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Casablanca Travel Guide


Overview

Economic and commercial capital, Casablanca is also the symbol of modern Morocco. A true international metropolis, the city has 3.5 million inhabitants, 10% of the Moroccan population.

In the early twentieth century, the city has grown considerably through its international port, the largest of Morocco and the 4th in Africa. Business Center in Morocco, the city meets 60% of the businesses of the country and its power consumption approaches nearly 30% of total Moroccan.

However, Casablanca does a minor role in the history of Morocco. Indeed, the city was relatively insignificant before the introduction of the French protectorate. In 1907, the city had only 25 000 inhabitants, a population multiplied by 140 in less than a century! Note: Some attractions worth visiting, especially the huge Hassan II mosque.

At the root of Casablanca, in the seventh century, was probably a Phoenician foundation. However, historians agree that the city was founded in the twelfth century. Called then Anfa, the city already traded products in the region since its port.

Belonging successively to the Berbers, the Almoravids and the Almohades, it was not until the fourteenth century that the small port resembles a city. At this period, Mérinides build a mosque and a médersa there.
Become a haven for pirates, the city is taken by the Portuguese in the fifteenth century. Uninhabited for several centuries, it is destroyed by the earthquake of Lisbon in 1755.

In 1770, Sultan Mohamed Ben Abdallah rebuilt the city to avoid a return of Portuguese and named it "Dar el Beida," the white city. He set up his troops and intends to develop a port for international trade. Spanish merchants give the city the name of Casablanca.

In the early twentieth century, Casablanca became the first port of export of the country and attracted people. With 25 000 inhabitants in 1907, it is far from the 700 people in 1836.

After the signing of the Treaty of French protectorate in 1912, Marshal Lyautey decided to make Casablanca the economic capital of the country. From that time, he immediately began expanding the port. Therefore, the city is experiencing a rapid economic growth that has not stopped yet.

Anticipating future problems due to population growth, Lyautey knew that the city must expand and modernize. He chose the architect Henri Prost to design the plan of urbanization of the city. Casablanca becomes a city model where the urbanization superbly mixes modern and traditional architectures in the respect of the Moroccan culture.

Casablanca today, the largest metropolis in the Maghreb, is one of the largest cities in the African Continent.

Overall, there are 4 monuments or places not to be missed: the Hassan II Mosque, built from 1988 to 1993, the church, the highest and the largest religious building in the world, just after the mosque in Mecca; the center of the new town, the old medina and the district of Quartiers des Habous.

Casablanca is located on the coast of Morocco. The mild Mediterranean climate from which the city profits will make it possible you to benefit from the vast beaches. And the city has an exceptional sunshine. Knowing that this town is nicknamed "the White House" for the color of houses, the glare is guaranteed!

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