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STAGE 1 - TANGER - CASABLANCA
Casablanca is the normal gateway to Morocco as most people travel from Spain by ferry from Algeciras or Tarifa if for no other reaons than that Royal Air Maroc charges €600 round trip against less than one hundred on GB Arways to Gibraltar.GB are, by the way, a superb airline. Casablanca lies on a beautiful beach only tarnished by pollution.
Another view of the beach looking towards the harbour.
View from the hotel bedroom. Hotels are very erasonable in Morocco.
Some houses in Tanger are very original, not to mention different in design.
Mosques are everywhere - immaculate.
As are kids looking the same the world over.
View from tallest hill in Tanger.
Television disks are a must nowadays.
Another view of the Harbour.
Houses are built very close together.
Closeup of houses.Very little weather protection as it is not needed.
Elders have traditionl Islamic dress but youngsters rebel.
A small square.
A superb Mosque spire.
An amazing tree this whose age is lost in antiquity.
Entrance to the Market. Most people are asleep.
A well stocked shop.
Some of the vegetables.
More Vegetables with traditional dress.
The waste removal department complete with waste fish.
Hens and chickens.
Weaving is a tradition here and the modern weaver has his bicycle powered loom.
Not alone is it amazing how they do it but the quality is superb.
Some of the products for sale.
Other souvenirs on the wall.
Farewell to Tanger.
STAGE 2 - EL JADIDA
El Jadida is a port city from where much of the phospate from Morocco leaves. It has a frequent rail service from Casablanca and most of its trains continue to Kenitra via Rabat.Here is the imposing City Hall.
The Portuguese Cistern has some stunning reflections. It was originally an underground cistern to provide water for the city and is now a tourist attraction.
The reflections are nothing short of amazing.
The original city was well defended with walls....
Nowadays under the walls they make.....
and fix boats.
Webmaster with typical British cannon.
Talk of getting a rabbit out of a hat! They are so friendly they allow you to pick them up.
Typical fishing boats at rest.
When city was besieged boats could come in here under darkness.
Jewish synagogue. Jews were strong in El Jadida.
Streets were narrow.
Sitting outside the church.
Everyone seems to like dressing in their nightdresses.
Women must cover up completely and when married are only allowed show a slit at their eyes.
Entrance to the old city.
STAGE 3 - A DAY TRIP TO OUARZAZATE
Leaving Marrakech the beauty of the mountains becomes clear. The road to the Sahara goes over them at 7.818 feet.
Long bonnetted Berliet is pretty well a standard.
As are original Bedfords still around in quantity.
The mountains beckon.
And yet at times you pass through snow free valleys as you climb.
Mountainside Berber villages are very similar. Many have no water and no electricty and have changed little over the centuries. The Berber are a very gentle people except then fighting of course!
The road gets more beautiful.
And the mountains seem to get higher and be more unapproachable.
A break for refreshments at a mountain village.
And a local arrives on his one man bus.
We pass a passengers on top doubledecker - the animals are below.
Road is climbing. In the valley is a little village.
Shanks mare is another standard means of transport.
Another village clinging to the mountain.
Buses do have problems.
Stones are popular tourist souvenirs.
Typical village near snow line. By day it can be 80 degrees fahrenheit here.
Three studies in locals having tea. The Berbers believe in allowing the women to do all the work while they go to the cafe most of the day and sit and chat.
A pretty well laden Izuzu. Provides cushioning when it falls off the road down the mountain.
We are now above the snow line.
The road is bleak and barren
And if you fall off it is a long way down!
The mountains are beautiful.
And in the desert at the other side they provide a most beautiful backdrops for a hundred miles. It seems incongruous to have the desert heat and the permanent snow clad mountains as a backdrop.
Then in the midst of it all we come across a French Foreign Legion outpost and pretty well fortified at that. They needed protection. They must also have been mad as anyone going into the desert to fight the natives has to be, And for what?
Closeup of the Fortress.
Three locals doing the usual pretty close to nothing.
Finally Ouarzazate a french gem of a town built in the middle of the desert complete with fortified fort - for the Foreign Legion, beauttiful streets and most mod cons. I would note that mobiles work everywhere in the Sahara but do not work between Cork City and Cork Airport. Which country is third world?
And a pretty well fortified fort at that!
Modern Shopping Mall with the usual snow mountains in the abckground.
Father and son!
Sunsets are so beautiful and give a crimson glow from the snow.
And as it goes down it becomes even more beautiful.
STAGE 4 - MARRAKESH - ONE OF THE MOST BEAUTIFUL CITIES IN THE WORLD/ THIS SETCION HAS YET TO GO IN AND IS BEING WORKED ON.