Thursday, November 18, 2010

Morocco 2

We managed to get Mauritanian visas for 1 day, but we were a little disappointed that their validity runs from the day of issue, regardless of the date you requested. Now we had to rush to cross Mauritania before the end of this month. Immediately after the Mauritanian Embassy, happy with our first visa, a car took us directly to Casablanca. For the first time girls stopped . They were two chicks bored from Rabat and decided to drink coffee in Casablanca.
In Casablanca
we meet cool guys. First, while waiting our host, we talked with one Swiss guy, who just arrived from Egypt. He said he came to work on a hashish farm. Actually he was only 18, traveling from 4 months and he had strange stories. We spent the evening with him and our new couchsurfing hosts - a photographer, two graphic designers and their friends. In the center of Casablanca  we were stopped by police who made problem to Walid (our host) that he had no right to hang with tourists because he was not a guide! We explained about couchsurfing, but they could not believe that there is such thing as free accomodation. Finally we convinced them that Walid is our friend and not a guide and they left us.
Casablanca is a big city – around 8 million people live there ( more then Bulgaria!) and after Fes and Rabat it looked like a different country. With modern shops and shopping centers, a lot of traffic...almost like Europe. The people were also different, just a few women covered their hair and most were dressed modernly. There were also parties and night clubs...
the largest mosque in Africa (Casablanca)

We spent two beautiful days with Walid and his friends – they made fire dance near one mosque in the neighbourhood, we played foot-bag until late evening and they made us our first dreads! We were already starting to look like Africans.
Our mission in Casablanca was to get visas from Senegalese Consul here. In the consulate they gave us two papers in French, which we tried to understand lng time. Nobody from the consulate, nor any of the dozens of waiting Senegalese knew English (there were no other foreigners, because only we and Romania need a visa! - the rest of the EU can go without a visa) We could not understand anything, but they took our passports and papers and after three hours we got a Senegalese visas for 50 euros per person! The price was a shock for us (we had read on the Internet that is 15 euros), but we had nothing to do ... except to learn French.
Senegal visa - 50 Euro, 3 months
Mauritania visa - € 34, one month
On top of that, the visa of the Gena had a mistake - the valididity was from 20.11.2010 to 20.02.2010! And when we came back to correct it, they put a stamp and wrote: from 20.11.2011 to 20.02.2010! Wrong again ... we gave up going back again ... we hope we don't have any problems at borders.
Then we headed from Casablanca to Marrakech, but the boy who picked us up invited us to his home near Oarzzazate and we decided to accept. We traveled with him more than 400 km, we slept in the middle of the road in the mountains at a restaurant and continued in the morning. (it turned out that many people eat and then sleep on the comfortable couches in the restaurants on the road and continue their trip the next day). The road was narrow with many turns, carved into the rocky mountains. Shortly after Oarzazat Rashid (the driver) went off the road and broke two tires. We changed one of them and Rashid took the other to nearest village by hitch-hiking, while we waited him by the car. A few hours later everything was fine, tires (with alloy wheels) were fixed with a hammer and we continued on the road.

happy on the road ...
shit happens...

Tagine - typical Moroccan stew cooked on the stove  with vegetables, olives and meat

While waiting for Rashid to return with te second tire one Tuareg talked to us, showed us the desert fashion and even invited us to stay in his village. Everyone is so hospitable here!
Братът на Рашид племенницата си

Rashid's brother ith his niece
The village of Rashid was a few kilometers dirt road away from the larger village and we took the bus - Mercedes 207D with 25 people inside. On one side of the village there was complete emtyness – only rocks and mountains, on the other side there was a river and some gardens.We felt like we are in the middle of nothing.
Rashid's family welcomed us like kings - with tagine and tea. Rashid had five brothers and two sisters (not counting the dead) ... really big family. Nobody spoke English except his younger brother. We explained that women do not work (except in the cities), but it seemed to us that only women worked. Baba (the father) was lying around all day and watched TV while the women broughed food and tea, and his wife (the mother of all eight children) went to work at the field even on Saturday. We spent two days in the village  with the good family of Rashid and again decided to go to Marrakech.
The child had not one toy! Playing with twigs, stones and whatever she found in nature and home...just one year old, but did not make any trouble while we were there and when she cried no one payed attention to her

The village of Rashid, almost nothing around...

