The Casablanca Religious Highlights Tour is a real trip through Morocco’s religious history, using the past to help understand the present. A Muslim-majority country, Morocco has always been a land of religious tolerance and peace, but did you know that the kingdom also has a rich Jewish history? On this tour, you’ll learn how Moroccan Jews and Muslims have lived together for centuries, sharing the same educational values, culture, traditions, clothing and even cuisine. King Mohamed VI has been instrumental in the restoration and renovation of many Moroccan synagogues, including the beautiful Temple Beth El in the Jewish Quarter in Casablanca. He also opened the Museum of Moroccan Judaism, the only such museum in the Arab world. You’ll visit the famous Hassan II Mosque, which features architectural influences from Christianity, Judaism and Islam. Each decoration, each piece of material used to build the mosque has significance. and contributes to the theme that the three religions share their origin. On this tour, you’ll also visit Christian houses of worship, including two of the largest cathedrals built under French protectorate — Notre Dame de Lourdes and Sacré Coeur.
Your guide and driver will meet you at your hotel, cruise ship dock, or other location specified by you.
The Hassan II Mosque (built 1987-1993) is a mosque located in Casablanca, Morocco. Erected partly on the sea, it is a religious and cultural complex built on nine hectares and includes a prayer room, an ablution hall, baths, a Quranic school (madrasa), a library and a museum. The prayer room can accommodate 25 000 faithful within a total area of 20 000 square meters while the esplanade 80 000 faithful (the complete set can accommodate 105 000 people). The Hassan II Mosque is one of the largest mosques in the world, with a 200-meter-tall minaret — the highest in the world. Craftsmen recruited in all cities of the Kingdom carved 53,000 square meters of wood and assembled more than 10, 000 square meters of zellige (ceramics) for the place of worship.
Temple Beth El is a Jewish synagogue located in Casablanca. It’s seen as the central element of a once vibrant Jewish community, and is well known for its beautiful architecture and design elements.
The Church of the Sacred Heart is a former Roman Catholic church in the city of Casablanca. It was built in 1930 by the architect Paul Tournon1, owner of the Prix de Rome, in a style combining Gothic aesthetic and art deco. It is surrounded by a large public garden, the Park of the Arab League. Today, the ancient Catholic sanctuary is now desacralized and and used as a site for exhibitions and cultural events.
The Church of Notre Dame de Lourdes is a Catholic church located in Casablanca, Morocco. It was built in 1954 by Achille Dangleterre and engineer Gaston Zimmer1 and is the second church of Casablanca after the Church of the Sacred Heart, which is no longer devoted to worship. Today Notre Dame de Lourdes is particularly frequented by many followers of sub-SaharanAfrica.
The Museum of Moroccan Judaism was opened in 1997 in a renovated villa in Oasis, Casablanca. The only such museum in the Arab world, it features artifacts and exhibits which highlight Moroccan Jewish culture and history.