Thursday, March 8, 2012

Tizi n'Tichka

After leaving Marrakech we headed south via the Tizi n’Tichka pass. We really had no idea what to expect, so were completely blown away by the drama of the scenery. We feel as though we are now seeing the 'real' Morocco. More photos than text this time as they say everything really.
The Tizi nTichka Pass

It’s very spectacular with snow caps in the distance and deep fertile valleys, with harsh dry mountains in between. To me it was a cross between the Pilbara in Western Australia and Arizona, except for the date palm oases and the mud brick villages dotted along the road.  The road was in pretty good condition, but very steep in places with only a flimsy stone wall between us and certain death.
Lawrence wanted this to be 4WD road!!!

We took a minor road after the pass. Lawrence was disappointed that the road had been recently tarmaced as he was keen to do some off-roading. I was not unhappy about this situation, as it was very bendy and steep.

Another Gorgeous Donkey

We stayed overnight in a very basic camp at Aid Ben Haddou, the Kasbah where Gladiator was filmed. Quite breathtaking, and in good nick. Next days drive was also breathtaking.
Heading to Agdz

Kasbah Aid Ben Haddou
Making the Mud Bricks by Hand

We arrived in Agdz and found our camp to be just lovely, right next to an oasis and part of a Kasbah, which is being painstakingly restored by a German architect and his team of volunteers. Proceeds from the campground go towards the restoration of the Kasbah, which has been in the same family for 270 years.

I absolutely love the donkeys here. Endlessly patient, knock kneed, and with large sorrowful eyes. We had one just outside the truck in Agdz, but found him to be a cut above. Being a gourmet, he spat out an old turnip I gave him with a disdainful look, but happily munched on carrots, avocado and dates.
Gourmet Donkey

We stopped at the weekly souk to restock the veg (the donkey ate all our remains), it was a real local thing, I had to restrain Lawrence from buying a sheep and goat.
Local Souk in Agdz

We are now camped in Zagora and have a couple of funny dogs to keep us entertained. The owners put out a mat and table and bought us tea to welcome us to the site - that's something you don't see everyday.
The Welcome Mat in Zagora

The further south we go, the cleaner the shower blocks – not sure why this is.

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