Saturday, 5 January 2013

Back to Bolton

Thursday 27th December.

We all got up quite early on our last morning. Breakfast on the terrace was a bit of a chilly affair but quite soon  we were able to move our chairs into the sun for a brief sit and read in the sunshine.
Nigel had everything packed up by 10.15 so we all helped him carry his bags and walk the dogs to the taxi. Muhammed was there to meet us and soon they were on their way.

We went back to the Riad to finish our packing and we had mint tea and another read and sun session on the terrace until about midday when we decided to stir ourselves and go and do some more sightseeing.


Inner courtyard of the Bahia
We first visited the Bahia palace, only a short walk from the Riad. It wasn't actually that old, built in the late 19th Century. I'm currently reading a book written by a woman who travelled around Morocco in 1920 and she talks of the splendour of the Bahia Palace as it was then, furnished and lived in. It seems such a shame that it is now in such a state of disrepair in a relatively short timescale. The entrance fee is very meagre but a lot of work needs doing to stop it deteriorating further, perhaps they should increase the price as it is mostly foreign tourists who visit.

Beautifully ornate doors

Decorated ceiling

Storks atop the walls
After we had finished here we wandered a bit further to the much older Badi Palace which is a complete ruin, work is in progress to halt further deterioration here. This was on a much grander scale than the Bahia and it was interesting to climb up to the viewpoint which gave a good overview of the whole site. Many storks were nesting on and around the remaining walls and their bill clacking and displaying was good to hear and see.

The Badi Palace was vast
By this time we were getting hungry and thirsty, so we strolled into a square we had not previously been in and Ric was impressed to find.......wait for it........a licensed restaurant! Quote of the week, "I can't believe we've found somewhere selling beer on the LAST day!" We climbed to the rooftop terrace where we had a very leisurely 2 hour lunch and he made the most of his beer opportunity!  After that it was back to the Riad for our bags, then to the taxi rank and off to the airport.





Preserved mosaic floors
It was a bit sad to watch Ric, Aoife and Emer disappear onto their flight which left before mine, I stood in the queue like Maggie no mates, the only person travelling alone in the world.

However, 4 hours later, at just after midnight I was greeted by a smiley bobble hatted Drew and whisked home to Bolton. Nigel had been watching flight arrivals and e-mailed me to make sure Drew had picked me up before he went to bed.....ahhhhh!

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