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Morocco Topics specific to Morocco, including Western Sahara west of the berm
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Morocco Overland: From the Atlas to the Sahara - 4WD, Motorcycle, Van, Mountain Bike

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  • 3 Post By K3nny
  • 2 Post By mbravo

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Old 20 Oct 2013
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Morocco prices and general experiences 16Sep13-03Oct13

Hi all,

thought I'd jot down the prices and generalities I encountered during my short stint in Morocco 16Sep-03Oct13.

ferry ticket from algeciras to tanger med 16Sep13 from the acciona desk at the port for one person and bike was 55.20 euro. return on 03Oct13 was 640dm. I did check the travel desks, but all they do was go to the acciona website anyway, so I figured it was better to buy straight from the source, both times. factor in 1hr 45min late departure from advertised departure time, this occurred both ways. also factor about 30min for the seemingly inefficient customs processes both ways. ferry returning to spain did not accept dm at the cafe on board.

Cost for 30days third party insurance at the tanger med port (amongst the alco huts after you leave customs, along with cash machines) was 92euro.
Unleaded petrol was consistently between 12.8 to 13.1dm (apparently its govt regulated?). no issues encountered with quality or finding a station atleast within 30mi, outside of w sahara.

1.5l of bottled water was between 6-10dm. tagine was between 35-50dm. coffee/mint tea between 8-15dm. bottle of soft drink between 8-12dm. pack of marlboro between 32-45dm. 25cl can of flag (if you can find it) about 30dm.

campsites for one person, tent and bike was between 45-100dm. less decked out than EU campsites but liveable. I would not consider wild camping north of the atlas mountains, not because of safety reasons, but i rekon you'd be bothered alot for food and money (there are people everywhere, even when there's absolutely nothing around). south of the atlas seems game on as long as you choose spots wisely.

if you weren't already aware, its a cash society so dont expect to swipe your card much except in bigger hotels. watch for inconsistency of roads, whereby even a national road will suddenly have rutted or unsealed parts. watch for stains on the road, they spill all manners of crap at will. on that point, i'd advise not to hang around behind trucks as they don't secure their loads and overload/unbalance badly at times.

when you park in a city/large town there will possibly be a guy that oversights a parking area/strip. he won't always have a badge, but usually has a vis vest. i always felt confident leaving my bike and gear with them, as its their livelihoods on the line to make sure nothing happens to their charges. all they ask for is a little money, i usually flipped them 5dm for just a few hours parking. actual parking lots charge between 20-30dm for overnight, and they look after your bike very well (they usually put cardboard over my bike to protect from sun/rain/cats...oh yes, cats like to sleep on your bike, one even used my seat as a scratching post...bastard).

apparently if you want to politely turn down someone trying to peddle you something (as they often do), apparently it helps to say 'sho-kran'. (this needs corroboration)

police have a presence everywhere, and unlike EU where 'radars in use' signs are present but radars are not, moroccan authorities do regularly setup radar ambushes. checkpoints in/out towns are frequent, watch for the 'halte' signs which means they want you to stop and wait for them to wave you through, and 'ralentir' which just means for you to slow down as you pass. all the police that pulled me up spoke some english, thank god.

off piste going south of toubkal is a maze, don't go unless you have good maps and great sense of adventure, a guide, or heaps of petrol and time to kill. same could be said about trying to make an off piste connection from dade gorge to todra valley, between msemrir and tamettacht (that's spelt wrong, sorry)

overall i found its a very safe and fairly easy place to bike tour and worlds apart from EU, which is great. just expect very little road/town signing, inconsistent roads, seemingly mad traffic, off-piste means just that and persistent and continual peddling/begging.

hope this helps
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Old 30 Oct 2013
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The start of the gorge link piste between the Dades and Todra is more difficult to find at the Dades end as there's a number of possible entries. At the Todra end it's well signposted.
"For sheer delight there is nothing like altitude; it gives one the thrill of adventure
and enlarges the world in which you live,"
Irving Mather (1892-1966)

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Old 30 Oct 2013
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Great info, K3nny - thanks for posting.
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Old 30 Oct 2013
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Kenny is correct about "shukran", with a couple notes. First, it is much more like U than O in it, like in "sugar". Literally, it is just "thank you" in Arabic. So technically "no, thank you" is "la shukran" (where la is like in "last", but is pronounced short and sharp). However, intonation, context and face and body language all play a role, and in refusing peddlers and touts just a firm "shukran" is enough, and is correctly understood by everyone

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