A Trip We Will Remember the Rest of Our Lives

We are reluctantly settling back into our normal routines here in the States – we miss Morocco!

HIGHLIGHTS:

There were many! But if I had to narrow it down I’d say:

The beauty of Chechaouen was breathtaking! Also, there were 3 people who did the hike with Mohammed the guide up into the mountain and LOVED the experience (I regret I didn’t join them)

Our day in Fes was magical – Ali took us on a very comprehensive tour of the Medina. Being from the city, he knew so many people, and made the day extra special.

Visiting the weavers turned into a lesson on Moroccan head scarves and the regions they represented.

His explanation of the mathematics that informed Moroccan tile was fascinating!

Also the visit to the title/potter place was so interesting and we loved meeting the people that worked there and my son got to try to make a tagine on a potter’s wheel!

The trip to visit Mohammed and his cave home was also very special – mostly because he was such a character!

The Berber pharmacy in Marrakech was so interesting and Ali took the kids to get a massage when he thought they were getting bored- very astute! And the cooking class was terrific – even my husband, who is an excellent Moroccan cook learned some new tricks.

One of my favorite experiences was going to the Women’s Coop –Majana outside of Essaouira. The women let us try all aspects of the Argan Oil production – they were all so welcoming! And my son got to climb a tree with goats on the way….

ALI AND ABDULHAK

I can’t say enough about both Ali and Abdulhak – they were what made the trip extra special.

Abdulhak was an excellent driver – I know how crazy city driving is in Morocco – and he was completely calm and professional. He also kept the van very clean and stocked with water for us on every trip. We enjoyed talking to him over meals and learning about his family and life in Fes. We thought he an Eric were brothers from another mother.

Ali Alami was an incredible guide – he really made our two weeks the trip of a lifetime! He had amazing attention to detail – the first day he gave us all change purses with dirhams and explained the bathroom etiquette – a small, but incredibly important detail! The initial gifts were lovely, I think I wore my earrings everyday on the trip. His insights, knowledge and passion for the culture of Morocco were first rate – even my Moroccan born husband said he learned new things every day. Ali’s restaurant choices were excellent – and he worked with Youssef and me on room assignments and meals to make things go smoothly. There were so many little things that he did that were truly remarkable. While in the Fes medina, he noticed my 12 year old son starting to get tired, and he found a friend with a donkey and promptly gave him and his twin sister a donkey ride. We were at a restaurant in Essaouira and we puzzled that they didn’t have sardines on the menu after seeing them in fisherman’s buckets all day, and a quick word from Ali to the owner, and within a matter of minutes, there were plates of grilled sardines on our tables! At the same restaurant, there was a Gnawan musician – that I’m pretty sure Ali arranged just for us! We had some very hot days – especially in Marakkech and Fes, Ali worked with us to figure out what the group could handle, and what might be too much. He was very flexible and accommodating.

I’m so happy that Ali and Abdulhak joined us for dinner at Youssef’s family’s home in Casablanca, they were family to us by then!

All of the accommodations were terrific. I think my favorites were the riads in Rabat and Fes. The staffs of each hotel were very helpful and friendly!

Of course I would recommend your company, and already have! It meant a lot for us to take our children on a tour of their father’s birthplace and learn about the history and culture. They each took away some special memories and connected to part of their own personal background. We thank all of you for making it a trip we will remember the rest of our lives.

With gratitude,

Eileen (United States)

July / 2017

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