Morocco, A Visual Journey

Old Jun 10th, 2018, 08:02 AM
  #81  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,787
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Medina, continued
Entryways, Gates and Arches















progol is online now  
Old Jun 10th, 2018, 08:24 AM
  #82  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,787
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Medina


Junk Market by the wall



Taking a break


Buying a tarbouche, Not a fes!

This was a lovely gentleman - he didn't try to push Michael to purchase anything. Michael had wanted to buy a fez in Fes. We were quickly corrected, and told that here they are called "tarbouche". He liked the felt but wanted one with a tassle, although it seems that only the cardboard ones were made with the tassle. After looking around, Michael wanted to come back to this particular vendor and he purchased the tarbouche.

"This is what I have"



A lovely interaction



Tarbouche (not a fez!)
progol is online now  
Old Jun 10th, 2018, 12:28 PM
  #83  
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 11,648
Likes: 0
Received 7 Likes on 1 Post
Nice fez, oops tarbouche!

"The old part of the city that consists of hundreds of small lanes and narrow streets in maze-like patterns, which are crowded with tourists exploring,..."
We enjoyed our time with our guide in Fes. One of the factoids he shared was there are over 9000 alleyways in Fes!
yestravel is offline  
Old Jun 10th, 2018, 04:06 PM
  #84  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 1,476
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Lovely photos as usual Paule. Thanks for taking me back to Morocco. We visited Fes by default after being conned on the train from Tangier to Casablanca.....still very worthwhile, it was one of our favourite cities. Morocco has been on the return radar since 2004, even more so now.
sartoric is offline  
Old Jun 11th, 2018, 03:12 AM
  #85  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,787
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by yestravel
Nice fez, oops tarbouche!

"The old part of the city that consists of hundreds of small lanes and narrow streets in maze-like patterns, which are crowded with tourists exploring,..."
We enjoyed our time with our guide in Fes. One of the factoids he shared was there are over 9000 alleyways in Fes!
yestravel, it sure felt like 9000 alleyways! And then double it if you're getting lost and have to backtrack!

sartoric, thanks so much! I'm glad you're enjoying the photos (again!) and that it's inspiring you to want to go back.

More photos of Fes to come later...
progol is online now  
Old Jun 11th, 2018, 11:04 AM
  #86  
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 11,648
Likes: 0
Received 7 Likes on 1 Post
"it sure felt like 9000 alleyways! And then double it if you're getting lost and have to backtrack!"

​​​​​​​You're not kidding! Although I think we got lost less in Fes than in Marrakech which is smaller.
yestravel is offline  
Old Jun 11th, 2018, 03:58 PM
  #87  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 3,263
Received 33 Likes on 2 Posts
Wow, your pictures are wonderful. I especially liked the mosaics but also the scenes in Fes. And yes, the place you stayed was phenomenal.

Regarding touts, although I’ve not been to Morocco, I thought they were really bad in Egypt and India. I loved both of those trips, but the touts did put a damper on things and made it so much less enjoyable to walk around unaccompanied. I agree that Turkey was not so bad.
althom1122 is offline  
Old Jun 11th, 2018, 04:01 PM
  #88  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 3,263
Received 33 Likes on 2 Posts
One more question - I havenít seen any reference to or pictures of snake charmers. Iím terrified of snakes. Did you see any?
althom1122 is offline  
Old Jun 12th, 2018, 03:32 AM
  #89  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,787
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
yestravel, by the time we got to Marrakech, it was a breeze to find our way around! Well, that's a bit of an exaggeration Fes was just so huge - we got lost occasionally, but never to the point that we couldn't get oriented, though sometimes, it took us a while to find a point that was familiar enough. Fortunately, Michael has a generally good sense of place and got us around without too much lost time!

althom, thanks again for your lovely words. Unfortunately, the touts in many of the places in Morocco were very overwhelming, and that definitely impacted the experience. That said, we loved our trip - it is an amazing place to visit, and being forewarned is being forearmed! And as for the snake charmers, the only place we saw them were in the massive main square in Marrakech, Jemaa el-Fnaa, which by day has a market and lots of activities going on, including snake charmers. Easy enough to avoid them. And for those who want to take a picture, know that you will be expected to pay something.
progol is online now  
Old Jun 13th, 2018, 05:58 AM
  #90  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 57,091
Received 5 Likes on 3 Posts
Progol - yet more lovely photos. You seem really to have captured the essence of what you were seeing.

