During the very early stages of ‘planning’ I do Africa (more like discussing rather than planning) we had hoped we might reach Morocco. Back then driving our big boy up the western side of Africa was on the cards – before we changed our minds and drove op the eastern side of the continent. So, when it came to choosing our next destination earlier this year, Morocco was therefore naturally at the top of our list.
Unlike before, I planned this one to a tee. And unlike before, we could use great sights such as Instagram, Bookings.com and TripAdvisor to get all the information we needed.
There are so many things to see in Magnificent Morocco that I wanted to cram as much in as possible during our time there. So we opted for a road-trip with a rented car, initially alone and then with none other than the Kiwis in Africa whom we had met in Kenya and spent a lot of time with in Uganda during our trans-African honeymoon.
It would be the first time I’d see them again after we parted ways in Tanzania – them heading to South Africa and us to Egypt – so I was very excited.
Sitting on a roof terrace in Marrakech, drinking gin and tonics and talking for hours about all the crap that had happened to us during our overlanding trips, I again realised a couple of things about overlanding. So, before I get to why you HAVE to go to Morocco in my next blog post, I’ll share this about overlanding:
- The friendships made on the road, are some of the strongest and can last a lifetime.
A series of unlikely and unfortunate events had seen us meet in Kenya, part ways, run into each other again at Jinja, travel together for a week in Uganda, meet again in Rwanda, part ways again and meet again in Tanzania. Some friendships take years to form, but overlanding friendships are special. We had never really spent that much time together yet found that we had met two wonderful people and forged a friendship that we hope would last a long time.
- Not many people understand what you had gone through like other overlanders who have been there, done that and had similar experiences.
Needless to say, we’ve told stories of our trip a dozen of times over the past couple of years, but it’s different from exchanging stories with other overlanders. If you tell a story about something really bizarre that had happened, friends and family back home often don’t really “get it”. The tales seem so far-fetched that you really have to know what it feels like to grasp the true humour, danger or frustration felt by overlanders. The Kiwis had been through as much as we have, if not more. If you’ve done Cape to Cairo via the eastern side of Africa, there is one word that will leave you either laughing or crying – or both, at the same time… Kilopatra Hotel!
It was wonderful hearing some of their stories again… go read some of their extraordinary stories here: https://kiwisinafrica.wordpress.com/
- You need others when you’re on the road.
I realised again that you can’t really travel in isolation when you’re overlanding Africa. The advice or help of other overlanders while you are on the road, stuck, confused or fed-up is priceless!
- Africa is a fantastically unique place.
The stories we swapped on the various roof terraces of Morocco reminded me again how unique and special it was to get to drive from the one end of Africa to the other. The places we saw, the problem solving skills we learned, the shitty brothels we had to sleep in, the beautiful people from all walks of life and all continents we met – it truly was a privilege.
We’ll share some more about Morocco soon.
#latergram Sunrise and shadows in the #SaharaDesert at #Merzouga, #Morocco. Almost home with our Rooimier after being on various trains, airports and flights for the past two days making our way home … We’re taking the long way down ☺ ✈ #simplymorocco #magnificentmorocco #travelmorocco #shadows #cameltrek #instatravel #instasunrise #desertdays #Africatravel #northafrica #Africa #loveafrica
A photo posted by Dorette de Swardt (@doretteds) on