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When you arrive in Casablanca, you’ll have the opportunity to enjoy Morocco’s largest city and visit its lively bars and interesting, educational attractions. The centre of the city is the best place to find luxury shops and designer outlets, whilst on the coast there are large beaches where you can enjoy snacks sold by local vendors as you work on your tan.
In true Moroccan style, a number of local companies offer the chance to ride horses or camels along the beach. Alternatively, use your visit to Casablanca as an opportunity to sit back and relax in the sun, with hired sun loungers and parasols.
If you’re making your own way around the city, then you might want to consider purchasing a guide book. Casablanca’s taxi drivers can take you anywhere, even with very vague instructions, but if you’re exploring on foot then you’ll find that the streets can quickly become confusing. Though the city isn’t the easiest to navigate, you’ll have no trouble walking around the centre if you’d prefer not to use the public tram network or pay for a taxi to your attraction of choice. There are a few main attractions that are favoured by tourists, if you’d prefer your stay here to be more than a relaxing afternoon on the sand:
King Hassan II Mosque
This very impressive mosque is Morocco’s largest, with the world’s tallest minaret. It’s a breathtaking building, open to all, and is beautifully decorated complete with interior water features and tile mosaics.
The Shrine of Sidi Abderrahman
Situated just off the coast, this shrine is visible but not accessible to tourists. Around the area, you’ll find a small neighbourhood and a beach which both offer great vantage points from which to view the shrine.
Mahkama du Pacha
An impressive parliamentary building, this property has intricate and ornate designs throughout. Elegant ironwork and carved wood add a sense of luxury. As this building is regularly used, it’s hard to gain access to the inner rooms on your own. Guides running organised tours are sometimes able to bring small groups into the building to see some of the 60+ rooms.
Whether you use your time in Casablanca to seek out souvenirs and regional treasures, or simply enjoy filling your bags with designer clothes and accessories, you’ll love Casablanca’s many shops. The Morocco Mall is the largest shopping mall in Africa, and is filled with chain stores and an IMAX cinema, whilst a visit to the Maarif area of the city is an opportunity to buy designer fashions, leather accessories and bags.
Traditional Moroccan items are sold around the Old Medina area. They include handcrafted leather items, clothes and painted pots. Morocco’s shanty neighbourhoods, including Derb Ghalef, are where street vendors sell a selection of locally produced items and are open to tourists haggling.
Many restaurants in Casablanca only open late in the evening. It’s normal to dine at 8pm, and often much later, rather than visiting a restaurant for an early evening meal. Light options include sandwiches and salads, though traditional Moroccan meals include kebabs, olives, pastries and pigeon meat.
Seafood and Spanish tapas restaurants can be found in abundance throughout the city. You’ll find that many dining establishments serve at least one variety of paella. Vegetarian and vegan diets are very well catered for, ensuring that all can enjoy a hearty Moroccan meal before returning to the cruise ship.
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