Jane's Travel Blog

New Chapter: Explore the World

Tangier, Morcocco

15 Comments

Bob and I arrived in Tangier, Morocco on Dec 6th via a ferry from Tarifa, Spain. We crossed the Straits of Gibraltar on a fairly clear day and the waves made it just a bit shaky for my stomach, but I made it with no mishaps.

Lorraine, our property manager greeted us with a warm smile. The drive to the apartment was eye opening. We turned on a street that did not look like a street and honked our way up the hill nudging pedestrians out of the way to our corner.

Now corner really isn’t quite right in that it’s a alley-like-walkway with a water spigot at the end. This is my landmark to get to the apartment. We haul the luggage up the walkway, take a left and then a right and stop in front of a beautiful muted orange door and we are home.

Our apartment in on the third floor of a newly renovated building with a balcony overlooking the Bay of Tangier. Stunning view! The sun streams in making for a cheery place to stay. The bedrooms are on inside walls, but each room has a window to bring in the light. We call them our Mr. Ed doors. “Willllburr” Every morning one of us sticks our head out the window and acts like Mr. Ed and we laugh every time. Silly fun!

We have been exploring much here. Everything is so different. The Medina and Kasbah make up the ancient city and are a maze of cobblestone alleys and streets. We live just on the edge of this area and I do most of my grocery shopping here. I have my favorite fruit guys, and a few great vegetable guys.

Once out of the Medina, Tangier is the “new” city, with brand name stores and a modern grocery store. It’s a very welcoming city.

When I first arrived, I was a bit nervous about being a woman in a Muslim country, but my uneasiness was quickly eliminated. Before we arrived, I was told  that I would need to be careful. They said that I would be stared at for the way I dressed, that I would be bothered by men trying to sell me stuff, and I could not go into cafes by myself.

No one stared, a few people tried to sell me stuff, but they were just trying to make a living (now they ignore us) but I still felt funny going into a cafe.

Every cafe I walked by had only men. They would line the outside of the cafe enjoying mint tea, reading the paper or chatting with other men. For the first few days, I never saw any women. What is a woman to do? Where will I enjoy a cup of coffee and get some work done? I was determined to find my cafe.

One day while trying to find a cafe, I noticed two women sitting outside a quiet restaurant enjoying breakfast. They were clearly European in that one had fashionable pink hair and the other blue hair. I walked right up to them and asked, “Where can a woman go for a quiet breakfast and a cup of coffee?” They laughed, invited me to sit down and we are now friends. Deb and Sue are sisters from Manchester, England living in Tangier. They have taught me the ropes of Tangier. I now have three favorite cafes. We also were invited to a wonderful English Christmas dinner. Ann, their mom, is visiting from England too.

When I’m not in a cafe writing, Bob and I are out exploring. We took a lovely hike next to the Atlantic Ocean and one along the Bay of Tangier.

That’s all for now. We are in Tangier until mid February, so stay tuned for more adventures.

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15 thoughts on “Tangier, Morcocco

  1. Hello Jane… So nice to find you in my reader and read about tangiers… and your latest adventure that you are enjoying. A real English Christmas dinner, lucky you. Take care and may 2016 bring you both continued JOY.. Love Barbara x

  2. I’m sure you rocked the kasbah! Enjoy the specialty cuisines and experimenting with great spice combinations. Looking forward to your next magic carpet ride update.

  3. enjoyed this. Wonderful tile work. The colors, the sights and the sounds are all I would imagine. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

  4. Hello Jane & Bob,
    I woke up this morning thinking of you.
    Thanks again for sharing J & B ‘s Amazing Life!!! Glad all is well. Go Forth!
    Love, Lynn

  5. Jane, always interesting and delightful. Thanks for sharing and whetting my appetite for travel. Just wonderful.

  6. HI Jane and Bob!
    Tangier sounds like an extremely interesting place, but I think I would be bit uncomfortable as a woman trying to do things on my own. I am so proud that you are out exploring! That is the only way to truly see a place. What an exciting adventure you are having! Are there wonderful rugs and textiles, tiles and spices to sample? Miss you. Happy New Year to you both!

  7. Hi Jane & Bob:

    What a wonderful adventure! So glad to hear that you two are doing so well.

    I visited Morocco 20 years ago with my husband and did find it to be the worst place I’d ever been in terms of street harassment by a long shot. I wonder if it would be better now that I’m older and/or perhaps the society has liberalized? At any rate, glad to hear that you’ve found ways to negotiate it. No question it’s a beautiful and fascinating place to visit.

    Best wishes for a happy and healthy 2016, fun of more travel, fun, and adventure!

    Carol

    • Hi, Carol. Sorry I forgot to respond to this last month. Thanks for writing.

      Yes, Morocco has changed a great deal, I think. Jane has not experienced any harassment at all, even though she is out everyday, sitting in cafes, working on the Internet, meeting with her female friends. We live in the center of the old city, so it’s not like we’re isolated or anything, either. There are occasional people asking for money, or wanting to be your tour guide, but this is very minor, especially as we are now recognized around town. Jane has encountered no sexual harassment at all. Tangier is one of the most enjoyable cities I’ve ever been in. We walk everywhere, and it is endlessly fascinating.

      We will be heading for Las Terrenas in the Dominican Republic on Feb. 13. We have a layover in Madrid, and hope to pop into the Prado.

      I enjoy following your activities on facebook. Best wishes.

      Bob

  8. What a wonderful description of the place. You are lucky to have someone to experience your adventure with. Have a happy new year in your new life!

    Jeanne

  9. Lovely journey you are on. Since we missed each other in Malaga area I am happy I caught up with you when you are in my other home city Tangier. Enjoy each second of the culturally rich environment. Live to Love the Road.

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