“Do you want some hash?”
This was one of the first, and strangely one of the least aggressive, greetings I received when I first arrived in Morocco, where I’ll be exploring for the next few weeks.
Upon landing in Tangier and making my way to the riad I had booked, I was hit with a stream of seemingly nice people.
“Let me help you with your bags!”
“Where are you from?”
“Let me help you find your way!”
These seemingly friendly greetings all quickly devolved into my new friends arguing with me about why I wound’t just pay them a few dirhams, despite the fact that I wasn’t interested in their service. So really, an older man offering up hash seemed like a big upgrade compared to these other run-ins.
A full-on Tangier post will be coming soon, but in the meantime I wanted to share a sneak-peak from what I’ve already experienced thus far.
Essentially one large labyrinth of walkways that spiderweb throughout towering interconnected buildings. The old town medina was where I was first dropped off and had to navigate through in order to get to my riad. This definitely proved challenging, as google maps provides only a general layout of the area, but wandering around long enough eventually got me to where I needed to be.
Exploring and getting lost has actually been my favorite activity within the medina thus far. There is a seemingly infinite number of little crowded alleyways that all lead to different shops selling everything you can imagine.
Once I was able to get above the medina and look out towards the ocean, it almost felt like I was nestled into some small village along the Mediterranean. Definitely a different vibe than the more claustrophobic areas of the old town.
Tangier has an amazingly long and sandy beach along part of its coastline. Being from California, I’m accustomed to seeing people on beach towels and in swimsuits in places like this. Here though, things are a bit more conservative and full head-to-toe outfits appear to be more of the norm.
Another surprise is the fact that camels are often be seen providing rides along the water for only a few dirhams.
This is a pretty tempting offer, but I’ve got other plans involving camels and sandy environments for later on in the trip.