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Saladman
Jan 12, 2010


peak debt posted:

Is it really "shukran" in Morocco, not "saha" like in Algeria?

Can't say for sure about Morocco, but "saha" is not used in Tunisian Arabic (instead, ayshuk, though also shukran). I've never been to Algeria and don't know any Algerians, though. Ayshuk was not understood in Morocco though and I pervasively heard "shukran", which I rarely hear in Tunisia. [My girlfriend is Tunisian though very expat by this point in her life.]

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Shibawanko
Feb 13, 2013



Sub Par posted:

This may be too late to help you but no, we never were able to get our (US-issued) cards to work on CTM's website. Booking while you're there shouldn't be a problem, even small cities have booking offices where you can go in person to buy tickets. I seriously doubt the middle of June is jam-packed tourist season...

Thanks, yeah we left without booking beforehand and booked in the office here instead, it went fine.

Unfortunately my wallet got snatched on the bus in Fez (not much was in it fortunately, just 50 euros, i kept the real stuff in a safety purse under my pants), so be careful. I was dumb and left it in my front pocket, most likely it got snatched from the side of my seat.

Essaouira is nice and comfortable. If anyone ever comes here, consider eating at a restaurant called Miyame (in a side street in the medina, near bab doukkala), nice big steaks for very little money, and the owners are really friendly and seem to enjoy their job.

Shibawanko fucked around with this message at Jun 21, 2014 around 10:40

Saladman
Jan 12, 2010


Shibawanko posted:

Thanks, yeah we left without booking beforehand and booked in the office here instead, it went fine.

Unfortunately my wallet got snatched on the bus in Fez (not much was in it fortunately, just 50 euros, i kept the real stuff in a safety purse under my pants), so be careful. I was dumb and left it in my front pocket, most likely it got snatched from the side of my seat.

Essaouira is nice and comfortable. If anyone ever comes here, consider eating at a restaurant called Miyame (in a side street in the medina, near bab doukkala), nice big steaks for very little money, and the owners are really friendly and seem to enjoy their job.

Front pocket is the pocket you should keep your wallet in. Actually I have no idea how that happened without you noticing, unless you slept on the ride. Back pockets are much more pickpocketable, if that's a word.

Shibawanko
Feb 13, 2013



Saladman posted:

Front pocket is the pocket you should keep your wallet in. Actually I have no idea how that happened without you noticing, unless you slept on the ride. Back pockets are much more pickpocketable, if that's a word.

I don't know how it happened either honestly, I can only speculate that it was stolen on the bus. In the airport I still had it, but somehow it vanished. I was sitting in the bus and there was some space to the side of my seat, and a person sitting behind me, so I suspect that they carefully slipped it out somehow. I tend to be pretty paranoid/careful about that sort of thing, but not enough apparently. I was fully awake, but somehow they still managed it.

Also the police was useless. I tried to get them to write up a declaration so I could at least claim it for my insurance, went around to about 4 police stations with a nice guy who worked for my riad (he took me all around the medina to look for the hostel and gave me free tea, didn't even want any tip or payment even though he helped me for several hours), but the police were basically too lazy to do anything that day. Oh well, 50 euros and a couple of cards (which I blocked/can replace), could be worse.

Florida Betty
Sep 24, 2004



Saladman posted:

Can't say for sure about Morocco, but "saha" is not used in Tunisian Arabic (instead, ayshuk, though also shukran). I've never been to Algeria and don't know any Algerians, though. Ayshuk was not understood in Morocco though and I pervasively heard "shukran", which I rarely hear in Tunisia. [My girlfriend is Tunisian though very expat by this point in her life.]

I asked my (Algerian) husband, and he said Moroccans, Algerians, and Tunisians all use "saha" at least sometimes. But he's from Annaba, which is pretty far from Morocco, so who knows.

Saladman
Jan 12, 2010


Florida Betty posted:

I asked my (Algerian) husband, and he said Moroccans, Algerians, and Tunisians all use "saha" at least sometimes. But he's from Annaba, which is pretty far from Morocco, so who knows.

Could be regional within each country too, although with the Algerian-Morocco border closed for like 20+ years now I guess their cultural exchange is becoming increasingly limited. It's so hard to find anything about Maghrebi dialects even if you're looking. Even Wikipedia doesn't have articles in Maghrebi, which is weird because they have everything else, even Swiss German (alemannisch) and Esperanto

xcdude24
Dec 23, 2008


Florida Betty posted:

I asked my (Algerian) husband, and he said Moroccans, Algerians, and Tunisians all use "saha" at least sometimes. But he's from Annaba, which is pretty far from Morocco, so who knows.

Shukran is said all the time, in addition to a million God phrases that are used to express thanks. bsHha literally translates to "to your health," and is usually said to someone after they eat, work out, buy something, get a shave, etc.

By the way, if any of you are in Marrakech and are looking for a nicer place to eat(~100dh/person), check out kechmarra. Probably some of the better western food I've had here with a dope rooftop eating area.

And Wikipedia doesn't have articles in Moroccan Arabic because it's not really a written language.

Saladman
Jan 12, 2010


xcdude24 posted:


And Wikipedia doesn't have articles in Moroccan Arabic because it's not really a written language.

Neither is Swiss German! But they're pushing to make it more of a language and less of a dialect, so I guess maybe Wikipedia is the vanguard.

Sub Par
Jul 18, 2001

Hi. I'm Mitt Romney, and I make way more than you.

Dinosaur Gum

Everywhere I went in Morocco it was shukran. I also highly recommend Essaouira. We went there with 10 days left in the country intending to stay for 3 days and ended up staying for all 10. That place is the poo poo.

