Day 15 : Casablanca

We figured we had an extra day so why not change it up and spend our last 2 days in Casablanca (or to the locals Casa). We went for it and just showed up.  The taxi driver dropped us close to the Medina so we could walk around and find a Hotel. We chose Hotel Volubulis. A nice place but located next door to a Russian/Moroccan/Mafia hookah night club. .... where there was Partying all night - followed up by a massive street fight at 3am. Funny enough we found the prices for shopping here in Casablanca to be the cheapest of all the other areas we have visited so far.  Not many tourists spend a lot of time in Casa so maybe it is priced for locals more so than anyone. I'm not sure why more travels don't spend  more time here - it was nice and relaxing here believe to or not.


Casablanca. The good ole Hotel Volubulis and our street view. Lots of Colonial Architecture in this part of town.
Breakfast with Brian. Our little nook we hung out in a lot. Wifi zone , fresh air and chilling after a long but awesome trek.
Construction site Chaos! This construction site gives me shoulders. But don't worry, the little clothing shop was still open for business. Mannequins perched on top of debris, music blaring and all....
The market scene inside the Medina. Way more chill than any other we have seen so far.
Some Spices and such inside the Medina
Our Hotel. We actually forgot our room pic which we almost never do (except this time) but here is the common area/lobby.... open to the outside. We sat here a lot and just hung out.... which was a nice break from town.
KFC... just In case you cannot read Arabic, see above. hehe We always love seeing Fast food places in other counties. They are the same but different. The McDonalds billboards offer the McBaguette.
Dish has cornered the market - they have it all wrapped up here.
Shop Local we always say. Much cheaper here too. We notice these things because we travel with Brian Cowles, who has an impressive "eye for value".
Market in the Medina Just another shot. The people in Casablanca also don't really mind the pics either. Which was refreshing.

The big attraction here is the Hassan II Mosque. Built by King Hassan II to commerate his 60th Birthday, this enormous Mosque was funded by the public. It is fairly new having just been completed in 1993. It was designed by a French Architect (due the French influence of Morocco) and its location was chosen based on a Quaran verse which states "God's throne was built upon the water". It is the tallest building in the country and the 3rd largest Mosque in the world. Zzzzz , sorry of these stats are boring.. but we thought you could learn a little something today. We will let the rest be told in a few pics.


Hassan II Mosque. The Mosque living up to its Quran inspiration. It really doesn't look all that big from far away, but it is because the scale of everything is so big, it is quite deceiving.
Hassan II Mosque. Massive doors made out of Titanium so they are at least functional.
One of the corridors outside in the courtyard which holds 80,000 worshipers outside the Mosque. It is where most like to pray because It's cooler. That's me really trying to blend in.
Hassan II Mosque. A small detail from one of the walls. The Detail was crazy in this place.
The bath house in the lower levels of the Mosque. Dreamy. I'd like this added into the basement remodel of 2014.
Hassan II Mosque. Just a little idea of scale of this beast. See what we mean about the scale? Just look at the wee people at the bottom of the pic and that massive door.
Hassan II Mosque. We just like this pic with the locals in it. Although they may not even be locals....maybe they live in Marrakech and they too are tourists.
Inside the Mosque. 25,000 worshipers can pray inside. The roof is retractable so when it's nice out, they open the roof for fresh air and can pray direct to the sky.
The wash rooms in the lower levels of the Mosque. It is required to "wash" or cleanse the body before worship. So a ritual of hands, feet and face are done.
The Cowles. Do you think anyone will notice we are not locals?

Although neither of us have seen the movie Casablinca, we wanted to go the the famous Rick's Cafe featured in the movie. There isn't a whole lot to do here so why not end our Morocco trip with an ultra touristy bang.


Rick's Cafe. Inspired by the Movie Casablanca although not actually filmed here. Funny enough it was filmed entirely in LA... and we saw so many other movie locations here that weren't even supposed to be here....
At Rick's Cafe. Fancy Tagine and couscous minus the cool clay triangle pot you get it in if you order it on the street.
Rick's. Live music every night. A constant video feed on every TV of "Casablanca", overpriced food and drink, but a must see and try once of you are here right?
At Rick's Cafe. Our very German friend who spent all evening trying to convince us that Communism is the way to go.

did brian call him a commie straight to his face after a few beers? i can see that happening... From sara, on Oct 8, 2013 at 06:10PM


On our way to the airport. Who needs to buckle a helmet in this crazy traffic? Not this guy. And who needs to put in on backwards? ...This guy.


Next, we leave for a week long layover in Paris.  We have learned to never again listen to all the crazy hype that people throw out about a country. No more. We wish we would have just stayed another full week here and hit the one area we missed....but it is what it is at this point. Our original plan was to take the ferry over to Spain and drive thru up to Paris, catch our plane and head home. "No can do" says the airlines. So off to Paris we go. Not so great planning on our part. - plus we wouldn't have been able to see friends that we haven't seen in forever!  BUT - because of rule - this new fun rule,  no one will know where we are going on future trips (except parents, we aren't stupid) until the first Blog post. Kind of like "Where in the world is Matt Lauer".

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