Discover Morocco through an itinerary tour from Casablanca
Casablanca is the first city that comes to many people’s minds when you mention Morocco. Spanish for the White House, Casablanca is the biggest Moroccan city and the pumping heart of the Moroccan economy. Since Casablanca is the first economic center in Africa, it’s one of the most cosmopolitan cities on the continent, making it very tourist-friendly.
Starting your Morocco tour from Casablanca will allow you to get to know Morocco from a whole different perspective. As opposed to other popular Moroccan cities like Marrakech and Fez, Casablanca is a coastal city with some decent beaches, which is also a plus if you’re into sunbathing on a beach.
So, let’s find out why you should start your Morocco journey from Casablanca, known among the locals as “Casa”.
Tours from Casablanca
Tours and trips that starts from Casablanca to the desert and several cities
First, let’s Find Out More About Casablanca!
There’s a lot to know about Casablanca if you’re interested in the city. Casa has been one of the key locations for some of the most important events in history. And aside from its delightful weather, Casablanca is a lively city. While it might be too loud for your taste, it’s part of the aesthetic of Casablanca.
Let’s find out more about the city, starting with history.
History of Casablanca
The history of Casablanca is divided into three stages for the sake of convenience.
The area we know now as Casablanca is believed to be inhabited ever since the 7th century BC. The original settlers were the Amazighs. In the old times, the coasts of Casablanca were a remarkable port for the Phoenicians and later the Romans.
Leo Africanus (an Andalusian Diplomat and Geographer from the 15th century AD) describes the city of Anfa (the old name for Casa) as the most prosperous city on the Atlantic coasts, thanks to its fertile lands.
Casablanca (Anfa back then) was a major settlement of the old Berber Independent state of Barghawata, which rose along with many other Berber states against the Ummayad Caliphate in the 8th century AD.
Casablanca remained part of the Barghawata state until the Almoravid Dynasty conquered it in the 12th century AD, adding it to the Moroccan empire, which used to include Southern Spain (Andalusia) and Portugal. The Arabs mixed with the Amazighs during these times, making Casablanca one of the first areas in Morocco where the Moroccan Dialect developed, which is essentially a bastard language developed from mixing Arabic and Tamazight.
In the 14th century, Anfa was one of the main ports of the Atlantic before a major revolt against the ruling dynasty (the Mirinids) that resulted in the port becoming a hub for outlaws and pirates. The Portuguese saw an opportunity in the chaos, which lead them to seize the port, destroying everything, and rebuilding it to their advantage. That’s when Casablanca got its contemporary name; the Portuguese built a white military fortress in the location that they named Casa Branca, i.e., the white house.
After an earthquake destroyed the European settlements in the 18th century, Sultan Mohammed ben Abdallah (1756–1790) rebuilt the city, keeping its Portuguese name. In Arabic, it’s spelled ad-Dār al-Bayḍāʼ (الدار البيضاء), which is a direct translation to the Spanish name casa blanca. The city grew to be a strong port again with the support Spaniards.
By the end of the 19th century, Casablanca was one of the main trade centers between the Muslim world and Europe, with tea being transported from Britain, making its first introduction to Moroccan culture back in those times.
By the dawn of the new century (20th century) the colonial eandevours of France succeeded in subjugating the city under their infleunce.
Casablanca also played a major role in WWII for holding the famous Anfa Conferance where U.K. Prime Minister Winston Churchill and U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, along with other Allies generals discussed the progress of the war.
In 1956 AD, Morocco regained its full independence, which made Casablanca go through many changes that led to where the city is today: one of the most important economic and cosmopolitan hubs of Africa.
Geography of Casablanca
As mentioned before, Casablanca is located in Western Morocco on the coast of the Atlantic. Casablanca has some of the most fertile lands in Morocco, making agriculture a big thing in the region.
Casablanca is home to more than 3 million people, and it covers an area of 220 km2 (80 sq mi). The industry sector is also a big thing in Casablanca, with most of Morocco’s industry being there.
