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29 March - 16 April 2005

Another trip, this time back to northern Africa.  We enjoyed Egypt so much and wanted to see a completely different culture with Roman, French, Spanish and Muslim influences, but still retaining some of the Berber character of its ancient peoples.

Started in Tucson, leaving about 7 a.m. and arriving at JFK around 3 p.m.  Our Royal Air Moroc flight left at 6 p.m.  It was about a 6½ hour flight to Casablanca.  The arrival time was about 0715 on 30 Mar.  I learned that the Casablanca airport was a former USAF base back in the 1950s before Moroccan independence.  Morocco technically was part of NATO under the French.

One of our group had a problem immediately - his luggage never arrived from CA.  We had about a 90 minute delay trying to trace the bag and making arrangements for it to be sent to Fès.  The luggage did finally arrive - 3 days later since Royal Air Moroc does not fly from JFK every day.

We used the ATM at the airport to obtain local Dirhams (about 8.4 to the dollar).  This is the first overseas trip we did not have traveler's check.  Also the first time we did not use our credit card since they instituted a 3% surcharge to convert from local currency to USD.  The ATM worked great for the cash we needed.

At about 0900 we were on our way to see the sights.  Each general destination is listed to the left in the order we visited (except for the Sahara Desert where we camped then went back to the desert border cities, then to another campsite).

--> Casablanca

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