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Your Tanzania Holiday: Observe the big 5 on an epic safari & sail on the crystal-clear Zanzibar Sea with a traditional wooden Catamaran

Which arguments are relevant to you when deciding where to plan your epic holiday? Is it the time frame you have, the budget or the level of adventure or relax you are seeking? My itinerary for Tanzania covers a combination of these requirements. The essence for me is to move smooth and with a certain flexibility, without being too much fixed on a travel schedule. This is why I often book flights, 1-2 accommodations and in this case the safari in advance. I love the idea to stay longer in a place when I like it a lot or move on when this is not the case.

Most of the accommodation can easily be booked through booking.com or airbnb, once there. If I have a must-see hotel or restaurant on my bucket list, I take care of this reservation in advance. In this case it was the Zanzibar Coffeehouse in Stone town! Are you a coffee lover as I am? Plan extra time to visit one of their coffee farms! Get more on that here. The farm is located at the foot of the Mbeya range in Southern Tanzania.

How to get to North Tanzania

Tanzania is easily reached via frequent air connections to Dar es Salaam, Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar airports.Get a direct flight from Zurich to Dar es Salaam (I bought a SWISS early bird for ca. 700 CHF) From Dar es Salaam you can fly either to Arusha (what I did) or to Kilimanjaro Airport. Find direct flights from Dar es Salaam to Arusha and from Arusha to Zanzibar for example with assalaamair. Absolutely recommend the airline.

How many days should I go on a safari?

The safari I choose took 5 days. 4 days are absolutely fine, too. Why not going for a personalized safari where you can choose by yourself, how many days to stay in a park?
This why I recommend organizing it directly through a safari specialist. There are several tour operators that include different parks to visit. If you love hiking, don’t miss Kilimanjaro!

Choose an overnight in a tent in camps for the maximum adventure. Feel the animal life at night to truly connect to the wild life. Believe me, the experience of hearing a buffalo eating grass just right behind your tent is priceless! The equipment is great and you get spoiled with delicious fresh prepared food.

In my opinion Tarangire, Serengeti and Ngorongoro national parks are the must see for your Tanzania Safari. The nature and wild life that you encounter here is unique since you get very close to the animal and you can feel the way they live very intense.

The budget for a group 5-day trip could cost around 1000 USD (tent overnight and entrance to the mentioned parks, food included). You can individualize your safari, too.
Get in contact with the local Ranger & Guide Deo from Sirini Safaris. His knowledge about the animal’s life is extraordinary. Having an experienced guide as Deo makes you feel safe every second. On top of that he drives you at the right time at the most exciting wild life situation you can catch! I appreciated very much having Deo as our ranger.

The safari takes place in a powerful and spacious 4×4 safari car with 7 passenger seats. We were a group of 6 which was the perfect size.

Did you know that a ranger has to drive at least 1.5 year as a co-driver through the parks before getting the official permit to be a Safari ranger? Furthermore, all rangers interact through the whole safari by walkie talkie to always be prepared where the next wild life situation is taking place!

The sunrise in the Serengeti park was one of the most beautiful ever seen. Get the feeling of these experience in my videos and pictures!

Discovering Zanzibar in 10 days – Start in Stone Town

Start your Zanzibar holiday in Stone Town, the capital of Zanzibar. Get there from Dar es Salaam by ferry (costs ca. 35 USD) or by plane.
Stone town has its own charm, it’s a place where to feel the first Zanzibar vibes and get in touch with their cultural & food traditions. I recommend staying 2 days before heading north to the beaches. Stone Town is confusing at daytime, it’s easy to get lost. At night time, it’s even worse because many of the shops used as landmarks may have packed everything away. I would not recommend walking around alone.

