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Help! Did i make a reservation or what?

London, England
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Help! Did i make a reservation or what?

hi everyone,

i wonder if anyone can calm my irrational panic-today i called up dar bouanania and, in terrible french, booked for my arrival in fes next week- however, the girl only took my name and didn't ask for any deposit or information. Am i worrying over nothing? my fear is turning up in fes from london ready for a nice long nap and find i am not actually booked.

any help at all would be greatly appreciated.

Manchester
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1,276 posts
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1. Re: Help! Did i make a reservation or what?

Hello,

If it is any consolation to you, I have frequently rung up hotels all over Morocco and have just left a name and a date of arrival, in seventeen years of travelling around Morocco, I have never come unstuck. Why don't you ring back and just confirm that they have accepted your booking and give an approximate time of arrival.. Fez is a beautiful city very different culture and I am sure that you will love it.

Happy holiday

Tangergirl

London, England
7 posts
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2. Re: Help! Did i make a reservation or what?

thank you very much tangergirl! i think i will get a french speaking friend to call up and confirm, and also to get some detailed directions, as it's inside the medina! could you possibly tell me if taking the bus from the airport to fes medina (landing 9am) is more hassle than it's worth- should i just bite the bullet and take a taxi?

this forum is invaluable, it's so informative!

Manchester
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1,276 posts
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3. Re: Help! Did i make a reservation or what?

You are very welcome.

If I was you I would forgo the bus on arrival at Fez airport and get a taxi. As your hotel is inside the Medina the taxi will only be able to drop you at the entrance to the Medina so it would be a good idea either to have very detailed directions and if possible ring the hotel from the airport to arrange to meet you at the entrance to the Medina, or else pay (a small amount) to somebody at the entrance to show you the way to your hotel.

It is several years since I have been to Fez, but I loved the city very much, but do remember how very, very hot it was in the August, thus my suggestion of a taxi after your journey. A final suggestion is make sure when using the petit taxis which if I remember correct are red that the meter is switched on, also if using a Grande taxi from the airport, negotiate the price before getting in.

Hope that is of some help to you.

Regards

Spain
Destination Expert
for Fes
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4. Re: Help! Did i make a reservation or what?

Even if you are travelling on a budget, trying to save money by taking the bus from the airport instead of a grand taxi just isn't worth it. In the end, you will be waiting for a long time and the bus doesn't even take you to the medina, it just goes to the Ville Nouvelle from where you have to take a petit taxi to Bab Boujeloud. So you may save a quid or two, hardly worth it given the hassle! You can easily negotiate a fare of about 100 to 120 dirhams for the ride from the airport to the medina.

Once at Bab Boujeloud, you simply need to take that first left just inside the medina gate and then continue down on what is called the Talaa Kbira, Dar Bou Inania is the second or third left just past the Medresa of the same name which will come up on your right. It's easy to find, and even if you have difficulty, you could always tip a child 10 dirhams to take you to the door.

Plenty of places, particularly those like the one you reserved, can't accept cards anyway so it is normal that they just take your name. Simply let them know if you are going to be arriving late in the day so that they don't give your room away.

London, England
7 posts
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5. Re: Help! Did i make a reservation or what?

brilliant! thank you both for being so helpful!

another question (i know, another one) is this: we are hoping to go to chefchaouen from fes for a day, maybe stay the night... but then hoping to head to oulidia, maybe via el-jadida? looking at the map it's a big jump, have you any suggestions to break up the journey? i know the trains don't run to oulidia or essaouira but i am assuming buses can be taken from around there, perhaps el-jadida? and then on to marrakech for 3 days where we fly out from. again, thank you for your insight.

Spain
Destination Expert
for Fes
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6. Re: Help! Did i make a reservation or what?

You can get a CTM bus from Fes to Chefchaouen, and then another CTM bus from Chefchouen to Casa. The journey is a bit long to do in one go but Casa isn't the place to stop, I'd try for Rabat. Also, Chef isn't really worth the hassle of getting there and away unless you spend at least one night.

London
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7. Re: Help! Did i make a reservation or what?

Just stayed at Bouanania. Don;t worry about lack of deposit - they have a honesty system a little different to our western ways :) It is very close to the Blue gates (have forgotten the Arabic word - but these are the main gates to the medina - look at guide book). about 2 minutes walk inside. Pay a young boy 5 dr to take you to Bouanania, but try not to get caught with his offerings to be a guide for the next week.

In all my travels (45 countries) from 5 star to £1 a night hostels, I have never come across a guide like the man you will find at Bouanania. Ask for Abdou. Young fella (25) who knowledge of teh medina and Fes surpasses any guide book and I guarantee you surpasses any "official guide". All his information checks out (dates, names, places) and you will learn more than you can ever hope to read in any book. After 2 days I was more like a brother than a tourist and treated very differently from any other tourist (with my mum in tow as well).

P.S. try and get one of teh bottom rooms in Bouanania - they are 5 degrees cooler during the day (cool air sinks into courtyard)

Manchester
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8. Re: Help! Did i make a reservation or what?

Hello una chinita,

I would agree with Chino, the more that I go to Casa the less I like it. Chefchauen is pretty, but, in my personal opinion it is too touristy and I felt it was very stage managed for the tourist, it reminded me of Betwys-coed in North Wales, I drove over from Tangier and the time that it took was to me not worth it. Rabat I think is lovely and the people are great.

Have a good time

London, England
7 posts
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9. Re: Help! Did i make a reservation or what?

wonderful, thank you all for your advice. here is my final itinerary. are there any glaring errors you can see?

four days in FES, one of those to go to volubilis.

up early and make the journey to EL JADIDA (on the train, all in one go- i think the plan is fes-casa, casa-el jadida)

stay 1 night in EL JADIDA (any cheap recommendations?)

on to OUALIDIA for 2 nights

ESSAOUIRA for 4 nights

MARRAKECH for last 4 nights, one day to go to the Orika Valley.

is stopping in el jadida a mistake? we are only doing it, really, to break up the journey from fes to oualidia... bearing in mind we don't wish to be doing to much travelling, it's not really that sort of holiday. i suppose we want to have our cake and eat it too! any advice on this would be great.

thank you!oooooooooo

London, England
7 posts
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10. Re: Help! Did i make a reservation or what?

(oops, sorry for the oooo's, the cat stood on the keyboard!)