Meknes, a city of Moroccan heritage and culture

Meknes is a city in Morocco. Its name comes from the Amazightribe that founded it, Meknassi, and it is called this way because of this. The Meknès-Tafilalet region is the place where the government works. You can reach this city by car or bus. It’s 138 miles from Rabat and 60 miles from Fez. Four towns in Morocco used to be very important. This one is one of them. You can visit this part of Morocco from there. It’s in the north-central part of the country, so it’s an excellent place to start if you want to go there.

This city has a lot to do with the Alaoui dynasty’s second ruler, Moulay Ismail. He made it the capital during his time in office, which lasted 55 years. This city came out of nowhere to become a city like Rabat or Marrakech. For more than 40 kilometers, Meknes has imposing walls and many mosques. It’s a city that was once an imperial one. Still, now it has a lot of historical monuments and beautiful nature. So it’s also called the “City of a hundred minarets.” Because it is also near Volubilis, the Roman ruins, it is the best place to stay (Oualili). The prices in Meknes are some of the best in Morocco, and the people are more friendly than in other cities.


There are trains and highways in the city, making it easy to get there from Tangier. It’s also an excellent place to stop on the way to Fez from Tangier. You should stay the night in Meknes and visit Fez the next day if you can only go by car in the afternoon.

People can get there by bus. In Meknes, the best way to get around is to take the bus or taxi. People who come to this place don’t have difficulty getting around. This city has many more tourist attractions than the next one, Fez. Visitors will always find something to do while they are in Meknes.

In Meknes, what to do and where to go

Meknes, Morocco

Meknes has a lot more to see than just the walls and the medina. The Mausoleum of Mulay Ismail, the gates of Bab El Mansur, Bab Berdain, and Bab El-Jemis, the Pond of Adgal, the Medersa Bou Inania, the fabulous Gardens of the Sultans, the granaries (Heri es-Suani), the enormous stable, and the Museum of Moroccan Art in Dar Jamai are all worth a visit.

Meknes is 26 km away. Moulay Idriss is in the same area. Here, there is a very busy moussem. Thousands of people from around the world come to Moulay Idriss annually in August and September. This draws many tourists and makes for a festive event with many traditional colors.

The ruins of the Roman city of Volubilis are 27 km from Meknes. Since the 1st century AD, Volubilis has been home to the lawyers of Mauritania Tingitana.

In Meknes, there are a lot of religious places that you can visit

Cheikh El Kamel Mausoleum in Meknes, Morocco

Ahmed Dahbi built the mausoleum of Moulay Ismail in the old city. It is located on the other side of the square and is in ruins near the Grand Square. If you are not Muslim, you can visit the mausoleum of one of Morocco’s most famous sultans. It is one of three mausoleums in Morocco that non-Muslims can visit. Despite his attempts to marry Louis XIV’s daughter, Anna Maria de Bourbon, due to their good relationship, he did not succeed. Non-Muslims should stay outside the room.

To enter the mausoleum, follow the rules of respect and wear moderate attire that is suitable for Muslims. It can be accessed through a series of elegant and simple courtyards, with rooms that have minimal decoration but are still beautiful. The heart of the mausoleum is a room with beautiful Islamic patterns and a fountain in the center. One wife of Moulay Ismail and two of his sons are buried here. Many Moroccans believe that the mausoleum of Moulay Ismail has the ability to help people who are sick or injured. With rooms that have minimal decoration, such as zellige tiles and paint on the walls.

On the other hand, the Carpenter’s Mosque was built in the 10th century. It is in the center of the old city of Meknes.

It is believed that construction of the Great Mosque began in the 11th century, making it likely to have been built at that time. It has 11 doors and 143 arches, with beautiful ceilings.

The Rawi Mosque was built in 1790 by Sidi Mohammed ben Abdallah and is called the Rawi Mosque because it was built in that year.

This is the mausoleum of Sheikh Kamil, built by Sidi Mohammed ben Abdallah. It is the place where the mausoleum of Hajj Ben Issa, the founder of the Issawiya Sufi order, is kept.

Meknes has a lot of museums and medersas that you can go to

The madrasah in Meknes

When you go to Dar Jamai Museum, you can see how Moroccans who are rich like to dress and what they do. Toward the end of the 19th century, it became a museum of Moroccan and ethnographic art.

