Thursday, December 1, 2016
A very windy cycle from the Kik Plateau where we left a stunning arid landscape as we descended into a lush valley with red-earth hills and pine forests.
Our awesome guide Saiid "Yella Ladies"
Daily dose of 13 beautiful women!
I think we saw an equal number of cars and donkeys!
Cy and Tenzin
Our home for the next three nights, the Domaine Malika, I love a room with a view.
We arrived just in time for traditional Moroccan mint tea.
Today we left from our inn to cycle upstream through the gorge created by the Nfis River. This was considered our most challenging and most beautiful ride and it was both. There were quite a few long climbs and descents. We had a bit of weather as well, sun, rain and hail. It took us four hours to ride 24 miles....did I mention we're riding in the High Atlas Mountains? It felt great!
Melinda, me and Micky
The view after most climbs....
Rebecca, Joyce and Sharon
We were cold, tired and still smiling when we finally arrived at the days lunch spot. The homemade soup for lunch was the perfect cure.
After lunch we visited the Tin Mal Mosque, one of only two mosques in Morocco that non-Muslims can visit.
The Mosque dating from 1153 is being restored and is hauntingly beautiful. We had a local man giving us a tour of the building and his descriptions brought the mosque to life, I could easily imagine thousands of praying in the mosque. You could feel that you were in a special space.
Architecturally, Tin Mal presents a unique opportunity for non-Muslims to take a look at the interior of a traditional Almohad mosque. It is roofless, for the most part, and two of the corner pavilion towers have disappeared, but the mihrab (or prayer niche) and the complex pattern of internal arches are substantially intact. The arrangement is in a classic Almohad design – the T-shaped plan with a central aisle leading towards the mihrab – and is virtually identical to that of the Koutoubia in Marrakesh, more or less its contemporary
Village of Tin Mal
We took the shuttle back to the Inn and those twists and turns were way scarier sitting in the back of that van, made the accomplishment of the cycle all the sweeter.