Car rental in Casablanca
Rent a car in Casablanca

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Casablanca, the biggest city in Morocco, is also the country's trade centre and largest port. With its rich heritage and Mediterranean climate, Casablanca is a favourite destination among Europeans and other travellers from around the world. Like most major cities, Casablanca is a bit too big to explore on foot – it's best to rent a car to travel in comfort and privacy. With a rental car, you can freely explore other fascinating nearby cities such as Rabat, Tangier, or Marrakesh.

It's your choice: Where to go in Casablanca

The main airport by Casablanca, Mohammed V International, is the busiest and best-connected airport in the country, with connections to major European US, Canadian, and African airports. Road transportation is good, and it doesn't take long to drive from the airport to the city centre (approximately 45 minutes). To rent a car in Casablanca, you can easily book online. Did you know that Casablanca used to be ruled by the Spanish, French, and Almoravids? It was settled by the Berbers in the 7th century, and during the 15th century, it was a paradise for pirates. Then the Portuguese came, fought the pirates, and built up a fort they called 'Casa Blanca'. The city was made famous partly because of the eponymous 1942 film. Today, Casablanca is a thriving business centre with a developing art scene and vibrant nightlife.

What to do in Casablanca

Being one of the most vibrant cities in Morocco and a dream holiday destination, Casablanca is full of activities and places of interest to keep you busy during your entire stay. Even if you're not religious, you'll want to see the magnificent Moorish architecture of the Hassan II Mosque, the biggest in the world after the mosques of Mecca and Medina. This massive structure took 6.000 artisans six years to finish. The Cathédrale Sacré-Coeur is also worth visiting. If you're planning to visit in June, don't miss L'Boulevard Festival, featuring musicians from France, the US, and other parts of Morocco. To relax, check out the city's hammams, traditional Turkish baths, or the Corniche for some fresh ocean air. The seaside boardwalk stretches for several kilometres and is lined with shops, restaurants, bars, hotels, and beach clubs. By renting a car in Casablanca, you'll be able to reach most places whenever you want.

Important info about Casablanca

Casablanca, set on the coast and on the Chawiya Plain, has a typical Mediterranean climate, with hot summers and mild, wet winters. In summer, temperatures can reach 35°C, and in winter, dip to 5°C. By Morocco's coast, the climate is much more Mediterranean, with refreshing winds, while inland areas tend to be drier and hotter. Remember that temperatures can drop dramatically at night, so make sure to dress appropriately. For the best weather, visit Casablanca between April to May, or September and November. Casablanca has diverse landscapes ranging from high mountain ranges to beautiful meadows. Did you know that Morocco is home to Africa's highest ski resort, too? To enjoy this popular winter sport in this typically dry and hot country, visit between December and March.

Weather in Casablanca
Facts
Country Morocco
Language Arabic, French
Currency Moroccan dirham
Time-Zones Western European Time (GMT+1)
Country Code +212

Good to know

Drivers stick to the right side of the road in Morocco, and the minimum legal age for driving is 18. When you drive, make sure to take your driver's license and passport with you, as you may encounter occasional police control. If you intend to rent a car in Casablanca, it's recommended you book early to enjoy better rates. Road conditions have improved a lot in recent years thanks to government spending. As speed cameras are installed on toll roads and highways, make sure to drive within the limit, and bear in mind that animals are allowed to share the roads with other vehicles. At intersections, always give way to the right. For trips to other towns and nearby cities, make sure to fill up the tank in the city because gas stations can be scarce in rural areas.

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What to taste in Casablanca

Like most other cities in Morocco, Casablanca has a cuisine comprising aromatic spices and intriguing ingredient combinations. Its flavourful cuisine has French, Arabian, and Andalusian influences. You'll find several Spanish tapas bars and romantic restaurants serving iconic French dishes. If you want to experience authentic Moroccan cuisine, don't leave Casablanca without tasting b’stilla, a pigeon-meat and almond pie seasoned with cinnamon, coriander, and saffron. Or you can try couscous, a popular staple across the country, and tagine, a meal named after the clay pot it's cooked in. Served bubbling hot, tagine can be found everywhere, including at roadside cafés. For drinks, mint tea is the most popular choice. If you're not a fan of sugary tea, make sure to tell your server in advance, as the tea is often heavily sweetened. While enjoying your aromatic tea, why not order some cornes de gazelle (gazelle horns), biscuits stuffed with almonds and cinnamon?

What to bring to your friends from Casablanca

At the beach in Ain Diab, you'll find Africa's second-largest shopping centre, the Morocco Mall. Most luxury brands are available here, and the shopping complex houses entertainment facilities as well as upscale restaurants. Many visitors prefer shopping for their favourite luxury brands here, as they say the prices are lower and the selection is wider. For traditional handmade Moroccan goods, go to Medina. Here, you'll find leather shoes, handbags, tagines, pottery, and spices, among many other souvenirs. Moroccan leather, tanned using an age-old-process, makes excellent gifts. As a rule of thumb, always try to bargain before buying – you may end up saving a lot of money. Other popular souvenirs among holidaymakers are lanterns. Available in different sizes and shapes, they're often decorated in astonishingly beautiful designs evocative of Morocco. If you're seeking something edible, Moroccan pastries are highly recommended and delicious.