March 14, 2016

by apaparis

I was in the red city this weekend. Marrakech is a vibrant maze. Its dusty streets are pulsating with life and there are hardly any signs so when you ask a Moroccan for directions, it goes something like this:

-Excuse me, how do you find La Maison Arabe?

-Ah! That’s easy. You go straight, then you make a left, take a right, and another right! You’ll see an alley, you go down and it’ll be right on your right. If you hit the Mosque, you’ve gone too far.

It is almost impossible not to buy something at the souk, but bargaining is a must. Thick woven carpets, paintings, carvings, jewelry. The colors are rich and deep. Snake charmers, henna tattoo artists and traditional dancers will beckon to you, as well as those sitting in front of piles of fruit, bundles of herbs, clay tagines, steaming piles of nuts and grilled meat.

On one of our days, we took a road trip to the nearby Berber villages in the Atlas Mountains. As our guide called it: La vrai Maroc. The government subsidizes work projects for women, especially those divorced or widowed so they can receive some kind of income. In one of the little villages, its population only 200 people, we looked at the argon oil production process and couldn’t resist indulging in the handmade spa products.

Further up, the road ends and we hiked to one the seven waterfalls, resulting from snow melting off the top of the mountains.

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