January 26, 2011

marrakesh adventures . . .

In the shivering coldness of December past,
my lasses & i excitedly set out upon an adventure
for some rare precious time & togetherness.
We brushed down our dusty French & headed
for warmer climes to long dreamed of Marrakesh.
Our 1st evening found us in the old part of the walled city,
outside a solitary studded wooden door, behind which
we found the warmest of welcomes at the Riad Cannelle
That evening we fell asleep to strange distant rhythmic drumming,
later we learnt it was the local children gathered in the street,
they all play the djembe, a traditional Moroccan hand held drum.
We woke to the soothing sound of trickling water- the fountain,
the singing of birds & the adhan, call to prayer calling over the roof tops,
After a breakfast of Moroccan pancakes & mint tea, see above, top left
(see also the array of deliciousness we tasted on our travels).
we soon set foot outside the riad straight into another world,
full of sights & sounds & smells, colour & noise & busyness.
Stepping right into the heart of the bustling souks.
A labyrinth of alleyways, we wandered, getting completely lost,
past stalls stuffed with carpets & lanterns, slippers & jewels,
stopping now & again to try our hand at haggling for goods!
After such an experience some quiet time was needed . .
so we made our way to the Saadian tombs dated 1578-1603
to gaze in wonder at intricate stucco work,
beautiful carvings in cedar wood & marble.
But best loved of all for me was . . .
. . . our visit to the El Bahia Palace,
a wonderful rich example of 19th century eastern architecture.
It took 15 years to complete, i can see why.
Each surface covered with carvings & paintings so detailed.
I could have happily wandered there for hours, just looking!
Our time was filled with adventures too many to tell all here,
and at the end of 4 days we three tired but happy travellers
heading home, back to the snow & a wonderful Christmas,
full of wonderful memories to cherish.
* * *
I came away with a camera bursting with images
an imagination full to the brim & filled with joy
to be back in the peace & quiet & beauty of home
x x x
I have uploaded more Marrakesh images here
if you want a peep and read a little more.


  1. Beautiful, Ruthie. Sigh...Marrakesh, one of those magical places I've always dreamed of visiting!

  2. Me too Christina, didn't think i would ever get there, it was my eldest lass who came up with the idea, & found the riad & booked the flights, she's a real treasure. x

  3. Wow, that looked like an amazing adventure! Marrakesh is on my list of places to see too. The architecture looks fantastic and I love the stucco work. I also like to try haggling when I'm in countries that do, for some reason it's quite thrilling! :) x

  4. The photo collages are so rich and beautiful... sounds like a great trip. I've bookmarked your flikr page for my design students to peruse once mid-semester project time comes... a PERFECT bit of world design inspiration. Such enchantment there, it is definitely on my list of top 5 places I want to go. But, alas, just now I am buried in snow in New England - and loving it! Its another kind of faery tale!!

  5. I loved all your photographs, such wonderfully vibrant pattern and colour!! How exciting to get to visit Marrakesh, just the name carries the promise of romance and the exotic!

    Hugs to you Jane

  6. What a wonderful mid-winter getaway to have with your daughters! Those journeys are so special, and I bet you came away with lots of little goodies, too ;) Thank you for sharing such beautiful sights and dazzling artwork, I'll take a look at the other photos too as the weather here gets drearier :)

  7. Wow! Those painted panals in the El Bahia palace are just breathtaking! I can see why you loved them best... I would love to see them up close in person, they're fabulous and so similar to some parts of the Book of Kells - I love how this kind of design crosses over cultures.
    I wonder if some of these experiences will find their way into your art??
    Glad you all had such a good trip :)

  8. Wow, this reads like a breath-taking poem and the pictures are so bright & colorful. I enjoyed reading about your lovely detailed adventure in Marrakesh :-)

  9. Jenevieve, it was the first tiem i had ever tried, i found it quite ahrd to start with! but it got better as we went along, or as i became braver should i say!

