With Europe, a brief boat trip away, the desert to the south, and the Atlantic coast to the north, Casablanca is likely one of the world’s extra distinctive locations with many issues to do. I’ve not been to Casablanca, however Kati has been and located it as unique and thrilling as one imagines. The town is a type of locations that encapsulates a mixing of cultures with a mix of historical past. It’s not fairly Africa, it’s not Europe, and it’s not the center east. Nevertheless it’s straightforward to see how all these areas and cultures have left their mark on the long-lasting Moroccan metropolis. Casablanca is the biggest metropolis in Morocco, it’s additionally one of many largest within the Arab world and an enormous monetary middle and port. The town is typically known as “The Casa” and with a inhabitants of virtually 4 million individuals, the town is trendy and cosmopolitan. In Casablanca, you’re simply as more likely to see individuals adhering to the decision to prayer as you’re more likely to see younger males flirt with scantily-clad girls by the seaside. The Hassan II Mosque looms over the town as a reminder of the town’s historical past and present tradition whereas the Gucci-wearing and Porsche driving locals remind you that Casablanca actually is a conflict of cultures.Within the tenth century, the town of Casablanca was barely various fishing villages. Regardless of its humble beginnings, the port of Casablanca has been traditionally vital for each empire that’s handed by way of the Mediterranean. The Phoenicians, the Greeks, the Romans, all handed by way of right here leaving their mark to some extent. By the fifteenth century, the town was unbiased and thus, appealed to many pirates and privateers. Lastly, conquered by the Portuguese, they deserted it in 1755 following an enormous earthquake that destroyed a lot of the town. By 1907, the French took over the town and it’s stated that Europeans right now made up half of the town’s inhabitants. Throughout WWII, the town turned an vital staging space for the Allies and the period has since been immortalized within the movie Casablanca. Lastly, by 1956 the nation regained its independence. Casablanca is fabulously distinctive so should you’re visiting the town, try these must-see points of interest. Take within the Sights at Hasan II MosqueSitting on the coast of the Atlantic with beautiful views of the water, the Hasan II Mosque is the third-largest on this planet. It took seven years and over 10,000 craftsmen to construct the mosque and no matter your faith, the mosque is a shocking feat of structure and artistry. The mosque is a tribute to the previous King of Morocco that mixes each conventional Moorish design and trendy structure. The mosque can accommodate as much as 25,000 worshippers and regardless of it being the third-largest on this planet, the minaret is the biggest on this planet. Towering above the ocean and the town, the minaret is 700-feet tall and is capped with a lightweight that shines east (towards Mecca). Together with its conventional design, the mosque is also trendy with an earthquake-proof basis, retractable roof, and even heated flooring.Excursions can be found to non-muslims in quite a lot of languages although since it is a non secular web site, gown accordingly. Make certain to deliver your digicam for these picturesque panoramic pictures of the coast. The Hasan II Mosque, named after the previous King of Morocco is likely one of the largest on this planet. In a position to accommodate as much as 25,000 individuals. Get a style of Native ArtIn a metropolis the place issues can get massive and ostentatious, the Abderrahman Slaoui Museum is a welcome little gap within the wall. Positioned in a small constructing downtown, the museum is known as after Abderrahman Slaoui who was an area businessman and artwork collector and the museum is a showcase of all of the issues he collected over time all of which symbolize Morocco in some facet. Classic posters, figurative work by Moroccan artists, in addition to handmade jewellery are all on show. Displays change regularly primarily that includes modern Moroccan artists. Spend A Second in an OasisWhile it may not technically be an Oasis, the Parc de la Ligue Arabe is a centrally positioned park that may be a welcome respite in the course of the hustle and bustle of Casablanca. The park was inbuilt 1918 and is the town’s largest open-air inexperienced house. The palm tree-lined avenue gives loads of shade and the park itself is stuffed with tons of African flora. Guests will discover little cafes the place you may cease for a espresso or mint tea, and hang around and perform a little individuals watching. For somewhat style of the town’s colonial previous, head out to the Cathédral de Sacré Coeur, a former French Roman Catholic church simply outdoors the park. The church is now a cultural middle however nonetheless retains its unique Artwork Deco type. Seize a drink at Rick’s CaféDespite the truth that the film was filmed within the U.S and never in Casablanca, that hasn’t stopped the town from cashing in on the celebrity of the traditional 1942 movie. Any movie aficionado and even somebody simply seeking to get a drink in a classic and funky ambiance may have time at Rick’s Café. Primarily based on the bar of the identical identify within the film you may stroll in feeling like Humphrey Bogart, get pleasure from a cocktail, and wish to the reside lounge music being performed on the piano. The bar opened in 2004 by a former American diplomat and has been adorned to really feel as authentically Forties as attainable. Palm bushes, brass chandeliers, and desk lamps all add to the aesthetic whereas the newborn grand piano tucked into the archway units the temper. Get a style of Genuine Moroccan FoodCasablanca is a world metropolis. It doesn’t matter what you’re seeking to eat you’ll discover it right here. High-quality French delicacies sits subsequent