A bit more sedate,and a chance to chill

Meknes Travel Blog

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Waiting on a train in Casablanca

An interesting start to the day. Went up to Casa Voyageurs station to wait on train coming in from Marrakech, and it was running 45 minutes late. There were loads of soldiers waiting at one end of the platform,and as the train pulled in the front half of train was clear for soldiers to board. There was a mass scrum to get on the rest and a fight broke out spilling back onto the platform.

A wee porter from ONCF rail company was pulling folk with kids backfrom the melee and we got from him that there would be another train put on. Still the rest continued to cram onboard,while we waited and got an empty express train 10 minutes later heading for Meknes.

Fountain In Meknes
Still we were now running an hour and a half behind schedule.

Bit of a trek from Meknes Gare De Ville down to hotel, it wasn't the station in the map that I had for the hotel. Only occasion on this trip that there was an ermmm.... '' heated exchange'' :-D

Got to the hotel, the Ibis, and I still don't think it was that bad a walk, I'm sticking to that ;-) . Everybody having calmed down, we went for a swim at the hotel for a bit to cool down, and a chance to chill before heading into town,which wasn't very far. Plans were having to be changed and we would have to do Volibulis the next day. We would just spend the rest of the day exploring Meknes

An uphill walk into the old medina and we reached the main square and the gate,Bab Mansour.

Meknes Old Town
 Meknes had once been the capital of Morocco under Mouly Ismail, and his tomb is here , though only muslims are allowed to enter this, but you can see the gate outside.

A few entertainers about, and folk offering horse rides round the square. Walked down the steps and into the souk and it was a lot more like Marrakech than Casablanca , and to me seemed quite European in some ways. Didn't seem to be many tourists about, well none that stuck out as much as we did. Seemed a very easy going place, and here the traders were shouting to entice custom, but in a friendly banter sort of way.

Spent ages walking round finding all the various sections of the souk, even ending up in the DIY section with folk buying lengths of wood or beds that were made up.

srteet up to the medina
 Found ourselves back outside the medina walls and walked around them and back in through another gate. Headed back to the square and went through next to the Bab Mansour where there is another little square that is very quiet. cafe here that has a rooftop terrace that you can sit and watch the world below go by.

Getting dark and we went down into the square again and it was a bit more like Marrakech, with the drums and the snakes, but nowhere near the level of intensity. Nice to watch though and we went to one of the cafes that are set out along one side of the square. Here the waiters competed o get people in, and kept taking tables from the back and putting them to the front to get more people in. They were laughing with each other as people chose to go to theirs rather than the one next door.

Bab Mansour gate
There is however a white line along this side that obviosly the tables can't go past, and the guy next to the one we were in took delight in rebuking the guy in ours for going inches over the line. It  was all done though in such a way that you just got the feeling of a friendly atmosphere in the town.

Went back down and into the souk again, which being later was now a lot busier, but in no way intimidating. We had hoped to come across a tourist agency or travel agent to see about trips to Volibulis, but never found one. Having come out of the souk at the bakery section, we wandered back down the road towards the new town and our hotel. Managed to sink a few beers before calling it a night. 

 
Up early next morning and asked about how to et to Volibulis. Turned out not to be that expensive to do it by taxi. Very impressive site.

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Waiting on a train in Casablanca
Waiting on a train in Casablanca
Fountain In Meknes
Fountain In Meknes
Meknes Old Town
Meknes Old Town
srteet up to the medina
srteet up to the medina
Bab Mansour gate
Bab Mansour gate
Bab Mansour
Bab Mansour
Cafes on the square
Cafes on the square
Bab Mansour and Tomb Of Moulay Ism…
Bab Mansour and Tomb Of Moulay Is…
Meknes Souk
Meknes Souk
Mosque In Meknes
Mosque In Meknes
New Town Meknes
New Town Meknes
Arch
Arch
View ove the valley
View ove the valley
Round the Walls
Round the Walls
Another Gate
Another Gate
Square off the Bab Mansour
Square off the Bab Mansour
Dunno?? just looked nice
Dunno?? just looked nice
Souk at night
Souk at night
Main Square at night
Main Square at night
Road back down
Road back down
Meknes
photo by: baidanbi