We take the boat in the morning – from Algeciras to Tanger; from Spain to Morocco; from Europe to Africa. We bought the tickets yesterday – 35 euro each. Unfortunately, we get on the wrong boat at first. We pedal off the boat imagining ourselves to finally do our first miles in Africa, but find ourselves in Ceuta. Although a part of geographical Africa, it still belongs to Spain. After loads of hassle with the ferry company, we get a free ride back to Algeciras (mainland Spain) and a new (also free) ticket to Tanger (Morocco). We’d cycled eight km between different ferry terminals, until we were finally on our way to our true destination. Six hours wasted. As a final compensation for the hassle, we don’t have to pay the 30 euro fee that they usually charge for bicycles.
We reach Tanger in the afternoon and immediately start cycling south so to reach as far away as possible from the border before darkness. People drive a bit more reckless (although slower) than in Spain, and the roads are somewhat narrower. Sometimes sand has blown up on the shoulder, so that we have to cycle in the middle of the road and get quite some horning and shouting from the truck drivers. But people here are welcoming towards us – a good change from private Spain.
There are fruit salesmen all along the road, often sitting on the ground shadowed by high trees or simple stalls. One of them is Mohammed – two honeydew melons are ours for only two dollars. These are perfect places for us to rest at along the road, and at the same time fill up with some energy from yummy fruits.
We reach the northern outskirts of Asilah after biking the last hour or so in darkness. The local campsite sponsors us with a spot for the night.