“Are you not entertained?”

Days: 468 (6 October 2015)

Total distance travelled: 124,443.5 kilometres (77,294.07 miles)

Another day of travel, punctuated by another lunch stop, at yet another overpriced tourist restaurant…

Fortunately the heat was out in force, reducing our appetites somewhat, so we instead took the time to wander, ice-creams enough to tide us over as we instead strolled around what was actually quite an interesting town.

Interesting sure, but did we know its name, no chance!

We soon found ourselves down narrow streets, high mud walls leaving us in the much cooler shelter of the shade, but in the middle of the day, few people seemed about.

It’s a little voyeuristic, the habit we’ve developed of peering through windows and doors in an attempt to see how the people in these far away lands live, but our curiosity could not be quashed, so peer away we did.

We even managed to stumble upon the means and freshly completed job of wall repair, although the workers were strangely absent, possibly forewarned that there were some snooping foreigners on the loose!

Shit, piss, hey presto! Fresh walls

Some shit, a little piss and hey presto! Fresh walls

By the time we emerged from the warren to rejoin our group, would also acquired almost half a dozen new cotton scarves from a very happy local vendor…

It became one of those days where we were seemingly on the road for the whole of it, but by mid afternoon we were pulled to the kerb, ready to hit up our best photo opportunity of the day.

We were by now, almost at Ait Ben-Haddou, a UNESCO World Heritage site, also a ridiculously popular location for use in Hollwood (and other) films.

It’s an impressive list of films, some more notable ones including Gladiator (hence my corny quote for a post headline), Lawrence of Arabia, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, The Jewel of the Nile, Game of Thrones, and not surprisingly, a host of biblical ‘epics’.

So this was what all the fuss was about.

Like a scene out of Hollywood... probably because it has been!

Like a scene out of Hollywood… probably because it has been!

We took a handful of snaps, before we were ferried to our waiting hotel to get settled into our rooms, the plan being that we’d all wander over towards the site as the evening got a little closer to sunset.

As such, by the time we crossed the river that separated it from the newer town, the shadows were long and the sky a pretty orange.

The ksar of Ait Ben-Haddou, the famous mud city/town that hugs the hillside we were now exploring was fascinating, although as the sun was fast descending from the sky, we were given little time to appreciate it, as we raced to the top.

At least the views below weren’t bad at all!

An evening look out over the ksar of Ait Ben-Haddou

An evening look out over the ksar of Ait Ben-Haddou

With our group now stretched out over the various points of the stone stairway the lead steadily upwards, today was not one where we stopped to wait for others to catch up, lest we miss the promised sunset.

As a result, there was indeed sun still to be seen, as made the summit, a Uruguayan couple (obvious with their mate) our only initial company, as well as the lone structure that sat atop the rise.

A last bastion, a watchtower? Nope, a granary...

A last bastion, a watchtower? Nope, a granary…

We pulled up a perch… well okay, so we sat, or stood, and waited for the sun to end another Moroccan day, and one of only a few we had left as part of this tour group.

Another day, almost ended...

Another day, almost ended…

We’d soon be leaving the desert behind, as ahead lay a couple of days on Morocco’s Atlantic coast.

 

Notes:

* Our flights from London Gatwick to Marrakesh (via Casablanca) with Royal Air Maroc cost us £88.09 per person.

* Our 15 night Morocco tour was booked through On-the-go travel, and costs per person vary depending on the season.

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8 Responses to “Are you not entertained?”

  1. thatsbalogna says:

    That scene does look…familiar. Perhaps it seemed underwhelming because you didn’t have dramatic music playing in the background. 😀

  2. I know these feelings well. We try to avoid group tours & tourist swamped places as much as possible. Otherwise, we go as early as possible to avoid the crowds.

  3. The picture looks beautiful. I love the view of those lush greenery beside the sandy yet strong structures. Loved all those building and a granary that huge is fascinating.

  4. asoulwindow says:

    Morocco seems like an exotic and mystical country. I was in Jordan last year. From your blog I can make out there are much similarities between the two nations.

  5. It’s funny, I’ve never been there or knew its name, but Ait Ben-Haddou did look very familiar from all the films. It is very beautiful. From a distance these types of structures remind me of sandcastles. While they’re impressive, they still seem fragile, like the wind could blow them away.

  6. Neha Verma says:

    Morocco has a charm that is unexplained. The city of Ait Ben-Haddou looks very mystical to me. Those mud houses have some symmetry about them and that makes them very unique. I would love to visit here.

  7. siddharthandshruti says:

    That looks so serene. The sunset seems beautiful and somehow melancholic. Loved your Morocco posts. 🙂 Putting Morocco on our bucket list.

  8. I’ve always been fascinated with the architecture in Morocco. However, these structures are beyond anything I’ve seen before. You are right, it looks more like a Hollywood set!

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