Thursday, March 28, 2013

A Look at Morocco

Looking through the window of a casbah

Our Gate1Travel guide Ibrahim was a delightful man who showed us the best of his country through geography, history, and people.  From Rabat on the coast of the Atlantic through to Atlas Mountains to the edge of the Sahara Desert back through the mountain oasis of Ouazazate to Marrakech to Casablanca, we generous people and feasted our eyes on things we will never see again.
Courtyard in a medina of Rabat
Family outing in the city of Sale
Happy to be in Morocco on the way to Fez

Roman Ruins of Volubilis

  Karavanseri (Hotel for Caravans) now a museum

Our camels waiting to take us back down the dunes

Seriously, we were at the edge of the Sahara Desert. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I'd be there, let alone get there on a camel. 
The variety and beauty of olives
Lunch in a Berber tent
Algerian food is tangines and couscous
In Fez at a leather-dying factory

While so much of Morocco is rural and unique, the cities are highly Westernized. Is that good or bad? Older cities like Fez and Marrakech have managed to balance what is uniquely Moroccan with some modernization. Newer cities like Casablanca are a bit scary in that they are so modern. Look at this picture from our hotel room.  We could hear the call to prayer through the din of the evening traffic.  The city highrises surround little flat shantytowns, where the poverty is visible. 
Morocco is a country of contrasts - the snow-covered mountain tops of the Atlas Mountains and the beautiful desert foliage, shepherds in fields and aggressive souvenir hawkers, the sands and the oasis, the seacoast and the high plateaus.  It's a country where you view life through a vastly different window.


Carol G said...

Great pics. Morocco is definitely on my list!

Mary Colter said...

Donna - I LOVE the two camel photos (camels waiting and camel shadows)! What marvelous scenery. Can't wait to see how this inspires your work.

Jennifer Lowe said...

Donna, your trip looks amazing! It sounds like something that will stay with you long after you've been home.

Doug said...

What an amazing trip, I fear you haven't even scratched the surface of what you have seen...

Unknown said...

Great pictures - yes! The camel shadows one is amazing. Looks like lots of great sights and sites. Can almost taste the food.

Wayne Rhodes said...

(prev comment was from me)