The climate of Casablanca
The climate of Casablanca is considered a hot-summer Mediterranean climate. Casablanca gets its cool breezes from the Canary currents of the Atlantic. A lot of Americans find the climate of Casablanca very similar to Los Angles. Casablanca is mostly sunny the whole year with an average of 72 days of rain.
Starting your Morocco tour from Casablanca will prepare you for the climate in Morocco, which tends to be really hot in the non-costal cities.
Culture of Casablanca
As you can deduce from the history of Casablanca, it’s a culturally diverse city. While it’s a cosmopolitan city, Islam is still the most dominant religion in Casa. You can tell that by looking at Hassan II mosque, which is one of the most culturally significant buildings in Morocco.
Casablanca is a busy city that’s hard to keep up with. People from all sorts of life inhabit the city. And there’s a huge range of diversity when it comes to social and economic status. Casa can be very luxurious at times, but it can also be very down-to-earth and even seem poor in many places.
Casa is also known for its rich art scene; it’s one of the best places to explore contemporary Moroccan art if that’s your thing. There are plenty of galleries, cultural centers, music shows, movies, and museums to explore in Casablanca before you head to other spots in Morocco.
People of Casablanca
People from all walks of life inhabit Casablanca. People from all over the world live in Casa. Aside from the significant community of Sub-Saharan Africans who live in Casa, there’s a Jewish community, a Christian community, a Chinese community, and any type of community you can think of in Casablanca.
Festivals in Casablanca
If you’re lucky enough to have time to schedule your tour from Casablanca during a local festivity, you’ll be able to experience a different face of the city.
Some of the most important occasions for people in Casablanca are Muslim holidays like the month of Ramadan and the Eid Adha holiday (the holiday of sacrifice).
Other cultural festivals include:
Discover Sahara Desert
You can discover the desert of merzouga with our tours that start from a several cities
Why Are Tours From Casablanca More Convenient?
While Morocco isn’t exactly the biggest country, making moving around not a big challenge, starting your tour from Casablanca is a good move if you want to visit everything. It’s also a fun city that would allow you to familiarize yourself with Morocco.
Casablanca Is Situated Strategically
Casablanca is situated in the middle of all the interesting parts of Morocco. Casa is located on the western coast of Morocco in a strategic spot. Traveling from Casablanca to all the imperial cities and other important tourist attractions in northern and southern Morocco is a matter of a few hours.
- You can travel from Casablanca to Marrakech in 3 hours.
- Casa to Rabat is a 1-hour journey.
- Casa to Meknes and Fez is a 2/3-hour journey.
- Casa to Tangier is a 3-hour journey.
- And Casa to Essaouira is a 4-hour journey.
You Can Find All Kinds of Transportation from Casablanca
Since the distance from Casablanca to all the major attractions in Morocco isn’t too far, you can travel in a car or by public transportation. The trains in Morocco are actually quite decent. There’s also the Al Boraq, which is the fastest train in Africa that can take you from casa to Marrakech in 3 hours.
As for the Sahara region, which is a little bit far away from Casablanca, you can take a plane if you’re in a hurry to go there. A plane will take you from the International Casablanca Airport of Casablanca to Moulay Ali Cherif Airport in Errachidia in 1 hour. The trip usually takes a whole day.
Regarding transportation for your tour from Casablanca, the best choice is to take a long-distance taxi if you don’t like buses or trains.
Alternatively, you can travel privately with a professional touring agency.
Tourists underrate Casablanca
Starting your tour from Casablanca is very convenient because it’s a city that you shouldn’t miss exploring. Most people land at the Casablanca International airport only to leave the city without exploring it. Casablanca is often overlooked at the expense of more exotic Moroccan cities such as Marrakech, Fez, and Essaouira.
Discover The Imperial cities
With Prime morocco tours,You can discover the imperial cities and live some other experiences!
