Article Published on July 07 in Top Five Lists

Morocco has literally hundreds of special events throughout the year. While many of them are religious in nature, some are specific to the harvests. Here’s our Top 5 list of Harvest Festivals you don’t want to miss!

 

1.  Rose Festival: The M’gouna Valley becomes as bustling with humanity as it is fragrant with rose near the end of April and beginning of May. The festival features song, dance, food, and of course, all kinds of rose perfumes and cosmetics.

2.  Cherry Festival: Sefrou is the cherry capital of Morocco, and those that tend the groves of trees there like to let lose for a  few days after the harvest is complete in June. This festival is particularly known for its folk performers.

3.  Honey Festival: Taking place in mid-August in Immouzzer des Ida Outanane near Agadir, this festival is big on folk music and of course, food.  Many varieties of honey are on hand for exhibition and sampling, so culinary delights abound.

4.  Date Festival: Given as a sign of welcome to visitors, dates epitomize the hospitality of Morocco. The Date Festival is the southern town of Erfoud, held every September, is a time when many different tribes from the region gather for music, dance, and food.

5.  Olive Harvest Festival: In many of the villages that surround the town of Ouzoud (and the waterfalls for which they’re known), mid-December is a time for celebrating the olive harvest. Just follow the shouts of the young local boys, who climb the olive tree branches to shake them and let loose the olives.

 

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Article Published on July 05 in Snapshots!

Gardens at the Royal Palace

Moroccans love their gardens! Those pictured above line the outer walls of the palace in Rabat, home to the royal family.  Some of the best known gardens, however, belong to Marrakech.  One of these is the Menara Gardens, which has been in existence since the 12th century.  It originally began its life as an orchard of palms, olive trees, and fruit trees, dotted with pools and pavilions, and little has changed since that time.  Another must-see garden for anyone even remotely interested in horticulture is the Jardins Majorelle.  The gardens get their name from their founder, 20th century French painter Jacques Majorelle, and is noted for its broad collection of cacti from around the world.

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Article Published on June 28 in Snapshots!

Elder and Donkey

The humble donkey is certainly kept in his place in Morocco.  This beast of burden lives up to its title, as donkeys are used on a daily basis, both in the cities and the country.  Though commonly used for transporting goods, they are not commonly used for transporting people — in the cities, at least.  Bicycles and motorized vehicles are reserved for that job.  The donkey seen here has been outfitted with a simple and traditional saddlebag, filled with goods that are most likely on their way to be sold.  In addition to labor, donkeys are also known for their patience.  True to form, this one is calmly waiting for his master to be done with his business.

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Article Published on June 24 in Notes From the Caravansary

We introduced our Rendezvous Tour program last year and have been working to add more excursions and new options for these custom choice 8, 10 and 12 day base tours.  You’ll find out what our Rendezvous Tour program is and see the updated information in the Rendezvous Tours section of our Tour Catalog. These pages include the information about booking as well as updated pricing for each of our current listings.  Coming soon are options to make it easier to view these listings by price, length of tour/excursion and whether an excursion departs from Marrakech or Fes.

Tagine Giveaway!

We’ve always considered the cuisine of Morocco one of the best parts of visiting the country and given the growing popularity of Moroccan food in Europe, the US and elsewhere, it seems the rest of the world agrees.  While you don’t need to have an actual Moroccan tagine to cook Moroccan food at home, these terracotta cookware lend a thoroughly satisfying touch to the preparation and serving of your Moroccan meals.  To encourage the exploration of Moroccan cuisine with you, just subscribe to our monthly newsletter, Morocco Bound, to be entered into a drawing for an authentic Moroccan tagine.  Tramp Imperial Travel will be giving away this tagine by random drawing from our subscriber’s list during the month of July.  Future Morocco Bound drawings will include spice collections, art and photography prints and other Moroccan interest items.

Safe travels!

Rich, Hamid and the rest of the Tramp Imperial Team

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Article Published on June 21 in Snapshots!

The Nejjarine Square

No trip to Fes would be complete without a stop to the Nejjarine Place, a prime epitome of Fassian life and a microcosm of the society that fills it.  ‘Najjarine’ means ‘carpenter,’ and this public square gets its name from exactly that: the carpenters’ souk, or workshop, is adjacent.  The Nejjarine is also known for its beautiful fountain, one of the oldest in Fes.  The motif of age is resonant here, as it is also one of the best spots in the city to purchase antiques.  Because the Nejjarine is also a major crossroads within the medina, it is where friends meet up or go to often, making it a great place to people-watch.

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Article Published on June 14 in Snapshots!

Pomegranates

The pomegranates being weighed on this scale were purchased at one of the many fresh produce stands that frequent nearly every road and highway in Morocco.  This stand was tucked away in the Middle Atlas Mountains, not far from the Cascades d’Ouzoud.  While farmer’s markets are coming back into vogue here in the States, for many Moroccans, there’s no other kind, nor has there ever been.  As here, pomegranates are sold when in season in Morocco, and is noted for its many health properties.  In addition, dried pomegranate rind is often blended with other incense by apothecaries, and is believed to bring good luck to the home.

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