My Holiday to Morocco – Marrakech and Agadir

As you know, at the end of last month I went away for 10-nights in Morocco.  I’m a very lucky girl and the holiday was paid for by my family and K as my birthday present, which I’m very grateful for because otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to go away.

I counted down excitedly to the day we were going, scheduled blog posts for the duration of the time I was away and – eventually – the big day arrived!

We bought the deal with Thomson’s and, unfortunately, the only flights we could get were a bit rubbish – 6pm from London which meant we arrived at our hotel at 1.20am the following day, and departing Morocco at 10.40pm on the way home, which meant we didn’t arrive back home until 4.00am the day after.  However, I can’t fault Thomson’s – booking was easy, their customer service was brilliant, the flight was great (from someone as terrified of flying as me, that’s really saying something!) and the hotels and transfers were just perfect.  10/10 Thomson’s – good work!

Since I’ve been back, quite a few people have asked me what I thought of Morocco.  To be honest, I’m not really sure what the answer is…

I’ve wanted to go for Morocco for ages; it always looks so colourful, vibrant and interesting when it’s shown on television and in magazines.  I knew it wasn’t as advanced as the UK but I don’t think I was really prepared for quite how much poverty there is there.  I don’t think we’re shown the half of it.

On one particular day, K and I managed to get ourselves completely lost in Marrakech.  As it turns out, after about 2-hours of walking, finding ourselves well away from the tourist area and in the depths of the ‘real’ Marrkech, a friendly old lady came to see if we were ok (as we looked so out of place!) and she spoke a bit of English.  She managed to show us on a map where we were and one of her grandsons (I think) led us back to where we should have been.  This meant we went through lots of little alleyways as he knew the shortcuts.

It was really interesting to see the way they live there and it was a real eye-opener.  We really don’t know how lucky we are with our way of life in this country and, I guess ignorantly, I never really thought poverty still existed to such an extent in countries that are holiday destinations.

Whilst lost in Marrakesh I really noticed people staring at me – and I mean STARING.  I wore a maxi dress and cardigan in order to cover myself up and be respectful to their culture, but they still looked.  Even K noticed how much and he never notices anything!  I don’t think it was done in a threatening manner and I don’t for a second think I was in danger at any point, but I felt extremely uncomfortable.  I also found it really hard to avoid the street sales people – they don’t take “No, thank you” for an answer and they will force their products on you, follow you and even – in one of the experiences I had – grab you.

As I said, I’m really glad I went and I definitely recommend that people go to see what it’s like – it’s interesting – but be prepared to see poverty if you go off the beaten path and to be hassled a lot by people asking for money.

We were only in Marrakesh for 3-nights, then we made the 4-hour journey to Agadir on the coast for 7-nights.  A more modern area, it was nice and hot (around 30-40 degrees during the day, around 25 degrees overnight) and there were a few different restaurants to choose from. The street traders there also didn’t hassle you as much and when you said “No, thank you” they listened to you, which I appreciated.  Both the hotels we stayed in were lovely – absolutely spotlessly clean – and the staff were attentive, friendly and very eager to please.

I hope this doesn’t sound like I’m slating Marrakesh at all – I’m really not – in fact I feel lucky that we got lost and had a 4-hour transfer between hotels, as I think we got to see parts that tourists wouldn’t usually get to see; and that’s pretty special!  I think, perhaps because I’ve never been abroad (other than Tenerife and Croatia), I wasn’t really expecting what I saw and I’d also never experienced the intensity of a male-dominant environment like that in some of the parts we found ourselves lost in when we were in Marrakech.

Overall, I had a really great time out there and it was so lovely to be able to spend some quality time with K without having to worry about the everyday goings-on of life.  We spent the majority of the time in Agadir laid on sun-loungers around the pool and taking naps; it was idyllic!

Rather than write anymore, I’ll share some of the photos I took while we were there – they’re not great quality but I don’t own a camera, so I had to borrow this one for the trip!