Best Things to Do in Casablanca
Before you head to other exotic spots in Morocco, your tour from Casablanca should include at least a couple of fun activities. There’s plenty to go around when it comes to the best things to do in Casablanca.
The list below includes some of the most iconic activities that you can do in Casablanca:
Explore Hassan II Mosque
Hassan II Mosque is the most iconic landmark of Casablanca. The first thing that you see whenever you type Casablanca on Google or YouTube is the soaring minaret of Hassan II mosque, which used to be the tallest minaret in the world before the Algerians decided to build the tallest one in 2019 out of spite. Or at least this is what many Moroccans believe.
Hassan II Mosque is one of the very few mosques that allow non-Muslim visitors to enter it. Hassan II Mosque is your go-to if you want to see some magnificent architecture and mesmerizing (almost psychedelic) internal decoration.
While it’s still relatively young, Hassan II Mosque holds a special spot in the hearts of Moroccans. When it was under construction in the late 80s, Moroccans from all over the Kingdom contributed their money to this building. People who worked on this project include French architects and some of the best artisans in the Kingdom.
Located on the edge of the coast, Hassan II Mosque has the whole Atlantic as its background. The whole complex looks amazing with its fountains and arches, which is why cameras are constantly taking pictures there.
When it’s Friday or a religious holiday, the mosque can hold up to 105,000 worshippers, making it one of the largest religious buildings in the entire world.
Sunbathe on the Beach
Casablanca’s beaches are often sunny and pleasant to visit. If you don’t like the beaches within the city itself, there are plenty of nearby beaches that will fascinate you.
If you travel to Mohamadia or El Jadida, you’ll be surprised by their great coasts. The beaches of Mohamadia are very popular among the locals for their golden sands and clean water.
As for El Jadida, its ramparts are more of a highlight than the beaches. The ramparts of El Jadida mark an era of the Portuguese empire. The iconic cannons all over give a unique aesthetic to the place.
Visit Rick’s Café
Cinephiles will appreciate this one like gold. If you’re into the cult classic 1942 movie Casablanca, then you’ll really want to have a drink at Rick’s Café and listen to some live piano music.
The story of Rick’s Café is very peculiar because the movie was never shot in Casablanca. It’s actually a Hollywood movie. But that didn’t stop the American Kathy Kriger from recreating a faithful copy of the café in its supposedly original city.
Rick’s café features a great menu and live music shows, making it a great spot to visit even if you didn’t watch the movie and have no associations with the place.
Explore the Judeo-Christian Side of Casablanca
Whether it’s the great Cathedral of Sacré-Coeur or the Jewish Temple Beth El, Judeo-Christian culture also has a significant trace in Casablanca.
The Roman Catholic church used to have its influence go as far as Casablanca in the old days. As for during the period of colonialism, nearly half of the population of Casablanca used to be European Christians, which explains why there many traces of Christianity in Casa.
As for Judaism, Jewish history in Casablanca goes way back to the pre-Christian era. Nearly 500,000 Jews used to live in Morocco before Israel was founded. The Museum of Moroccan Judaism in Casablanca holds many secrets about the history of the Jewish people in Morocco, who used to be a vital community in the whole Kingdom.
Have Fun in the Nightclubs and Lounges
If you’re not into all that history and culture stuff, and all you want to do is to party like it’s 1969, Casablanca is your hotspot. All of the amazing clubs in the Corniche of Ain Diab should provide all the fun you need. If you’re more into the quiet mood, you can try the lounges.
The nightlife of Casablanca is super vibrant! It should provide the perfect opportunity for you to make new friends in Morocco. You’ll find many young people there who have “party” as their middle name. You can also get access to some of the things we shouldn’t be talking about if you have the right connections.
Explore the Museums
If you’re into museums, you’ll be delighted to explore the ones in Casablanca, especially if you’re into Art Deco, which we’ll return to later.
