There are many trains to choose from, and it is easy to choose from the scheduled trains. they are clean, and the train I was on was crowded. It is about 180 miles (300 kilometers) by train, and took 4 and ½ hours. Below is a map showing the train that I took today circled inside the dotted red line.
The tour guide that I had, Mohamed, took me from Hotel Chella to the Tangier train station. The ride took about 15 minutes, and I think that I gave Mohamed 60 Dirhams (about $7.00 US) for the ride. Mohamed was actually not going to charge for the ride, but I paid him the money anyway. Below is a picture of me standing in front of the train station.
A porter got my bags, and I followed him into the station to the ticket counter. The ticket lines were not crowded. I don’t know what all the prices were, but I purchased a first class ticket for 155 Dirhams (about $18.50 US). I was actually surprised, and quite happy with the price. After purchasing my ticket, the porter took me to a waiting area that appeared to be for people who would be riding in first class. I could be wrong on this point, but it was obvious that only certain people went into the waiting room. At this point, the porter had not asked for any money.
The train was scheduled to leave about 10:30. The porter came and got me and my bags, and took me outside to the train as it pulled into the station, and then took me to my seat in a first class compartment. All seats in first class are assigned. The porter put my bags and jacket in the overhead, and I paid him 20 Dirhams (about $2.50 US) if I remember correctly. You know that I am an old fart, so I may not have remembered the exact amount that I gave the porter. Below are pictures showing the arrival of the train I was taking to Fez, the first class train car, and the assigned seat I had been given.
As you eave Tangier the you pass by the Atlantic Ocean headed south, and then the train heads to the southeast eventually going east to arrive in Fez. Some pictures of the ride to Fez are shown below. Most of the landscape you see between Tangier and Fez is agricultural. The most surprising aspect of the landscape is how green everything is. Most of us would be expecting to see desert country in Morocco. It turns our that the landscape in like California that is usually green in the winter. In the summer this area would be dry like Southern California.
- Many different types of agriculture can be seen from the train.
- This year, 2012, brought an abundance of rain to the farm lands in Morocco.
After 4 and 1/2 hours we arrived in Fez. I started to get tired of sitting after 4 hours, and was glad to arrive in Fez. The experience of the train ride was very interesting, but one can see an endless piles of trash and plastic bottles along the way, but the train was safe, very reasonably priced, and for the most part quite comfortable in first class. In Fez, a friend of Abdul that spoke English also met us at the train, and he helped me get to my hotel.
I hope that you are enjoying my trip through Morocco, and will come back to read about other parts of the trip.