to take-out sushi however while you’re touring, you desire a style of the genuine, and nothing is extra genuine than the meals at La Sqala. Positioned proper outdoors the outdated medina, La Sqala is tucked away between the partitions of an 18th century fortified bastion. Duck out from the hustle and bustle of the town and dine in a peaceable courtyard surrounded by bushes and an Andalusian-inspired backyard. Stay leisure is a daily staple right here however after all, you’re not solely coming right here for the ambiance you’re additionally coming right here to eat! La Sqala provides authentically Moroccan fare like spicy tagines and fluffy couscous dishes that can make your mouth water as quickly as you sit down. Search out authentically Moroccan fare like spicy tagines and fluffy couscous dishes that can make your mouth water as quickly as you sit down. Seize a Drink with Hen’s Eye ViewLocated within the Kenzi tower lodge, Sky 28 is sort of presumably the tallest bar in North Africa. The constructing is supposedly the tallest within the area and when you head as much as the highest, you’ll be inclined to imagine it. That includes elegant designs reminiscent of plush crimson velvet chairs, massive home windows providing 360-degree panoramic views, and the fanciest of cocktails, company can get somewhat style of luxurious if even for a short time. Within the afternoons the view provides sights of the coast with the Hasan II Mosque and at night time the illuminated metropolis grants a romantic backdrop for any date. Stay music and light-weight meals are provided and rooms on the lodge begin at 150$ an evening, simply in case you don’t really feel like leaving too quickly. Study in regards to the Historical past of Morocco’s Jewish PeopleThe subject of Jewish individuals within the Arab world is one which has lasted for hundreds of years and understanding the complexities of the issue is one thing that requires quite a lot of training and understanding. The Museum of Moroccan Judaism is sort of actually the one museum within the Arab world devoted to its Jewish inhabitants. Jews in Casablanca have an extended historical past relationship again to no less than the tenth century when Casablanca was merely simply referred to as Anfa. After the destruction of the town by the Portuguese in 1468 they have been gradual to return however by 1750 the inhabitants was on the rise once more and the primary synagogue was inbuilt Casablanca. Although lots of the metropolis’s Jewish inhabitants left within the Fifties, there are nonetheless roughly 2000 to 4500 Jewish residents of Casablanca. The Museum of Moroccan Judaism opened in 1997 on the location of a former Jewish orphanage and has a big exhibition corridor that includes jewellery, artwork shows, and artifacts together with menorahs and mezuzahs. The museum not solely demonstrates the affect of Judaism on Morrocan tradition but additionally goals to focus on the historical past and interfaith coexistence. Stroll By way of the Outdated MedinaThe metropolis of Casablanca is a spot the place on one nook you’ll discover an outdated artwork deco type theatre, adopted by a Moorish-inspired dwelling that’s subsequent to a contemporary glass and metal skyscraper. These variations of kinds and designs are what units the town other than others and like most elderly cities within the Arab world, there’s a medina. Whereas different medinas within the nation are little doubt older, the outdated medina in Casablanca will make you are feeling such as you’ve been transported into one other period solely. The unique walled metropolis was destroyed however then rebuilt in 1755 following the good earthquake that destroyed a lot of the town. Lastly, in 1907, the walled metropolis was destroyed once more by the French earlier than it was rebuilt once more. That is vital to know as a result of the world that the outdated medina is presently in looks like a mismatched patchwork of buildings and winding streets that add a sure attraction to the world. It is likely to be somewhat arduous to navigate however the enjoyable of it’s to blindly wander in and see what’s happening. Stroll by way of the retailers and stalls, purchase some olives or spices or sit at a restaurant and revel in a hookah and mint tea. Make certain to brush up in your French and Arabic. Seize a snack at Pâtisserie Bennis HabousIf you’re on the lookout for a extra low-key place to hang around as a substitute of the Outdated Medina, the Quartier Habous is the spot. Constructed within the Fifties to accommodate an inflow of immigrants, the neighborhood is filled with intricately molded avenue arches, whitewashed buildings, and Moorish designs. All of it added to the attraction and great thing about the town however one place within the space that has survived the take a look at of time is Pâtisserie Bennis Habous. Constructed and opened within the Nineteen Thirties the bakery is likely one of the most well-known in the entire metropolis. Impressed by French pastries with Maghrebi flavors, Pâtisserie Bennis Habous serves handmade goodies like cornes de gazelles which is a crescent-shaped cookie, stuffed with almond paste and a lightweight coating of orange water. If extra European dishes attraction to you, the almond macarons are all the time a success. Head over to the close by Café Imperial and wash it down with a Moroccan espresso. Casablanca is a metropolis of juxtapositions. It’s the outdated world of medinas and souks alongside trendy companies, designer items, and street-side cafes. It’s a metropolis the place you may seize a French pastry within the morning, lounge with a hookah within the afternoon solar, and revel in an expertly crafted cocktail in a high-end bar at night time. It’s a conflict of cultures that every one one way or the other come collectively proper there on the Atlantic African coast. I’m already planning on going and Kati returning to Casablanca. Right here’s you, child.