Shibawanko
Feb 13, 2013



Essaouira rules because it's permanently 25 degrees celsius there and almost nobody bothers you with crap to sell. You can just walk around and sit on the seaside drinking tea and nobody will ever disturb you.

Overall I did really enjoy my trip despite some bumps along the way, Marrakech and Fes have a few aggressive idiots running around, ruining some of the fun, but Chefchaouen and Essaouira were really cool.

It's too bad that Morocco has an unbecoming fascination with Reggaeton. Maybe the government should enforce a law that says that all long distance buses are obligated to play only the finest classical music, or none at all. 10 hours of Daddy Yankee's "Gasolina" on repeat was too much for us.

Shibawanko fucked around with this message at Jul 1, 2014 around 07:48

xcdude24
Dec 23, 2008


Couple of quick suggestions-

If staying in Essaouira, Riad Maktoub is a good shout- 120dh for a two person room.

Taghazout is a little beach town about 40 minutes from Agadir. It's mostly popular with Moroccan tourists, and is awesome if you have a group and are looking for a low key weekend. Not a whole lot in terms of sights, but there's a ton of cool beachside cafes, as well as a really nice walk along the coast. Seven of us rented a house for 600dh a night, although the house could have easily fit fifteen. If you're with a small group, you should be able to rent a house for 400dh a night. Bring money before you go, as there's no ATM in town.

Mama Mia and Kech Marra are both good non-Moroccan restaurants in Marrakech - take this with a grain of salt, as my standards for a decent restaurant meal have plummeted.

People tend to overlook Rabat, but it's definitely worth a day or two. As far as Moroccan cities go, it's about as low key as you can get- very little harassment, good public transportation, and decent restaurants. Go to Dar Naji, and ask for the rifisa: it's not on the menu, but it'll probably be some of the better Moroccan food you'll have at a restaurant.

Animal
Apr 8, 2003


Bumping this thread because it may be better to continue it than the new one I created.

I am headed to Casablanca tomorrow. Here's my general plan:

Sept 4: Land in Casablanca, train to Marrakech. Stay in a hostel.
Sept 5: Stay in a really nice hotel in Marrakech (Marrakech Rouge)
Sept 6: Pick up rental car. Drive to Ouarzazate, then to the Dades Gorge, stay the night in a hotel there.
Sept 7: Drive to Merzouga. Spend the night in the desert tents.
Sept 8: Start drive to Fes. Seems too long to do in a day, so looking for advice/suggestions as to where to stay or to press on.
Sept 9: Fes. Stay in a nice hotel.
Sept: 10: I drive to Casablanca, drop off the car, and fly to Madrid.

I'm glad to read that driving is fine. I will be renting an automatically. Never learning to drive shift has finally come and bite me in the rear end. I will rent from either Dollar or any other reputable company.

Any advice or recommendations will be welcome. My friend who is flying in from Seoul is making most of the planning, I'm just tagging along. So there destinations can't be changed much, but if there is something unreasonable I can bring it up to her so we can adapt. Thanks!

Saladman
Jan 12, 2010


It's a pretty drat long drive from Marrakech to Dades Gorges, not sure how much you like driving. Merzouga is again quite far. But yeah you can do the itinerary as you planned it but drat it sounds exhausting, especially for your jetlagged friend.

I would also recommend not driving at night, even dusk (or especially dusk) when there are tons of people on the roads on bikes or whatever without reflectors. The roads are all reasonably wide and in good repair, but there are a lot of lovely cars. The mountain pass from Marrakech to Ouarzazate is gorgeous and man what a difference--verdant forests on the north side, barren desert on the south side. Essentially no places to safely pass so keep your eyes out as you'll need to pass super slow lovely trucks a handful of times. The rest of the driving will be easy (huge line of sight).


Unless you REALLY want to see a sand dune Id swap Merzouga out and put the time on Meknes. Chefchaouen is supposed to be (and looks) fantastic too but it's pretty far out of your way.

I spent 3 days in Marrakech which was 1.5 too many. We had been to several modern medinas before though.

Saladman fucked around with this message at Sep 2, 2014 around 21:09

Animal
Apr 8, 2003


Any guesstimates how long the drives are? That would help a lot. "Long drive" is relative

Saladman
Jan 12, 2010


Animal posted:

Any guesstimates how long the drives are? That would help a lot. "Long drive" is relative

It was about a 3h15 drive to Ouarzazate from Marrakech, then Dades Gorges is another 2 hours (we decided to go to Fint Oasis instead). You're also passing by ait benhadou which is awesome but would take about 90 min to run through. So yeah not even a stretch to do these drives, but depends on how you like driving. 2-3 hours is my comfort zone limit for a day, after doing tons of 9 hr drives throughout college I started to hate anything remotely that long for my vacation time.

Google maps slightly overestimates travel times IME, mostly due to all the trucks and overloaded minibuses you'll have to pass (not that many, but enough to slow you down 10-20% of googles estimate).

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Rynder
Mar 26, 2009


Just came back from a tour starting at Marrakech heading a bit past ourazazete, and looping and ending at Essouira. Pretty country. The tour I did was solo through GAdventures if anyone's interested, but after seeing the prices on things you could probably do the same itinerary on your own for a bit cheaper.

Also I was told that moroccans don't drink but that was a dirty lie. I don't think I've drunk more than i have ever. Just don't be a drunk fool on the streets but that's true everywhere.

Rynder fucked around with this message at Sep 23, 2014 around 16:38

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