New Years 2009 in Marrakech

Trip Start Jul 13, 1988
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Trip End Jul 03, 2010


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Where I stayed
Felicia's Lovely Riad

Flag of Morocco  ,
Wednesday, June 30, 2010

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Check out this lovely photo slide show from our trip.

We arrived early morning in Casablanca and had a car to take us to Marrakech and tired from the flight we pretty much slept the whole way. All the sudden the car stopped and the driver told us to wake up and that we were there. I was shocked because when I opened my eyes I felt like I had been transported back in time hundreds of years. We were inside the Medina (old town) of Marrackech and it was so different from any other place I have seen before. Narrow winding streets, filled with people, bikes and vespas, colorful spices, the old man selling eggs from a cart, the Arabic music playing everywhere, women covered from head to toe and men wearing long cloaks. We stayed at my friend Felicia's home which is a true gem! A beautiful traditional riad with beautiful artwork, tiles, flowers, lanterns and having dinner there in the middle of the riad under the stars was simply amazing! We spent the days wandering around the big market (souk) to shop for slippers, lanterns and spices and the evenings we were exhausted from all the new impressions that we had seen during the day. We explored the Jewish quarter which was quite interesting as we had people fighting about showing us the way. Locals expect a little money when they show you a location and this time a fight broke out between two locals who both wanted to show us the synagogue. 
We also had to go to Gueliz which is the modern part of Marrakech and it was day and night from the Medina. I would definitely recommend staying in the Medina as it gives a much more authentic experience. We also tried a hammam, which is a traditional bath where a woman scrub you down, and wash your hair. It's a very common ritual practice but make sure to spend a little extra for a good hammam as some of the cheaper ones where the locals will ensure you don't come out much cleaner than you came in. We got to experience both a cheap local one and a nice expensive one at Felicia's dads beautiful resort and it was two very different experiences. The local one is something I can laugh about for a long time and I think I took another shower when I got home, but other than a fun memory I wouldn't recommend anyone trying it. Also the square Djemaa el Fna is one of the busiest square in Africa and in the whole world and we were only a short walk away from it and went one evening and it's quite an overwhelming experience. The square bustles with acrobats, story tellers, dancers and food stalls. At night the square becomes one big open air restaurant and the food is quite good and also cheap. 
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