Errachidia, the ancient Ksar-es-Souk
Built at the beginning of the twentieth century under the name of Ksar-es-Souk, Errachidia, located in the region of Tafilalet, is today an administrative, military and university town.
Downtown is the bus station, which includes banks, the post office, as well as numerous shops and a small covered market where you can find everything.
Formerly a French garrison town, Errachidia is a military structure on avenues and straight streets. Its population is both Berber and Arab. It used to be a very important crossroads for caravans and even today, Errachidia remains a well-known trade centre. It is also a university town with a poly-disciplinary faculty and an international airport with few visitors.
Although Errachidia intra-muros does not present great models of local architecture, it is very different from its surroundings, the ancestral and rich province of Tafilalet. Just as the city is in the centre of a real setting of valleys and gorges, it is also the antechamber of pre-Saharan countries.
From the gorges of the Ziz to the erg Chebbi through the palm groves of the Ziz, from Errachidia to Rissani, the road follows the course of the rivers Ziz, Guir and Ghéris and thus the ksour and kasbahs that it shelters.
The city centre of Errachidia is situated around the bus station and the place of large taxis, next to the avenue de la Marche Verte.
All the administrations: courthouse, town hall, commune, police station are located along the avenue de la Marche Verte, the main thoroughfare that crosses the city from north to south.
Postal, banking and ATM services are spread throughout the country. Some garages are at the entrance of the city to the north, towards Tinejdad and the road to Meknes.
Health in Errachidia
At the end of the square is a medical testing laboratory, rare enough, the only one for the whole province, to be mentioned here.
At the exit of the town, after crossing the bridge over the Ziz towards Erfoud, is Moulay Ali Cherif hospital.
Hotels and riads in Errachidia
Most hotels and a number of recent riads are located at the entrance to Errachidia from Goulmima. In the city itself, in the center, some cheap hotels.
The trails of the Tafilalet around Errachidia become a world reference for off-road raids. They snake from valleys to gorges, from the High Atlas to the dunes of Merzouga.
As in most medium-sized towns, cafés and small restaurants stand along the main thoroughfare. Around the bus station there are also plenty of shops, shops and cafes.
The city does have an airport, but it is used at homeopathic doses, and most often for special events or private freight.
The airports of Marrakech, Agadir, Fez and Ouarzazate are well served.
Bus station and large taxis in Errachidia
The bus station is located in the city centre, while the large taxis are located just behind a huge car park.
At the beginning of the road of a thousand kasbahs
Its reputation makes it an unforgettable tour. From Goulmima to Skoura, it crosses palm groves, valleys and gorges planted with inhabited kasbahs. One can cite the palm grove of Skoura, the valley of roses in Kelaat M’Gouna, the valleys and gorges of Dades in Boumalne Dadès and Todra in Tinghir then Tinejdad and finally Goulmima.
Gorges of the Ziz and Agourai gorges
The Agourai gorges, for example, near a small village, Assoul, on the road that connects it to Rich. The gorges of the Ziz which starts at Rich until Foum Zabel, the famous tunnel of the legionnaire.
The palm groves and surrounding villages
From Errachidia to Rissani, they spread out dense and green especially to Errachidia but also to the blue spring of Meski, to the ksar Mâadi or Erfoud. To the west, the palm grove of Goulmima is also superb.
The surroundings radiate ksour of impressive beauty. At Goulmima, the Igoulmimen ksar, then past Errachidia in the direction of Erfoud, the Meski ksar slightly dominates the palm grove at the foot of the Meski blue spring. At the gates of Erfoud, the ksar Mâadi in the palm grove is an essential stopover. Finally Rissani and his ksour: the Haroun ksar, the El Fida ksar, the Abouam ksar, the Oulad Abdelhalim ksar.
After Erfoud and Rissani, we arrive at the threshold of the desert of the erg Chebbi and the hamada du Guir. The high dunes of Merzouga and Hassi Labied stand out on the horizon stretching their shimmering and nuanced flanks to the assaults of the sun.
Some wellknown thermal springs of public utility, such as the Hammat My Ali Chrif spring, about forty kilometers from the gorges of the Ziz, are a welcome stopover for Moroccans as well as foreigners wishing to taste their therapeutic virtues. Gastric, rheumatic or dermal problems are treated in the spa.
Likewise, for the amateurs and no less professional of speleology, the region shelters a certain number of caves and abysses. Thus, the Titaouine caves at Zaouia de Sidi Hamza in the gorges of the End, the Bouazmou caves, the Ifri Nouadou caves and many others.
Errachidia is a strategic place, crossroads in the valley of Ziz.
To the north, through the High Atlas and then extending to the Middle Atlas, the road leads to the imperial cities of Fez and Meknes.
South of Errachidia the valley of Ziz joins Merzouga, the dunes of the erg Chebbi. This road overlooks the valley, offering superb panoramic views, passing through a small oasis known as the Meski blue spring. You can enjoy the coolness of the brook, in the shade of the palm trees, and even camp there.
To the east, Algeria is very close to the dry plains of Bouarfa and the Figuig oasis.
To the west of Errachidia one reaches Ouarzazate by the road of 1000 kasbahs, along the valleys of Todra, Dades and the valley of roses up to the palm grove of Skoura.