First immersion in the city
Marrakech Travel Blog› entry 1 of 4 › view all entries
February 2nd, 2009 – by: tirsomaldonado
As always I read everything written in Travbuddy and I bought my Lonely Planet. Actually I bought two! Marrakech Encounter and Morroco! I loooove reading about all destinations. But this time I am trying something new! I visited playandtour.com and I bought a tour guide in .mp3. It is a brilliant idea, as every touristic resource has a number drawn in a map and an audio file explaining everything about it.
This morning I overslept, so we rushed all over the place to get on time. No problems whatsover, and Clickair was very punctual! Now I am already in my seat, writing to you guys and checking all my notes and guides. Yesterday I spent all day preparing this trip. It is a five day trip, so I need to organize it properly.
Excitement, that is the word that better describes how I feel today! Once we get to the airport there will be a taxi waiting for us.
We are staying at Riad Maison Do in The “Medina”, the oldest neighbourhood in the city. You will find a review of this riad in my travel blog. It is located 10 minutes from Jemaa El-Fna! That’s all for now, I will keep writting tonight… ;) It is time to play my audio guide!
It is 1am in Marrakech and I can only say… Woaow! What an amazing city we have been visiting! Lets start from the beginning….
During the flight we had to fill out an inmigration form we had to hand it in at our arrival in Marrakech. As soon as we exited the aiport, there was a guy from the hotel waiting for us. Right at the exit you find some official exchange rate offices, so we exchanged all our money. Actually I withdrawn all my money from an ATM machine, which is the easiest way.
There were some water drops, but right when we headed to the car, it started raining like crazy! Raindrops were huge so in 2 minutes we were soaked wet! Damn, what a nice welcome! ☺ It took us for ages to get to the hotel, as one of the main roads was closed.
It was still raining when the man explained everything to us, so they offered to cook us lunch until the rain stoped.
The Riad was around 7 minutes from Place Jemaa-el-Fna. The streets had a very lively red colour, even having rain most of the time. On the way I took many photos as everything looked beautiful! Once we got to the Place, first thing you come across are small booths with fruits and other tasty things. Then, as we walked across Jemaa-el-Fna two guys came straight to us! They put two monkeys on my shoulders so we could take a photo. The photos came out great, although I did not enjoy being forced to pay for them when we didnt ask for it.
From Place Jemaa-el-Fna we went to see Minaret Koutoubia. They say that the Giralda de Granada was inspired in it! Right next to it you find the Mosquee Koutoubia and a small park with a big line of carriages. In “planeta finito”, a travel program on TV, we saw that they cost 10 euros per hour, although we don't know for sure as we didn't ride in it. Once we saw some shows in the middle of the Place, we headed to the souks!
Don´t ever ask anyone how to get anywhere! If you do, get ready to pay money, and they don´t like coins, they want bills! Even if you don´t ask, some of them will walk with you until you give them money.
The terrace is upstairs and has beautiful views over the city! In the winter they close it with some kind of plastic, but in the summer is wide open! You can tell not too many local people can afford it, as it was packed of tourists and did not a single local! If you are around, it is a must see place!
Once we left Café Árabe, we went back to Place Jemaa-el-Fna and we book a table in Le Marrakchi! The had two shifts, one at 7.30pm and another at 9.30pm! if you dont reserve in advance you might not find a table at 7.
Le Marrakchi is right in the squere overlooking the whole Place. I guess it is a touristic place, but you eat extremely well and for a very small amount of money. It is true than my mother and I do not eat so much, but It only cost us 32 euros for two people! We had couscous with chicken and vegetables, a tajin with chicken and a local beer (Casablanca)! Food was really good although they don´t have a very huge menu!
If you make a reservation make sure you tell them to book a table next to the window, as in a clear day you can see the whole Place. The only thing I did not like from the place is how small the tables were! Everyone recommened this restaurant, so we were kind of forced to do it and improved our expectations!
From the restaurant we headed back to the Riad! Woaw, I love talking too much hehehe I will talk to you guys tomorrow!
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