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Discovering Goulimine: The City of Blue Men and Camel Fairs

by nizar ennabil on July 30, 2023

My latest voyage took me to the spellbinding city of Goulimine, a place steeped in history and culture that was once known as the "City of Blue Men." This moniker, bestowed on Goulimine due to the frequent presence of nomadic camel herders dressed in indigo garments, gives an exotic charm to this city's rich tapestry of stories.

Goulimine's vibrant past stretched from the 10th to the 19th century as a significant trading post. Camel caravans from Niger, Mali, and Senegal, laden with goods such as gold, spices, fabrics, and even enslaved people, once treaded the worn paths to this city. This network of commerce tied Goulimine to far-off places, even to the fabled city of Timbuktu.

Fast forward to today, and you can still feel the echoes of this trade legacy. Every Saturday, a camel market takes place about ten kilometers southeast of the city. At the crack of dawn, members of surrounding Berber tribes, adorned in their traditional costumes, convene at this souk. They gather not only to trade but also to share stories and continue traditions passed down through generations.

Perhaps one of the most significant events in Goulimine is the annual camel fair that takes place in July. Despite modern advancements, this fair has retained its historical character since the 1930s. It's a grand spectacle, attracting locals and tourists alike who come to revel in a blend of commercial exchange and cultural display.

This city is a testament to the enduring allure of Morocco's storied past. Goulimine, with its lively markets and storied history, continues to be a captivating embodiment of Moroccan tradition and culture. I'm glad I embarked on this journey and can't wait to share more tales of my Moroccan adventures with you.

Join me in my next exploration as we delve deeper into the heart of Morocco, one city at a time.