• Medersa Bouanania: This is a school of theology founded by Sultan Abu Hassan Marini (1331-1351). Patio and apartment with 26 rooms: It has a balcony and 26 rooms. A perfect example of zelliges mosaics and wood carving can be found. This masterpiece of the Hispano-Moorish style was built to look like the Koran school from the old days. It has a central courtyard surrounded by a gallery, a prayer room, and the first floor with spaces for students.

• Medersa Filalia: a historic building used for religious and educational activities. • It was built in 1789 by Moulay Ismail and was the first building there.

• The Rif Ceramics Museum 

Meknes has a lot of historical things to see

Bab Berdaine

During the reign of Sultan Mulay Ismail, he had a pavilion where foreign ambassadors and emissaries came to meet him.

A large gate from the 17th century called Bab Lakhmis is called this.

• Bab Berdaine: a considerable gate built by Moulay Ismail in the 17th century that looks like a piece of art

In the 19th century, Sidi Mohamed Ben Abdellah built a palace for the Alawite religion. Dar El Beida is the name of this palace. Today, the Royal Military Academy of Meknes is in this building.

• El Fandouk Hanna is a cultural group. Ownership of endowments

• Ksar Mansour: a palace and a granary owned by the public.

Created as an institution in 1914, it dates back to when the military used it as a place where people could stay and get help. In 1947, it became a place where people could get horses to be born.

• Moulay Ismail built a huge barn and stable complex. It is only for storing food.

A large water pond called Bassin Agdal is 319 meters long and 149 meters wide. It has a depth of more than 2 m. The Moulay Ismael built it to water the gardens in Meknes, so he did it.

• Cara Prison: the prison is named after Cara, a Portuguese architect who was also a prisoner.

Meknes has a lot of famous historical places

• Dar El Makhzen Palace: This palace is in El Mechouar Stinia. Two massive walls in the middle of it form a 2 km-long corridor. It was the palace of Moulay Ismail, the ruler of the country.

This door is thought to be one of the most beautiful. The gate was built in 1732 by Mulay Abdallah, the son of Mulay Ismail, the most crucial sultan in Moroccan history, who made it. The size and shape of this door are imposing. El Hdim Square and the Medina of Meknes were linked to Lalla Auda Square in the Dar el Kbir fortress. This imperial city shows how strong it is. This gate is the biggest one in Morocco and even North Africa. Bab el Mansour was completely renovated in the 1990s. The restoration work made the dark green color of the imperial city of Meknes even more beautiful, making it even more like the city itself.

• Lahboul Garden: This garden is in the city of Medina Al-Ismailia. Zoo and open-air theaters are found there.

• Real Golf: it is inside the walls of Moulay Ismail. It has nine holes in it. The sport was played with lights that were not real.

It means “Square of the ruins.” • Plaza de El Hédime: Large, beautiful square in front of Bab Mansour, where the medina and the imperial city of Meknes meet. It would help if you walked on this long esplanade to get to the souks. It looks a little like the Jemaa el Fna square in Marrakech. You can find it in the middle of a square surrounded by buildings that aren’t as different from each other as in Marrakech. Some of the tables outside restaurants can be found in and around this square. It is a great place to have Moroccan tea while we look at the people in the square. All kinds of people come to this square at night to see the acrobats and tell stories and the vendors. The food market is on the south side of the square.

People in Meknes want to know where they can go for food.

Town: The new town

Some restaurants and bars serve everything from harira to tagine to couscous to chicken everywhere you look. There are a lot of restaurants on Rue de Ghana, which is right next to Rue Antsirabi. Some of them are popular with tourists because they have menus for 40 Dh.

There is a bar called Le Pub on Allal Ben Abdellah Avenue. Every day, until midnight. It’s good, even though it’s a little weird because it’s French food. Besides, the pizza isn’t that bad, and the place has a liquor license! Fifty DH to one hundred DH.

• Athenos, Mohamed V Avenue Lunch is served. Delicious Moroccan food, like tajine, as well as great desserts. From 25 to 70.

As of now, there is no Mo Di Niro on the Rue Antsirabé. Every day, until midnight. This restaurant is popular with teenagers because it serves American-style food like burgers, pizzas, and pasta dishes. A range of 20-100 DH. A range of 20-100 DH.

• La Fine Bouche, Avenida Allal Ben Abdellah, is on the list. Every day until 10 pm. They serve tasty chawarmas and other dishes—15 to 50 Dh.