The view from our room in Marrakesh – the roads are chaos!
This is the local bakery.  Families cook their dough in the morning, take it to the baker and he has it ready for them to collect in the afternoon.  This little boy is doing the ‘bread run’ for his family.
The obligatory sun-lounger picture.
Outside of the Old Town of Marrakech, most of the pavements are in this condition, with metal etc sticking out of the ground and large holes dotted about.
You can’t buy alcohol outside of your hotel in Marrakech, so I had a late night coffee – I look pretty windswept in this!
During our 4-hour transfer to Agadir.

Wild puppy – so cute!

 

Damart Dress* (blog post to follow)

 

This was the local shop.  No joke.
This is the local shop from the other side.  Again, no joke.
I ordered this couscous meal – the photo doesn’t do the size justice.  It was HUGE.
K only took unflattering photos of me.
Walking from our hotel to a local restaurant.
Camel!
LilliesandLove xx
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My Week In Pictures (Croatia)


So, as I’ve mentioned (about a million times) I was on my jolly holidays last week.  It was quite a major thing for me as I’ve only ever been abroad twice before and the last time was in 2006, so I was very excited about it!  I was also excited as the destination was Croatia and I’ve wanted to go there for ages.

This holiday was even more special as it was my birthday present from my boyfriend – pretty amazing eh?  I’m a very lucky lady!

I could go on for ages (and ages and ages) about what a brilliant time I had, but instead I’ll just show you some of the photos we took.  There are quite a few pictures but, believe it or not, I’ve actually cut them down by quite a lot and this is just a fraction of them!

I would definitely, 100% recommend Croatia as a holiday destination is you want something relaxing.  If you want to be out getting drunk and clubbing every night then it won’t suit you, but if you just want to get away from things and recharge your batteries, it would be perfect.  It’s lovely there at the moment as it’s not yet become a hugely popular holiday destination, so it’s still true to it’s own character and unspoilt.

At a later date I’ll load a post showing you the gifts I brought home for my family.  I bought the gifts with the hope that the reaction I’d get would be “Oh… wow… erm… thanks!” – I think there’s nothing better than a tacky holiday present!  I’m seeing my family this weekend to hand the gifts over, so I’ll post an update next week showing you what I got them all.

Finished work on Friday and cracked open a bottle
for my first official drink of my holiday!
Any other time, setting an alarm for
this time would make me cry.  To go to
the airport it’s brilliant!
Breakfast by the Marina when we got off the plane.
We decided to explore.  This photo doesn’t
do the steepness of this path justice.  I also
didn’t think the “we have to walk back up this”
part of the journey through.  Ouch.
This was at the bottom of the path – the totally
calm and still waters of the Adriatic Sea.
How very British of us.  Fully clothed sitting with
our feet dangling above the water.  (We were too
early for check-in so had to wander round in our
travelling clothes for 4 hours)
Our apartment.
Seget – where we stayed.
It’s practically Holiday Law to take photos
like this, isn’t it?
Cocktails overlooking the water – perfection!
This dog’s owner was trying to teach him to swim;
he was having none of it.
Loved this guard dog sleeping on top of his kennel!
These Cacti were huge – over 5ft tall!
A rickety old jetty in the town of Trogir.
A random dog in the middle of the pavement.
This was a totally normal sight over there.
Pinocchio dessert?

 

Or perhaps you’d favour a Mexican?
The buildings in Croatia are just so pretty
and interesting to look at.
Big beer for him and the strongest cocktail in the
world for me.
Stunning architecture in the town of Split

 

On the left – sat outside a fancy restaurant waiting for dinner.
On the right – inside the Underground Halls in Split.

 

Lots of little alleyways and walkways in Split.
Legend has it that if you rub the statues big toe
it will bring you good luck.
There were quite a few of these ornate wooden
ships at the docks.
There were lots of wild kittens running around
in Split too – so cute!
Cheesy grin while I have a drink on the seafront.
I had to drink this glass of wine – it was looking
at me!
We think the dark smudge at the top left of the
water was a dolphin.  Although we aren’t sure.
No idea what these big stone chairs were for,
but there were a few of them on the sea front in Split.
Waiting for our taxi for a night out in Trogir.
Trogir Cathedral.  Every night, in the courtyard
outside it, there’s live music and cocktails being
served.  Totally idyllic and magical.


I can’t believe we’re home already but it was the most perfect birthday present I could wish for.

I heart Croatia.
LilliesandLove xx
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