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“A cascade yes, but of trash not water”
Review of Cascades

Cascades
Camberley, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
33 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
“A cascade yes, but of trash not water”
Reviewed 4 October 2013

Fearless in our rented Dacia Logan with the Davinator at the wheel, we embarked on an excursion inland.

We stopped at the foot of the Cascades as part of a day trip from Tamraght. We drove up the P1002 from Tamri to the P1000 (with a diversion to look at a dam the Davinator wanted to see) and then up to Imouzzer. Some astounding gorges and natural beauty along the way; plus an abandoned village on a hillside, some authentic Berbers living in tents (not off tourists), traditional peddlers going door to door (one with live poultry) and got a real feeling for how beautiful an oasis must be to desert nomads. Also, big respect to Moroccan road builders and road maintenance men. These men put the hair in hairpin bend or indeed in hair-raising above the abyss roads. Some serious engineering and we drove for hours on your classic 1.5 car wide mountain road, sharing the road with donkeys, goats, electric bikes, the odd truck and dodging boulders from time to time.

A big mistake - we took no packed lunch. Hence, we arrived at the Cascades at about 3:30 pm near starving as there is literally nothing to buy between leaving Tamri and arriving in Imouzzer. However, we were so put off by the rapacious parking attendants, the empty cafes, the tatty handicrafts, the trash, the plastic bags, flies, the absence of any flowing water, the stray dogs and the air of decrepitude that we bought some simple provisions at the tiny shop and promptly drove back out again.Spending the grand sum of 18 dhirrim in Imouzzer. We went off up the hill and discovered the lovely Hotel des Cascades (subject of another review).

This is a good symbol of what's wrong and annoying about tourism in Morocco. With a little thought, organisation, signage, basic infrastructure and community support, they could be making money and happy tourists with the astonishing natural beauty of this spot. I was very glad to be with the Davinator (large, world wise and great at scaring off vendors). And we'd done our research so our expectations were low, as in we knew not to expect an actual waterfall. The reality crawled under our low expectations and it made us sad.

'Parking attendant' is a synonym for 'pay me and I won't break into your car'. The young men would have been better employed picking up the trash, maintaining and repairing the poor town road and the broken aqueduct (water carefully collected higher up and brought downhill to gush into the roadbed and be wasted). They need a good town administrator from a seaside town in France to sort them out.

If you're in the area for a week or so and need a break from the coast, you may want to visit. I would never do this with an organised tour because it will become an endless succession of people with their hand out for money for various things; guiding, toilets, tatty handcrafts that come from China, meals with 'Berber' families, sitting at a plastic table and chairs set in the water of the river, car parking, etc etc. Better to gird up your loins, hire a car and do it yourself. At least you've eliminated several middlemen that way.

By the way - I wouldn't swim in that water unless I had recently had my inoculations topped up, had a shot of gamma globulin AND access to course of Ciproxin. I'm not going to ruin your day by describing what we saw. Just use your imagination people.

And if you are there and it rains - get out of Dodge and down to the coast pretty quick. And stay out of the water. Gravity and hydraulics will bring indescribable flotsam in vast quantities downstream for your perusal. I did mention the great roads - but they are prone to collapsing, landslides and boulders bigger than your car descending on you when it rains. This is obvious from travelling on them.

The Davinator's driving tip: watch out for neatly stacked rocks in the road - it means something to watch out for and you really need to know about it. If you see a men at work sign or an orange cone (these are rare and valuable in Morocco) something big is happening around the bend ahead of you. It may ruin your day if come on it at speed.

We do love Morocco but sometimes we are saddened by how much potential is wasted.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
10 Thank Mary_Dolson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Edinburgh
Level Contributor
105 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
“Litter plastic dirty rubbish”
Reviewed 25 June 2013 via mobile

The water was at alow a did season trickle. The paths were piled with bags of rubbish and old water bottles. Behind the rocks human faeces piled with old tissues. Some local said swim splash your face to cool down . Yeah Right. Sorry but give some kids jobs on litter patrol because the falls are fast becoming an indictment of trash culture. Adn boo to all you tourists who buy. Bottle of water and then don't consider how it will be disposed of .

