(You can find Part One of this adventure here)
As we walked out across the water I began to wonder where Ismail was taking us. Actually I was really wondering when this horse ride was going to be over. It is safe to say that at this point my back was starting to send me messages I hadn’t heard in awhile. But, he wanted to show us something. I was really hoping that it was something good. We began winding down a sand trail and my eyes caught something in the bushes. There were small white dots all over. As I led the horse a little closer to see what it was I saw that the bushes weren’t dotted – they were loaded with small white dots!
The dots were small shells that had blown up from the ocean and attached to the bushes. It was very cool! We continued our climb and I realized that turning back was not going to happen for awhile. After making a turn we were able to see something cresting over the hill.
Ismail told us that these were the ruins of an old fort. There are many ruins that can be found on the beaches though far away from the “beachy” areas. I’m afraid I don’t know much more about these specific ruins or who built the fort to begin with . It was pretty amazing to walk around them, as they to me were ignored bits of history with no story to accompany them. I wondered who was there to build them and who might have died defending them.
As we began to walk away there was some noise coming from one of the big towers that was still standing. We were so alone in this area and were carrying our bags and a decent amount of money I started to panic. I wondered if this guy had led us all the way out here away from anyone to rob us. Maybe he had a partner who was waiting here and it was all going to happen at that point. I was just about to call out to my husband (the guide didn’t speak English) when I saw a young man sitting at the top of the tower. He was eating a sandwich and drinking a Coke. The fear subsided and I was able to enjoy the rest of our ride.
Although my back might disagree, our horseback ride was a wonderful part of our vacation. It’s something both my husband and I remember and look back on fondly. Essaouira will always be a very special place for us and I’m sure that as our children go we will bring them here to experience everything we love!
I thought this photo was really fun. Both pictures were taken in Essaouira on the beach – kind of funny how six years can make a difference!
Finally if you’re heading to Essaouira and looking for a decent place to stay on a budget I’ll recommend the hotel we found (after searching for like an hour) It’s located in the medina part of the city, close to the ocean and other activities. When we travel I don’t like to stay in fancy American hotels (I can do that here) but love finding riads that are nice and a fraction of the big hotel cost.
Dar Mounia fit the bill. They brought us breakfast in bed after we told them when we wanted it and let us store our luggage with them after we checked out but were still exploring. They also have a lot of add-ons like massage, hammam, and can book horseback riding, quad riding, and a number of other excursions. We paid 300 dirham for the night in a suite that had a fireplace (though we didn’t use it).
2, Rue Laalouj – Essaouira