Zenfolio | Polly & David Bean | Ourika Valley
Created 4-Nov-14
40 photos

A short excursion from Marrakech takes you south to join the valley of the Ourika River. You then follow the road into the foothills of the High Atlas Mountains until the village of Setti-Fatma (just before the road runs out). This is the country of the Berbers.

It’s a popular weekend trip for Marrakshis (inhabitants of Marrakech) to escape the heat and dust of the city – as well as for tourists. We signed up for a guided tour in a 10-seater mini-coach.

Quite a few of the waiters and shopkeepers we spoke to in Marrakech were Berbers from the town of Ourika or one of the villages higher in the valley. Many parts of the Marrakech souk are run by Berbers and sell produce from Berber areas. A well-known product of the Berber region is Argan Oil, which, in the area, is largely produced by women’s cooperatives.

Our tour bus stopped for a “camel photo-opportunity” and then at a herbal product showroom before continuing close to Setti-Fatma. We then switched to a different guide who led us up a "gentle climb" to the first of five waterfalls in the nearby hills. After a rest by the waterfall pool and a glass of fresh orange juice, we returned back down an easier path and hopped back in the bus for a short ride to one of the many riverside restaurants for a traditional (salad, tagine) local meal. It was a delightful and refreshing interlude in our stay in the Marrakech Medina.

Our destination: the village of Setti-Fatma

Our destination: the village of Setti-Fatma

Our camel photo-opportunity

Our camel photo-opportunity

The herbal product showroom and exhibition garden.

The herbal product showroom and exhibition garden.

Berber women grinding the Argan nuts for oil

Berber women grinding the Argan nuts for oil

Window shutter and grill

Window shutter and grill

Happy Polly

Happy Polly

Traditional Berber mill in use

Traditional Berber mill in use

Berber kitchen

Berber kitchen

Larder

Larder

More storage

More storage

The Guest Room

The Guest Room

Living Room

Living Room

Bathroom

Bathroom

The family silver

The family silver

Attractive Collection Box

Attractive Collection Box

Crossing the Ourika River

Crossing the Ourika River

Berber blacksmith

Berber blacksmith

Returning to the bus

Returning to the bus

Berber man on his donkey.

Berber man on his donkey.

Berber Hotel-Restaurant

Berber Hotel-Restaurant

Categories & Keywords
Category:
Subcategory:
Subcategory Detail:
Keywords: