On our way to Hassan II mosque, we stopped by Mohammed V square. Significant to the locals but we’ve found little interest even when droves of tour buses stop here. it’s just another square with a fountain, lots of pigeons and water carriers in traditional clothes that will ask for a fee to photograph with them. Frankly there is nothing much to see save for the courthouse and city hall that has that ‘old school’ look.
The Hassan II Mosque is one majestic and gigantic building. Not to mention a beautiful building too. It’s foundations lie partly on reclaimed land and partly in the Atlantic Ocean. At 210 metres the minaret is the tallest religious structure in the world. Depending how you define largest, biggest, size or capacity, Hassan II mosque is the top 5 largest mosque in the world, the first being the Haramain Mosque in Mecca.
Not withstanding that the afternoon prayer is a couple of hours away, the doors to the mosque were shut when we reached it. We were told there are escorted tour of the mosque held at specific times and cost €12. So I guess, for Muslims to enter the mosque for free, is just before or during any of the five prayer times. (Correct me if I’m wrong).
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Before continuing our tour to Rabat just a little more than 100 kms from Casablanca, we had lunch at Ain Diab. It is a seaside suburb of Casablanca and known as the corniche of Morocco or to its extreme, the riviera of Africa. Passing the neighbourhood getting to the beachfront you’ll get to see posh residences.
A walk along the boulevard exposes you to the mighty Atlantic ocean with its rough waves, the beach is nothing out of the extra-ordinary. It’s a popular spot among the locals and tourists and during the summer expect ½ million visitors here. Properties fronting the beach are commercial buildings like hotels and restaurants making up the numbers. In 1958, Ain Diab hosted one round of the F1 races here but unfortunately never again.