Sick of tours spending more time on souvenir shops and tagine, than on the actual attraction? Here you will find information on how to do a day trip from Marrakech to Morocco’s most famous Ouzoud Waterfalls.
There are a few options to reach the waterfalls from Marrakech. The first one is to use a grand taxi in the direction of Azilal. Grand taxi is the Moroccan alternative of a bus. It is widely used by the locals and there are a lot of Grand taxi stations spread all over Marrakech. Just Google it and go to the closest one.
At the minute you will arrive people will approach to find out where you are going. Let them guide you to the right car, they are not looking for a tip. When you find your taxi, if you are lucky there will be more people willing to go your way. If not, you need to wait until all of the six places in the car are filled up. That, or you can pay the price also for the missing passengers. The price to Azilal is 80Dh per person. I waited for about 40 minutes until the car was full.
It took about two hours to get to the junction to Ouzoud on the way to Azilal. I asked the driver to stop and there was another grand taxi already waiting on the junction for the remaining 16 km to the town. It costs 10Dh per person. Another 15 minutes and I arrived in the town. It was a noontime already. There are people who will try to convince you that if not hired as guides you won’t be able to see anything. That is not true, everything is easily accessible and none of the Moroccan tourists had a guide. There are no signs or whatsoever but you can check with Maps.me (very useful application) where the offline map of Morocco was only a few Mb. It has the viewpoints and the waterfalls and you can easily navigate to see them all.
I decided to have lunch first and use the opportunity to leave my heavy backpack there afterwards. The owner pointed out the direction of the waterfalls and at around 2 pm I started sightseeing. It turned out I was doing the circle in the opposite way and most of the tourist were already gone at that time. Super. I reached the hill with the monkeys first and an amazing view of the waterfall. Here I should say that the waterfall was worth the efforts and I think it should be seen by every traveler in Morocco. I visited at the beginning of October (autumn) and there was a lot of water, so I imagine in spring it should be even more spectacular. It takes about 2 hours and a half to do the full circle and check out all the viewpoints and the smaller waterfalls. I didn’t find the small ones so impressive, so if you are running out of time you might as well just skip them.
At about 4:30pm I headed to the parking where the taxi left me. Since my initial intentions were to reach Fes I started asking for the first big city towards that direction – Beni Mellal. There was a grand taxi and two people already waiting. In about 20 minutes we left Ouzoud and reached Beni Mellal for about one hour and a half. The taxi stopped at the main bus station where I checked my options to go to Fes immediately without staying overnight in the city. There was a bus at 5 pm which I missed being in the city only at 6:30. The next available was at 10:30 pm arriving in Fes at 5 am in the morning. I decided to sleep in the city and catch a bus early in the morning.
If you want to go back to Marrakech from the waterfalls it is easier. All of the excursions are coming from there and as long as there are empty seats in the busses you will be all set. Check with the bus drivers when you arrive in the town at what time they are leaving in the afternoon, so you don’t miss them. There weren’t any left at 4:30, so you should be back from the waterfalls earlier, and probably an early start from Marrakech than mine, around 7 am will be a good idea.
The second option to reach Ouzoud waterfalls from Marrakech is to use a bus to Azilal which cost only 10 dirhams less than the grand taxi (70Dh) which is slower and you will lose at least one hour more to reach the junction to Ouzoud. But if you have more time than money, that is also an option. Safe travels!