Things to do in Stone Town

  • Discover the Forodhani Gardens Food Market in the late afternoon and eat your snack right at the waterfront while admiring the sunset. Try the Zanzibar Pizza from Mister Mango! The dough is made of water and flour and comes filled with either salty or sweet ingredients. My suggestion: avocado, tomato & cheese!
  • Go for typical lunch or dinner at the place called Emerson Spice. Get a la carte Swahili BBQ. This very special atmospheric 19th-century house, built in Swahili-Arabian style, once belonged to the last Swahili ruler of Zanzibar and has been carefully restored
  • Darjani Bazaar is the main bazaar in Stone Town. It’s an interesting place to go for a quick walk and buy spices, coffee and tea at very good prices. Don’t be scared of the smells there.
  • Get lost in the narrow streets and stroll for souvenirs! Be ready to negotiate for your shopping’s. Find some unique handmade crafts or dresses created from local artists.
  • Stop by for a selfie at Freddy Mercury’s House. Did you know he grew up in Zanzibar?
  • Take a Spice Tour. Stone town is the perfect place to start the half day spice tour. Get more from your local hotel or find more about it here.
  • Sip on a delicious ginger, cinnamon, star anise, cloves and chili Tea or a spiced coffee at Stone Town Café

Beaches to see & places to stay in Zanzibar – Start north in Kendwa or Nungwi and move south by taxi

Start your beach holiday in the north in the place called Kendwa. Here you find kilometer long sandy beaches that are not affected so much by the tides. Kendwa & Nungwi are well known for its luxury resort, so don’t be surprised to see lots of couples. There are backpacker hotels, too, that work if you are looking for fun & parties. The Kendwa Rock may be a popular one. Don’t miss the full moon parties at Kendwa Rock taking place Saturday’s! Since I was traveling solo I found it bit difficult here to find a good value for money hotel, not too much in the backpacker crowd & not to luxurious. Kendwa is close to Nungwi, which has a number of bars and restaurants. I stayed 2 nights in Nungwi and headed directly on to Matemwe.

Activities in Kendwa & Nungwi

  • Enjoy a sunset on a comfortable hammock on the front of the bar at Sunset Kendwa (also known as the Sundet Bungalows Hotel) at Kendwa Beach
  • Diving or snorkeling! The Scuba Do Zanzibar is a PADI accredited 5-Star Gold-Palm Dive Centre and recognised as one of the most professional, eco-friendly diving, snorkelling and Water Sports centres in Zanzibar.
  • Book a tour with the operator Safariblue. Spend a day out on a traditional wooden boat (dhow) including snorkeling and a delicious Swahili seafood barbecue made fresh on an island.

I stayed 2 nights in Nungwi and headed directly on to Matemwe. Here you are not surrounded by any pushy beach boys that try to sell you souvenirs or excursions as back in Nungwi. I enjoyed very much staying at Sevi Boutique hotel that offers spacious and comfy villas and excellent local and international food. Get more on my experience on my travel guide here.

Activities in Matemwe

Go for scuba diving (the best times for visibility tend to be between June to October in the north and November to March in the south). The Mnemba Atoll is probably the most famous dive spot in Zanzibar. This is easy to reach from Sevi Boutique Hotel. Get in contact with your hotel manager to make a reservation, snorkeling will cost you 45 USD for a half day.

Moving South! Paje – chill vibes southeast of the Island

A place southeast of the island I absolutely recommend is Paje. It is well known among kite surfers. I went for a yoga class located in the Paje by night Hotel. Very much recommend the Hotel Waterfront. Paje has a good choice of hotels offering value for money stays. As a solo traveller getting in contact with other travelers works very easy due to the chilled vibes and different communal spaces in Paje. In the evenings, there are several parties and events going on, if you are in the mood of some action! The colors of the sea seen here are imaginably clear. The beaches seemed endless to me! The Maasai beach boys down here, appeared less pushy to me. I had the chance to get a lovely exchange of personal life stories with some of them. It makes you better understand their background and culture.

Activities in Paje

  • I loved the choice of coffee shops, restaurants and bars in Paje! They are all located along the beach, so go for a walk and try them all!
  • Sail the typical Zanzibar Catamaran and enjoy the wind blowing in your face
  • Kite surfing is a must if this is your sport!
  • Walk along the beach to Jambiani (about 30 min from Paje). There is a beach restaurant on a Pier belonging to the Spice Island Hotel. Get lost in their hammock overlooking paradise clear blue waters. This is your spot to get drink and make a unique photo of your Zanzibar trip!

Don’t expect to see any sunset in Paje, the suns goes down on the other side of the island. You can take a taxi or dala dala (public bus) to Machamvi Beach. About 20 min. card drive. about traveling Zanzibar

Practical Tips for your travel in Tanzania

In general I can say, that traveling solo in Tanzania is safe, I never felt in danger. Of course be careful and avoid to walk alone by night in dark/ remote places. Golden rule! When interacting with the Maasai boys insist on your price since they will always try to get a benefit.

