And so we arrived in Marrakech the destination of the majority of visitors to Morocco where we again stayed in an Up Market Hotel "Le Meridian N'Fiz" thanks to a staff discount of one of the ladies and we had three nights to enjoy all that Marraketch had to offer.
After settling in and making the most of the hotel facilities until early evening as we were within 15 minutes of the Jemaa el Fna Square empty in the daytime but where at night it comes alive with food vendors and stalls selling everything from trinkets to Fruit and Dates. Street performers with their songs and Snake charmers putting deadly cobras into a trance we ventured out to enjoy the sights and sounds
After an evening of heavy bartering and taking in the sights we headed back to the hotel for a well deserved meal and to bed.
The next morning we had to drop off laundry to a local shop and the French owner and his parrot were very helpful so we stopped to eat. It was a French Creperia and the food was delicious the owner was very proud of the fact he came from the same town as Aterix the Gaul.
After a breakfast like that you should walk it off but knowing the amount of ground we would have to cover during the day we decided instead to save our feet and do the tour in a horse drawn carriage - make sure you barter the price and wrap up warm.
The tour will take you on a prescribed route and the wall runs all around the old city with gates at strategic points which the carriage can enter, however, you are restricted to what you can film inside so not many pics of the palaces and inside the wall but enough to peek your interest on the outside of the more affluent part of the city.
The next day we booked a day trip for 30 euro which took us into The Atlas Mountains to visit a Berber Village where we were introduced to one of the villagers who entertained us in their house with a cup of Mint tea on the roof and showed us where the animals were kept underneath so that their body heat helped to keep the family warm who slept above. The ladies were shown the kitchen where the Berber lady was showing off a piece of Cheese but the way the girls all wanted a hold of it not sure what they thought it was? We were then taken by the guide around the village to see how the people lived and as you can see everything was very basic.
Outside the village we came apon the ships of the desert otherwise known as Camels and although we did not have time enough to camp out in The Sahara, no trip to Africa would be complete without a Camel ride. The Berbers take you for a ride one or two to a camel for about 10 euro but barter it down they will do it for 5 euro a head.
Rene & Denise decided to double up while Lynn decides to go solo - I think the speed sign could have been ignored we got nowhere near that fast.
The next stop was to a Womens co-operative producing Aragon Oil products exclusive to Morocco - a co-operative is run by women for women and where women keep all the profits, this is a monumental leap towards equality in a country ruled and run by men.
Our final stop on the way back was for a romantic riverside meal. Along the river there are many places set up to eat at and in the summer it is packed but as this was a quiet time we were lucky enough to be able to chose the one who obviously gave our Guide the best commission.
After an enjoyable meal we were taken to a bridge which then led to a track that was an uphill trek through the mountains to walk off the meal by finding the source of the river that we had just dined beside. Note the clever use of the cold stream to cool off the soft drinks and when we reached the scource of the stream way up in the Atlas Mountains believe it or not there was a souvenir shop. We saw the back of one local had got there before us but the girls were not to be out done and you can see Rene doing her impression of Pretty Woman.
Our last night meal which the girls paid for as a treat for me for being their guide during the adventure was in an excellent restaurant that we had to be guided to through narrow alleys but was well worth it.
I would highly recommend PEPE NERO,however, I cannot guarantee the company will be as good as the company I had - Thank you Ladies