black / girl / abroad

The planning continues! (Dubai, Marrakech)


Sometimes, you feel like you’re in the zone and you know what you’re supposed to be doing and THIS IS IT.

fabiowanderley / Pixabay

I was destined to travel. And to plan travel. It’s in my blood. My dad is a gypsy wanderer who can’t sit still when he’s talking to you, let alone stay in one country for long. My mother was from another country, and left hers when she was still a teenager.

When I’m building an itinerary, it comes together like a symphony of checks and balances, a crescendo here, a diminuendo there … and then you’re looking at perfection. You leave little gaps for those moments when you know you’ll be tired. Another for when you know you’ll be peckish. Yet another for when you know you’ll need spiritual awakening, and to stand at the edge of something breathtaking and foreign and BEYOND. Beyond you. The life you know.

I’m literally mapping out a trip right now. Details are still in flux, but it’s shading in, like an image coming into focus, on the verge of crystal clear and blinding with its beauty. Even if it ends up falling apart, it will be beautiful in simply attempting to go on the ride.

Here’s what’s coming down the pipeline …


Free-Photos / Pixabay

I’ve actually been to Dubai about 4 or 5 times, so it’s not new to me, but I’ll have the fun of trying some new things plus seeing how the emirate has changed since I was last there for a stopover (on the way to S. Africa!) in 2016. I’ll also get to show a friend who’s never seen it before, and never been to the Middle East!


The Itinerary

Day 1 ~8 PM Arrive @ DXB Airport. Maharba Meet & Greet

Dinner: Wing it

Day 2 AM Sightsee: Dubai Museum, Old Soukh, Dubai Creek, Gold Soukh

Museum Hours: Sat – Thurs (8:30 – 20:30), Fri (14:30 – 20:30)
Ramadan: Sat – Thurs (9:00 – 16:30) Fridays closed
Fee: AED 3

Lunch Mall of the Emirates
Perfume shopping
Dinner Booked for 3 @ Pierchic

Requested window table overlooking Burj al Arab.

Day 3 AM Lunch / Spa @ Talise


Dubai Mall

Dinner @ Khan Murjan

Call to make reservation for 3 (+971 04 327 9795)

Day 4 10 AM

(arrive 9:30a)







Breakfast / Jumeirah Mosque (20 AEDpp, incl. snacks/tea for bfast)

The Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding hosts visits of the Grand Jumeirah Mosque 6 days a week Saturday through Thursday at 10:00am. No reservation; arrive at main entrance 9.45am. Tour lasts 75 minutes.

Burj Khalifa @ The Top  (tix purchased)

Lounge (food, drink)

Jumeirah Beach

Casual / local / wing it

  • Maybe try: Shwarma at Al Mallah

Morocco: Marrakech


hannaahlberg / Pixabay

I’ve never been but have always dreamed of going to Morocco! And while our initial plan was to focus on Casablanca, all the interwebs says there isn’t much to see there and to prioritize Fez or Marrakech. So we switched up some things in our schedule and will go straight to Marrakech as soon as we land for a very tight, but exciting two days!

The Itinerary


Day 1 Afternoon



Hotel Xfer: Riad Idra

Rest / Snack on the Riad rooftop

Marrakech Street Food Tour

Meet at: Poste du Maroc / Jemma el-Fna / Morocco, Marrakesh 40008. Meet your guide in front of the yellow mailbox closest to the ATM on the wall of the the post office in Jemma el-Fna square.

Day 2 AM









Wing it


Hotel recommendations

  • Terrasse des épices : Very nice roof top with an à la carte food, Moroccan and international. Casual. They do serve alcohol. 5 minutes walk from the Riad.
  • Le Foundouk : beautiful restaurant with Moroccan and international food. they serve alcohol. 15 minutes walk from the Riad (it’s recommended to go there by taxi).
Day 3 AM



Le Jardin Secret

Elegant, ornate 19th-century palace complex with traditional Islamic gardens, plus a shop & cafe.

Xfer to Casablanca


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