What are the top tourist attractions to visit in Casablanca, Morocco?
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Casablanca, Morocco is the country’s biggest city and serves as the country’s chief port and biggest business and financial center. Other than having the second largest mosque in the world, Hassan II Mosque, Casablanca isn’t that well known for its attractions with most v visitors coming to the city for business, especially when compared to Morocco’s more popular tourist destinations like Marrakesh and Rabat.
But visitors need only to look a little further in the city as Casablanca has more to offer than meets the eye. Casablanca is an interesting blend of colors with its French colonial past, traditional Arab culture, coastline location, modernization, and technology, there’s a great mix of things to experience in the city.
To give you an idea of where to start, here are the 15 best things to do in Casablanca, Morocco.
Visit the Magnificent Hassan II Mosque
You can’t come to Casablanca without checking out it’s most famous structure Hassan II Mosque. The magnificent work of architecture took six years to complete by 6,000 traditional Moroccan artisans. Commissioned by King Hassan II, the Hassan II Mosque was completed in 1993. The mosque became the second-largest mosque in the world and overlooks the Atlantic ocean.
Visitors can admire its intricately made interior through a guided tour which is required for non-muslims to enter the mosque. The view from its spacious courtyard is also magnificent.
Try Local Cuisine
When in Casablanca, it’s a great idea to try the city’s local Moroccan cuisine. There’s no better place to try Lamb Tajine, their delicious Moroccan roasted chicken, Rfissa a stewed chicken dish with lentils, a tomato-based soup called Harira, roasted lamb referred to as mechoui, couscous, and many more. If you’re a fan of delectable, savory food with a healthy mix of vegetables, then you won’t get enough of Moroccan cuisine. The city also has other varieties of restaurants that serve amazing seafood dishes.
Explore Old Medina
Compared to the old medina of other Moroccan cities, the old medina in Casablanca is relatively young and is even considered less vibrant. Casablanca’s old medina has gone through different reconstructions, once in 1755 after an earthquake and again in 1907 when it was nearly destroyed by the French.
Visitors can easily walk past Casablanca’s old medina but we highly recommend spending some time in this old walled city to experience authentic Casablanca daily life. Those who look closer will find its hidden beauty and even find some treasured spots.
Stroll along the Boulevard de la Corniche
Boulevard de la Corniche runs along Casablanca’s coastline just west of the Hassan II Mosque. The miles-long walkways are lined with palm trees on one side and beach shores on the other along with different nightclubs, restaurants, cafes, and many more. In this area of the city, the neighborhood is filled with private beach clubs that gives members and visitors access to swimming in the sea.
This area highlights Casablanca’s seaside culture with plenty of fun activities like cycling, soccer on the beach, and street performers.
Grab a Drink at Rick’s Cafe
Located inside the Old Medina, Rick’s Cafe is a must-visit for tourists for a fun ambiance, great food, and drinks. The cafe was inspired by the movie Casablanca starring Humphrey Bogard and Ingrid Bergman. Rick’s cafe was neatly modeled after the cafe in the movie called Rick’s Cafe Americain.
The cafe features a 1930’s piano which constantly plays classic tunes for the cafe’s patrons and makes everyone inside feel like they’ve stepped back in time and onto a movie set. People won’t also help but notice the beautiful surrounding architecture.
Take a Ride on Casa Tramway
One of the more recent and important installments of the city in its age of modernization is the Casa Tramway. Casablanca currently has two trains in operation and another additional train is planned to join in 2022 in their Casa Tramway. Each train takes just over one hour to complete their routes from one part of the city to another. This modern public transportation significantly cuts travel time throughout the city.
Visitors shouldn’t miss out on hopping on the city’s Tramway to catch a glimpse of Casablanca’s local life. Just remember to give the exact amount for the ticket.
Visit the Casablanca Cathedral
Casablanca Cathedral, also known as Cathedrale Sacre Coeur. Built by the French in 1930, the cathedral is a masterfully made structure designed by the architect Paul Tournon using the Art Deco style with clear traditional Moroccan design influence. The result is a uniquely beautiful cathedral.
The cathedral serves as an important religious setting during the French-Catholic Rule of the country but its religious function ceased when Morocco gained independence in 1956. Nowadays, still well preserved, the cathedral serves as a cultural center that hosts exhibits and fairs.
