Ouzoud Waterfalls

(10 Hours)

Detailed Itinerary

Rural Morocco

A 6 hour round trip from Marrakech, the Ouzoud Falls are the 2nd highest in Africa (the 1st being Victoria Falls, which are in a class of their own).  You should however allow a full day, setting aside plenty of time for walking and lunch.

The first part of the trip takes you through quintessential Moroccan countryside, huge vistas, deep red soils, olive groves and occasional flocks of sheep.

After about 2 hours you reach Demnate, a good stopping point for refreshments, perhaps a nuss nuss (strong coffee, being half water and half milk) and a wander around the Jewish Quarter (Mellah). Situated 6km from Demnate is Imi n´Ifri, a natural limestone bridge that was formed over a gorge 1.8 million years ago. It’s a mere 300 steps to the bottom, some of the route being over boulders. En route you are rewarded with spectacular views, and the site of exotic birds flying overhead. At the bottom is an opening whose shape very much resembles the African continent.

Imi n’Ifri, limestone bridge

Ouzoud waterfalls

Ouzoud is a further one hour. You will hear it before you see it, the view from the top being of six steams on tiered cascades, before the falls cascade into plunge pools.  We recommend walking through the olive groves to the plunge pools, from where you have a superb view of the falls. The walk back passes various restaurants, good places to stop for excellent local fare in a surreal setting.  En route you can also visit the ancient watermills housed in caves.

You may well see some of the tailless ground dwelling Barbary macaque (apes) that live around the waterfalls.   In the summer you can also swim in the pools downstream from the waterfalls.

On the trip back to Marrakech relax and reflect on the vast difference between rural and urban Morocco.

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Barbary macaque