Friday, August 19, 2011

Morocco: Rabat and Casablanca

I have a couple of years planning to get to Morocco, but somehow it did not develop. This year, I came to Spain for my birthday for a friend who lives just an hour's drive from Tarifa - Spanish town, where a ferry to Morocco. I took the opportunity and together with [Info] Marat swept across Africa.

For 4 days we traveled more than 3 thousand miles on Highway Moroccan, mountain serpentines and country roads. Visited the Atlantic coast, in the Atlas Mountains and Sahara Desert. The first cities in our paths have become the capital of Morocco, Rabat and Casablanca ...

The ferry to Tangier from tariffs is only 35 minutes. During this time, you should manage to defend the turn to the window with the Moroccan pasportistom and get a stamp in your passport on arrival:




In Tangiers, a lot of new buildings. The impression is that you get a giant construction site. The city itself is very dirty and littered.

Visa requirements for Russian citizens do not need it, but to pass the customs proved to be difficult. As soon as we left the ferry, ran up to us people with badges who "helped" us to pass the customs. Each of them asked to see our papers, said something in French or Spanish, and then ended up communicating only phrase in English, which is all they know: "Give me good tip". English in the country in general, nobody knows. All speak French or Spanish a little.

Begging in Morocco elevated to the rank of general craft and honed by all visitors. Come up and ask for money for anything - how to ask the time. Money asked all segments of the male population of all ages.

Get rid of small tip we have not succeeded, and I was first sent to any window, where the customs officer did not appear until after 40 minutes, with every 5 minutes ran up to me with an employee badge, watching my papers, looked into the empty box and said: "One minute! ", then ends with the phrase:" Give me good tip ", and then I was sent to search the car.

At this time some wise guy was trying to separate my friends that I was forced to disembark at the gate customs. He told them that I had trouble with the police and asked for 500 euros, to be settled. Was sent.


Hour and a half later we finally managed to get through customs and we moved down the coast towards Rabat. In fact, we decided to Tangier on the way there will not stop.

Unfortunately, to take a good car in Spain is difficult and extremely expensive, so I asked the Moscow office of my favorite Audi Q7, which we have somehow traveled to the United States . If it does not, then I would have been much more difficult to spend 12 hours driving each day:


Before we arrived in Rabat with no problems. It's funny that when moving to south temperature dropped all the time, and if it was 33 in Tangier, Rabat is 23 and cloudy.

The road to Rabat, rarely went out to the ocean, and near it we saw only on the waterfront of the old city. Our attention was attracted by the fishermen, casting their gear into a raging ocean:



This photo looks like a shot of Godzilla, when early in the film fisherman threw his rod, and the water came from a huge eye lizard:


About how I shot these waves and what it cost me, I already wrote here :



And this is the last shot, which managed to make my 5D before finally dying:


Once we were settled in a hotel, we had less than an hour out to stroll around the city:


Old walled city and its main street turned into a market:




Clean and well-groomed waterfront discordant with the rest of the city:




Satellite parabolic like mushrooms after rain clung to the roof mushroom all residential buildings of Moroccan towns:


Even local residents "favelas" can not live without satellite TV:


The main attraction today is the mosque of Casablanca's Hassan II. This is one of the largest mosques in the world. It accommodates 25 000 people + 80 000 can pray in the square outside the mosque:


It is built over the ocean, and at low tide you can walk on the sea floor and watch the crab melenkimi:


The mosque was opened in 1993 and built in just 3 years. By the work was drawn thousands of 2500 construction workers and 10,000 graphic designers:


Hassan II Mosque is the highest religious building in the world. The exact cost of construction was not disclosed, but experts estimate it is 800 million dollars, and all the money was raised through donations from:


In the basement of the mosque believers can bathe before prayer:




On the first floor houses the 20,000 faithful and even 5000 can be accommodated on the balconies. Heated floor. Marble columns imported from Italy, and 50-ton glass chandelier from Venice:


In good weather, pushing the ceiling as the roof over the stadium for additional lighting and ventilation systems:


The mosque has an African accent. Patterns and colors give it belongs to the "forgotten continent":


All doors are imported from Russia and are made of titanium:


Doors a lot and they are very high. Even I am afraid to assume how much they cost:


In Casablanca we had a little time, and we just rolled down the main streets:



More from the mosque, I spotted a beacon. As soon as we pulled up to him, from a neighboring house keeper ran out and offered us a tour of the lighthouse for a small fee:






Casablanca from a height of the lighthouse. In the distance see the beach:


Under our regular "favela":


In most homes in Morocco are very small window. ACs do not, and it is done in order to not let the heat in the house:


Near the lighthouse, we found an excellent restaurant with Moroccan cuisine overlooking the ocean. Y [Info] Marat will be a separate post about food from this restaurant.

The girls at the next table were Qatar Airways air hostess and one of them was Russian. She became the only Russian man whom we met in Morocco:


So in conclusion, the promenade in Casablanca:


And its urban beach. He capitalized on this photo:




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