Marrakech Express

By October 3, 2008 Insights

Yes, since the beginning of last weekend I’ve had that song running through my head, because I finally experienced the Marrakech Express… well not really the express – it did take 4 hours from Rabat.

Marrakech was not at all what I expected but that could be said of much of my experience in Morocco. Somehow I pictured fortress walls, men in dusty djellabas, camels, snake charmers, sand and date palms. Well, 3 out of 6 ain’t bad. Definitely walls, snake charmers and palm trees, but also lush gardens, carriages and more tourists than Moroccans. 
At first glance, Marrakech seems more like a third world Disneyland, though walking through the souks, you definitely know that you’re in Morocco. People and motos everywhere and unbelievably no one is getting crushed. If you have any issues with personal space, Morocco is not the place for you. On any day inevitably you will find yourself in a complete gridlock of people, with a cacophony of smells and sounds bombarding your senses. It’s wonderful actually.
My only unfortunate outcome… I’ve now developed a bit of an addiction to bargaining. It’s less of a game in Rabat, where tourists are fewer (though still part of the buying process however), but in Marrakech, it’s essential or you’ll be paying 3x the price. What I can away with… pillows, jewelry (of course) and some fun photos. And a great deal on a carriage ride around town.