Shop at New Medina
Casablanca’s new Medina is called the Quartier Habous located in the southeastern part of the city about four miles from its center. Built by the French 1923, the new Medina is a charming marketplace full of turning pathways, narrow alleys, historic buildings, artisan shops, souks with great souvenirs, and an overall lively and uniquely Casablanca atmosphere.
It’s the perfect place for visitors to find a bargain from different souks selling leather goods, clothing, rugs, and handicrafts and enjoy the vibrant atmosphere.
Learn about Casablanca’s Jewish History at Museum of Moroccan Judaism
The Museum of Moroccan Judaism is a must-visit when you’re in Casablanca as it’s the only Jewish museum in the Arab world. The museum was established in 1997 and is housed in a former Jewish orphanage that dates back to 1948. It was recently renovated in 2013 and exhibits Jewish culture, Judaism in the Arab world, displaying the interfaith practices in Morocco.
The museum hosts a variety of Jewish artifacts found in Morocco including jewelry, a menorah, mezuzahs, and even a recreated jewelry-making workshop of Saul Cohen, a Moroccan Jew.
Spend Time at Mohammed V Square
Mohammed V Square is a great place for visitors to immerse themselves in local everyday life and to admire the city’s public buildings. The square was laid out in the 1910s by the French and is surrounded by beautifully made public buildings including the central post office or Grande Poste, Palais de Justice, and a gorgeous clocktower.
The square features a monumental statute of Morocco’s first French Resident-General, Marshal Lyautey and also a grand fountain that occasionally musical water shows. Watch out for the pigeons.
Stroll through Arab League Park
Located at the center of Casablanca, Arab League Park is a picturesque park that is a reminiscence of an oasis in the hot and dry climate of Morocco. The park consists of neatly rowed palm trees with a beautiful fountain that lined the main pathway.
The park covers 30 acres and was redesigned from the city’s original central park by the Frenchman, Albert Laprade. It was then given the name Park Lyautey. Today, it’s known by its modern name, Arab League Park.
Take a Glimpse Inside the King’s Place
The King’s Palace in Casablanca is just one of the many residential palaces of the King of Morocco scattered all throughout the country in almost every city. This is where the King will stay if ever he’s visiting the city. The palace is located near the new Medina and like every one of the King’s palace is other cities, Casablanca’s is just as majestic with an impressive exterior structure.
Unfortunately, it’s almost impossible to visit the inside but admiring its architecture and taking pictures is enough of a treat.
Take a Photograph at Mahkama du Pacha
Mahkama du Pacha is the city’s picturesque parliamentary building that holds Casablanca’s court of justice and state receptions. Located at the new Medina, Mahkama du Pacha is an eye-catching structure with its traditional Moroccan architecture, intricate designs, and bright beautiful colors. It’s like stepping into a Moroccan Palace.
Surprisingly, it’s designed by a Frenchman Cadet and completed in 1942. There’s one theory that because of France’s war effort, modern resources were short at the time so Cadet had to resort to constructing the building with traditional Moroccan style and materials.
Visit Notre Dame de Lourdes
If you want to find a catholic church in Casablanca still holding services, visit Notre Dame de Lourdes. The church was built in 1956 with a modernist architectural style with a tall and almost featureless exterior. The beauty of this church is seen in its interior design. The inside is spacious and peaceful with its walls beautifully decorated with masterfully crafted stained glass designed to invoke Moroccan rugs and plenty of portraits of the Virgin Mary seen throughout the space.
Spend a Day at Morocco Mall
For a familiar setting of modernity, visit Morocco Mall in Casablanca, Africa’s second-largest mall. This mammoth of a mall is located at the end of the La Corniche region of the city and has plenty of entertainment options for practically everyone. You can spot a beautiful fountain display outside the mall and inside has an indoor aquarium complete with small sharks, a skating rink, all of the shopping brands imaginable, an indoor fairground, and even an indoor souk.
Casablanca Travel and Tour Packages
Searching for the best Casablanca hotels, resorts, and affordable flights in the nearby Cities? Check out our list of affordable hotels and resorts via Agoda, or you may also see available Airbnb properties in the city.