Well Autoroute does not work in Morocco so no route for you in pictures. The words are; Motorway to Assilah, then Motorway to El Jididah bypassing Rabat (the capital) and Casablanca, the city not the movie and finally down the R301 to Safi. However as always in a new country, the poem.
Morocco, is there a word that rhymes with Morocco?
I have been up all night drinking Cocoa
slurping wine till I got Blotto
Sitting alone in a dark damp grotto
Getting help from a Glaswegian called Jocko
Eating a cheap Italian risotto
Heaping money on the lotto
And checking the odds with Motto
But still I cannot find a word to rhyme with Morocco. Damn.
Algercias to Tangier 15/01/2015
Up bright and early for an 8 o’clock start and the 15 minute drive to the port. We were a little disappointed there was not some sort of Wacky Races shoot out featuring the many French based motorhomes in the car park. We had read many horror stories about the crossing to Morocco and quite frankly they are all untrue. It is a doddle. You turn up at the port and check-in. You then drive onto a ship. You then show your passport and vehicle import doc to a man on the ship. You get off the ship. You show your passport and vehicle document to a man and he stamps it. You are now in Morocco. Easy Peasy, no fuss, no nonsense.
Homie Help: The two Hymers in our party got stopped by customs who opened their fridge and had a bottle of booze confiscated and then left. So to keep your stash, always put a bottle in the fridge or don’t buy a Hymer. Choices choices.
Here are some pictures of our arrival to Morocco
After leaving the port we trundled an hour down the Motorway to the town of Asilah and a spot of guardian parking on the sea front. We saw some camels. What happened in the afternoon was pure comical genius. Twenty people who could only speak English with only a grasp of technology conversing with a man that spoke Arabic trying to get a Maroc Sim card to work. They were in the shop for four hours and in true Bulldog spirit blamed Johnny Foreigner for all their problems.
We broke ranks walked around the town and went for a meal while the rest eat in their van exasperated after their SIM experience. The town has an interesting Medina, not too large and so a good introduction to Morocco. Maybe it was just us but there did seem to be a slightly edgy feel to the town, nothing scary, just edgy. That night it lashed down with rain.
Tourist Tip: If you see a big pile of British Motorhomers in a Telecom shop then head for the hills, or come back the following day.
16/01/2015 Asilah to Mohammedia
Wagons rolled at 10:30 for the motorway sprint to Mohammedia. We started with a convoy of six vans and set a brisk 45 mph pace. Not a lot to see really apart from a Bonellis’ Eagle that took off right next to us. Just before Rabat the other five pulled in for dinner and we left the pack and carried on. The drive around Rabat is a bit of a laugh as the Motorway ceases and turns into a free for all with Speed traps every 2 seconds. We had a bit of an advantage over the others following as we were there at the time of Friday Prayers. Arrived at Mohammedia in a campsite that is accessed along the beach and sandwiched between high rise developments. It basically rained on and off from the time we got there to the time we left. With being confined to the van and the view of the encroaching High rises we felt trapped, so at 10 next morning we and our new chums ken and Carol left for the coastal town of El Jadidah. Here are a couple of Pics of us heading along the Motorway.
17/01/2015 El Jadidah
Arrived around lunchtime after another schlep down a Motorway. The campsite is not the best but we managed to find the last two spots on solid ground. We are the only English vans here, everyone else is French which is fine as they only make a noise at lunchtimes. In the afternoon we wondered into town to see the Portuguese Cistern. This is set in the medina and is like a scaled down model of the Catacombs in Istanbul. It was built early in the 16th Century as an Arsenal before being used later in the Century as a place for water storage. Here are a couple of Pics.
Colour Supplement: When your man feels all good about himself after taking some arty Photos then head for the nearest Tat shop for a small giftette. You can massage his ego a little further by saying he would like good in a piece of tat on display. Now strike, set a quick flirty liaison with the shop keeper and have him adorn you with the item you have had your eye on since entering the shop. He is not going to be embarrassed so you get your item. I chose a Silk and cotton scarf.
Sadly here is a picture where I got taken for a scarf.
We finished off in town with sim card top up and some bread before heading back to the campsite.
Homie Help: The main street in El Jadidah has many shops selling rear lights, leisure batteries and sorts of kit for the van..
Once back at the campsite we had pre-dinner drinks before settling down to a good old fry-up. As this trip has been going along I have detected my darling wife sharing her affection with another. In fact my rival is loved more than me and used at least twice a day. Here is a picture of the beast in her bed.
18/01/2015 El Jadidah to Safi
A 10:30 start with Ken and Carol for the two drive along the coast to Safi. Before w left we got told off for dumping our grey water on the ground. It cost Ken a T-Shirt to keep her quiet. A T-shirt with a well-known Beer Brand emblazoned across it I hasten to add. The drive along the 301 can best be described as a trip through Yorkshire. At the Northern end it resembles Middlesbrough with seemingly endless chemical works before dramatic coastal scenery unfolds. Hugh soaring cliffs to the right and endless open moorland to the left. Excellent. The route also passes beside the Oyster beds at Oualidia. There are mile upon mile of these poor put upon creatures being cultivated just to satisfy over indulgent Westerners. We are Safi to buy some pottery I believe. I am sure Tracy will give you tips in the next instalment. It is blowing a hoolee at the moment.