Absolutely recommend to book some transfers in advance when you move from one place to the other at your hotel for example. Arriving at the ferry station can get very annoying having lots of taxi drivers hunting for a potential passenger.

Looking for a stay in Dar es Salaam before heading back home? Book your night at Slipaway, this place is known among expats and is peaceful to spent the last day at the pool and do some last souvenir shoppings before heading home. Ask your hotel for a city tour if you have still time left.

Visa: Some countries are exempt from visas, but for most people they cost $50 for a single entry – unfortunately, if you’re American your visa is $100. Work/volunteer visas are $200.

Money: The official currency is Tanzanian Shillings (TSH). Many hotels and tourist activities accept dollars and cards. I recommend to pay in shilling, since this is often cheaper. Be aware that there are not many ATM’s on the island, make sure you get enough cash in Stone Town when you arrive.

On some parts of Tanzania & mostly everywhere in Zanzibar people are mostly conservative, be respectful and make sure for example with dressing or taking photos (maybe ask for permission before) to not offend anyone or accidentally get yourself into trouble.

During Ramadan, it’s better to respect their traditions: No drinking, eating or smoking in the streets (or singing), no public displays of affection.

You will notice a lot of poverty in Zanzibar. Most of the local people live in the villages constructed around the hotel resorts. As a tourist you will always stand out and a lot of people will assume you have money and they’ll want your business. Be patient and respectful, I made the experience, that somehow they appreciate very much a discussion. Make them understand your intensions. I know, it’s not always easy, because they have one goal in their mind, and this is selling. But somehow it’s a good way to practice saying no!

“No thanks” in Swahili is “Hapana asante!”

Lot of people on Zanzibar say they’re a“Tour Guide”. They approach you with this to sell you a tour and often it’s a trap. If you want a good guide with great knowledge, ask your hotel or get in contact with pal Farid who is the best tour guide in Stone Town.

My very personal Tanzania experience

Traveling Zanzibar made me notice a lot of discrepancies between poor and rich. The island is full of luxury resorts with high walls dividing them from the villages where the local people live. Most people are poor and live in very simple habitats. But they recognize tourism is a way out of poverty, and so tourism is welcome. People give their best to let you remeber Zanzibar a place of joy and peace.

This is why I understand, that all of these business man have one principal goal when approaching. I had situations in my mind where I felt guilty, because all of that was new to me. Tough I am not rich! It was the first time traveling in a 3rd world country. But what I realized too, is that people here are happy and smile a lot more than many people back home. Thank you Zanzibar for your good vibes. Hakuna matata! All will be good.

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Africa

Sevi Boutique Hotel Zanzibar

My personal highlight:
A peaceful hideaway where to slurp an exotic fresh juice and spent hours observing the crystal clear Zanzibar sea

Welcome to Sevi Boutique Hotel ! This little pearl is located in the village of Matemwe on the north-eastern coast of Unguja, the main island of the Zanzibar Archipelago, between Mwangaseni and Kigomani.

A day at Sevi Boutique Hotel starts with a hearty welcome of the staff and a delicious breakfast! Home made bread, croissants and jams combined with fresh juices to boost your energy. All of this served on a spacious terrace overlooking the sea. The African dream !

After breakfast there is the choice to either relax at the pools. One is the infinity pool overlooking the sea, the other is embedded in a beautiful garden. For those who choose a Spa day, choose out of their massages and get a swim at the pool in the SPA area after your treatment!
My mornings often started with a walk along the white sandy beaches admiring the incredible wide tides! The scenery is amazing and nature full of surprises.

What I loved best at this place is its tranquility. Traveling from the northern part of Zanzibar that is more busy and crowded with tourists and all inclusive resorts, this spot is unattractive for beach boys. All hotels here are relatively far apart.
Sometimes in the evening you see local boys and kids playing football, I enjoyed this bit of action in the hood!

My personal suggestions: As almost everywhere on the islands, the beach is dependent on the tides. At low tide, the sea can get beyond the coral barrier. An accommodation with pool is therefore recommended.