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
Thank macintyresymon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
United Kingdom
Level Contributor
42 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
“Worth a visit if passing but dont go out your way”
Reviewed 9 January 2012

We walked from Immouzzer to he Cascades so this was part of a walk. I wouldnt bother going out your way to go here. Very little water is coming over the falls. Having seen professional photos get the impression very little water comes over now. The area around the falls is dirty with litter every where. You will probably be harrassed by locals wanting you to ay them to climb the rock and dive in one of the pools. Also a few stalls selling touristy rubbish. There is a coule of cafes there but didnt try them out.

Visited January 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank GrahamUnitedKingdom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
St Helier, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
60 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
“Beautiful clean water, lovely valley. Lots of persistent salesmen.”
Reviewed 30 June 2011

We were staying in Agadir, and had read about this excursion and wanted to do it so when we were pestered by some excursion salesmen on the promenade near Le Nil Bleu, we asked about it. We were offered a half-day trip for 200Dh each. There was some confusion, because one of the salesmen said it was an all-day trip and included a meal with a Berber family, but the other salesman (the one we paid the deposit to) explained that they no longer offer that option because there isn't enough to do in Imouzzer to occupy people for a full day.

So, having paid our deposit the day came for our trip and we were collected at 8 a.m. at our hotel in a minibus. As well as the driver there was a guide, who spoke very good English and alternated between explaining things in English and in French. He really could have done with a microphone though; he had to turn his head to speak to the passengers in the back and every time he turned to face forwards we couldn't hear him. The commentary started in Agadir itself, and carried on intermittently all the way through the journey, but less so on the way back.

We were told it was only an hour's drive to the waterfalls, but what we didn't know was that the journey would be interrupted multiple times for us to get out of the bus (compulsory) and walk short distances along the road in Paradise Valley where there were shopkeepers selling all manner of touristy stuff, particularly Argan Oil or products made of it. This included stopping off for about half an hour in one particular "cooperative" where the ladies make handicrafts. Here the ladies served us mint tea before we toured their shop.

We eventually got to Imouzzer, and were offered the opportunity to use the toilets in a cafe (in exchange for buying refreshments) and then our tour guide introduced us to a "local guide" who led us up to the waterfalls.

On this short walk to the falls, the path was lined with yet more salesmen who had their wares laid out on trestle tables. Each salesman seemed to sell the same things. One table after another, we had to tell the salesman that no, we weren't interested in buying.

At the waterfall itself, we were told by the "local guide" that we would have half an hour. It seemed less. If we'd known it would be so little, we would have found another tour operator. After all, it was what we'd come for. It is a beautiful spot, a spectacular waterfall, with a deep plunge pool. There is a man there who is mute, and he makes his money by climbing up the rocks and jumping some 40 feet into the pool below, then takes a collection at the bottom. He seems a genuninely nice guy, so have some loose change for him.

I had put my swimming trunks on under my shorts, so was able to strip off and get into the water, which is "refreshing" but comfortable after a couple of minutes. It was exhilerating diving in to the deep blue water and being swept down into the next pool below. I would have loved to have spent longer.

My wife hadn't put her swimwear on underneath (she was planning to change in the minibus, but there was no opportunity to do so) and she felt too self-conscious to change in front of everyone else in a small area standing on some rocks - so she didn't go in and was disappointed.

Our bus journey back returned us to our hotel at about 2.30, so it was a fairly long trip for the money. We stopped several times on the way back to look at some beauty spots.

I would recommend this excursion, but get the salesman to clarify exactly how long it will take and how much time you'll spend at the falls (we were there 30 minutes out of a 6 hour round trip!). Alternatively, consider taking a "grand taxi".

There are numerous hotels nearby, and you could consider an overnight stay - the area is outstandingly beautiful and I think it would be a really restful break.

Make sure you put your swimwear on underneath your clothes, and bring a towel and a camera. Watch out, the rocks are very slippery!!

Visited May 2011
Helpful?
3 Thank Curb_Safe_Charmer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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