Thursday, November 17, 2011

Explore Moroccan Desert

In Ouarzazate, in full route of the kasbahs, affectionately Ouallywood tell by the number of films have been shot by their surroundings. I discovered the fabulous fortified village of Ait Ben Haddou environment in which one of the most famous, 'Gladiator', the Oscar-winning film by Ridley Scott. To shoot the scenes of the battles in Germania, Ridley Scott and his team traveled to Bourne woods in Surrey, England. To recreate the grandeur of Rome is served, not to mention a good dose of technology, the sets raised on Fort Ricasoli, on the island of Malta , who most recently used for Alejandro Amenabar staging of Agora . And the beautiful kasbah of Ait Ben Haddou was chosen to acclimate the African village who is taken into slavery and trained as a gladiator the disgraced Maximus (Russell Crowe), general of the armies of Emperor Marcus Aurelius elder until his death at the hands of his own son. Can that many of the inhabitants of Aït Ben Haddou have not ever left the village, yet they know well what is a casting and how it managed to get an extra role. 

And this village, the most photogenic of southern Morocco , has become a classic for film crews. This part was filmed Lawrence of Arabia , The Jewel of the Nile , some scenes of the second part of Sex in New York and, of course, gladiata r . For the latter, almost enough to add a kind of arena to its adobe buildings, because the town was perfect as it was to roll thanks to a peplum, like other essential stops on the route of the Kasbahs, Ait Ben Haddou is a true journey into the past. Across the High Atlas mountains, a hundred miles from the bewitching city of Marrakech , the Kasbah of Aït Telouet first and then Ben Haddou, emerging like a mirage by two detours on the road which opens to the Great South of Morocco. The crenellated towers with geometric patterns that crown his creatures, his or town Ksar crumbling walls fortified and surrounded by palm trees give this last oasis airs that so many filmmakers have come here to look, while speaking to visitors days of the caravans that crossed the Sahara and seeking refuge in this kind of sand on the strengths of protecting the goods they hauled on the backs of their camels. Only a handful of families still living in this spooky town protected by UNESCO as World Heritage. The rest of its inhabitants have long since moved to the humble village which was built across the creek, leaving virtually uninhabited Ait Ben Haddou old. Very near Ouarzazate emerges that more than one city is a single long street in the that line the hotels that house the Nordic many come here to seek guaranteed sunshine all year round, apart from the studios that have served for so many films as been recorded by their surroundings, especially the Atlas Studio, whose visit this itinerary is highly recommended. Although Ouarzazate itself of little interest, just one kilometer from the center stands the imposing restored kasbah of Taourirt , another of these citadels of mud, symbolizing the essence of the Berber culture, within which you must visit the chambers of the tribal leader Glaoui, the last great master of the Atlas. By the way that heads towards the dunes of Zagora and the Draa Valley will dramatically threading between powerful pre-desert landscapes other good handfuls of ksour. But if you opt for the road but you go through the Dades valley, the concentration of these old fortified villages and kasbahs miraculously survived over the centuries is even greater. 

Two very elegant get up in the palm grove of Skoura , from whose slopes surrounding paths are taken north to stand in the villages of Asseghmo, Timatdit or Toudounte, brimming all of these authentic castles of land. Continuing towards the Kelaa of Mgouna, famous for the cultivation of roses, a walk will be undertaken by the Dades gorges or even more impressive Todra , set between the walls of a great canyon of 300 meters, culminating finally in Sea dunes of Merzouga is lost beyond the village, and the whole Sahara, Erfoud. GUIDE How to get flights from several Spanish cities to Marrakech for even less than 50 € with Ryanair and Easy Jet , and increasingly competitive also with Royal Air Maroc , Air Europa and Iberia , a company that also flies to Ourzazate stopover in Casablanca. Flights and a week's hotel, for even less than 300 € with agencies such as Falcon Travel , adventure and different routes through the area with specialists such as Travel Tuareg or Mugam , which proposes a handful of expeditions on foot or by road through the Atlas and the rest of southern Morocco. When to go You can go all year, but the best times are spring and summer. Getting around If travel to the Route of the Kasbahs not part of an organized tour, the best is to have a vehicle. Through Avis can rent an SUV for a week from about 250 €, and a highly recommended for 4x4 penetrate through the tracks, about 800 €. Where to stay The options are varied, but nothing comparable to settle in any of the many kasbahs converted into a hotel, Relais & Châteaux as Ahlan Give or Ben Moro in Skoura, Dar Daif , 5 kilometers from Ouarzazate, Hotel Tomboctou in Tinghir, Ksar El Khorbat , in the Todra Valley, Kasbah Azul , Agdz near, or Kasbah Ellouze (T. 00212 5 24 89 04 59), very close to Aït Ben Haddou, all with much charm but none as luxurious as the Kasbah Tamandot Sir Richard Brandson acquired full Atlas Mountains and from which to make an excursion to Aït Ben Haddou. Where to eat Hotels / kasbah mentioned also have restaurants where you can sample delicious local specialties such as couscous, tagines, the cake or the lemon chicken. The route can be visited Aït Ben Haddou entirely free, loitering at will among the castles of mud, and you can also access many of the Kasbahs of the route you choose. ... Be sure to saturate at least two days in Marrakech, with the tricks of the Jemaa El Fna, the souks and walks in his palm, its palaces, its many restaurants to the latest and nightlife. For some days at the beach, none in the vicinity with the charm of Essaouira. And, of course, dress day for the Route of the Kasbahs with a walk through the gorges of Todra and a sunset over the dunes, either in Merzouga, Rissani or Zagora.

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