I have to say that after the trouble we had with touts in Tunisia over 35 years ago, we never returned there or went to Morocco. We found being treated as a "walking wallet" was so unpleasant that we never wanted to repeat the experience, when there were so many other great places to visit. I can see that we missed a great deal because of that decision, and possibly things might be better with a guide. I have also posted somewhere [here?] that when I went out by myself, I had no trouble at all. Perhaps it would be a good place for a solo trip!
annhig is offline  
Old Jun 13th, 2018, 07:04 AM
  #91  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,925
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Brilliant pictures. I need to look at them again and again. Brought back lovely memories.
gertie3751 is offline  
Old Jun 13th, 2018, 12:58 PM
  #92  
***RETIRED*** Do Not Contact
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 2,057
Received 20 Likes on 8 Posts
Wonderful thread and photos
ibobi is offline  
Old Jun 14th, 2018, 12:27 AM
  #93  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 1,476
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Love the lost in market conversation. We had to pay a guy $1 to get us out of Jemaa El-Fnaa. I noticed a couple of Americans following us and nearly asked for 50c. Ha ha.
sartoric is offline  
Old Jun 14th, 2018, 02:20 AM
  #94  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,787
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks so much everyone, for the wonderful comments!

annhig, I completely understand avoiding places because of the aggressive touts; it is overwhelming, and very much a part of the experience - and not in a good way! So part of my message is to anticipate this aspect of the trip and be prepared. And for some, the travel (anywhere, not just Morocco) is worth it while for others, it may be too much. We have to figure out our own levels of tolerance in travel.

gertie, many thanks! More to come (though with a f/t job still, it looks like the weekend mornings are usually my photo days, so hopefully, I'll have more up soon!)

ibobi, thank you! Glad you're enjoying this!

sartoric:
<<We had to pay a guy $1 to get us out of Jemaa El-Fnaa. I noticed a couple of Americans following us and nearly asked for 50c. Ha ha.>>
Haha, I see you really got into the experience of Morocco! You are truly too funny!
progol is online now  
Old Jun 16th, 2018, 05:23 AM
  #95  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,787
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Still in Fes...
With our guide (whose name I don't even remember, he really didn't make a connection with us), we saw the Chouwara tannery, the main tannery that people visit in Fes. In order to get to a viewing point, you are taken through a doorway on the street that goes through a leather shop (surprise!) and then to a viewing balcony overlooking the vats where the skins are soaked and then dyed. We were given a twig of mint but it really wasn't as smelly as I expected and I didn't find that I needed the mint. We went through #10, which is considered one of the best viewing balconies in Fes. I was taken by the process, though - it is remarkable to see, despite the many photos we've seen.

The following day, we were approached by a young man in a little square in the mellah, and pointed out a building that used to be a synagogue. He was very pleasant in his hustle and asked if we anted to visit one of the smaller tanneries in Fes. I was at first a little uncomfortable, as he took us through some quiet back streets, but brought us to a place that was exactly what he said -- a tannery. And no shops this time. And no heavy sales pitch. Yes, of course we gave him some money for our unofficial "tour" but this was well deserved.