Accommodation

Find 14 different villas or Bungalows in the traditional Bandas style. The rooms are very spacious and decorated with natural materials. Little details as a hammock in the garden or private little pool make your stay extra special. I loved to do my morning yoga in 2nd floor of my Bandas and get a bath in my cozy private pool! All rooms are surrounded by a well maintained garden, this offers good privacy between every bungalow. Of course there is a mosquito net around your the kingsize bed and AC.

As honeymoon travelers or family holiday with kids opt for the Villa. It offers a seafront and all comfort you need on 250 sqm on two floors. The view out of the balcony on the second floor will leave you lots of unforgettable memories to bring back home.

Book your room here and ask for the actual rates!

Food & Drinks

As a food lover I was very happy to enjoy fresh sea food every day. The fish is caught practically in front of the hotel. The menu choice is small but special every day. There are dishes for vegetarian, too. I was happy to discover various local Swahili dishes with excellent curry during my stay. Get a variety of raw tuna carpaccio to grilled lobster combined with local vegetables and spices. Be prepared to fall in love with special aromatized salts as curry or cinnamon and fresh baked bread!

What to do around Matemwe & Sevi Boutique Hotel

Matemwe is ideally located for snorkeling or diving at the Mnemba Atoll, one of the diving hotspots of the island. If you are planning several dives, Matemwe is a good choice. Ask the Diving specialist at Sevi to advise you. A snorkeling morning is around 45 USD which I found reasonable, all equipment used was of good quality, wet suit, water, coffee & snacks included. Of course you can choose a service from the local fisher man that are around the beach. Prices are cheaper but service quality varies.The staff of Sevi Boutique Hotel and Manager George are very happy to assist you for any kind of activity.
I would like to take the occasion here to say thank you for the time spent at Sevi and hope to be back soon!

Are you in the mood of more lovefoodish travel stories?
Planning a trip to Bali? Get some inspiration here!

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Why you should join this Quiz from ebookers for your next exciting travel destination!

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Travel friends! Check out this cool new travel experience for your next individualized holiday! Participate at the Quiz in cooperation with ebookers  and win your own trip*!

Summer vibes are in the air! I am very happy to be part of that amazing contest organized by ebookers.

There are several ways to organize the ideal holiday. What I appreciate most is a specialist that gives me a choice and support in finding the perfect location and activities for my holiday.

What runs through your mind when you think of an individualized travel adventure? What does it include? How could this work?

Sometimes we have a rough idea in our mind on where to spend our holiday. We use google to find out more about the country or a lonely planet. We get lost in the million available options.

What if we could have some support in preparing our perfect holiday?

How about having support and inspiration from an experienced operator? A service that helps to organize an individualized holiday easy and fast at home on the computer.

A specialist that has contacts to local suppliers and gives us plenty of options for accommodations or maybe culture and adventure packages. I found this new way from ebookers very helpful and exciting, since it inspires me with many different ideas by using a very simple holiday online guide.

WIN your holiday: Are you interested in knowing more about the new individualized travel experience by ebookers?

Than you should absolutely participate at this online travel quiz. You can win your own composed travel. Try it now! Feel free to share your experience with me and your friends, drop me a line by contact form!

To the Quiz…

Follow the link below.

German Quiz:

https://www.ebookers.ch/reise-blog/Individuelle-Buchen/quiz

French Quiz:

https://www.ebookers.ch/blog-voyage/réservez-unvoyage-uniqu/le-quiz

Good luck!

All rights reserved, read more about the terms of conditions here.
*sponsored content in cooperation with ebookers
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Guest blog story about Top Moroccan Food You Should Taste Once in Your Life

morocco2

Sharing food stories bounds – Maria, a passionate foodie approached me to share her knowledge about Moroccan Food within the Lovefoodish community

Author: Maria Bella

Top Moroccan Food traditions you should discover once in your life

Morocco is a great country regarding travels. It’s further famous for its traditional food taste. The delicious cuisine of morocco has been enhanced by the many sorts of its long and action-packed history. Over the centuries it has been sophisticated into a captivating blend of Middle Eastern, Iberian, Mediterranean, Arab, Moorish, Berber, African and Jewish inspirations which is exclusively Moroccan. Spices grasp pride of place in any Moroccan kitchen and are used competently to make a variety of characteristic tastes to lure any palate.

