Ancient caravan routes
Since the eighth century, trading caravans, sometimes consisting of thousands of camels, roamed the desert between Morocco and the sub-Saharan Africa. They took various roads where they found small waterholes and real oasis where they rested. These routes changed throughout history following security, commercial interests and political difficulties. In Morocco, they parted from Fez or Marrakesh; in sub-Saharan Africa, all them ended up in a city of extraordinary economic and cultural vitality: Timbuktu.
In the north-south direction, these caravans were carrying handicrafts and salt picked up in Traza or Taoudeni for sale in Tomboctu; then, they returned to Morocco loaded with gold and slaves.
The caravan trade went into decline in the fifteenth century because of competition from shipping undertaken by Europeans and finding gold in America. Nevertheless, it continued until the late nineteenth century. It finally disappeared with the arrival of the truck.
Today the ancient caravan routes are impassable because of border disputes and the drying up of wells. As for Tomboctu, it became a small forgotten town.
The Hotel Tomboctou received this name to recall the ancient caravan routes that crossed the desert. So, each room was named following one of the stages in these routes across the Sahara and it was decorated in the style of the concerned locality.
Stage names given to our rooms:
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ę Hotel Tomboctou 2012.