Some of the most notable museums in Casa include:
- Museum of Moroccan Judaism
- Musée Abderrahman Slaoui
- Villa des Arts de Casablanca
- Dar Al Ala
- Laredo Art Gallery
Admire the Art Deco Buildings
Downtown Casablanca boasts many unique architectures that return to the Art Deco style, which was developed in the West in the first half of the 20th century. Many Art Deco buildings in Casablanca were built during the French occupation.
If you admire the art style of modernity, you’ll appreciate the Art Deco aesthetic of Casablanca.
Visit the Old Town (Medina)
The Old Town of Casablanca, known locally as the medina, is the perfect place to get a very close look at the more traditional and less luxurious part of Morocco. You’ll find common Moroccans dwelling in the market.
The medina is also where you want to go if you want to do some traditional shopping in Casablanca.
When you start your tour from Casablanca, that allow you to explore this great city ever.
Top 5 activities you must do in the Moroccan Desert.
What Are the Best Tours from Casablanca?
In your search for the best tours from Casablanca, you’ll encounter many travel agencies presenting their itineraries that start from there. Almost all of the tours share commonalities, like visiting the imperial cities, the historical coastal cities, and most importantly, the Sahara Desert.
Here are some of the best tours from Casablanca that you’ll find out there:
8-Day Casablanca Tour Via Beni Mellal
The special thing about this tour from Casablanca is that it doesn’t go to the Sahara Desert. Instead of taking the route from Casablanca to Fez before heading to Marrakech through the Sahara Desert, this tour takes a more straightforward route through the city of Beni Mellal.
This 8-day Casablanca tour usually leaves Casablanca and takes you to the capital city Rabat, before heading to Fez and Meknes. After exploring the three imperial cities, the tour heads to Khenifra and Beni Mellal, which are often overlooked by many tourists. The region of Beni Mellal-Khenifra offers a wonderful opportunity to explore this part of the Moroccan landscape that’s different from the desert region quite significantly.
The tour also allows you to visit Ouzoud Waterfall, arguably the most beautiful waterfall in North Africa.
11-Day Tour From Casablanca to the Imperial Cities
The 11-day tours from Casablanca have an extra day dedicated to the Blue City Chefchaouen, one of the most iconic Moroccan cities, with its blue-washed buildings and chill vibes.
The tour includes staying in the Sahara Desert dunes of Merzouga for a couple of days, which is an incredible experience by all means. You’ll be able to camp in the middle of Erg Chebbi dunes and enjoy a vibrant night of partying to the beats of the Sahara.
In addition to that, the tour also includes visiting some very cool spots like Ait Benhaddou Kasbah, a massive complex of old buildings that you might recognize from Game of Thrones, and many phantasy and historical movies from the 2000s like Gladiator and the Scorpion King.
The tour concludes after visiting the coastal city Essaouira. Essaouira is also another iconic spot for people who love Game of Thrones; it’s known as Port city of Astapor, which is part of Slaver’s Bay.
14-Day Desert Tour from Casablanca
The 14-day grand Desert tour from Casablanca is a great opportunity to spend more time exploring each spot without a big hurry.
Aside from all the attractions mentioned above, the tour also includes a visit to the coastal city, Agadir. Agadir is one of the sunniest cities on the planet, with amazing beaches and a nightlife similar to Casablanca.
The tour also includes visiting the Argan Oil cooperations, which is a great opportunity to get authentic argan products from their source.
Also, the 14-day tour gives a lot of time to explore the Red City, Marrakech, the number one tourist attraction in Morocco. Marrakech is also one of the perfect cities to start your Morocco tour from.
We hope our article about Casablanca has shed some light on this fantastic city for you. If you want to explore Morocco, starting your tour from Casablanca will give you a great journey from North to South. Casablanca is an amazing city to start your tour from, and it’s also a great city to explore. It would be a shame if you left Casablanca without having a little bit of fun in the city.
If you want to make a reservation with Prime Morocco Tours, make sure to contact us. Together we can create a tailor-made tour specifically for you in which you can explore all the parts of Morocco that interest you the most.
And check out our blog for more information about Morocco.