Thursday at midnight, we were kind of tipsy, and got the receptionist at our hotel to drive us to the bus station to purchase bus tickets for Marrakesh with departure six hours later. Planning is obviously not, and has never been, our strongest suit, but we did by some miracle manage to be on the bus one minute before departure.
We got to see the stunning sunrise over the mountains of Morocco, before I passed out for the next 3,5 hours of the journey. When we arrived in Marrakesh, we bought our return tickets before we took a taxi straight to the old city inside the city walls. The first thing to happen, was that a man threw a snake over H´s back and then demanded “paper money”. If sellers are pushy in Agadir, they most certainly are in the capital! Of course we just walked away, but still – beware if you’re ever to visit the Jemaa el Fna, which chances are you do once you’re in Marrakech. They also have drugged monkeys and city horses, neither of which I will ever approve of, or support with my money.
We found a beautiful rooftop terrace where we ate some delicious traditional Moroccan food called Tagine and planned our next move. We decided to visit the King´s Palace, which turned out to be the first of many confusing adventures of the day. We were guided in a hundred different directions, walked up and down deserted alleys and so on, before we found it after about an hour. It wasn´t to be seen because of the high walls surrounding it, but we walked through the beautiful gardens, laughed, talked and had a great time as usual.
We then proceeded to visit something called Maison de la Photographie , a photography museum with an amazing terrace with sky view over Marrakech. It was hidden away in another tiny back alley, and we had to get some boys to follow us. To be honest, we were pretty relieved that they actually followed us there at all, as it looked a bit shady for a while. The pictures were strong, genuine shots of mainly Moroccan people throughout the decades, and I was, for the first time since the war gallery in Dubrovnik, fully satisfied in my photographer soul. I took my travellers picture (a series I will show you soon), and then we went back into the jungle that is Marrakesh back alleys.
Again, we got lost in the tiny streets, and we had to be followed by more people. They will always follow you here and there for a small amount of money, but you must count on being guided to their family’s shops and such on the way. The trick is to be stern (not rude) when saying no, as they won´t take no for an answer. It is truly a whole different culture, and really exiting! We went further and further into the Medina – the souks of Marrakech; Silver, metal, leather, souvenirs, fabric dying, food and so much more. When we saw the light from the Jemaa el Fna we started our day from, it was a stronger feeling of relief than I had foreseen.
We bought more honey-glazed nuts (a kilo for 50 dirham / 5 dollars) and ate at the famous marked. We asked for a little bit of everything, and filled our tummies on shrimps, fish, veal, chicken, vegetables etc. It was amazing! As the sun sets, the Jemaa el Fna gets lively, the stands, the lights, the swarm of tourists and locals alike – I recommend it from the bottom of my heart !
As the sun set over the Mosquée de la Koutoubia, we found a taxi to the Supra Tours (recommended both for comfort and price). We were both pretty worn out and at the same time stunned by the smells, sights and impressions of the day.