Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Img_9176_6 Sunday was the final day of the Hassan II Golf Trophy, and as expected, Ernie Els won. He posted a final score of 17 under, followed by Simon Dyson in second and Johan Edfors in third.
The trophy presentation was lavish, complete with Scottish bagpipers and much of the upper echelon of the Moroccan government. Prince Moulay Rachid, who presided over the presentation, seemed very pleased with the outcome. At left, the prince presented Els with the trophy.
Ok, enough golf. Let's get back to the travel. Rabat is a small, lively city with much to offer even though it's not as populated as Casablanca or as exotic as Marrakesh. I visited some of the sights with another journalist and our guide from the tournament, Ilhem. Photos of my trip are after the jump.

First up was Hassan Tower, the sight of an old mosque that was
destroyed by an earthquake in the 17th century. Now it is a monument to
a past King, Mohammed V. Next we took a taxi to the Casbah, the old part of the city. The ride
was an adventure. Road signs and traffic signals were optional, and
lanes were merely suggestions. When I sat in front seat and put on my
seat belt, the driver promptly unbuckled it and looked at me like I was
The Casbah is on top of a cliff that over looks the Atlantic Ocean. The
views are stunning, and you can see surfers and fisherman in the harbor below. When we arrived, we were surrounded by a
group of men who wanted to guide us. They argued until a man who spoke
very good English won; the others left dejected. He was a bit expensive
but worth it.
After the Casbah, we hit an open-air market. Jewelry, handmade rugs,
wooden furniture, tangines (a traditional Moroccan cooking vessel made
from clay) and leather goods were for sale. We haggled a bit before
returning to the course for the trophy presentation. Now for the pictures (click to enlarge).
Below, from top: The Hassan Tower; a man polishing a door in the mausoleum; a guard outside the mausoleum; another view of the grounds; a typical street in the Casbah; an ornate door; the harbor and scenes from the market. Img_9041_4_the_tower_2   Img_9063_2_door_polishing_3   Img_9032columnsguardcomb


Streetdoorcombo Img_9099_2_beach_and_boats



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