Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Morocco: Let's Begin


Story telling time folks. I cannot wait to begin sharing with you my amazing 11-day trip to Morocco.

It all started with a 10-hour direct flight from San Francisco to Charles De Gaulle in Paris. The two-hour layover was spent looking for the next gate to Mohammad V airport Casablanca.

The short 2-hour flight from Paris to Casablanca included a meal, which I really appreciated.

Upon arrival at Casablanca airport, we were flying blind. Our phones did not work. We had no way of contacting our friends who have gone ahead to Rabat. We needed to be in Rabat, an hour’s drive from Casablanca. Rolling our luggage we tried to get out of the airport to find the taxi queue, but the guard dissuaded us from even going out to get a taxi. He said it would be way too expensive.

Just a floor beneath is the train station, which I have read from other blogs the train is quite reliable, and way cheaper too. The fact that other people from the same flight were lugging their heavier luggage to get to the train gave us validation that we were doing the right thing.

Since Rabat is our final destination, we were informed at the ticket booth that we would need to change trains, 3 stations down, which was the Casa port terminal.

The first train from airport to the port was smooth sailing. The train was clean and very few people were on train on board.

Upon arrival at Casa Port, we all disembarked and boarded the already waiting train in the next platform. This one is air-conditioned and quite nice; however, it stood in the station for a long time. I don’t know what was holding up the train, was it not scheduled to leave asap, or was there some technical difficulties, who knew.

Anyhow, it finally left and the long ride was wonderful. We passed through lovely sceneries including a vineyard. We shared the seats with two locals who helped us determine what station we needed to stop. After determining it was the Medina station, we were ready to roll our luggage so much so that we abandoned our cushy seats and stood next to the doors for about 3 stations.

We finally arrived at our stop in Rabat, which was the old town. We took the escalator up to the street level. Outside the station, we were assaulted with lots and lots of cars. We know that our hotel was near the train station so we asked a local where it is. We were pointed towards the direction across from the station. We were told that it is walkable, 15-20 minutes. I was not having any of that. In a new town when you don't know where things are just yet, it's best to take a taxi, that's my protocol. Thankfully, my husband agreed, mostly because the luggage must be preserved and pulling it around in cobblestone may not be a good idea right that minute.

The minute we arrived at the train station I muttered to the hubby, we are late for the welcome talk by the tour manager, but he said it was way too early for the welcome tea and talk.

As we entered the hotel, we were identified as belonging to the tour group and were ushered to the meeting room right away. They held onto our bags and check in would be accomplished after the talk.

We entered the meeting room the instant that the tour manager was discussing PUNCTUALITY and how lateness is frowned upon. Everyone cracked up the minute we entered dramatically. Everyone knew us from day one, it was not hard to make friends from that moment on.

Later that night, we found that we were too tired to get out of the hotel and find a place to eat. The restaurant downstairs would do it for the night we thought and found our friends midway through dinner and we joined them.

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Hubs went for the tagine right away.

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As you know from prior post I had the swordfish.

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Female friend had tagine also.

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Female friend's husband had this beautiful plate of meat, the name of the dish is a mystery to me.

Since this is supposed to be a Skywatch post, I would like to share with you a few sky images from different places in Morocco.

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All these are phone photos. Unfornately I have not learned how to take good photos from cell phone.

SKYWATCH is a weekly gathering of sky lovers and sky watchers. Join us.

18 comments:

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  2. Interesting fact for me was that the flight from Paris to Casablanca is only 2 hours! I had no idea that Morocco was that near France. I look forward to more posts about your Moroccan adventure. :)

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  3. What an adventure!! Yikes, no cell phone!!? I think I would be too nervous to travel this way anymore, but I envy people who can. I like your description of your "grand entrance"!

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  4. what a fascinating place - would love to go there.

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  5. I love the way you write your stories, you already know that, and would like to add here i read them word for word including commas and exclamation points, haha! At least i can relate with you on the Charles de Gaulle airport, where it took me a long time to the next Gate! But don't be apologetic of the phone shots, as they are lovely too. More travels for you, i am happy with that too!

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  6. Very nice. Looking forward to more.

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  7. Thanks for the delightful post! Brings back great memories of our OAT tour in Morocco last year [posted in great detail on my blog site]. It was one of our best all-time trips.

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  8. What a great tour post and just amazing adventures!
    Great photos too. Bravo!
    I would like to visit Morocco for sure...

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  9. Loved the post. Awesome pics :))

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  10. What a beautiful place, one I'd love to visit. To answer your question on my blog, the snow in the Colorado mountains almost all melts in the summer, the only place any will be left is in the highest, shaded areas. Our summer can actually get rather warm.

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  11. Thank you for the great photos and info!

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  12. It is obviously an amazing trip Maria..... I laughed at the way you made friends ... being late had its advantages!!

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  13. Interesting read and nice captures!

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  14. I visted Morocco in 2012 but we went south and did not see much of cities. It was interesting but I did not like the food :( But that is me.

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