Shared spices include cumin, paprika, aniseed, pepper, coriander, sesame seeds, cinnamon, turmeric, ginger, saffron, and mint. Couscous productions are an important role in Moroccan cuisine and are acquisition admiration worldwide. Conventionally the main meal is enjoyed at noontime, with the holy month of Ramadan being the omission. Bread is accessible at every meal and it is mutual for Moroccans to eat with the fingers of one hand while bread, on the other hand, is used as a utensil.

 All you need to know about Couscous

Couscous is initially from Morocco and often presented with meat or vegetable stew. Usually it’s set up on the Muslim blessed day (Friday) and for extraordinary events, however you can discover it at most eateries and bistros.

What is Chermoula?

Chermoula is a mixture of herbs and flavors utilized when barbecuing or heating fish and seafood. Depending upon the blend, you’ll get types of onion, coriander, peppers or saffron. Generally you’ll consider it to be a dipping sauce as well!

Why you should try a steamed sheep head

In the celebration of Eid al-Adha, everybody slaughters a sheep and steams that for hours. You can ordinarily buy a half or entire head and appreciate it with cumin, salt, and peppers. The entire head is expendable, however the best parts are the delicate cheek meat and tongue.

The function of the traditional cooking instrument: Tagine

The Tagine can be found in different types. It’s a clay cooking pot with a funnel shaped top. It is used to prepare numerous sorts of dishes. They are slow-cooked to perfection. A tagine can be prepared for chicken, meat, sheep, fish and any different type of veggies.

Mint tea – a well known tradition

Everybody has his or her own particular interpretation of mint tea, which is the drink of option in Morocco. It’s a green tea base with bunches of mint leaves and sugar.

What is Bissara?

Ordinarily served for breakfast, this is a rich and generous soup produced using dried fava beans. Commonly it will be completed with new olive oil and a sprinkle of cumin.

Do you like eggplant fritters?

Aubergine, or eggplant, is a basic in a couple of various dishes in the Moroccan cuisine. When preparing it make sure to remove the wastes. The eggplant is cut then they are dunk in a paprika better before deep frying them for a delicious side dish.

What about a stuffed Camel Spleen

Going up against the type of a sausage, stuff camel spleen is delicate and creamy. It’s generally loaded with hamburger or sheep, olives, flavors, and a touch of hump fat. It’s ordinarily served in a sandwich.

 

 

Would you try the sheep’s head, pigeon pie, or snail soup in your next morocco holiday? Which of these dishes would you love to eat most?

Which of these dishes would you love to eat most? Do you need any suggestion or help in organizing your next Morocco holiday? I am happy to assist you in preparing your culinary and historical adventure travel. Check the page of Virikson Morocco Holidays here

A mealtime may start with salads that are followed by a traditional Moroccan tagine. Mint tea will be obliged either with the meal or at the end. Regular fruit may comprehensively complete a meal, or on singular occasions, a pastry replete with almond adhesive and dusted with sugar known as Saab el ghazal (gazelle’s horns) may be helped. Halwa she bek ai, a pretzel formed piece of profound fried dough, bowl-shaped in honey and scattered with sesame seeds, is also prevalent.

Why the diversity of Moroccan dishes appears boundless

Usually the Moroccan spend time outside while the women are in charge of their homes and look after the kids. This means that you will not likely find more woman at a cafés or restaurants. If you are a woman traveler and you strike up tasting some food, you will likely be invited to restaurants or to a great street food. On the other hand, if you are a man or a man and woman traveling together, you will probably be invited to a stylish or traditional café for some tea or a meal. Staying in a foreign country is always exhilarating, and appreciating the food of the native people you meet during your travels finishes the experience. So be certain to try out the many flavor-filled features of Moroccan tasty cuisine. The diversity of Moroccan dishes appears boundless, but they all have something in common – they are all delightful. When you are in Morocco, be sure to try out outmoded favorites such as the triple-layered savory pastry known as Bisteeya, or Mechoui slow-roasted lamb.

Moroccans have always been acclaimed for their single spice mixtures resulting in unbelievable taste sensations. Whilst in your Morocco family holidays, eat like a Moroccan! Have a look out at this list of Moroccan delicious food Restaurants and choose the best one where to eat during your travel.

