Marrakech, Morocco - Goodbye Europe

July 1, 2017

Destination 9/9
June 28 - July 1
Where we stayed: Hostel Riad Marrakech Rouge

Transportation   ⭐️⭐️⭐️
General costs     ⭐️⭐️⭐️
Sights                  ⭐️⭐️⭐️
Food                    ⭐️⭐️⭐️
Accommodation ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Wednesday June 28
Before arriving in Marrakech I arranged with the hostel a taxi that would pick up us up and take us to the hostel. When we walked out of the arrivals gate we saw the beautiful exterior of the airport along with a swarm of people waiting for their friend and family. It was already about 10:30pm so we walked to the people and saw a man holding a sign with our hostel name on it. I go over and ask if it was for Meghan and off we went! A kind young gentleman met us on the road and walked us through the windy side streets to get to the hostel. We walk in and sit down and the gentleman at the desk said here you eat before you go to bed and gave us some watermelon, a few minutes go by and the young gentleman who walked us to the hostel came by with some delicious mint tea. Once we finished that we were escorted to our beds. The hostel has windy architecture with stairs randomly leading this way and that with beautiful decor all around. It was truly mesmerizing. We got settled and pack our bags for tomorrow since we are up at 6:30am for breakfast before we head out at 7 for our Sahara desert tour!! 


Thursday June 29
5:30am wake up, had a shower and got all our stuff packed and our luggage in storage. We had a quick breakfast and then we were led to the bus where we met up with people from other hostels etc and all got onto one bus and off we went! 


A couple hours of driving go by and we stop for a bathroom break, at that point is when we learnt that it was actually a 7hr bus ride to get to the 1hr camel ride.... few hours later we stopped to see Kasbah Ait Benhaddou in Draa Valley (Zagora), the gateway to the Sahara. We took a little tour around the town, bought some head scarfs and then had some lunch before hopping on the bus for the final 3hr stretch. 

We finally reached our destination where we met the camels around 6pm. I asked one of the camel leaders to help me put on my scarf properly as I was not doing it right at all. We each got a camel and off we went. 1hr of camel riding is not for the weak behind as our butt bones and thighs were burning! It was quite the work out. 

By the end of the hour trek through the Sahara desert we reached our camp. Zoe and I got a tent to ourselves since the other 2 moved to an empty one. The staff starting bringing out carpets and pillows and laying them in the centre for us to hangout on. We had dinner around 9:30pm and then went back to hang out on the carpet while the staff played songs around the campfire for us. 

I can't even begin to describe the view of the night sky. Absolutely beautiful would be an understatement, with the Big Dipper on our left and the Milky Way on our right it felt like a dream. After the campfire songs stopped we were told that we could bring our mattresses from our tents to the carpeted area and sleep outside for the night, I took that in a heart beat! 


It was a truly amazing experience. The main guide of the camp "Mr Sahara" was such a kind soul and was perfectly what you would picture a pirate of the desert to be. Chain smoking, long dark curly hair, balloon pants and a head scarf. That night couldn't of been more perfect.

Friday June 30
I'm not much of a sleeping in person to begin with but when the rising sun hit my eyes as I was sleeping outside I couldn't help but wake up. Walking behind the tents to a sand dune where I was joined by other people on our trip to watch the sunrise. 

We got some bread with jam and tea or coffee for breakfast and then hopped on our camels for a shorter 30min trek to meet up with the buses. 

 

We stopped again for some picture taking of Ouarzazate, known as the gateway town to the Sahara.