About a week ago, the Empire Skate team landed in Morocco in order to skate some of the most beautiful spots that Africa has to offer. Follow Cody and Jake Cormier, Charles Deschamps, Zander Mitchell, Kyle Macdonald and JS Lapierre through their adventures in Morocco in this first recap of one of the most epic trips of all time.
All photos by Dan Mathieu
Day 1 and 2 : Marrakech
After landing at the Casablanca airport at around 7 am, the Empire team piled up their luggage in what would be our home for the next 10 days: Omar’s minivan. Thank you Omar, you are actually the best guide Morocco could hook us up with. After about three hours of driving through the craziest landscapes we’ve seen, we dropped our boards in the majestic city of Marrakech, the Moroccan capital of party and skateboarding.
Marrakech is one of the oldest cities in Morocco, but has a very modern look and above all, totally incredible skate spots in large quantities. The boys had no problem skating them as if they were their local spots. To put it simply, they managed to film as many tricks in two days as they would do in a full week at home. Good homies, good times, good spots; what more could we ask for?
Day 3 and 4 : Ouarzazate
After two busy skate days in Marrakech, it was time to hit the road for another adventure. Next stop: Ouarzazate, the city is known as the Hollywood of Morocco. This is where almost every American films taking place in the desert was shot. Despite its dry appearance, the city is very developed and modern in terms of architecture. And that means one thing: There are skate spots everywhere! The first spot was right in front of the King's old Castle, commonly known as the Kasbah. After seeing a bank of almost infinite length in front of the place, the guys didn’t wait a second before crushing the smooth and polished surface of the royal castle. They all landed tricks one after the other under the astonished gaze of desert tourists.
After skating a few other spots in the Moroccan version of Hollywood, we had to stop at the general store to stack up on food and especially beer before heading to the TRUE desert, where there is not much except sand, camels, snakes, scorpions and nomads.
Day 5 : The Sahara Desert
The first few days of the trip were intensely filled with skateboarding. Legs were sore, memory cards were filled and now it was time to go for a real adventure in the Sahara desert. It was quite an experience!
After several hours of driving through the infinite dunes of the Sahara, we stopped in the middle of the desert, at a place where nomads pitched tents for us to spend the night in. After a delicious dinner and a traditional music session around the fire with the nomads, it was time to go to sleep. A camel ride at sunrise was waiting for us at 6 am the next morning. It was one of the most epic things we have ever done, period.
After a few hours cruising on the sand dunes on camels with our new nomad friends, we had breakfast and it was already time get back in the skate tank and hit the road. Next destination: Agadir, the surf capital of Morocco.
Take a look at our blog next week to follow the Empire Skate team’s adventures in the incredible kingdom of Morocco.