Located on the foothills of the Atlas Mountains, Marrakesh is a beautiful city in Morocco. The city is home to some terrific, age-old architectural marvels. Read on to learn about some of them.
El Badi Palace
‘The Incomparable,’ El Badi Palace is a beautiful ancient building in Marrakesh. Constructed between 1578 and 1593, the palace today is a well known tourist attraction among visitors from across the world. Featuring several large pavilions, beautifully designed corridors, a royal entrance gate, richly decorated rooms and a central pool, the structure is a classic display of craftsmanship prevalent during the Saadian period. There is a museum around the structure exhibiting a series of age old artefacts and objects dating back to the early 15th century. For several years, the palace was the central venue for the Marrakesh Folklore Festival.
A perfect example of Islamic design and Moroccan architecture, Bahia Palace is a well-known architectural marvel in Marrakesh. Built in the late 19th century by Si Moussa, the palace is a must visit attraction in the city. Dar Si Moussa (the oldest part of the palace) has a courtyard in the north and several beautiful fountains. Tourists from across the world come here to see its decorated ceiling, the library, multicolour vitrage and the decorated columns.
Located on the outskirts of the city, Saadian Tombs is one of the most beautiful structures in the city. First discovered in 1917 by a group of archaeologists, the structure is known for its design and patterns. It served as a burial ground for Sultan Ahmed el Mansour and his descendants. The Hall of Twelve Columns, where Sultan Ahmed el Mansour and his family rest, is the most significant chamber here. Tourists visit the Saadian Tombs to admire the beautifully carved arches and domes made of Carrara Marble.
Situated in the west of the city, Koutoubia Mosque is one of the largest mosques in Morocco. Completed under the reign of Berber Almohad Caliph Yaqub al-Mansur (1184 to 1199), the mosque today stands as a classic example of fine Islamic architecture. The 77-meter minaret, made of red sandstone and designed using almohad style, is a major attraction for the tourists.
Zawiya Sidi Bel-Abbes
Located in the heart of the city, Zawiya Sidi Bel-Abbes was built in the memory of a prominent 12th century Sufi preacher. A classic example of traditional Islamic architecture and design, the structure has a beautifully crafted pyramidal roof; courtyard with fountains; and the arched entrance.
Also known as ‘Koubba Ba’adiyn’, Almoravid Koubba is among the oldest structures in Marrakesh. Built in 1117and later excavated in 1952; the structure is only remaining example of Almoravid architecture in the city. The beautifully designed dome, richly decorated pine cone shaped gateways and the sculptures around the structure are among the popular attractions here. The epigraphic decorations and the calligraphy on the ceilings and walls add to the beauty of the place. Religious training sessions and musical events are organised here regularly.