Morocco: for women only

Many women write to me asking if a trip to Morocco, alone or with female friends, is safe and can be easily done.

I want to respond with a kind of travel journal, the one that me and two dear female friends of mine have kept daily during a wonderful two-week trip over there. Enjoy it!

We fly to Casablanca! We exchange, at the airport euro into dinars and we buy a sim card for our mobile phone (highly recommended).

We head to the bus station and, paying around EUR 4, we get to the city center, from there, a taxi driver will take us to our riad (booked on line from Italy).

 

We walk through the narrow streets of the bazaar and after going to the bus station to buy a ticket to Meknes (we suggest to buy the ticket for the next destination, every time you get to a new city) we enjoy an excellent dinner at a local restaurant with outdoor seating (Moroccan soup with warm bread and cheese: one Euro).

The square was full of men drinking tea, no one has bothered us, someone tried to sell us some local weed but nothing more... and it's just the beginning.

We spend the following day visiting the Mosque of Hassan II, it may contain more than 25,000 people and thanks to Hamad, the guide who speaks a fluent Italian, we explore it properly.

At 1 pm we depart to Meknes by CTM bus (the most used company during this trip, safe and always on time) and when we arrive at 5 pm, we meet Aziz, a smart guy who will take us around for the rest of day with a tip of 10 Euro...

We visit different areas, handicrafts and textile shops, Noemi will buy an orange carpet that from now on will become our new travel companion! We’ll call it: "The little brother"!

At around 5 pm, we departure to Fez, arriving at 6 pm and after the usual bargaining with the taxi, we reach the city center.

The search for a place to sleep, this time, it’s not so easy... but we manage... well, we find one that looks like an horror house!

Three floors just for the three of us, with a terrace where the wind rattled a tarpaulin and we, intrepid travellers women, ready to face anything.

In the evening, after eating a couscous not well digested, we dive into local life and spend the evening in the main square listenimg to Berber music played by various artists... women were really few, but there were no problems.

After spending a hard night above a table disguised as a mattress and no pillow, we meet Rachid, a 22 years old boy who will accompany us throughout the day and will take us through all corners of Fez, in tanneries, in markets, in the stables, madrassas and so on till the usual “Berber whiskey” (mint tea... we would have drunk 1 liter per day per person at the end of the journey!)

In the evening we depart by night bus to Merzouga... once again we are the only women!

At 6 am we arrive at destination and we meet Ibrahim, a guy that I had contacted from Italy and that will prove to be an excellent guide!

In this little village there are 200 inhabitants, three bars, one mechanic, one oven (used alternately by the families) and one hairdresser. The market is located in Rissani.

At 5 pm we leave on the backs of dromedaries. The three of us, Ibrahim and Barah, the cook.

About half an hour later, we enter the desert but we still continue for 2 more hours to the camp. The night falls at an incredible rate... while we help Barah to cut vegetables and meat, and after a dinner by candlelight, we look around speechless.

Our dromedaries rest a few meters from us, the sound of light wind, the light of a candle...
We had to sleep in tents but the lure of the sky was too strong so we decide to spend the night in the sleeping bag under a blanket of stars worthy of the best poetry.

There are some moments in life that you will carry forever in your heart, that’s, to me, is one of those.

Around 5 am, we wake up (submerged sand) to admire the sunrise from the dunes...

In the afternoon we went by a 4x4 to visit some Berber nomads families.

We spend the afternoon in the pool and the evening listening to djambè and bongos, a lot of fun... of course drinking several cups of Berber tea!

Well, today we do not really know what will happen... we meet, as agreed, with the driver who will take us to Ouarzazate and on the way we visit places like the Todra Gorges and the Valley of Roses.

At Merzouga, we find a shared taxi and we start this adventure with Aziz, the driver, Hamad, a school inspector and Mohamed, another passenger. After an initial silence of 20 minutes, it took was a joke to blow up the friendship.

The arrival in Marrakech has been quite devastating... remember, we were always with a 15 kg carpet, in Jamaa el Fna, passed from hand to hand, and in a crowd that stole the breath away, at the end we manage to get to our riad.

We spend the evening in a restaurant where we enjoy a nice dinner, then we relax on the roof of our riad eating a slice of watermelon, while the sky seems to envelop us as a sheet light.

The must of this wonderful city are definitely: have breakfast with a nice orange juice in one of the many stalls of Jamaa el Fna Square, a couscous restaurants hidden in the suq, bargain, bargain and bargain all the times... if not there is no taste, a drink in a bar overlooking the square as the sun and everything comes to life with a magic that you can feel only here.

We spend the last two days in Agadir... we relax with massages, scrubs and pool.

We celebrate Ilary’s birthday with a great dancing night...

 

This trip has been really intense, full of excitement and adventure... thanks girls for sharing this experience!

Oh Morocco, we can not wait to get back to you!

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