Rockin’ the Casbah

Marrakesh September 2016

A few college friends and I decided to meet up in Marrakesh for our 2nd Annual USFers Trip.  (The first was to Bali for my wedding-not sure if that really counts).

I found a great Riad, a traditional Moroccan house  with a courtyard/interior garden on Airbnb. The host Cristina is wonderful and I plan to have a dedicated post just on how wonderful the Riad is.

Our flight was a long one.  I wasn’t surprised that there wasn’t a direct flight from SFO to RAK.  But I wasn’t about to complain since my friend traveling from India had a route a little more inconvenient than ours.

My route went San Francisco > Paris > Casablanca > Marrakesh.  The connection to Paris was 3 hours long and it took us 2 hours to find our way to the Terminal that flew to Casablanca!  No wonder why our luggage got lost!  Yup first time it happened to me… and had made me realize I need to seriously figure out how to travel with JUST a carry on.  (I have yet to finish my claim with Chase this is a whole other story).

I was really surprised with the Architecture of the Marrakesh Menara Airport. It was beautifully designed and with the whole Luggage debacle I just appreciated the fact that there weren’t any crowds and that our driver was still waiting for us!

The first thing I noticed about Marrakesh was how many beautiful doors there are!  They all range in size, color, texture and shape.  But what is common is the distinct Moroccan Arch way.

Anyway what am Ito do with just a pair of jeans a scarf and an extra pair of undies in Marrakesh?!… well off to the Souks to go shopping for local attire!

This in it self was an explosion to the senses.  So many colors, noises, and smells… oh the smells…

Within the Medina are the Souks and you only need two things. Patience and a sense of humor.  It takes practice to realize that your can haggle your way down with ease.  I started doing it for my friends as well.  They often said that I can negotiate as well as a Berber (the local desert people).  They start off at a crazy amount and i go about 90-80% and they laugh  cause its a ridiculous price, by the end i think we get away with paying probably only 30-40% of what they actually wanted.  I think it helps that we negotiate with humor and a smile.  Its hard not to laugh when the local vendors are also laughing too.

We ended up back in the Medina around “La Place”or  Jemaa el-Fna and found a restaurant that overlooked the crowd.

We pretty much spent the entire day wandering the Medina, this was an adventure in it self.  The only thing we had to remember was “La Place” this was our orientation point and then we can make our merry way back to our Riad.

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