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 Post subject: Morocco!
PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 6:24 pm 
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Invented Vegan Meringue
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PPKers who have been to Morocco, I seek your wisdom!

Boyfriend and I will be there for a week in mid-January, after a month-long European adventure. We've ferrying over from Spain, and flying out of Casablanca a week later. We're not particularly keen on spending more time than necessary in either Tangier or Casablanca, so we'd thought of heading straight to Chefchaouen for a day, then somewhere else for a couple of days, then Marrakech. Where should that somewhere else be? Lonely Planet ranks Fes really highly, but I kind of get the impression that I wouldn't like it there. And the leather tanneries sound super gross. Boyfriend seems keen on Rabat, but I hadn't really considered it.

Regale me with your stories and recommendations!

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 Post subject: Re: Morocco!
PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 6:51 pm 
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I loved Morocco! I checked out Amey's blog, before going and definitely can recommend that. http://veganeatsandtreats.blogspot.com/ ... -fool.html

Marrakech has the Earth Cafe a great vegan restaurant, that I loved and wish I'd gone to more than once. Casablanca really has nothing particularly exciting - its very metropolitan and apart from the giant modern mosque built over the ocean really isn't that spectacular. I'd miss it in favor of other places. The leather tanneries stink and like the carpet stores are basically a huge and annoying sales pitch.

My absolute favorite place was the desert. we got a driver and headed into the Sahara, and it was just surreal and beautiful.

Our hotel:
Image

Our guide:
Image

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 Post subject: Re: Morocco!
PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 7:28 pm 
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Ahh I was thisclose to going when you are going but costs worked out better for Portugal. Please post all about it when you come back! I've been dying to go there for years. Tofulish those pictures are great. I love the second one because at first you're like 'oh it's a guy', but then you're all 'holy crepe there's a desert behind him' :)

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 Post subject: Re: Morocco!
PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 3:44 pm 
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I spent a few weeks in Morocco and split the time between Fes and Rabat. I far preferred Rabat, and would definitely recommend it. I am well-traveled and have lived in three different countries, but found Fes really intimidating and disorienting. I stayed in the Medina (which is part of the point of going to Fes), and found the tall ambling walls with no markings really difficult to navigate, and due to reports of muggings I didn't go out much after dark since even on day four I couldn't find the way back to my Riad easily. I felt in Fes more than anywhere else that I visited that I was reliant on guides, and I hated that. It's clearly a lovely city, and the trip to Volubulis is entirely worth it, but I didn't actually have that much fun there. If you do choose Fes, I quite liked the Riad where I stayed, and have some restaurant recommendations. Rabat is on the water, has a much smaller and easier-to-navigate (for a foreigner) Medina, and stunning architecture. There are also great ruins there, and other sights. You could in theory do both Rabat and Fes--it's a three or four hour train ride between the two. Amey's blog was also really helpful for me for food!

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 Post subject: Re: Morocco!
PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 5:15 pm 
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Thanks molasses jane, that's super helpful. It pretty much confirmed everything I was thinking about Fes, particularly the thing about guides. I think at this stage we're thinking about heading from Chefchaouen to Rabat, and stopping at Volubilis for a half-day or so on the way (since I really want to go there).

I had a look at Amey's blog a while ago, it's awesome! I can't wait for all those olives.

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 Post subject: Re: Morocco!
PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 6:23 pm 
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We've been to Chefchaouen, Fes, and Marrakech. In Chef, we ate a couple of times at the restaurant associated with the Riad we stayed in. They were accommodating to veganism. we also ate a restaurant close to the main square as well that was really good. During our time in Morocco we ate lots of bread, veggie tagines, and couscous. There wasn't many options other than that at times. We were pretty done with tagines and couscous at the end of 3 weeks. (but there are worse problems to have, for sure). To be honest, we didn't grill restaurants about broth that the couscous or tagine would have been cooked in.....we decided to let that go.....or whether there was butter/dairy in the bread. We did have some nice veggie harira soup (again, don't know about broth) and there are some great eggplant salads (and salads in general, too).

In Marrakech there was a restaurant called Tagin or Tangier or something like that. It's a beautiful restaurant and quite well known, I think.Very modern, lots of black and white accents. We ordered this salad plate and there were about 15 little salads in 15 little dishes (5 dishes across X 3 dishes down). It was so delicious and beautiful.

Fes is really something else. I understand what molasses jane is saying. The medina is really chaotic, ancient, polluted, crazy, wonderful/awful all at the same time. Lots of men sitting in cafes, not many women out. Air is oppressive in medina, and one (we) could feel oppression in other ways, too. Very interesting place.


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 Post subject: Re: Morocco!
PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2011 11:50 am 
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Yeah, I really liked Rabat. It's a "normal" place with normal people, so it's less hellbent on selling you caftans and such every five feet. There is a small but gentle tourism industry. We spent 3 days there I think, and had a great time just cruising around, exploring, interacting with people. There's an AMAZING place there called Chellah that has 3 different epochs of ruins all built on top of eachother and now it's overgrown and full of storks and wild flowers and it was probably one of my favorite things from our whole trip to Morroco. Magical and fun.

I liked Fez (though we stayed outside the Medina), but I also don't really disagree with what anyone here has said about it. Generally I really like places that offer the advantages of the main attractions, without so many attractants! We spent one night in Meknes, another one of the old Imperial Cities, and I really wish we'd had more time there. I LOVED what I saw of it. It was hustling and full of action and had a lively Medina and a nice non-Medina part of town. It's really a Berber town too, which made for lovely people watching.

Have fun!

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