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Burto’s Travel Diary

Saturday, 09 Sep 2006

Location: Morocco

MapSeptember 4th 2006 - Morocco – Marrakesh/Ouzazate

Had a sleep in and a late breaky, packed a day bag and left the rest at the motel. Did some shopping and odd jobs to kill some time. Caught our bus to “Ouzazate” at 5:30pm and arrived to our accommodation quite late, this place had air conditioning which was a luxury. Ouzazate is a small town, 4 hours by bus from Marakesh. The town is located a few hours from the Sahara Dessert, but don’t have time to get there. The town is well known for its movie studios which are used for various Hollywood movies.

September 5th 2006 - Morocco – Ouzazate

Caught a bus out to “Atlas Studios” in the morning, a couple of kilometres out of town. Did a tour around some of the sets of movies like:- Gladiator, Kingdome of Heavens, Jewel of the Nile and Cleopatra. Back in the town, walked down to see the Kasbah and got a tour of the old town while trying to find it. Went to a nice restaurant which had photos of the staff with movie stars. Had a nice pizza.

September 6th 2006 - Morocco – Ouzazate/Fes

A big day of travelling ahead to make it to Fes. Bus left at 8:30am for Marrakesh and saw what we drive through during the night on the way up. Some very crazy winding roads through the mountains, not for the faint hearted. Picked up the rest of our luggage from Marrakesh and caught the 3pm train to Fes. The journey was suppose to be 8 hours but arrived in Fes at 12 midnight. Was hassled by a bloke when getting off the train, asking if we wanted to stay in his hotel and use his mate as a guide the next day. Already had accommodation organised.

September 7th 2006 - Morocco – Fes

Slept in a bit and got up to have breaky on the roof of the hotel. Decided to do a walk through the “Medina” using the Lonely Planet book as our guide. The “Medina” is the old town of Fes, built inside surrounding walls. It is full of narrow streets, most leading to know where. Very hard to find things, very easy to get lost. Hassled a lot by the local Moroccans to use them as our guide and ended up seeing many carpet shops. Mainly because people offer you to go up to their balcony to take pictures of stuff, but have to go through their carpet shop to do it. Also got a tour of how they make ceramic mosaic tables etc. from a shop owner. Found a nice restaurant for tea and had vegetarian spaghetti (bit scared to eat meat here).

September 8th 2006 - Morocco – Fes

Got up early to visit the Tanneries. Got a guide to take us up to a balcony to view the dying tubs where the Moroccans dye the leather. They use a special process to get the raw skin of animals (sheep, goats, camels) to a final dyed piece of leather. There was a leather shop there and the shop attendant said that “Steve Erwin” and family had visited here before. Did another walk in the afternoon to various sites and to a lookout with a view over the city. Went to see the Jewish quarter and had a bad experience with a guide. He took us down a maze of streets and asked us for ridiculous amounts of money. Told him he was dreaming and found our own way out. Went back to the same restaurant as last night for the same meal.

September 9th 2006 - Morocco – Fes

Caught a taxi to the new part of town to organise some day trips and our ticket to Tangier. Had a nice lunch in a Italian restaurant, but my mate used their credit card to pay and they accidentally charged 100 times the amount. They didn’t know how to use the card swipper properly and took a while to cancel the transaction. Had a look through the Batha Museum in the afternoon. Went for a walk through the Medina at night to check it out and got invited into a blokes place for mint tea. He lived in a “Riad” (a certain type of Moroccan house) with his family. Got shown around and drank mint tea with him.