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The Best Things to Do in Casablanca

by Busines Newswire
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While the movie “Casablanca” is widely known, the actual city itself, the largest in Morocco, remains less familiar to many.

Positioned on the Atlantic coast, Casablanca is where aspiring young Moroccans flock to pursue their dreams, and it serves as a thriving hub for both business and the creative industries. It stands as a prominent symbol of a modern and progressive nation.

While it might not possess the historical charm characteristic of imperial cities such as Marrakesh, Fez, Meknes, or Rabat, Casablanca shines brightly in various alternative facets. In the upcoming section, we’ll delve into some of the most captivating things to do in this lively metropolis.

Hassan II Mosque

Built in 1993 and perched on a platform with views of the Atlantic Ocean, the renowned Hassan II Mosque is Africa’s second-largest mosque. It’s one of the few mosques open to non-Muslims, allowing access through guided tours lasting about an hour each. With a capacity for up to 25,000 worshippers, this mosque provides Muslims with the unique experience of praying on a glass floor directly above the sea. You can also appreciate its stunning architectural beauty at any time from the expansive courtyard, which can hold an additional 80,000 visitors.

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Rick’s Café

When searching for things to do in Casablanca, a must-visit is the renowned Rick’s Café. Inspired by the fictional setting in the classic movie starring Humphrey Bogart, this piano bar was brought to life by American ex-diplomat Kathy Kriger and architect Bill Willis, welcoming its first patrons in 2004. With palm trees, elegant brass chandeliers, cozy table lamps, delightful cocktails, and a baby grand piano nestled in an archway, stepping into this bar can make you feel like you’ve entered the world of the 1942 film. You might just find yourself among fellow fans of the movie.

Morocco Mall

Located at the end of the La Corniche area, you’ll find Morocco Mall, the largest shopping center in Africa. This modern hub is perfect for a day of entertainment, whether you’re with your family or traveling as a couple. Besides the wide array of shops, ranging from H&M to Dior, and a diverse selection of dining options, Morocco Mall also boasts an indoor aquarium featuring a small shark, an impressive fountain display outside, as well as indoor ice skating and a fairground. There truly is something to suit everyone’s interests. If you’re seeking a taste of old Morocco, you can explore an indoor souk (market), but for a more traditional experience, the Old Medina is the place to go in Casablanca.

Abderrahman Slaoui Museum

The tiny and beautiful Abderrahman Slaoui Foundation Museum is a small building hidden in the middle of downtown Casablanca city. Named after Abderrahman Slaoui, a Moroccan businessman and art collector, the museum is a showcase of his collection of decorative Moroccan art. With old posters, Moroccan jewellery, figurative paintings by Muhammad Ben Ali Rbati, landscape paintings by Jacques Majorelle and crystal objects, a morning spent in this gem will give you a new appreciation for the art of Morocco and beyond. New exhibitions are shown regularly, featuring contemporary Moroccan artists.

Museum of Moroccan Judaism

The Museum of Moroccan Judaism, which is the only Jewish museum in the Arab world, offers valuable insights into the history, religious practices, traditions, and everyday life of the Jewish community in Morocco. Its exhibits encompass various aspects, including paintings, decorative items, attire, and meticulously recreated Moroccan synagogues. Moreover, the museum highlights not only the Jewish cultural influence in Morocco but also the historical coexistence of different faiths within Moroccan society.

Travel in Morocco offers options for tour packages that involve visiting this place

Parc de la Ligue Arabe

Located to the south of Place Mohammed V, you’ll find the Parc de la Ligue Arabe. This park, designed in 1918, is the largest open space in Casablanca. It features a beautiful palm-tree-lined avenue and is a great place for outdoor activities like games and leisurely strolls. You’ll also discover charming cafes within the park. The Arab League Park offers a tranquil environment where you can relax and appreciate the diverse African flora. Nearby, you can explore the Cathédrale de Sacré Coeur, an intriguing historical place of worship that hints at Casablanca’s art deco heritage.

Royal Palace

Close to the New Medina, you’ll come across one of King Mohammed VI’s many palaces. The king has palaces in various cities, including Marrakech, Fes, and Rabat. The King’s Palace in Casablanca is equally majestic, featuring a vast open square at its front, an abundance of guards, and an impressive exterior that anyone can admire. While the palace is seldom accessible to those not connected to the king, it’s still worth a visit to appreciate its exterior grandeur.

Place Mohammed V

Exploring the administrative center of Casablanca, you’ll encounter Place Mohammed V, a testament to the architectural design of Henri Prost. This square is surrounded by public buildings that have influenced architectural styles across Morocco, including the law courts. In its midst stands the statue of Marshal Lyautey, the inaugural French Resident-General in Morocco from 1912 to 1925. Alongside this monumental statue, the square boasts an impressive fountain dating back to 1976. At specific times of the day, you can enjoy a musical water show there.

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Villa des Arts

The Villa des Arts, affiliated with the ONA Foundation, a prominent cultural institution in Morocco, is among the largest museums in Casablanca, situated near the Parc de la Ligue Arabe. Its mission is to showcase contemporary arts within the context of Moroccan culture and heritage. The museum houses approximately 800 permanent artworks, complemented by temporary exhibitions featuring international and contemporary artists. A visit here offers a unique lens through which to view Moroccan culture. The museum’s structure is a beautiful representation of Art Deco architecture from 1934. Throughout the year, it hosts a diverse range of cultural events, making it a year round draw for both residents and visitors.