We went to Fes, Morocco without doing any research and this was the result…
Usually Melissa writes and I take pictures, but in this case I was somewhat stressed out and really wasn’t thinking about capturing the moment.
First let me say that Morocco is one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen. The landscapes are insane. The colors are out of this world and the food…. well that’s another post. We don’t eat meat and everything is mostly meat based street food with none of that “sanitary inspection” thing we’ve been raised with. That said, our initial impression wasn’t the best one.
Right off the bat, we got ripped off by a taxi driver, who charged us around $25 (EACH!) for a 5 minute drive. Dropping us off in the most hectic, surreal bus stop that only belongs in a scene from an Alejandro Jodorowsky film that has yet to be made. We were the only two tourists and nobody spoke a word of english or spanish. We felt like aliens.. everyone looking at us, people fighting, screaming…you get the idea. This was in part our fault, for jumping into a ferry to Morocco with zero previous research. We had been driving around Spain for a week free styling our trip and were so relaxed that no one thought “hey, we’re going to Africa in a couple of hours and we don’t know where we’re staying or how to get anywhere… oh and we don’t speak the language.”…
After a long, stressful 7 hour bus ride and a short walk, we got to Fes and some angels gave us the name of a hostel (Dar Lalla Kenza, which we totally recommend) and we got there and it was amazing. The hosts were extremely nice and spoke english and there were kittens and everything was alright. We walked along the Medina where all the markets are usually open, except on Friday’s due to religious reasons (which we also didn’t know because who does research for travel, eh? Our future uses do!) but we still walked around and got lost like we’re supposed to. We were told getting lost is part of the experience of going to Fes; it’s inevitable.
I’m pretty sure almost no one ever thinks about the leather they wear; how it’s colored that bright red into your favorite cowboy boots which you’ll most definitely wear to next years Coachella… Here you see the whole process and it smells really weird but you get used to it after a while.
We had an amazing dinner at a place called The Ruined Garden. Everything is as fresh as you can think of and you eat like royalty for the price of 2 appetizers and a beer in New York. And they had literally hands down the best coffee (espresso) that I have ever had. EVER. This was eating vegetarian in a country where they still herd sheep by foot and people don’t know what “organic” food is because “organic” is not a “thing”. Street food is as good as any restaurant, but way cheaper and not fancy at all. You know those grades they give restaurants? If Morocco took that test it would probably flunk it with F minus. But again, that’s not a “thing” and even if a place looks dirty or messy, believe me it’s probably healthier that the Halal Food truck in front of H&M in SOHO.
And so, our Moroccan adventure comes to an end. But not before we endure a completely unnecessary 10 hour train ride from Fes to Tangier. FYI, it’s normally a 6-ish hour ride, but hey!, we don’t speak Arab so who the hell knew that the train ticket said to change trains at a certain station? Not us. Nope. We just rode that train like we had nowhere else to be in the world (which we actually did.. Portugal). So then, after that long-ass train ordeal, we finally got to Tangier, where we waited another 3 hours for the next Ferry and FINALLY… got back to Spain (and hit up the first bar we saw).
Unlike our first taxi driver, we met some really great people who where kind and gave us the real impression of what actual Moroccans are. They where very nice to us and shared their food and joked around (and really loved our sunglasses). So to the leather salesman, the musical instrument guy, and our hosts at the hostel, we say a big THANKS! Because of these people, we would love to come back someday and spend more time rather than a flash visit. Morocco is huge, so take your time if you’re planning on going.
Until next time.
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