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The Ouzoud Waterfalls of Morocco

Discover the comprehensive guide on reaching the enchanting Ouzoud Waterfalls from Marrakesh and maximizing your day trip experience.

Morocco is typically associated with waterfalls, making Ouzoud a delightful surprise for travelers. Situated just two hours from Marrakech, this small town boasts some of the most breathtaking waterfalls that might catch you off guard, defying expectations.

The Wonderful Ouzoud Waterfalls: A Perfect Day Trip from Marrakesh

After a spending night in Marrakech, the opportunity for a change in scenery led me to the discovery of an extraordinary secluded spot. Here, you not only get to admire an impressive waterfall but also indulge in the refreshing experience of swimming, ensuring a delightful day in this hidden gem.

The adventure commenced the day, with my media assistant and dear friend, the charming Rafaela. Together, we set out to explore tour agencies in Marrakech, aiming to organize a one-day excursion to the waterfalls. Opting for public transportation would have involved changing buses in a town farther from Ouzoud, translating to a lengthy journey of up to 5 hours each way.

Our challenge? Identifying a reliable tour agency in a city teeming with scammers (you can explore the Top 7 Morocco Travel Scams here).

The Ouzoud Waterfalls of Morocco

What to Do and See at the Ouzoud Waterfalls

Upon reaching the Ouzoud parking area, a guide will approach your group, offering a one-hour journey from the top to the bottom of the waterfalls. This scenic trip provides multiple perspectives of the waterfalls. A mandatory stop at a gift shop awaits, where the guide earns a commission on every purchase. Inside, traditional Berber cosmetics, including a distinctive green lipstick, along with items like honey, massage oil, and spices, are available for those seeking souvenirs.

The shop also offers free bread for tasting spice sauces if you missed breakfast. Shortly after, you’ll reach the bottom of the waterfalls, which takes you directly beneath the waterfall’s mouth, ensuring a drenching experience. It’s advisable to leave non-waterproof items, such as cameras, with your guide due to the powerful waterfall roar.

Following the boat ride, you have the freedom to swim in the water. Surprisingly, foreigners are in the minority, as most visitors are locals seeking respite from the heat, though it’s poignant to witness Muslim women waiting on the rocks while their husbands and sons enjoy the water.

Rainbows and Monkeys at the Ouzoud Waterfalls

For me, the primary allure of Ouzoud was the monkeys. Waterfalls and rainbows are spectacular, but monkeys? Monkeys are undeniably the most amusing creatures on the planet. Have you ever marveled at how human their faces appear?

While spotting monkeys on the lengthy descent to the bottom of Ouzoud Waterfalls is uncommon, they are easily found on the effortless ascent and during lunch at the restaurants. Unfortunately, my experience was marred by the restaurant owner, a rather grumpy individual seemingly harboring a dislike for monkeys, as he vehemently chased them away with a broom. Don’t you just adore monkeys too?

The short climb to the top of the waterfalls takes less than 10 minutes and, while I appreciate progress and accessibility, a part of me wishes that Moroccans hadn’t installed those ladders that somewhat disrupt the natural beauty of this paradise.

Regardless, you can capitalize on these artificially created viewpoints to marvel at the rainbow forming beneath the waterfall. Admittedly, you may witness more rainbows at Iguazu Falls, but come on, this one is as enchanting as any other.

On your way to the top, you’ll encounter numerous monkeys eager to befriend you (especially if you offer them a piece of bread). If monkey feeding is your cup of tea, remember to pocket some bread from the restaurant to share with these furry companions.

How to Get to the Ouzoud Waterfalls from Marrakech

As previously mentioned, the most convenient and efficient way to reach Ouzoud is through an organized tour. I highly recommend booking with an agency located near your hotel or hostel, ensuring easy access to the owner in the morning in case of any pickup issues.

As emphasized earlier, be cautious when dealing with Moroccans in the tourism industry, as some may resort to dishonest practices to secure a sale.

For the best possible price, consider booking the night before. By doing so, you take advantage of the likelihood that fellow travelers have already paid the full price, making the cost of accommodating you on the trip to Ouzoud more of an opportunity cost than an actual expense for the tour agency.