    Valerianna, wow, im honoured, thank you! i hope it helps. ps im missing our snow! enjoy & keep cosy x

    Della, i did, a few, we took only hand luggage to make for less temptation, well really for easy & quicker travel, but it helped to curb the temptation. I posted a couple of irrestables on flickr though.x

    Carrie, they reminded me of that exactly too, especially after having just re-watched "the secret of kells", i cant wait to get down to some painting, my head it swirling!

    Thank you Jade x

  10. Wow, Ruthie, what a fantastic place for an artist to visit; all those marvellous, intricate designs to motivate you. Thanks for sharing your trip to Marrakesh; somewhere I'll never get to. I followed your link to see more! xa

  11. A place of myth and mystery...how exciting! I will definitely check out the rest of the photos.

    So glad you and the girlies got away for a trip. :)

  12. Wonderful and inspirational culture :-)
    Great photos,I think I'd want to buy everything !
    Seems to me that you are inspired.
    Wish you a nice weekend :-)

  13. Such beautiful inspiring pictures Ruthie. What a wonderful adventure and even more special because it was with your girls.
    Thanks for sharing. :) xx

  14. Aah Ruthie, it sounds like a wonderful adventure! Gorgeous colourful photos x

  15. What a marvellous place Marrakesh looks, the name alone conjures up visions of romance and adventure. The souks are wonderful aren't they? I've never been to Marrakesh but I have visited other North African countries - your beautiful photos have encouraged me to put Marrakesh on my list (rather long now!) of places I must visit.

  16. Wonderful pictures - looks to have been a great trip - stimulating and exciting! Haven't been to Marrakesh, but have been to that region - Agadir, Essaouira - the colours, textures and patterns are amazing, aren't they? Thanks for sharing :)

  17. Lovely,lovely photos Ruthie! ;-)
    Marrakesh has so much magic and beauty. I could spend hours in the souks. You must of had a wonderful time with your daughter's with plenty of treasured moments together.
    I enjoyed looking at your flickr photo's too. Stunning colours and patterns. Wow, what a place to visit!

  18. Wow, is right! Just a feast of visual gorgeousness!
    Love going to exotic places and this totally fits the bill. The artists and crafts people just make the most beautiful visual treasures. LOVE your photos and collages.

    Fantastic Ruthie. So happy you got to experience it!

  19. it is so wonderful to have a glimpse into your journey. It is such a colorful and exotic world. Thank you thank you, I am so glad you had a wonderful time!

  20. What beautiful images and beautiful words to go along with them! I will have to add that to my list of places to see! Welcome back!!
    Jean :)

  21. Wonderful photo collages, wonderful words. What an experience for you ALL. Thank you for sharing such richness.

  22. Anonymous3/2/11 00:22


    Oh my gosh!! What a Beautiful place to visit! You have inspired me to want to visit there some day. It looks like you had a most wonderful holiday. It looks so relaxing!!

  23. A lovely posting Ruthie.Looks like you had a great time.
    With your photographers eye for picking out the patterned,the quaint and the colourful,Marrakesh was the perfect destination.

  24. Bravo to you Ruthie and your lasses for being such adventurers. I loved my visit to Morocco many years ago. Such different roots than my own culture. A land and people on the edge of the great desert, but at the gateway of the Atlantic and discovery. will be interesting to see the influences in your creative work.

  25. What lovely images, It's nice to look back over our trip. I had a fantastic time with you both and was truly inspired too! Will be interesting to see what work we create from the trip!

    Han x x x

  26. Thank you for sharing your beautiful photographs and memories......oooohhhh, I have longed to travel to Morocco for years. You just reminded me to put it back on the top of my list! Now I'm off to see more of your linked images!

  27. what an amazing place to visit... your pictures are fantastic! thanks so much for sharing:)

  28. I went to Kech for Easter holidays and spent a wonderful time with my friends and soooo many lovely stuff there !! I'm just sighing as I couldn't bring everything I wanted with me !! xoxox


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