About Maria: She writes creative, historical and informative articles about traveling. Her aim is to provide unique and creative content that enables the reader to understand the traveling experience and help to plan a low cost morocco holiday.
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AfricaSTORIESTravel

Discovering Morocco in 10 days: High Atlas Mountains, Sahara Desert, Atlantic Coast

My personal highlights: 1. Experiencing the Sahara desert feeling like a little girl playing in a huge sand box – 2. Joining local women for an authentic Hamam experience

This blog story invites you to dive into my first Africa travel. I experienced south of Morocco starting in Marrakech going all the way through the High Atlas Mountains, the Sahara Desert down to the to Atlantic coast.
All of that mainly traveling in a mini-bus with an excellent local guide and a group of 15 passionate traveler.

On this trip I learnt about the beautiful real Moroccan way of life, Moroccans or better Berbers are a unique hearty folk that captured my heart. Berbers are a Moroccan pre-Arab culture that ruled unperturbed and unconquered for hundreds of years. They are craftsmen, you get to see that in every village you pass by. Interested in knowing more about this amazing people? Visit the blog www.journeybeyondtravel.com and dive into that fascinating history.

I can absolutely recommend exploring this country. As a passioned traveler having a heart full of love I am very much pleased to have left a piece of it out there.

Traveling alone? Consider an organized group travel!

I’ve chosen a group trave. with the company Intrepid. Happy to have booked them for a trip in Brazil and South East Asia back in time I knew what expected me. One benefit of choosing this kind of traveling is to have all accommodation and transfers organized. You move smooth, efficient and safe. An other advantage of intrepid is, that they use local guides. They bring you to spots you would never have access by yourself. This makes the experience authentic. That is how we got to buy the world renewed Safran or got to eat sea food as locals do for example.
Find the detailed itinerary of the South Morocco trip here and get the whole picture. My blog story includes personal moments and highlights and skips some of the itinerary spots.

Let’s start in Aroumd and drive through the High Atlas Mountains after 1 night in Marrakech at my own

One of my highlights is the village Aroumd situated in the High Atlas Mountains. By the way: the High Atlas rises in the west at the Atlantic Ocean and stretches in an eastern direction to the Moroccan-Algerian border. After a 1 hour light hike we reached the village situated at 1900 meters. I am ready to discover the village populated by ca. 1900 inhabitants. I spend an afternoon making Moroccan donuts from scratch. A local girl teaches me a delicious, simple recipe. I feel so honored to have this chance to be the in her house.

Food blogger maniac interested to know more about Moroccan Food

My curiosity for food brings me directly into the kitchen of the Riad we stay. I get introduced to the preparation of a Tagine.
Tagine is named after the earthenware pot in which it is cooked for hours. It comes with seafood, beef, lamb, chicken or with only eggs. Every Tagine has veggies included, too as pumpkin, zucchetti, potatoes or even prawns. Beside Tagine couscous is one of the excellent dishes you get all around Morocco. The preparation procedure and spices used are same.

Cooking Moroccan food at home following the blog mymoroccanfood

I found a very lovely blog about moroccan food called mymoroccanfood managed by Nargisse!
You will be so much inspired cooking the dishes by yourself, give it a try! My favorite is the Quinoa and shrimps stuffed squid tagine.

A traditional hamam experience in a local village – Sitting scrubbing my skin with prestigious argan oil

My adventure in Aroumd continous experiencing a very special wellness program. I am fascinated about the simplicity and authenticity of a local hamam. Entering the stone house a woman asks me to keep my underpants on. They guide me to a room where two ladies sit with their daughters on the floor washing each others body & hair. There the lady ask me to sit down. The girls bring me two buckets with water and a pot of black soap made of artisan argan oil. Sitting there on the floor beside them I enjoy my first traditional hamam experience, as a Aroumd local. I am again: fascinated.

Driving through the Tizi n’Test pass to the Game of thrones village called Ait Benhaddou

The trip is packed with a full program (10 days), be prepared for a lot of driving. This is mostly done with a comfortable mini bus. The scenery you get out of the window is breathtaking and makes the drive entertaining. The drive passes through the Tizi n’Test pass (2092m) still the High Atlas Mountains. This is one of Morocco’s most challenging roads, but the most exhilarating and overwhelmingly drive ever.

