Michael and Pam's Travels Our European Motorhome Adventures and other Travels

وداع المغرب, Morocco 🇲🇦 2019

Date: 27-28th September 2019

Travelled: 238 kms from Asilah in Morocco to Ronda in Spain

Visited: Just the road

Stayed: Ronda municipal aire, €10. the usual services. N36.75211, W05.14749

Budget: 110 days @ €74 per day

After departing Casablanca, we continued north along the coast staying overnight in Mohammedia planning on visiting Rabat the next day,

Map of Mohammedia, the icon on our parking spot

On the beach in Mohammedia.
Ocean Blue Camping, Mohammedia. Your average dusty Moroccan campsite, but it had good shade and security.

However next morning Pam was still feeling a little unwell so we pass Rabat by continued to push on north. It’s a long driving day (272 kms) to Asilah. We take the tollway for most of the day, costing us the equivalent of €18. There is very little traffic at that price.

A very flash looking bridge.
A less flashy looking bridge.

Arriving in Asilah we flip a coin (there are two campsites in Asilah, right next to each other) and drive into Camping Echrigui (€8 all services) N35.47226, W06.02860. Another very tired Moroccan campsite across the road from the beach.

Map of Asilah, the icon on our parking spot

On the beach in Asilah
We gave Cinderella a wave.

Pam is feeling much better this morning, avoiding an expensive medivac back to OZ. We feel we can tick Morocco off our bucket list, and make a run for Ceuta and the ferry back to Spain. Our flight home is less than 3 weeks away and a leisurely trip through Spain is more appealing that driving 500 kms a day to make our ferry booking in Bilbao.

Doesn’t look very 3rd world from here. Travelling east towards the port city of Tangier Med.
Past the port of Tangier Med the hills rise steeply into a low mountain range.

We make the steep descent to Ceuta and the Spanish border. We use the last of our Moroccan Dirham to fuel up the Hymer with cheap diesel. The Dirham (cash notes and coin) has no value outside Morocco and cannot be exchanged, so it’s a use it or loose it.

The queue starts about 200m from the frontier. The tension starts to build from here.

I cannot explain the chaos that is crossing the border from Morocco to Spanish Ceuta. Two lanes of road width become four lanes of cars, it’s mirror scrapping mirror every time we move forward which is only every 5-10 minutes. Of course the Hymer is a lot wider than the average Moroccan car. Finally we can see a gate with a couple of policeman. The gate is only opened about 2 m wide so four lane turn into one.

Finally through the gate after an hour we then divide again into 6 lanes leading to the Moroccan immigration gates. We pick a lane and drive up. Several minutes later there is a scuffle at the back of the Hymer. I go back to find a young man of African appearance has secreted himself under the scooter cover. He tries to run only to be caught and marched off by police.

I know a photo would be better but there are signs everywhere stating no photos and no cameras.

We finally make it through immigration, our vehicle is checked by customs and we roll forwards to the Spanish side and get waved straight through. We drive straight to the ferry port only to find we have just missed the ferry and must wait for 3 hours for the next one.

So we drive back into Ceuta, do a quick Lidl shop, before returning to the port and parking in the shade. A couple of hours later we queue for the ferry. 15 minutes later Pam tells me someone in another motorhome behind us is waving at us. I jump up and go out the back door as another young man of African appearance comes out from under the scooter cover and runs off.

So I stand guard at the back of the Hymer until we load some 15 minutes later.

Never been so glad to see a ferry ramp !

We roll off into mainland Spain, glad to see that part of the day behind us. We have the co-ordinates for an aire in Ronda in the GPS and we go straight onto the freeway. It’s a 90 minute drive to Ronda initially along the coast east toward Malaga, then into Serrania de Ronda mountains. The drive through the mountains is beautiful but we’re tired and just want to be there safely.

We arrive in Ronda in time to set the Hymer level and plug into electricity before dark. Feels good to be back in Spain, but we did enjoy Morocco.

Morocco a quick summary.

We spent 12 days in Morocco, driving 1679 kms, staying in 6 different locations. Whilst diesel is cheaper and food less expensive than Europe, our daily costs were on average with our expenses this year. Entertainment was expensive, most entry fees were €7pp (foreigner rate). They add up quickly, restaurant meals were more expensive than we thought, given there is no alcohol. Always felt safe, didn’t get uncomfortably hassled by anyone.

Not so good was the anxiety of the border crossings and the dick who walked himself into the Hymer’s mirror in Casablanca.

Michael and Pam

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