Although they had not even a bathroom in the house, everyone had at least one expensive mobile phone
The cat (or mush - in Arabic)

Almost everywhere there are remains of old villages ...

In Marrakech we found the best so far couchsurfers at 1:00 o'clock in the night after a perfect hitch-hiking through the Atlas Mountains. They were studying in Marrakesh and they had guests for the weekend - their friends from other cities. The atmosphere was so friendly and cheerful that we stayed untill 6 o'clock in the morning. We spent three days in this company, they prepared typical local dishes, we walked in Marrakesh between monkeys, snakes and humans.

Maraksh is really touristic city but it is nice to see. The big square with dancing snakes, monkeys, fruits and restaurats, the small streets with shops for souvenirs, ceramics and all kinds of things.
The square of Marrakech
all things ...
Moroccan beautiful porcelain
We left Marakesh, afer we took food and water with the idea to spend a few days on a wild beach. First three boys took us to Agadir. They were smoking hashish and laughing all the time. The driver was so high that he diceded to hit a huge desert shrub on highway.The bush hit us really hard and broke the front sign of the car. We wasre quite startled by the shock, but fortunately there were no serious consequences. They left us in Agadir in the evening, where we slept on the beach under the surfs of a surf school. On the morning a guy drove us from the beach to the end of the city. There we met the second good Rashid – a Moroccan who lived in the U.S. for the last ten years. He invite us to drink tea in a cafe nearby and he wanted to spend the day with us. He had taken a rental car and we drove searching for wild beaches. First he took us to a beach that he knew. But the ocean was very angly and it was impossible to sleep on the beach without being hit by a wave. Everything else was stones. Rashid buyed us lunch and sweets and we continued to Legzira - the beach that we knew from other tourists. The beach was fantastic - a series of beaches separated by rocky arches. We stayed there and Rashid went back to Agadir.

The first day the ocean was so wavy that you could pass under the arch only by swimming. Overall, the beach was deserted, there were only a few small hotels at one end. But although small, the hotels made huge garbage that they threw on the rocks and dunes of the beach. We put our tent on a dune, a safe height from the waves, surrounded by a dumpster and we watched ho te pile of rubbish became bigger and bigger every day. From time to time, they burn the trash, but glass, metal cans and most plastics remained on the sand and when the tide came the ocean took part of the trash. The view was really sad, our hearts shrank to see this beautiful place so brutaly and ruthlessly spoiled. He wanted us to do something, anything to change this ... we could not understand how these people come, put their garbage on the beach and then go to pray.

On the third day a guy from the hotel came with a boy who had brought with him to translate and said it was forbidden to sleep in a tent and if we want to go to the hotel, otherwise they would call the police. Just what we needed to share what we think about their hotel and the piles of garbage they produced. We were so enraged that we said that we are protesting and that w would stay in the tent until they collect their garbage and they could call police, TV and anybody they want. After a day of thinking, however, we decided that we do not want to quarrell with these people and we went to the nearby village - Sidi Ifni-. Almost immediately a very cool camper van with an old Swiss couple stopped. They had traveld around the world withd that same camper. "The last time we were here in 1972 - said the man. "Wow, and has it changed since then -  we asked him. "Oh, we don't remember" was their answer:)  They were really cool couple and we stared to dream whether we will continue to travel like this at their age.

all day Czech paragliders were flying above us:)

We stayed one day in Sidi Ifni to wash our clothes and to write our blog .... And now we are ready to take over the desert ...


  1. good good mazyan in arabic ,

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