Overview



The vats



The vats



Drying the skins
progol is online now  
Old Jun 16th, 2018, 05:42 AM
  #96  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,787
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Mosques, medersas and museums
I love the architecture, with the soaring courtyard; the stunning tile work (zellige), the Moorish arches, and the striking geometric designs and calligraphy. We made a few quick stops outside several of the mosques as non-Muslims are not allowed to enter (except for the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca, and we didn't stop there). and entered at least one medersa, Medersa Seffarine. To be honest, it was more of a lightning fast tour, and we really didn't have time to absorb it as much as I would've liked. On our own, we also visited the Nejjarine Museum of Wood and Crafts, which is another beautifully-restored historic building (but our Dar was better ) with a very lovely rooftop cafe, where we had some Moroccan tea (of course!).


Mosque view


Mosque view


Mosque view


Mosque view


Medersa Seffarine


Medersa Seffarine


​​​​​​


Entryway to Nejjarine museum


Nejjarine museum interior
progol is online now  
Old Jun 16th, 2018, 06:05 AM
  #97  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,787
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Overview
As part of our tour, we drove up to the Borj Nord fort that overlooks the town. It's built during the Saadian dynasty, modeled after Portugese forts, and contains a museum of arms (we didn't go in). It has a great viewpoint overlooking the city.


Fes overview

The Royal Palace gates
We also drove to see the Royal Palace gates, a stunning entryway to the palace, which is not open to the public. The gates are lovely and worth a quick stop. After that, we visited the Mellah, the old Jewish quarter which is nearby.










progol is online now  
Old Jun 16th, 2018, 08:32 AM
  #98  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 57,091
Received 5 Likes on 3 Posts
<<The following day, we were approached by a young man in a little square in the mellah, and pointed out a building that used to be a synagogue. He was very pleasant in his hustle and asked if we anted to visit one of the smaller tanneries in Fes. I was at first a little uncomfortable, as he took us through some quiet back streets, but brought us to a place that was exactly what he said -- a tannery. And no shops this time. And no heavy sales pitch. Yes, of course we gave him some money for our unofficial "tour" but this was well deserved. >>

lol, Progol, that must have made a nice change. In Tunisia we fell for a great scam, so good it still makes me laugh. We had hired a car and were en route between one place and another when we were flagged down by a small boy standing next to a car that had "clearly" broken down. Somehow, in french I suppose, he communicated that this was his father's car and could we take him into the next town where his uncle had a shop so that he could help. Of course, we said, so we duly gave this lad a lift to the shop, where were we invited in for tea as a thank you for our kindness. You will be astonished to discover, as we were, that this was a carpet shop, and before we knew what was happening, we were being given the hard sell by the "uncle". We did not succumb and soon made our excuses and left.

Needless to say we did not stop again whatever disasters appeared to have befallen travellers by the side of the road.
annhig is offline  
Old Jun 16th, 2018, 08:54 AM
  #99  
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 3,126
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Visually stunning! I don't think I've had such a feast of the eyes in all my travels. Simply love the colors and geometric patterns.
tripplanner001 is online now  
Old Jun 17th, 2018, 03:28 AM
  #100  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,787
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
<<Needless to say we did not stop again whatever disasters appeared to have befallen travellers by the side of the road.>>

annhig, after the experience you describe, I would be doing the same thing! Glad you got away without any more damages! That was a pretty extreme strategy to bring you into a carpet shop, however!

tripplanner, I'm thrilled that you've been enjoying the photos so much! I really encourage you to go! Seriously. My husband and I have been reflecting on the trip, and we are both so glad that we went! We really did enjoy the trip a lot. There is an intensity traveling in Morocco that is both overwhelming but still thrilling, despite the parts of it that we were less comfortable with. As I look over the photos again, I'm struck by how much we were able to see. I wish we had another week to have added a day here or there, and also stay in a place that is simply about relaxing. But if you are enjoying these photos, then you really must visit!

One more overview from the Baj Nord fort above Fes before we leave:


Last edited by progol; Jun 17th, 2018 at 03:35 AM.
progol is online now  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Manage Preferences - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information -