Sunday, June 11, 2017
Morocco: Cats, Cemetery and Tagine in Rabat
The Andalusian Garden deserved more time for exploration than we gave it. The garden is located inside the fascinating Kasbah des Oudaya and it was through here that we were to exit the Kasbah.
None of my tour mates seemed interested in the garden. Must have been fatigue, or jet lag, after all this was on technically the second day of our tour. The first day being arriving in the country and Orientation day. We have one guy arrived at 2 am on this day so you can imagine everyone was just getting their legs underneath them.
I shied away from photographing the garden; but when I found out that cats make this their hangout, I went and got busy. The cats appeared to be in good health and happy. Some were friendly and welcomed humans trying to pet them.
Just outside the Kasbah, there is a cemetery by the waterfront. The setting is beautiful and while we only saw it from the street, I knew it would be one of the places I would go back to should I be in this part of the world again.
Kasbah was the last of our guided itinerary for the day and the rest of the afternoon was ours to do as we pleased.
Many of our tour mates decided to go back to the hotel with the bus so they can rest.
A few of us inquired about lunch recommendations. The El Bahia Restaurant near the medina was recommended highly. Thus we asked to be dropped there so we could have lunch.
Four couples and a solo traveler went for lunch on that first tour day. We clicked right away and were dining buddies since that first lunch. We all had different varieties of tagine (we later got tired of eating tagine no matter how good it is).
Kefta tagine - my first of many tagines in this trip. It was very good.
After lunch, with the exception of the four of us (we were traveling with another couple we know from home) everyone went back to the hotel to rest. We decided to go back to the Hassan Tower and the mausoleum (photos in previous post). To do that we had to walk about a mile, passing pop up markets where we watched artists paint vases and browsed at items for sale.
Afterwards, with the help of GPS on our phone, we managed to find our way back to the hotel on foot. It appeared that we could have done most everything on foot. It was an easy walk from the Hassan Tower to our hotel. We even bumped into tour mates who looked fresh from nap and are out looking for stores that carry wines.
A block from the hotel is a train station. We were guessing what language is the middle one, we know that the right one is Arabic. We were joking that probably is wingding font or something. Turned out to be Berber alphabet.
Beside the train station is a Catholic Church, which was not open when we first came. Pity too because we were there during the Holy week and we wanted to visit a church so badly. The next time we passed by the church was when we were going out to eat dinner, but we were told that there is a private service, no tourists allowed.
For dinner, we found ourselves going to the highly recommended Tajine Wa Tanjia restaurant. The same people, plus a few more from our tour, ended up eating at the same place and so we got tables together and made a big party of it.
My husband had the camel tagine, which is one of their specialty. It was good.
I had the calamari tagine which was spectacular.
What I find really interesting (or frustrating) is that when you order a camel tagine (or any kind of tagine) you get only camel and maybe a few prunes. There are no other stuff in it. No tomatoes, no vegetables, no couscous.
And here's an interesting tidbit about couscous. In the USA, when we go to Moroccan restaurant and order a tagine, the tagine includes couscous. At least in the places I've eaten here in California. Over there, we wanted to have couscous and they have it on their menu. But each time we order it, we are told they only have it on FRIDAY! Yes, we tried in different restaurants across the country and we got the same response, they only served it on Friday. I don't remember getting an answer as to why this is the case.
Any one here know why?
OUR WORLD TUESDAY