Saturday, August 2, 2014

Marakech, Morocco (Part 2)

On our final full day in Marrakech, we hired a driver to take us into the Atlas Mountains, just a couple of hours outside of the city. It was refreshing to take a break from the crowds of the medina. Morocco is a stunning country with such diverse landscapes.

If you look closely, in the distance you can see a kasbah.

Aren't the babies darling?

We stopped at a local Berber village to see a women's argan oil cooperative. Argan trees are grown in abundance in Morocco and the Berber people are very resourceful in using the oil for a variety of purposes.

The view from the Berber village. Many of the shopping stalls in the central square of Marrakech are Berbers that commute into the medina each day.

As we approached the top of the mountain, the views became more and more beautiful.

Not a bad view for lunch! The cooler temperature and breeze was also delightful. We even got to hear the call to prayer echo through the mountains. 

It was a wonderful day excursion into the outdoors.

Later that evening, we ventured into the square one more time for our last Moroccan dinner. 

What a great example of mindfulness - right next to the hustle and bustle of the square. It was powerful to see the locals stop what they were doing and rush to get a spot for prayer. 

The following morning, we had a few hours to do some last minute exploring before our flight that evening. We walked from our riad over to a famous Moroccan school, the Medersa Ben Youussef.

We also decided to go see the big mosque up close (this was immediately after my toe getting run over while crossing the street.)

We enjoyed one final meal overlooking the square.

And we were off to the airport! FYI, the food poisoning hit while in the cab on the way there.

Oh Morocco, you're amazing but you also wore me out. What a beautiful, flavorful, tiring, energizing, passionate, and eye-opening country.

The dogs sure were excited to be home after Jason picked them up the next day.

And worn out, apparently. Ahhh, a real bed! Tough life, Dexter.

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