Ourika

Ourika

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Ourika Valley



The Ourika valley, the most accessible valley in the High Atlas from Marrakech, offers a place to relax as part of your Moroccan holiday with us. Starting less than 45 minutes' drive from Marrakech city, it is famous for the 7 waterfalls of Setti Fatma and the ski resort of Oukaimeden at its head, and is a lush valley with green terraced fields beside the river that contrast strongly with the rocky valley sides of the foothills of the mountains.


Places in Ourika Valley


Setti Fatma

A little village that’s seen a whole lot of tourist action in the past decade, Setti Fatma is a scenic stop for lunch by the river and for hikes to seven waterfalls. The village is neatly nestled in a canyon beneath the High Atlas mountains at the southern end of the Ourika Valley road, 24km south of the Oukaïmeden turn-off at Aghbalou.

 

Tnine

Beyond the turn-off for Aghmat and 33km from Marrakesh along Rte d’Ourika is the town of Tnine (aka Tnin l’Ourika), where you may run into donkey traffic at the Monday souq.

 

Aghmat

Drivers speeding past Aghmat (aka Rhmat, Ghmat or Jemaa Rhmat) 31km from Marrakesh are missing a key turning point in Moroccan history. This town was an Idrissid dynastic capital from AD 828 to 1058, and an important stop on the camel caravans from sub-Saharan Africa through Sijilmassa (the ruins of which now lie near Rissani).

 

Aghbalou

A red stone mosque and minaret are the signature landmarks of Aghbalou, the Ourika Valley's largest village, located some 47km southwest of Marrakesh. Most buses make a stop here, and from here to Oulmes the river is lined with cafes and restaurants.

Safran Gardens

Almost anything thrives in Ourika’s rich soil, including saffron (Crocus sativus), organically grown here from bulbs that are cultivated near Talouine. Saffron is a high-maintenance plant, with flowers harvested before dawn for maximum potency. You can watch the harvest take place during the first three weeks of November, although you'll need to get here between 4am and 5am. At other times of the year, guided tours are given by staff who reiterate key points on explanatory placards.

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