Arriving in Ait Benhaddou my eyes are again wide open to admire the houses and landscape. This Mud Brick city on the edge of the High Atlas Mountains is on the UNESCO World Heritage List and featured in many films. Game of thrones fans: The city is used to represent the slave trading city of Yunkai in the episode 3. Today it is still home of 8 families. We walk through the whole village and I feel thrown back in time.

Continuing towards the Sahara Desert: Pure adventure on a 4×4 car

The second highlight of my trip is the Sahara Desert. I am surround by dunes, silence and a tremendous infinity. A feeling I cannot describe in words. It is like playing in a big sand box when my feet touch the ground.
In the desert a perfectly organized camp waits to spoil us with comfortable tends and delicious Moroccan Tagine. Her we stay for one night only. A place to definitively come back for some desert hiking for example.

The desert trip includes a fun camel ride. My personal exciting journey is the 4×4 ride through the desert and the dry lake called Ikiri. The car sliding and bumping on sandy and stony paths is pure adventure. Our driver Mustapha is a professional Rally driver of the Maroc Dakar Series. The scenery encountered here is unique in the world.

A beautiful laid-back city called Essaouira at the Atlantic Coast

The trip coming to an end we reach the Atlantic coast. Essaouira is a little pear loved by plenty of surfers and kiters due to its perfect wind conditions, too. It’s the coastal getaway in Morocco, away from mass tourism and the hectic lifestyle of the major cities of Fes and Marrakech. This charming town fits the bill perfectly. The city offers fantastic sandy beaches, authentic culinary experiences, gentle Moroccan charm and just enough sophistication to make the destination unforgettable.

This is where I discover best street food: fresh fish, figs to go, bread, bakeries with hand made sweets. By strolling through the streets you pass by hip young Moroccan designers, cozy coffee shops and live street music. The diverse ethnic groups such as Arabs, Africans and Europeans enrich it with good vibes.
Recommended: Visit the rooftop terrace called Taros for great dance and drinks.

The culinary highlight of my morocco trip:

  • Buy the fresh fish at the market
  • find the spices or side veggies you like and home made bread
  • bring everything to a special restaurant that grilles it for you
  • enjoy it and lick your fingers!

A secret hint about where to sleep in Essaouira

Dar Lazuli Bed & Breakfast is a modern Riad with attention to detail. It’s located in a tranquil zone close to restaurants and nearby souks. I like the ambience with a contemporary and traditional design. The staff is friendly, too.

5 things to do and see in Marrakech

My trip started and ended in Marrakech. I discovered the city mainly on my own. I got lost in the medina, of course. But people are friendly and help you to find your way back to your Riad. Marrakech has this atmosphere of 1001 nights with its rose purple sky in the evening.

  1. Try the local food stalls at the main square of Marrakech called Djemaa El Fna. There is a mass of people insisting to stop at their stall, take your time and choose what you like.
  2. Visit the Berber museum inside the Jardin Majorelle and the Botanical Garden. It’s a perfect spot to take typical moroccan design photography.
  3. Visit or stay a palaceEl Badi Palace is the sprawling 16th-century sultan’s home. Sultan Ahmed el Mansour spared no expense adorning the more than 350 rooms of his palace with marble, gold, onyx, ivory, wood and semi-precious stones.
  4. Relax in a typical Riad, enjoy fresh brewed typical moroccan hot tea and lean back.
    Most of these traditional Moroccan houses built around a central garden or courtyard. They are as much a part of the city as the snake charmers of the main square. Many of them have had a modern makeover.
    Recommended: Riad Alboraq located in a hidden corner absolutely away from the crowded streets you find a modern, clean and very comfortable place to stay. Their terrace is lovely to enjoy breakfast. The infrastructure is sophisticated and makes you feel like a princess.
  5. Get lost in the backstreets. Walk around to discover every angle of the old medina. Feel the vibes of the Marrkech. Find classic local souvenirs as djellaba robes, spices, babouches (Moroccan slippers), old carpets or colorful ceramics.
    Recommended: La Porte d’Or — an ancient two-level bazaar rammed with rugs and antiques.

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