The owner of the Riad ‘Rashid’ was kind enough to take us to the Atlas Mountains. Before heading there, we stopped at an outdoor local market where the natives were getting ready for the Eid festival.
Rashid explained the culture and the lifestyle of the Moroccans in Marrakesh and outside the red city. We continued our journey to the Atlas Mountain and enjoyed the view. When we arrived at our destination, Rashid advised us what direction to climb so we can reach the Ouzoud Waterfalls. It was quite an adventure and it was worth seeing the waterfalls.
We got down the mountain and walked to a restaurant to have lunch/ dinner before heading back to the city. The journey was spectacular, the view, the scenery was very unique. I can’t think of any other place that can be comparable to Morocco. We highly recommend hiking at the Atlas Mountain and the effort to reach the waterfall is totally worth it.
At that time, I just started dating Tim and thought why not plan his birthday since we will be spending it together in Morocco. So I went on tripadvisor and searched ‘places with belly dancers’ and booked us a table at ‘Comptoir Darna’. I arranged a surprise cake and belly dancers.
When we got there, Tim requested no big surprises so I told the waitress to just bring the cake without the drummers but instead got 7 ladies to sing to him and made him dance with a belly dancer.
Earlier that day, we went quad biking. Instead of renting my own, I just rode behind my knight and shining armor LOL and we drove across the sahara desert of Marrakesh following the instructor and a German couple that rented a duke buddy.
The Riad organised a personal tour to take Tim and I to Essaouria. On our way to the city, we saw Goats on Trees. NO! NO! NO! I wasn’t high or anything, I’ve got a picture to prove it.
I yelled ‘STOP THE CAR!!!!!!!! WHAT THE HELL IS THAT??!!!! GOATS GROW ON TREES???!!!! TIM TAKE OUT THE CAMERA LETS TAKE PICTURES THIS IS INSANE!!!!!’. So we went all paparazzi on the goats and we were just amazed with that kind of scenery.
Later, we stopped at a mini workshop on how to extract oil from the Argan Tree; the ladies who worked there only spoke French and Arabic so I took the role of being a tour guide and translated the method. Tim and I bought lots of souvenirs for our families. Afterwards we said our goodbyes and continued our journey to Essaouria.
Jardin Majorelle (Majorelle Garden) the unique blue house located in the red city of Marrakesh. The house was bought by Yves Laurent in 1980 and the house was open to the public either late 1940s or early 1950s.
When we decided to visit the place, I purposely wore my blue skirt. I know, I’m such a loser LOL. The place is beautifully designed and I wish I could just sit there and sketch. There’s something about that place that brings out the artistic side of a person. The garden, the surrounding colours and of course the simplicity of the place. It is a beautiful hidden colourful gem in the red city of Marrakesh.
When I first met Tim, he managed to convince me to watch Game of Thrones (GoT) which led me to become a GoT addict. There’s something about that show that grabs your full attention and attaches you to the characters that die in the most hideous way. My favourite character who is not dead yet is Khaleesi (The Mother of Dragons). Besides that Tim and I are born on the year of the Dragon; her character is powerful and is a great example to women.
Tim and I visited a place called Essaouria, it’s a historical city of Blue & White and GoT was filmed there. FYI, Khaleesi’s scenes were shot there. The city also has modern buildings where many Spanish and French investors purchase apartments and either rent it out or reside during summer.
Essaouria was only a 1 day trip, we did not do any crazy activity. The trip wasn’t a hassle, we spent it on the beach and had lunch at a seafood restaurant. Of course! Visited the castle and market where GoT was filmed. We also did a little shopping and took lots of pictures.
Marrakesh is known as the ‘Red City’. Everything that was surrounding us was red, the buildings, the sand, the mountains, etc…. I remember when landing in Marrakesh, I was so astonished by the colour and how old the city looked; it was like going back in time. Like a little child, I had my hands against the window and was staring with my mouth wide open.
Tim cracked a joke that if anyone would ask for the location of our hotel, we should say it’s the red hotel next to the red building which is right opposite the other red building. But we had no issues, we always managed to spot our hotel. Actually we stayed in a Riad, in a place called ‘Maison bel Baraka’; which translates to House of Blessings. Riad is a large cultural house being used as a hotel. The owners of the Riad, were an interracial couple. Rashid a Moroccan man and Charlotte a Greek lady who met in Marrakesh and fell in love.
With houses being only coloured red, you can distinguish the difference by the doors because of the variety of colours and designs. I kept pestering Tim about taking photos of the doors.
There is an Arabic saying by Hayat AlYaqout:
أن الباب هو كل شيء . إذا اخترت الباب الصحيح ، فقداخترت الدرب الصحيح
(Ina-Al Bab Huwa Kul Shai. Etha Ekhtarta Al Bab Al Saheeh Faqad Ekhtart Al Darb Al Saheeh)
Which translates to …
“That the door is everything. If you choose the right door, you have chosen the right path.”
I took lots of pictures of closed doors and not knowing what is behind it but I’ll say Marrakesh was my door, my colourful red door; the door that opened great opportunities, the path that led me to adventures to a world resembling Never Land where Tim’s Peter and I’m Wendy.