Feast of almond trees in Tafraout

The almond tree, symbol of Tafraout

Tafraout decided in 2009 to revive this festival after two decades of absence mainly due to an endemic drought which, combined with a weak water supply in the region, disrupted the flowering of almond trees.

This tree was already known since Antiquity for its many virtues and its almond giving a very perfumed oil, rich in proteins, vitamins, carbohydrates and lipids.

At that time, it was already used for its cosmetic, softening, moisturizing and healing properties. Anti-inflammatory, it is still very widespread in dermatology and is also used as a laxative for livestock. In addition, the majestic grain of its wood has tirelessly attracted many cabinetmakers.

For some, the almond tree is a symbol of virginity, its long branches filled with beautiful flowers of immaculate whiteness invoking a wedding dress; in Morocco it is synonymous with fertility and abundance. The Louz Tafraout association organised a plastic art exhibition during the 2011 edition of this festival on the theme “the woman in relation with the almond tree”.

The moussem

In collaboration with the rural commune of Tafraout, the Ministry of Agriculture and the Souss-Massa-Drâa general council, the Louz association revived this adventure, interrupted for 20 years due to a severe drought.

The aim was on the one hand to promote the almond tree by relaunching almost disappeared commercial channels. But also to open up Tafraout badly served in road infrastructures and means of communication, in order to revive through a green tourism and a new commercial vitality this beautiful valley of Ammeln.

Where nestles, between pink granite cirques, this small village which dominates a palm grove where are also cultivated argan trees and olive trees.

It was a question of creating a dynamism around this tree which likes the sun and a dry air, which fertilizes the poor and stony grounds.

Around the almond tree, the idea was to enhance regional products by consolidating principles of social and solidarity economy.

About twenty regional cooperatives answered the call of this initiative, proposing stands where one could discover in addition to the almond and its products a vast sample of argan oil, cactus, honey, saffron, henna, Dakhla oysters, camel cheese, aromatic plants, Dades rose water, dates…

The various editions were enhanced by numerous round tables on the development of water resources, of which the valley is cruelly lacking, debates in which local, national and foreign economic actors, but also scientists were brought together to revive a market sector that had run out of steam.

In 2010 these discussions led to a drip irrigation project, another edition saw the planting of 8,000 trees.

At the cultural level, the aim was to revive an ancestral tradition while inviting many local Berber groups and artists, but also international stars. Like the Kabyle Amazigh Idir singer, Hindi Zahra, Berber-Touareg singer oscillating between ancestral blues and original jazz mixed with oriental rhythms.

Many workshops of sculpture, painting, plastic art, exhibitions on the theme of the almond tree were honored during all these events.

The Tafraout almond festival takes place between December and February, knowing that the flowering of almond trees is subject to the vagaries of the climate…

Other festival in Tafraout

Note also that another festival has been held in Tafraout for several years in August: Tifawine (lights) which includes many local and regional Berber groups. This event is also focused on the theme of rurality, it gives rise to a great carnival and collective marriages are celebrated there.

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Cities
Tafraout  
Anti-Atlas  
Souss valley  
Hotels
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Hotel Espace Tifawine

Tafraout- From 10 €

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Hôtel Restaurant Argana

Tafraout – From 16 €

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Hôtel Salama

Tafraout – From 20 €

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Maison d’Hôtes Afoulki

Tafraout – From 20 €

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Auberge Les Amis

Tafraout – From 21 €

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Hotel L’Arganier d’Ammelne

Tafraout – From 24 €

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