The city of Tafraoute came into existence in the 20th century when the French Protectorate consolidated a number of existing villages and douars at the south end of the Ameln Valley in the Atlas to form an administrative district headquartered in the town. However, the area has been inhabited since the prehistoric era, as is evidenced by rock art in close proximity to the town.  It is a mountain oasis in the Souss region of Morocco, located at 1,200 m altitude.  It is known for the almond trees the bloom in the spring, the cultivation of olives and grains, its Wednesday souk, and the remarkable landscapes formed in rose colored granite peeks that surround it.  Through the millennia the rock in the area has been shaped into enormous boulders and unusually shaped geologic formations.  

The Ameln valley is named for the Amazigh tribe that resides there.  It's architecture is an interesting blend of vernacular architecture made from the red stone of the region, some protectorate era structures, and newer large villas, most of which were built with funds sent back to families in the region by emigrés who left the region for Moroccan cities to the north, as well as other countries.  This high level of emigration from the region is generally provoked by periods of drought and the resulting challenges to agriculture and the economy of the region.  

The remarkable landscape attracts hikers and climbers from around the world.  A number of hotels cater to these travelers, most notably Hotel Les Amandiers, a 25 room, four-star hotel in the center of town that offers a swimming pool, meeting rooms, and a restaurant.  


De Mazières, M. "Quelques Sites Du Maroc. Debout-Ouzoud-Tafraout." La Revue Du Touring Club De France, December 1938, 293-94. Accessed October 31, 2015. http://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/cb34350058s/date.

"Hôtel - Les Amandiers." Hôtel - Les Amandiers. Accessed October 31, 2015. http://www.hotel-amandiers.com/.

Skounti, Ahmed, Daniela Zampetti, Naïma Oulmakki, Rosanna Ponti, Alessandra Bravin, Kamal Tajeddine, and Mustapha Nami. "Rock Art and Archaeology in Ifran-n-Taska (Eastern Jebel Bani, Morocco): First Results of the Moroccan-Italian Research Project." Academia.edu. 2010. Accessed October 31, 2015. https://www.academia.edu/2459577/Rock_Art_and_Archaeology_in_Ifran-n-Taska_Eastern_Jebel_Bani_Morocco_First_Results_of_the_Moroccan-Italian_Research_Project.

"Tafraoute Amlen Valley." HeyMorocco.com. Accessed October 31, 2015. http://heymorocco.com/tafraoute-amlen-valley.aspx.

"Tafraoute." Rough Guides. Accessed October 31, 2015. http://www.roughguides.com/destinations/africa/morocco/agadir-souss-anti-atlas/tafraoute/.

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