Monday, September 21, 2015

Fes to Merzouga

We had a huge driving day today - over 400 kilometres through the mid Atlas Mountains south of Fes, the high Atlas mountains, the dry, rocky, arid landscapes surrounding the Ziz River valley and then into the full on desert lands around Merzouga, our  gateway to the Sahara Desert.

We saw everything today, including Morocco's Swiss style ski resort at Ifrane, about one and a quarter hours from Fes, the cedar forests and rocky terrain of the mid Atlas Mountains, the Barbary Apes........

We saw nomad's camps and their flocks of hardy looking goats; there were apple and quince orchards too along the way.......

By mid afternoon we got some great sightings of the Ziz River, cutting its way through this arid mountain landscape....
 ....and saw how farming settlements have sprung up along its fertile flood plain (lots of dates!), below the expansive Ziz River dam. This area is the heart of Morocco's date production region.
 I love the adobe style mud brick houses. In this part of Morocco everything is in 50 shades of buff!

It's around 6.30pm before we reach Merzouga and see our beautiful Riad Nezhra. We are entranced by its mud brick architecture and desert style Berber decor. It has a view to die for looking out to the dunes of the desert.

We enjoy a swim as dusk gathers and are then served a delicious meal on the terrace, under the stars. We all think Morocco is magical!

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