Tetouan, Chefchouan and Martil
Trip Start Jun 27, 2006
6Trip End Aug 03, 2006
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
Where I stayed
This weekend we left on Friday after having lunch with Salima and her 6 sisters! They have a beautiful house in Saleh, right across the river from Rabat. The interior design of the house is beautiful and reminds me of a those palaces you read about in Arabian Nights. Apparently their father was an architect and designed their house.
Anyhow, lunch consisted of a huge communal plate of Couscous topped with chicken and a various vegetables. They had made a smaller plate of vegetarian couscous with squash etc for Caitlin as well. We all had forks and dug into the mound of food, talking as we ate. The meal was delicious and it was fun to eat all together - for me especially since I prefer to eat in the company of a lot of people -I guess its because our family is so large
Anyhow, we had a great time with them but had to leave for Tetouan right after, which was around 4 hours away from Rabat by bus. The ride was peaceful and we had a great view of the countryside. As we were travelling, this awful smell filled the bus and we could hear small burping sounds coming from somewhere near us. Apparently the guy behind us had become queasy from long journey and threw up on the bus (which had no ventilation!). We felt really bad for the other guy sitting next to him who was practically out in the aisle, trying to get as far as he possibly could from his neighbour. The entire journey on that bus was actually pretty sketchy, considering that in addition to the poor ventilation, our bus driver was steering the bus while talking on his cell phone as we ascended the steep mountain slopes...
We ended up staying at this relatively nice place called Hotel Panorama which was right next to the bus station (thankfully) since the bus station in Tetouan is pretty ghetto. The next day we headed to Chefchouan which is around an hour and a half away by bus and is known for having a marketplace completely painted in blue! There are all shades of it from baby blue, to sky blue, to indigo etc. Apparently the town was inhabited by Muslim and Jewish refugees from Spain. The medina used to be painted in green (the color of islam) but when the Jewish inhabitants arrived they decided to change it to blue - the color of the ocean (fyi) - and it stuck ever since. Chefchouan is really beautiful though and was a nice place to visit. Tetouan on the other hand is not a city I would return to or ecounrage anyone else to visit - there isnt much to do there.
The last place we visited was Martil - a small beach area around a 5 dirham ride from Tetouan. It was right along the Mediterranean coast and filled with people. Caitlin and I rented an umbrella for 15 dirham, and just chilled watching the people and the waves. There were a bunch of food vendors that came by selling everything from boiled chick peas, to cigarettes, to freshly made peanut candybars - which made it an even more enjoyable visit
Yesterday was also the world cup game between Italy and France - which everyone here is really into watching. We have managed to become fans of it as well. It was even more interesting to watch it here in Morocco because everyone was so split on who they wanted to win. A lot of people were rooting for France because of Zeidan and there are a decent amount of Italy supporters since there are a lot of Moroccan immigrants there. The game ended with Italy winning after Zeidan was kicked out of the game (no pun intended!:)for head butting that other italian guy? I cant believe all the press that is surrounding that one incident, its pretty crazy. And it completely baffles me as to why anyone would use their head a weapon.
Anyhow, after the visit to Martil etc.. we headed back to Tetouan to get a bus ticket back to Rabat since we had school on Monday. Unfortunately apparently everyone ad their extended family had similar ideas/schedules, so we only managed to get a ticket to Kenitra, a nearby city where we arrived at around 11:30pm. It was really sketchy and we had no clue how we were going to get back to Rabat which is half an hour away. Luckily out of nowhere we ran into this guy who asked if we were looking for a way to get to Rabat. We ended up following him and his friend, Abdul Rahim (who was pretty cute and played the guitar)around Kenitra - first in search for a grand taxi none of which were going in our direction, then to the train station which had no trains to Rabat until 2amm and back to another taxi stand. We ended up sitting on the side of an abandoned road and chilled for around an hour and a half until we finally managed to hitchhike back Rabat. They were really cool though and we were happy to get back safely.