Category Archives: Morocco

The best way to finish a season of being on the road as a tour leader, is to make a mini holiday for yourself. After my week at a surf camp, I came to Marrakesh to meet up with my colleagues for a couple of days of catching up. We only had a small group present, but we still had a lot of fun. We kicked off our party with dinner at a French restaurant, followed by some drinks at a rooftop bar. It was a great way to get to know each other a bit, because some of the team I had not had the chance to meet on the road. For this trip they’d decided we would do the work on the bus while driving to our destinations for the day. So we were playing games and discussing improvements for next year, while staring out the window to…

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Exactly one year ago I was in Morocco. I travelled through the North, was amazed, intrigued, annoyed and surprised by the life there, and came back with the idea I should one day head back to explore the South. I had no idea it would be this soon. I usually say that about places; ‘I really have to come back here’. But although so many places have blown me away, there aren’t too many I’ve revisited, because there is always a new country to explore. And yet, exactly one year later, I’m on Moroccan soil again. It’s very different than I thought it would be though. After another busy summer season, all the tour leaders got the chance to celebrate the end of the season in Marrakesh. For three days we’ll be taken care of and get to hear how all the other people are doing. It’s a fantastic chance,…

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The first thing I did in Chefchaouen was to get out. I’d walked around a bit on the day I arrived, but the first full day I had, my friend took me to the nearby waterfalls. Well, that was the plan anyway… It was Friday and we thought it would be better to go before the busy weekend. But of course that also meant that there would be less people to share a taxi with. When we arrived at the shared taxi spot, we were the first ones. Soon a couple came, so we needed only two more people. A family of three showed up, but that was too much. So the seven of us were all waiting. After an hour and a half or so, the couple decided to go elsewhere and try again later. So together with the family we agreed we’d all pay a bit more and…

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I just spent two weeks in Morocco and I had a great time. I loved the old medinas, the food, the desert landscape, the mountains and the sea. I will definitely come back one day to see the south part of the country. But throughout my stay in Morocco, one thing was bothering me: the constant attention. It wasn’t a good kind of attention. On my drive from the airport into Fes I immediately noticed that most of the people on the streets were men. Most of the salesmen were men. Most of the people sitting in cafés were men. There were women around, but most of the people I interacted with were men. I was travelling on my own and slowly I felt like I was becoming a bitch, an evil person who couldn’t even give a person the benefit of the doubt anymore. Whenever a man would approach…

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I was a bit hesitant when I started walking to Paradise beach. I was told there was no road, but you just follow the coast line and I would get beautiful scenery along the way. I came at the end of a road near the water and climbed over some steps. A few kids were fishing and a man came to the water with some little kids. I followed a small dirt road, which led to a whole lot more dirt. I felt like I was walking on a path paved with garbage. It was disgusting. I decided to walk a little further from the water where I saw a road. I still passed heaps of garbage for a while. Fishermen were standing on the rocks and occasionally somebody walked towards me, not paying much attention to me. The path got smaller and on my left I only saw a…

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Meknes is one of the places a lot of people skip during their time in Morocco. I had put it on my itinerary and part of me was disappointed when I met a few travellers who said I might as well skip it. Over the years though, I’ve found out I am often interested in places others skip. I was curious about this place. It is one of the four imperial cities of Morocco. There must be something special here right? The downside of Meknes was that I couldn’t find a hostel or shared room. Therefore I decided to splurge a little and book myself a room, although tiny, in a beautiful Riad. I was welcomed warmly with some tea and a tour of the house. This place was built by the royal family to accommodate family and other important visitors that weren’t staying in the palace. The house was…

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Did you know the Romans lived in Morocco? Well, I didn’t. At least I never really thought about it. When I think about the Romans, I think of ancient Rome and ancient Greece. I forget that the Romans spread out in all directions. So they also spread out to Africa. Near Meknes is the ancient site of Volubilis. It’s a perfect (half) day trip combined with Moulay Idriss. When I arrived at my Riad, I told the owner I was interested in visiting the site and when I came home later that night, he told me he had found three others and a taxi would be waiting at 9.30AM the next morning. I joined 3 young Italians in a private taxi. It was perhaps a bit more expensive than taking the grand taxis, but this was a whole lot easier and certainly more comfortable. We drove towards the mountains of…

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What do you do when you’re in a small beach town without any real tourist sights? It’s the perfect chance to dig into a bit of Moroccan culture. I’d heard about hammam. I’d read about hammam. And yet I was hesitant to go. Why would I go to a public bath house? I’m not a person who enjoys getting her hair washed at the hairdresser or getting a massage. But this was one Moroccan thing I just had to do. I had some vague directions to the town hammam. I didn’t want to go to some fancy hotel, which would be more like a spa. If I was going to do hammam, I was going to go local. I walked around for a bit, sure that I was in the right street, but didn’t see anything that resembled a hammam. Then again, what differentiates a hammam from any other building?…

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I’m in Tanger and after a few days with my Moroccan friend, I am on my own again. My welcome to Tanger wasn’t great. Within the first 5 minutes of me walking through the Medina, a man chose to walk as close past me as he could so he could reach for my ass. So I immediately put my guard up. Today I wanted to take a day trip to Cap Spartel and it seemed like nobody wanted to join. When I went down the stairs, two French guys were asking for directions there, so we teamed up.     We went to the shared taxi point, only to find a street with no taxis. We asked a local and together we walked up and down the streets, him asking other locals. Eventually we found it and the three of us hopped into a taxi. We drove through a fancy…

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I feel like I’m Yasmin from Aladdin. A slightly fatter, less exotic and more anxious Yasmin, but a Yasmin nonetheless. I realise 1001 nights isn’t exactly in Morocco, but sitting in my hostel, which is tiled with beautiful mosaics, I feel like it’s pretty close. I’m in Morocco! I still cannot fully grasp it. I’m in Africa!     My start was a bit rocky, as it usually is. I fully planned on taking the bus to Chefchaouen today, to see my friend. So I take an expensive grand taxi from the airport to the bus station. One which could definitely not be shared with other people, according to guy organizing it for me. I get the car that’s falling apart, which once upon a time had seatbelts and could do with some better seating, but they hold the door open for me. Then we race through Fes. My heart…

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