Africa

The last stage of our Moroccan adventure: from Merzouga to Fes

Our last full day in Morocco didn’t have the prospect of being the most exciting one. We would be covering quite some road to get back from Merzouga to Fez in just one day and along the way there weren’t that many sights.

Or so we thought. We had about 470 kilometers ahead of us and according to Google Maps, it would take us over seven hours to drive those. Surely that meant some mountain ranges, right?

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After quickly washing up from the camel trip and our delicious breakfast buffet, it was about 9:30 am by the time we were able to leave hotel Le Petit Prince in Merzouga.

Knowing we had a long day ahead of us, we quickly covered some road before ending up in the higher mountains that slowed us down a bit. We had been expecting some smaller roads due to the time it would take us to cover those kilometers, but we hadn’t expected the gorgeous scenery we would be driving through. It was even better than the views we got on the Tizi n’Tichka pass!

Considering we were short on time, there wasn’t anything else to do than just drive along the beautiful views and soak it all in. Compared to the first leg of our trip, I never felt like we had to be in the car for too long or that it was taking ages to get somewhere. I was just too occupied with what was around me. So for that part of our day, I’ll just let the pictures speak.

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Because a whole day in a car with no other sights would end up being a bit too boring – at least for me -, I spent quite some time beforehand trying to find something – anything – that we could visit along the way. And that was when I stumbled across the Cèdre Gouraud. A forest about an hour and a half outside of Fes.

When you arrive in the area after having being in the desert in the morning and in between the mountains in the afternoon, it feels like you’ve arrived in a whole new country. It felt pretty absurd to us.

The forest itself isn’t anything new or exciting; we have a lot of those in Europe. But what attracted me to make a stop in this forest were the little berber monkeys that call this place their home. Thanks to this blog post and map we knew exactly where to go and were able to locate them pretty easily. Although I wouldn’t really call them wild animals anymore. They seemed pretty used to humans and stayed well within sight. I guess they must have gotten food from people before and know that the odds are pretty big they’ll get some every time. Nonetheless they were just really cute and it’s a really great place to stop and stretch the legs for a while.

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After spending a while with these cuties, it was time to complete the last few kilometers back to Fes. What was going to be a long day of “just driving” ended up being a really beautiful day after all. Such a lovely surprise! I had been dreading this day for the distance we had to cover, but looking back on it, it was a pretty perfect road trip day.

And with this post, I’ve now covered all of our stops in Morocco. All that I have left for you -for now- is the overview of how much this trip has cost me. So stay tuned for that!

Other than that I can only say that I really had the best days travelling around Morocco and this country certainly surprised me. I honestly wonder why it took me so long to get there and why on earth the reasons that held me back had held me back. I can only warmly recommend it and hope that it will one day shake off its bad reputation. Sure there are still some tourist scams, but it certainly wasn’t as bad as I had expected it to be. Just keep your eyes open and trust your guts and you’ll be just fine.

♥♥♥ 

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