Tomorrow morning (Thursday, Dec. 7th) at the wee hour of 6 am, Michelle and I are headed to Morocco for the first time. We’re taking a bus to Madrid, and a 2 pm flight (EasyJet 7869) to Tangier. I’m writing these notes up as I research places to stay, things to do, etc. Yes, I am aware I’m planning extremely last minute.
Based on recommendations from friends, we’d like to see Chefchaouen and Fez. Ideally, we’ll bus from Tangier to Chefchaouen tomorrow evening. I’ve read mixed things about how often the buses are, so it might be Friday morning instead. We’ll spend a day or so in Chefchaouen (unless it’s absolutely stunning), and then bus onward to Fez, where we’ll stay until Monday. Monday morning, we’d like to get an early train back to Tangier to catch our 3:05 pm flight (EasyJet 7870) to Madrid.
- Transportation will be on a thru bus to Fez.
- Hiking sounds like a must, either Rif Mountains or Jebel al-Kalaa (9 hours round trip).
- Lots of cheap lodging near the medina, especially considering it’s the off-season (Lonely Planet search). Casa Hassan, Dar Meziana, Hostal Gernika, and Mahaliya sound like good choices.
- Shopping and such in the medina.
- According to Michelle, if we get arrested, we have the right to contact the nearest US Embassy (Rabat).
- Walking around and exploring the sights/sounds of the medina is the highlight of the city.
- The main street is the Talaa Kbira, which runs from Bab Boujloud to the Karaouiyne mosque in the heart of the medina.
- “Don’t eat the seed-pod like things the proprietor offers you. Although he’s eating them also, they are very high in estrogen and can cause a man’s nipples to be sore for several days afterwards.”
- Check out the view from the hills surrounding the city.
- For lodging, I found a few hotels across the entire price spectrum (Lonely Planet search): Riad Jean Claude (10 bis Derb El Miter), Dar El Hana (22 Ferrane Couicha), and Dar Drissi (24 Derb el Menia Kbira)
- There are several trains a day to Tangier that take 4.5 hours.
A final note: No laptop this trip, although I have an international data/SMS plan for my phone. I’ll try to check my personal email account a couple times per day, and will be available by SMS whenever.