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Ourika Valley

Ourika Valley probably the most visited area in the atlas mountains a 1h30 drive from Marrakech, along the valley, the banks of the river Ourika are generously shaded by poplars and other weeping willows ...

This entrance corridor to the high Atlas is a fertile green valley situated some 60 km (just one hour) south of Marrakech where picturesque Berber villages cling to steep slopes above a rushing mountain torrent. In summer, the cool of the mountains marks a welcome contrast to the fierce heat of Marrakech (so the valley is very popular during the summer week-end) while, in winter, the snow-capped summits of the Atlas range provide a truly breathtaking spectacle.

Before the end of the valley the road peters out at the little village of Setti Fatma, set at 500m, where a pretty walk can be enjoyed beside the river to a seven waterfalls tumbling down the mountain in the shadow of highest peaks. Take a picnic for the trip but, if not you’ll find a good choice of inexpensive eating places along the way. The village of Ourika itself lies at the foot of hills where the road begins its climb up into the Atlas.

Famous for its pottery and semi-precious minerals, its exhilarating Berber souk, (a large country market, one of the biggest in the area) on Mondays is not to be missed.