Monday, November 26, 2012

Agadir - Moroccan Beaches

We sometimes manage to escape for a couple of days to the wonderful Moroccan Coast.  Agadir is south of Marrakech and now with the new superb motorway it is just 2.5 hours of smooth easy driving through the stunning hills from Marrakech.  

Agadir is great for a chill out.  The weather is balmy, warmer nights and cooler days although this weekend it was 29 degrees C in the day so pretty warm, but with the cool breeze off the sea it's really relaxing.

One of the great things about Agadir is if you stay in a hotel on the sea front, there is a long clean promenade 5 kilometres along the beach to the pretty port at the other end.  This time we hired bicycles and cycled to the port and back which was really nice after breakfast.  The bicycles cost 80 dhs for half a day and your hotel will arrange it for you.  

The port has some shops including my favourite Max & Jan and also a Zara.  There are a few classy restaurants too for lunch or dinner. We mainly like to arrive along the promenade in the morning have a coffee or ice cream and walk back.

I just thought that this was fantastic.  Free exercise machines have now been added to the promenade for everyone to use.  What a great idea!
You could combine Marrakech and Agadir for a great holiday and to combine souks and beach.


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As-Salaam-Alaikum

Hi, i'm writing this blog page to share information with all you wanderlust souls out there. Living in Morocco comes with lots of bizarre and unexpected events, which i thought you may enjoy reading about and sharing in the laughter.

My family and I moved to Marrakech 11 years ago from London. The beginning of a huge adventure for us. Choosing which country was right for us to live in had been an extremely long and tiring process. Having made a choice to move to MarrakeSh, was in itself a big box ticked. We had two criteria lists, one for our business (opening and running a guesthouse) and one for personal.

Phase two of our journey then began. Setting up home in Morocco, also a non English speaking country with a very different culture to ours. Marrakech is a real melting pot of; languages, tribes, rich, poor, city slickers, country peasants. It sometimes reminds me of that place Luke Skywalker went to, to buy that space ship, with all those different intergalactic aliens. (Any one know what it was called?) After months of beauroctratic paperwork, rendez vous with people who don't turn up and renting from an unpleasant woman for a large amount of money, we bought ourselves a villa. This was not in the plan as we didn't want to tie up our capital in a home. I now realise it is one of the best things we could have done. When you've had a really difficult day here to be able to close the door and relax in your own place really balances you.

Zamzam Riad & Spa was eventually created out of love and we hope you will come and stay and be pampered in our luxury boutique riad.



Creating the Guest House

We had decided to buy land and build a country guesthouse as per our business plan, about 10 double rooms and suites. The dream was to create a holistic retreat and build our house on the same plot. We were going to have an organic vegetable garden and provide a Moroccan Spa.

Land in Marrakech at that time, went mad. Prices going up daily, lots of people fishing but not really wanting to sell. There is also a problem here of title. ie not much land is titled and to buy land without a title is very difficult, unless you have a lot of time on your hands and like a gamble. We looked at more land than you can shake a stick at, drank more mint tea than you can imagine and got totally no where. It can take weeks to even get a price. You may be being shown a piece of land that isn't for sale or has already been sold. After a year of this we said 'that is it!, we are buying a riad!'

I had a total nervous breakdown and couldn't talk to anyone for three days. He then said this doesn't have to be the end....... It wasn't I have now built an Ecological Camp Adounia in the Sahara Desert!