So Phillip, a German guy, and I left the desert village of Merzouga in eastern Morocco on a 10 hr overnight bus ride. We were headed to Marrakesch but had thought maybe of stopping in the High Atlas Mtns to do some hiking. But along the way we had a flat tire and were stuck in the mtns for maybe an extra hr or more. Most of the passengers were colder than hell but I didn't think it was too bad. Hell I didn't think it was that bad and I was wearing shorts cus the only long pants I have well got one pant leg stolen in Barcelona. So we kinda decided after being delayed to give the mtns a miss. Anyway Phillip had to meet his friend in Marrakesch so he didn't have much time. So it ended up the bus ride was probably 14 hrs long not 10 as advertised.
I would say the only good thing about Marrakesch are the streets are streets are nice and wide so it makes walking easier. But of coure the Medina (old city) is the usual narrow streets and nice place to stay. There's a Big Square where all the visitors seem to congregate and hang out. But there are so many dam hawkers trying to sell things, eat at their stalls, etc that it gets to be a pain in the ass.
So we found a cheap hotel in the I guess its the Medina (old city. We went to eat some thing in the many stalls in the Big square. But we never got past the soup stalls cus loved the soups which were like 4 DH or $1 CAD with bread. So after a couple of bowls of the soup we couldn't eat anything else. So went back and had a smoke for a night cap and turned in early cus of the long bus ride we were both beat!
The next day Phillip had to meet his friend flying in from Germany. So we decided to move to a bigger room in a hotel with a cool roof terrace to chill. We also met Mark a Canadian guy from Vancouver too who was really into Rock Climbing so was a bit different than us. So the 4 of us shared a room and just chilled and walked around most of the day. There isn't much to do in Marrahesch if u aren't into shopping or getting hassled by hawkers. Hell they were such a pain in the ass that we had to tell them to screw off as 3 or 4 ppl would try to get u to do things with them at the same time. So the best thing to do was go on the terrace, chill and have a smoke.
I had enough of Marrakesch after 2 days so the next morning so I decided to leave for Rabat to get my visa for Mauritania. The other 3 were planning to go to the beaches in Essouira where I was going to after. I decided to go by train as it was faster and hadn't tried one in Morocco as yet.
The t rain system runs from Tangier in the north which is the gateway to Morocco from Spain by ferry. The train then runs south thru Fez, Rabat, Casablanca and to Marrakesch.
So for 130 DH, 13 Euros, $20 CaD I took a 5 hr train ride to Rabat rather than probably a 10 hr bus. So got to Rabat by 5 pm and had to stay the night. Then the day got up early cus needed couple of visa sized pics plus a copy of my passport. Then headed for the Mauritanian Embassy by 10 am. Shit the Visa application form was in Arabic and French so couldn't really understand what I was suppose to fill in. So just fudged whatever I thought it asked for as figured this was just a Catch Grab to take 340 DH, 34 Euros or about 60 CAD from all visitors.
The visa was supposed to be ready by 2 pm so got there early to pick up my passport. Then headed straight for the train station as already knew the place and it was the fastest way to leave Rabat as the trai ns left every 2 hrs. I figure Rabat is the shittest city of a whole lot of them
in Morocco but hell they're all shitty. The only nice places are in the mtns, desert or beach.
I bought a tkt for the 3:30 pm train but dam it was late. So had to sit in a covered seat of the train station in the pouring rain waiting for my train. This also added to my impression of Rabat as a real shit hole and wanting to get the hell out!
But managed to get to get to Marrakesch by 10 pm so stayed the night there. Then next day took the local bus to Essourira as told it was only a 3 hr ride. But hell it actually took 5 hrs as it stopped in all the small places and along the road to pick up and drop off pax.
So if u can picture Morocco well I entered the country in Tangiers and then took a 4 hr bus rideto Chefchaouen a bit south. Then took a 6 hrs bus to Fez. Then took a 10 hr bus ride to Merzouga in the deasert south east east of Fez. Then took a 14 hr bus ride west to Marrakesch. Then headed north on a 5 hr train ride to Rabat for less than a day to get a Visa. Then took the same train going back to Marrekesch for 5 hrs to stay the night. So the next day took a 5 hr bus ride to Essouira west on the coast.
So after Essouira I plan to head south down the coast to Mauritania. How I get there is going to be interesting. Cus the 1 st step will be a 26 hr bus ride to Daklaha which is the most southerly city in Morocco that buses go thru the Western Sahara desert. I don't want to stop anyway along the wa cus want to get out of Morocco as fast as possible. I have 30 days from the days I got my visa to get thru Mauritania . But this is all up for change as really have no plans.