Église Notre Dame de Lourdes
Built in 1954 by architect Achille D'angleterre, the cathedral’s imposing white concrete façade looks more like a warehouse than a church and a simple white cross is the only hint to its purpose. Step inside however, and encounter a dazzling kaleidoscope of floor-to-ceiling stained glass windows. Crafted by French glassmaker Gabriel Loire, the masterpiece includes 8,611 square feet (800 square meters) of glass.xa0
Located just northwest of the New Medina (or Habous Quarter), the cathedral is near major attractions like Royal Palace, Mohammed V Mosque, Moulay Youssef Mosque, and Mahakma of the Pasha, a courthouse renowned for its Hispano-Moorish design. Travelers may explore the cathedral as part of a half-day, full-day, and multi-day sightseeing tours of the city. Some tours leave from Marrakech, including day trips through the Atlas Mountains, including a hike to Berber villages, an argan oil cooperative, and lunch in the home of a local family.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Suitable for solo travelers, couples, and families.
- Tours may include roundtrip hotel transfers, food, and drink.
- Check specific tours for details.
- For a tour, a minimum of 2 people may be required.
- Entrance is free.
How to Get There
Notre Dame de Lourdes Cathedral is at the corner of Avenue Mers Sultan and Boulevard Mohamed Zerktouni, just northwest of Casablanca's New Medina. The easiest way to reach the cathedralxa0 is by walking or by taxi. There are two types of taxis, and both are budget-friendly. The small red taxis are private and metered, while the larger white taxis are car-shares taking up to four passengers.
When to Get There
Try to avoid visiting the cathedral late Sunday morning, unless wanting to attend a mass. In general, Casablanca can be quite hot year-round, though cool breezes come with the Canary Current off the Atlantic Ocean. In July are two of the city’s most outstanding events (Festival de Casablanca and the Feast of the Throne) or come during the spring for Ramadan to experience an array of cultural activities and festivals.
Mahakma of the Pasha
A 15-minutes walk from the cathedral, is another low-key masterpiece. Mahakma of the Pasha is an administrative building only occasionally open to the public, but it’s worth trying a visit. Set between the Royal Palace and the main Habous Souk (Souq de Habous), this gorgeously ornate 1950s structure has over 60 rooms decorated in extraordinary stucco work, intricately carved wooden ceilings, and walls covered with the beautiful Moroccan style of geometric mosaic tilework called zellige.
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