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Meknes and a fun border crossing, not!!

We left the campsite at Fez mid-morning after saying our farewells to Robin and exchanging contact details. Before going any further let met explain a couple of things about the campsite. It was very highly rated and the lawns and gardens were well kept but the showers were awful. In the cubicles that had working taps the nozzles sprayed water in every direction except at you. A very simple fix, but neglect had them in a bad state of repairs. Also at night the campsite was surrounded by barking dogs, they did not bark some of the time but all of the night. Without earplugs it would have been a no sleep night. There was an attendant at the amenities block but he did nothing about the obvious problem. I will summarize our experiences with Moroccan campsites in a blog later.

New pressure cooker.

We stopped at a supermarket on the outskirts of Meknes to do a little bit of shopping. We did however spot a pressure cooker on special for 159 dirhams (about 16 euros or $22 Australian) We had talked about getting one for a while and this was too cheap to leave behind. It will save on gas when we are cooking as well. 

Meknes

We arrived at lunchtime and parked right in the centre of town in a guarded carpark. We spent the afternoon wandering the souks, enjoying a drink in the square, having a carriage ride, buying some cookies, dates and nuts. We could have stayed in our carpark spot overnight but decided to travel a further 20 kilometers down the road to a quiet campsite.

Our parking spot in the middle of town.

The main square of Meknes.

Plenty of pottery in the main square.

Could not resist the pastries. They were covered in bees and we had to be careful when selection our items.

Jenny with a lizard, it was crawling out of its cage.

All aboard and ready to go.

Walking through the markeys

Plenty of impressive gate in the town.

One of the views from our carriage ride.

When we arrived at the campsite we were told that the water had no pressure but it would be restored by 0830 in the morning, we did fail to ask which morning. It was a pleasant enough place and when we arrived the only other patron was an Austrian motorbike rider, Bernard. The plus about the site was no dogs could be heard, a pleasant change from the Fez campsite. The next morning we continued driving north. The water was still not on in the campsite when we left.

Our campsite for the night. Luckily no dogs could be heard.

Volubilis

A few kilometers from the campsite is the ancient remains of Volubilis where we stopped to explore the ruins. Only 10 dirhams entry fee.

Onwards to the border.

We needed to stop and have some lunch and we also wanted to get the motorhome washed before we left Morocco, it was filthy. On the way we saw a large carwash and negotiated the price of 40 dirhams (4 euros or $6 Australian) and indicated that we would have lunch inside while it was being washed. It was a hot day and the carwash was inside away from the hot sun. Two men gave it the high pressure wash, then scrubbed it with the brushes before the final rinse.  They spent plenty of time cleaning and the result was a very clean Bunyip. After lunch we had decided to head straight to the border as we could catch the late ferry back to Spain.

Waterhole on the side of the road.

One of the many schools we passed, they were all painted in shades of pastel.

Illogical  border crossing

We reached the border at 7.20 and the ferry was to leave at 10.30, plenty of time!!! Well to get into Moroccan border control there were 4 lanes getting into one lane through a gate. After the gate we were divided into 5 lanes. Some lanes seemed to be going faster than others so a couple of impatient people decided it might be a good idea to change lanes not knowing that there was a concrete barrier. One car crashed into the barrier and then managed to get into another lane only to find that the lane he was in went much faster than the new lane he joined. Another person managed to get stuck on the concrete barrier and it took a few people to get him off. The five lanes then turned into 2 lanes when approaching the Spanish border control. While all this was going on people were sounding their horns in frustration. Of course this didn’t make the process go any faster. It was over 2 hours when we finally made it out of Morocco and into Ceuta. We drove to the docks with enough time to board the ferry.

Our carpark for the night, next to Gibraltar.

Back in Spain we drove to a carpark close to Gibraltar, it was late and we crashed out after a long drive, a frustrating border crossing and the ferry ride. I will write more about motorhoming Morocco in a later blog. We have enjoyed our time in Morocco but time is getting short and we don’t want to rush our trip back to Holland. 

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