driving in Morocco


Jun 19th, 2001, 05:57 PM
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driving in Morocco

I am planning a trip to Morocco for the fall, and we (two forty something women) want to travel independently. Has anyone driven through the atlas/desert areas of Morocco? Is driving ourselves okay, or should we hire a car and driver? Anyone know the cost of that?
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Jun 20th, 2001, 12:14 AM
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Lorraine: We went through the High Atlas (Tizi'n'Tiska pass?) to Ourzazate and then to Zagora and Valley of Dra with a local driver and guide. I would definitely recommend that. "Streets" in the desert are real bad and breakdown can definitely happen. Sorry, cannot remember the costs, but Morocco is generally spoken not extremely expensive. We also faced some problems with people in these rural villages. They were throwing stones at our jeep thinking we were French, which we are not. Some do not like tourists to come and look around. So, please, do hire a driver/guide which is familiar with the area and do's or dont's. If you do not speak French at all, a reason more to hire someone. By the way, Are you French? Your name does sound as if.
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Jun 20th, 2001, 05:54 AM
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Lorraine: my boyfriend and I drove ourselves to Essouira (on the coast) but took a small tour group with driver to the desert. We didn't have trouble Moroccan roads or drivers and I think it would be possible to do it yourself all over. But as previous poster says, the roads in the desert aren't clearly marked and i think it would be easy to get lost if you are going out to the dunes at rissani or merzouga, for instance. Maybe you could drive most of the way and then hook up with a small tour in Erfoud so you don't have to drive the desert yourself. We took the three-day tour from Hotel Ali in Marrakech and wish it had been longer but it was a good price _ $95 US apiece for transport hotels and meals. At 36 and 38 we were way older than anyone else on the tour, but it was an interesting group to travel with.
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Jun 21st, 2001, 10:06 AM
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We three women toured Morocco on our own, but did have a car/driver through an arranged tour who took us from Marrakech, over the Atlas, through gorges, to the edge of the Sahara where we picked up a camel trek into the desert. The roads over the Atlas are un-freaking-believable; no way would we have ever done it on our own [one lane wide, rutted and rocky, no guardrails and STFD (straight the f**k down)]. PLUS, the scenery is so extraordinary that everyone should see it; and in the mountains there are no "pullout here for scenic viewpoint", and the roads are soooo scary, the driver will never be able to take her eyes off the road to see anything. Also, with a hired driver who knows the area, things you'd miss just driving by will get pointed out.

Visit the cities and coastlines on your own, but get a car/driver for the Atlas Mountains and beyond.
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