Planning a Trip
By Bus -- Buses to Taroudannt arrive daily from Agadir (2 1/2 hr.; 30dh/$3.75/£1.90); Casablanca (10 hr.; 130dh-150dh/$16-$19/£8.15-£9.40); Marrakech (6 1/2 hr.; 80dh-90dh/$10-$11/£5-£5.65); and Ouarzazate via Taliouine (5 hr.; 65dh-75dh/$8.15-$9.40/£4.10-£4.70). All long-distance bus companies arrive at a large vacant expanse outside the medina walls at Bab Zorgane. From here it's a 10-minute walk into place al Nasr within the medina or an easy 15-minute stroll around the outside of the medina to Bab el Kasbah. If you don't feel like walking, there are usually a few petits taxis hanging around that will take you for around 5dh (65¢/30p). For onward travel from Taroudannt, all companies depart from Bab Zorgane. Some companies will simply issue a ticket once you are on the bus, or there are a couple of companies with ticket offices just inside Bab Zorgane. Although their buses operate from the same place as the private companies, the CTM ticket office is on place al Alaouyine (place Assarag) and is open daily from 9am to 8pm (no credit cards).
By Grand Taxi -- Long-distance grands taxis to and from Taroudannt operate from the same place as the long-distance buses. The most regular routes for foreign travelers are Agadir (1 1/2 hr.; 40dh/$5/£2.50); the transport hub of Inezgane (1 1/4 hr.; 40dh/$5/£2.50); and Taliouine (45 min.; 25dh/$3.15/£2.80), with irregular services to Marrakech (4 1/2 hr.; 80dh/$13/£6.25). Chartering a private grand taxi to travel between Marrakech and Taroudannt will cost around 1,000dh ($125/£63).
By Car -- Driving into Taroudannt can be confusing depending on where you're coming from. The entrance to the city from the Tizi n'Test pass and Ouarzazate is along the main avenue Hassan II, which skirts the eastern wall of the medina past Hotel Palais Salam and continues on out of the city, past Dar Zitoune heading toward Agadir. Arriving from the Tizi Maachou pass will bring you into the southwest corner of the medina, where you can drive directly into place al Alaouyine, past Riad Maryam. There are guarded parking lots at the Hotel Palais Salam and place al Nasr, but the streets are usually pretty quiet traffic-wise, and you can often park on the side of the street.
Taroudannt was left largely unaffected by the French occupation, and hence there are no separate medina and ville nouvelle sections. Travelers will spend most, if not all, of their time within the medina, which can initially be a little disorienting, although it lacks the overall intensity of Marrakech. Most travelers will spend their time between the twin squares of place al Alaouyine (formerly place Assarag) and place al Nasr (formerly place Talmoklate), or in the labyrinth Souk Assarag (also called the Arab Souk) that sits between the two.
The best ways to discover this market town's compact medina are all environmentally friendly. Getting around on foot is easy, as there's not a lot of traffic and you'll never be too far away from the sights or your hotel; it's a 20- to 30-minute stroll from one wall to the other. A pleasant way to explore the medina further is by caléche. These horse-drawn carriages are an attraction themselves and are an especially good way to view the medina's walls, or ramparts. Their "taxi ranks" are either opposite the kasbah, at the junction of avenue Hassan II and avenue Moulay Rachid, or on place Assarag. A tour of the ramparts costs 30dh ($3.75/£1.90) and is especially pleasant at sunset. For the more intrepid, exploring the back streets of the medina by bike can be fun. These can be hired from the Center Environmentale et Culturel (CECU) for 15dh ($1.90/95p) an hour. Petits taxis are always zipping around town and shouldn't cost you more than 5dh (65¢/30p) to anywhere in the medina; make sure they are using their meter before you commence the journey.