Saturday, March 07, 2015

A tour of Tangier, Morocco


Hello friends, hope your week's been good so far. This is my Marbella follow up post as promised. We booked a quick all day tour trip of Tangier, Morocco while staying in Puerto Banus. This entailed waking up at 6.30 am to get ready for a coach parked a few minutes walk away from the hotel. The hardest part of the morning was actually getting up. We ate tons of food the night before our trip (check my previous post), so much so that we had to actually crawl out of the room. Someone wasn't too happy about this :).


Journey to our coach
The coach trip to the Port of Tarifa took about 90 minutes. Make sure to keep an eye out for the scenic mountain views. You might even see Gibraltar on a nice day.


Jumped on this ferry from Tarifa


Little Oisin and Erin (Mom) : Enters a new continent :)
Once we got on the ferry, the ride took about 45 minutes, pretty fast actually if moving on big expanse of water doesn't do it for you.

Arriving at Tangier, evoked a few memories. The last time I came to this city was in 2006 as part of a Bukima 15 day Overland Morocco trip. There were many things to do in Morocco. The trip itself was a camping based tour that encompassed most of Morocco's major highlights. We visited Tangier, Rif Mountains ( Chefchaouen: With its beautiful white walled and blue door medina), Volubilis (UNESCO-listed site dating back to AD 40), Fes ( oldest and largest medieval city in the world. The dye pits are definitely an eye catcher and the Medina was a sight to behold), we journeyed through mountain ranges to the desert via Merzouga to meet some Berbers and dined under the Sahara, spent time in the bustling markets of Marrakech, followed by time in Essaouira, a lovely fishing town with beautiful beaches.

Catching the sunset with John M. aka Greywolf.
These camels were a pain. Literally!  I gave my cushion to one of the girls...Big mistake..
The sounds of the minarets, the bustling markets,snake charmers coupled with Old ladies trapping tourists with henna paints.


Dishwashing time
Todra the gorge with Sparky



Dye pits of Fes
Pushing a battering ram
The first to press the emergency toilet bell: Dave failed miserably. Am glad he pressed it,i was dying to get off as well.
 I really enjoyed the trip and am still friends with some of the people I met almost 10 years ago.

 Those were the good memories. The bad memories or should I say funny (looking back at it now) was in Tangier weirdly enough. We were ripped off by one of the local boys who promised to give a few of us a tour of the Kasbah in exchange for tips about how to speak the English language as he was a keen student. What a bunch of green horns. He took us round the markets and after a few hours he took us to a corner and kindly asked the 5 of us for 40 pounds each. We told him we didnt respect his assertions (in a nice way) and he asked us if we had ever seen the colour of our own blood (funnily enough he said it in good english, thinking about it now). I kindly gave him some money and sent him on his way with some nice all together friendly gestures. 

Getting off the ferry this time round, I was keen to see how Tangier had changed over time. Gladly not much had changed on the cultural perspective and I did not bump into any dodgy 'tour guides' that needed help with the english language. The locals in the Markets still hound you as much as they did at the time. One of the women on the trip actually opened her purse and yelled "I have no moneyyyyy". They still hounded us to buy more stuff regardless. A friend of ours got called Obama, by the street hustlers, and I was  Eddie Murphy, which was quite funny actually, however my time through the markets was spent trying to make sure I wasnt at the back of the tour group as the last person gets pestered the most. 

We visited  a few shops while we were there. These included a rugs store ( It sounds boring, but this was actually fun. The owner gave a presentation about rugs and its historical significance), a local pharmacy (someone on the trip bought some interesting aphrodisiac's..not naming names), a restaurant and a few more places. Check out the pictures below..








Very passionate about rugs

Snakes ...what snakes.



Narrow roads..Makes it hard to escape from someone trying to sell you fridge magnets



Chicken Tagine
Mint tea






I love olives




We went to another restaurant in the square. The food tasted grim. If possible avoid the tourist trap
Might just be a pony. Am not sure.





On the whole, I actually liked Tangier as a city. I met some nice and wonderful people on the trip. Massive thanks to Melody. Really helped out with the pictures.



There goes my time in time in Morocco. 10 years later and things haven't changed much. I would like to visit Marrakech, Chefchaouen and Essaouira again at some point. You should as well if you can. :)

Have a nice weekend and see you soon

                                                                
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2 comments

  1. Thanks for sharing your precious moments in Morocco with us. Sounds you all enjoyed a lot there. All the pictures are beautiful and clicked perfectly. These Picture beautifully explore Tangier.

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    1. Glad you liked the pictures. I love morocco :)

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