Valley of 1000 Kasbahs
Ait Ben Haddou Travel Blog› entry 8 of 18 › view all entries
We departed Marrakech at 9.30 and drove through some amazing landscapes. along flat roads past small villages, donkeys, heaps of trees ( much more vegetation than I had imagined to be) then began climbing the Anti Atlas Mountains through pine forests, down into valleys full of palms and greenery and then up up up winding switchback roads to the highest pass of the Atlas Mountains. (photo stops along the way) It was fantastic! The scenery changes at every twist and turn of the road.
Down to the Dades Valley (also known as the Valley of 1000 Kasbahs) passing much more barren landscapes, mud berber villages, crops along the stoney riverbed. Was very excited to see Ait Ben Haddou Kasbah ( the house of the children of Haddou) rising up from the dry flat lands.
We then followed Mustafa up through the kasbah itself. I decided to go and find a quiet spot on a wall to sit and ponder the grandeur of it all. Managed to get a few quiet times while we were there. At one stage I preferred not to go into the local berber home (within the kasbah) for mint tea, and instead wandered further along down the path and found a lovely view back across to the new village. I stopped to admire some paintings done on paper and then of course it was time to bargain again. I didn't mind as I saw the artist paint another picture (he used black Tea and heated it over a gas flame to bring out the darker colour)and ended up with 2 little pictures of the kasbah for 100MAD (approx.$15 AUD) after first asking price of 250 MAD . A nice momento. (and they look a million dollars framed up here at home!)
We continued driving through more and more arid landscapes till arriving at our 4 star hotel Fint in Ourzazate (war-zar-zet)