Septembre 26, 2002 – Tangier




The train is coming from Marrakesh but on the contrary of what I thought there are few foreigners and it is also difficult to find a seat as many 2nd class compartment are occupied by 2 passengers sleeping on the seats. I will not try to wake them up.


Finally, we arrive on time at Tangier Morora at 6am. A lot of taxi drivers are here to “welcome” us because the train station is a bit far from downtown. With other travelers I prefer to seat at the café next to the station and wait for calm. I meet 2 English guys with whom I will reach the harbor entrance. At the CTM bus station, just next to the harbor entrance, I ask for the departures for Chefchaouen. As there is a bus at 11am tomorrow morning I think I will spend a good day in Tangier. Then I walk into the medina to find a room where I will leave my bag. My objective is to find the Little Socco square (place du petit Socco) where there is an inexpensive pension right in my budget. At 7:30am, the city is empty, I find the Pension Mauritania and they give me a room that has a window on the square. In reality, it is not really a square but an alley that is widened there. This is also the crossroad of all the alleys of the Medina and the crossroad of all the traffics!!!


In Tangier, I am surprised by the cleanness of the streets and the architectural style inspired by Europe. This is a very different city from all the others in Morocco, Casablanca excepted maybe. The buildings suffer from their age but it is a symbol of the international past of the city. From the place des paresseux (laziness square) named because a lot of Moroccans enjoy relaxing and talking endless there, I have a great view on the Spanish coasts just in front of me and the Medina is just at my left. And this is where I want to go, so I walk up the street to join the kasbah and to watch from the top all the ferries that link the two countries. The museum is closed until the beginning of 2003.


At the beginning of the afternoon, I go the Dawliz complex to eat at Mc Donald’s and to enjoy from the panoramic terrace the view on the city and the strait of Gibraltar.



I am wandering in the afternoon to discover new faces of the city and especially the terraces of cafés where I enjoy an orange juice or a café while reading some French newspapers.


Around 4-5pm, the city wakes up and the crowd is bigger than during the day. The shops are full and many sellers offer their items in the streets. I hardly recognize the squares Petit Socco and Grand Socco as they are crowded. Another factor emphasizes the phenomenon, it is the last day of the election campaign, they will vote tomorrow.


Tonight I will eat quickly at a snack just in front of the hotel while watching at the crowd and at the sellers of cigarettes. The atmosphere has a little something indescribable as if something or someone could start a fight there… No one can flee its past.


I observe from my balcony the different political parties teams that warm the streets of the medina with music bands. Each time I am sure that it is a kind of carnival like in Rio de Janeiro.



Main expenses of the day :

Taxi train station – Harbor entrance: 20 DH for 3 persons

Pension Mauritania: 50 DH

Drinks (water, soft drinks, tea…) + Lunch and evening meal: 70 DH




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D1 : Luxembourg – Paris – Casablanca

D2 : Casablanca – Rabat

D3 : Rabat – Meknes

D4 : Meknes – Volubilis – Meknes

D5 : Meknes - Fes

D6 : Fes

D7 : Merzouga

D8 : Merzouga – Tinehrir

D9 : Tinehrir – Ouarzazate – Marrakesh

D10 : Marrakesh

D11 : Marrakesh – Imlil

D12 : Imlil – Toubkal refuge

D13 : Refuge – 4167m –Tizi Ouanoums

D14 : Tizi Ouanoums – Amsouzert

D15 : Amsouzert – Azib Likemt

D16 : Azib Likemt – Tacheddirt

D17 : Tacheddirt – Imlil – Marrakesh

D18 : Marrakesh – Essaouira

D19 : Essaouira – El Jadida – Tangier

D20 : Tangier

D21 : Tangier – Chefchaouen

D22 : Chefchaouen – Casablanca

D23 : Casablanca – Paris – Luxembourg




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Last update : January 2003

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