The weirdest day of the trip. In the morning, we broke camp, mounted our camels, and set off across the sand dunes, back to Merzouga. After passing through an oasis full of fruit trees, vegetables, herbs, and the croaking of frogs, we drove across the atlas mountains, and through the fog in a lush cedar forest, populated by monkeys. We arrived after dark in the quaint French alpine style village of Ifrane, (complete with ski resort), where we had pizza and Moroccan brewed beer for dinner.

Sahara Desert Fes
Barbary apes are actually monkeys in the macaque family. They live in Gibralter and northern Africa. As you can see, these guys were pretty tame. The baby was so cute! I was trying to zoom in on one guy and almost didnt notice this other one strolling past me.
Up a tree keeping an eye on things Ohhh yeah... that feels so good... That water doesnt look very clean..
Obviously we could get pretty close. These guys were just hanging out in a clearing off a side road outside of Ifrane. The view from our hotel in Ifrane. Are you sure we are still in Morocco? Ski Rentals at our hotel. Are you SURE we are still in Morocco?? There is actually skiing in near-by Mischliffen!
The Ifrane Lion is a famous landmark in the town. There are varying stories about who made the lion. It was supposedly created by a slave or a WWII prisoner. I just couldnt get over how lush and green and park-like this part of the country was. We strolled around this pond after breakfast in the morning. The trees were full of large white birds.
Meditel is one of the cell phone companies. A lot of people in Morocco have cell phones. One of the birds roosting in the trees. We think these are Cattle Egrets. The skyline of Ifrane, note the storks nesting on roofs. And the distinctly European architecture.
Ifrane is a university town. Ironically one of Bobs daughters was attending this university when we visited Morocco, but when we came through Ifrane she was actually in Casablanca for the weekend.

We read in one of our guidebooks that Ifrane is the coldest town in Africa. I believe it. It was pretty chilly!
Closeup of one of the storks. A sign for a snow barrier. The roads are sometimes closed in winter  

Back Photos and Text Copyright 2004, Andy and Sandy Welter. Last Updated: April 2004