Casablanca is found on the Atlantic Coast of Morocco to the south of the capital Rabat and is the city famous for its cross over style of Moroccan and European culture. A city of which boasts a population of over 3,200,000 people.
The sand beaches of Casablanca stretch 28 kilometres to the north and are a fun place to hang out, with the city life behind. The feeling is of a Californian boulevard is found on Boulevard Hansali with the skate boards, and walkers filling the large sidewalk.
In the evenings the famous Corniche is the area preferred by those looking for the nightlife, with its beaches and swimming pools, its fashionable bars, restaurants and hotels giving it a cultural mix of Morocco and France.
The foundations of the commercial centre of Morocco were made as a Berber fishing village before it was invaded by the Portuguese who renamed the village Casa Branca (White House) and built fortifications to keep the local population under their control.
An act of nature coming as a large earth quake, completely destroyed the city in 1770 and with it the hold of the Portuguese over the Berber population. Towards the end of that century Sultan Sidi Muhammad started to rebuild before the Spanish invaders again took the control of the city walls. From this time with the increased commercial traffic, Casablanca grew at an astounding rate; by the beginning of 1860 the population was 8.000 inhabitants, by 1907 it had risen to 20,000.
With the arrival of the French in 1912 the expansion was continuing, by 1930 over 100,000 people were housed in the city and it took until 1956 and the end of the French Protectorate before the city was again fully in Morocco's hands. The modern city of Casablanca is one of the largest cities in North Africa holding 60% of Morocco's companies giving it the undisputed crown as the commercial centre of Morocco.
Mosque Hassan II
The mix of traditional Moroccan architecture and ultra-sophisticated technology was built by over 3300 craftsmen and includes a retractable roof, which opens up the prayer hall to the heavens for over 25,000 people.
The height of the minaret (200 metres) makes it the tallest in the world and can be seen as a commitment to the faith of Islam by the people of Morocco where 98.7% of the people are Muslim, 1.1% are Christian and 0.2% Jewish.
The Port of Casablanca
It was built by the French at the beginning of the 1900's, covering an area of 12.000 m2. This port is protected by the 3180-metre-long Moulay Youssef jetty which was constructed to create Morocco's premier port ( takes 70% of the national maritime traffic for Morocco) and the fourth largest in Africa.
The port has uses, from the naval national office to a tourist harbour, where the private cruisers can be seen off loading their customers for a few days in Casablanca and the surrounding area.