Part 3: Marocco
We arrived in Morocco on December 6 after a rather turbulent crossing. We passed through border control and then drove to the mountains and the town of Chefchaouen, a beautiful blue city renowned as the hashish capital
Over the next few days, we visit the countryside and towns such as Fes and Meknes.
A long swell is approaching and the best option for surfing seems to be the Safi spot. However, it's a 6 hour drive to get there. We ended up arriving in Safi at around 2:30am. Waking up the next morning at 6:30am to surf, it doesn't feel good but the day is looking good.
The locals seemed tense but by being patient, Paco ended up getting what he was looking for, long tubes.
The conditions over the next few days don't give us any reason to stay put, as there will be a small, windy swell. So we're making the most of this time to continue visiting Morocco. On the programme: mint tea, dogs running to the van every time we stop and new landscapes as marvellous as ever.
A litre of petrol has gone down to €1.30, which is good for our wallets. As far as the van is concerned, every day is different, one day there's a starting problem, another it's white smoke coming out of the exhaust and then another day it's thick black one. As the day goes by, new worrying noises appear, and some end up disappearing with the road. Despite everything, it's moving, which means we can continue our trip. "Inchallah" became the expression we used to talk about the rest of the journey.
We're spending Christmas with friends in Essaoouira, but unfortunately the surf spots are saturated with people and we're a bit disgusted by the atmosphere. All the surf schools and surf camps crowd the beach. So we prefer to skip this part of the coast during the Christmas holidays. We head south to Tifnit, a very pretty little fishing village that was still unspoilt a few years ago. When we arrived, it was a hard blow to realise that the village was being destroyed in front of our eyes. Families were emptying their houses, loading what they could into whatever vehicles they could find and saying goodbye to their homes. The residents have had 5 days to disappear from the village, and most of them are sleeping in the street with the few possessions they were able to salvage and no idea where to go next. The military are there to supervise and watch while the diggers destroy one by one the houses built year after year. In less than 48 hours, there's nothing left. We meet a local surfer, Abdel, who explains that his village and others have been bought up for a big tourist project... He's in the same situation as the others, he's only taken a few things and doesn't know what to do.
Morocco has changed a lot in four years. Villages and towns are expanding to make way for tourist facilities. The country is becoming an extension of Europe.
It's time for us to hit the road and head for the Western Sahara.