felt cleaner. You could have the best time of your life here or the worst. It’s a place where if you weren’t already in love, you would fall in love. It’s an unforgettable place. Having Mark to share this with me was priceless.
We’ve posted our photos from Chefchaouen on the photos page, and they are some of our favourites so far. Enjoy!
We left Chefchaouen on an early morning bus on Sunday, destination Rabat. Rabat is the Moroccan capital, and is on the Atlantic coast. The bus ride was five long hours, and the lack of air conditioning or openable windows, coupled with the puking baby sitting behind us, made it a stifling, smelly and sticky ride. We arrived in Rabat around lunchtime, and managed to navigate a ‘petit taxi’ (little blue taxis, not to be confused with the more expensive white Mercedes ‘grand taxis’) to a hotel near the medina. We checked in to our room, and then ventured out to explore the city.
Today is our third full day in Chefchaouen, Morocco. What an experience! We’re starting to feel more comfortable and confident walking through town, but I must say that our first morning here brought with it the biggest feeling of “wow, we’re far from home” that I’ve felt so far. Meg and I went to breakfast on that first morning at a restaurant in the main square of the old city, and we both spent most of the meal in silence, looking around us and feeling more than a little lost. So many things felt different to us — while most people speak at least some English or French, the predominant language is Arabic. Being surrounded by a language so different than any we’re used to made us feel quite isolated. Add to that new food, new surroundings, and new interactions with people who sometimes offer help, sometimes offer goods for sale, sometimes ask for money, and sometimes just offer friendly greetings. I suppose confusion was the most predominant emotion, and I found myself wondering at first how we’d ended up here.
We made it! We woke up this morning to sun shining on white and blue buildings in Chefchaouen, Morocco. I don’t think it’s quite set in yet. Our journey yesterday was exhausting and full of obstacles, and we didn’t arrive at our hostel until well after dark. It was one of the best sleeps I’ve had in a while, which is good, because I think we’ll need our wits about us here. This is the story of our travels from Granada to Chefchouen.