It has both the advantages and disadvantages of a typical large north African city and commercial capital. It is Morocco’s largest city and the country’s main port which translates into quite a few gritty and industrial-looking neighborhoods. On the other hand Casablanca is also the most cosmopolitan of Morocco’s cities, with clubs, fast food chains and high end boutiques. Not to forget an upcoming contemporary arts scene, beautifully restored French colonial buildings, good markets and an authentic old part of town.
What to See and Do in Casablanca
Hassan II Mosque – It took 6,000 Moroccan artisans and five years to build this magnificent mosque, with its intricate mosaics, stone and marble floors and columns, sculpted plaster moldings, carved and painted wood ceilings. It’s the largest mosque in the world with room for more than 100.000 muslims. Tourists, or better, non-muslims are not allowed inside apart from some areas within an official tour.
Visit a Hammam – Try a steam bath and scrub in a traditional hammam when you visit Morocco. Recommended places for a good scrub are: Solidarite Feminine (an amazing organization that runs Hammams and also provides services to unmarried women and their children) and Les Bains Ziani.
Place Mohammed V – The main square in town, the Place Mohammed V has a large, at night beautiful lit fountain surrounded by fantastic examples of French colonial architecture.
The Corniche – the Corniche is a boardwalk lined with restaurants and nightclubs. It’s where most locals go for dinner and fun. Walk down the Corniche and enjoy the refreshing sea breeze, especially after spending some time inland. You will need a cab to get there but the fresh air is worth it!
Shopping – Casablanca’s old part of town is small and a good place to just get lost in as you explore the shops. It offers a nice contrast to the wide streets and modern architecture that marks the rest of Casablanca.