• The Ibis Hotel. People like this hotel chain because they serve alcohol. The food is good, but the real reason to go there is that they do alcohol. 50 to 150 Dh

At this point, you should add the label “Gallery.” Some restaurants stay open until the wee hours. You can only get Mexican, American, Thai, and Lebanese food there. It’s the closest thing to a shopping center that you can get here. The price changes a lot.

• Marhaba: This is the most popular restaurant in Meknassi. It has a local menu of Ma’aqouda and harira.

You can find this place in the old city of Meknes

There are 67 Rue driba in Colombe. Follow the signs behind Lalla Aouda, near the medina, and you’ll get there in no time. Always open: Delicious Moroccan food, like Bastille. People pay different prices for different foods, but most cost more than 100 DH.

• The market near the medina’s main square, in the Bab El-Mansur neighborhood, has sound, fresh food, and a lot of different types of olives, sweets, and other things to choose from.

Meknassa EZ-Zeitoun (Meknasa of Olives) is a Amazighfoundation built in the 9th century. It wasn’t until 1069, when the Almoravids built a bastion and a citadel, that it took on its proper form. When Mulay Ismail ruled, Meknes was at its best. It had been through many sieges, defeats, abandonments, and reconstructions. This Alawite sultan, who lived at the same time as the Sun King, Louis XIV of France, made Meknes even more beautiful by adding walls with monumental gates, gardens, mosques, fortresses, and his first palace. It became one of Morocco’s most beautiful and exciting cities.

The Alawite Sultan Moulay Ismail was the person who killed the most people in the city’s history. Most of the city’s important buildings and more than 40 km of walls would tell us about beheadings, concubines, and service if they could talk. They would speak of vast armies of enslaved Christians that were very big in the past. People would talk about the Alaouite Ismail Ibn Sharif, known as “the warrior king,” quickly.

He took the throne from his brother, Al-Rachid, because he couldn’t get better after falling off his horse and breaking many bones. Ismail found himself in a country that was weak because of internal wars. Ismail decided to move the sultanate’s capital from Fez to Meknes when he arrived at the sultanate. He wanted to build a massive palace with an army of more than 25,000 enslaved people, mostly from pirate raids on European ships. Tried to surround the city with its famous walls and build a vast palace. He was able to get most of the tribes back together and get rid of the foreigners who had set up camp on the coast. Black Guard: This is an army of more than 100,000 enslaved Sudanese people. He used them for this.

In history, Ismail is known as one of the bloodiest sultans. He was more feared than loved because he was so cruel. To protect the borders of Morocco from the Ottomans, who were coming from Algeria, Sultan Ismail used an iron fist from Meknes to fight back against them. Also, the cities of Tangier and Larache and Mamoura were taken from the English, and the Spanish, Tangier and Larache, and Mamoura were taken.

What to do in Meknes: go out at night

For some reason, Meknes has more bears than people, but only a few are suitable for people on a trip. Keep in mind that prices shown on the web may change.

There is a bar called Le Pub on Allal Ben Abdellah Avenue. Every day, until midnight. In Meknes, this is one of the few places where women can drink without being judged. This pub has two floors. The cost is 15-45 DH for a drink, 50 DH for a beer bottle, and 50 DH for cocktails. Guerrouane and Amazir are two of the best local wines. The Shisha (water pipe with tobacco) costs 50 DH, which is worth the money.

• The new thing, above the street in Paris. Every day, until midnight. It is said that the owners of this recently renovated bar are Italian, which would make sense because of the way it looks. It’s also the only place in Meknes where you can drink beer from the tap. At least 15 and up to 45 days. There will be 50 DH for beer bottles and 50 DH for cocktails. The bottle only serves the wine.

There is a hotel called Zaki that stays open late. The only place in Meknes where you can drink outside.

The best place to buy is in Meknes

This city isn’t a great place to shop, but it is cheaper than Fez. They have many traditional Moroccan clothes, rugs, and the Moroccan shoe that everyone loves: the bilgha. It’s also known for its iron and things made by local artisans, so it’s an excellent place to visit. It’s near Dar Jamai that you will find many shops for tourists.

When the merchant makes an offer, don’t accept it right away. Make sure that you are getting a good deal. Even if you don’t speak French or Arabic, the easiest way to haggle is to offer exactly half the price the store has already charged (or 75 percent of expensive or large-scale items). It will then go down a little, but only until a deal is reached.

Fake leaving when you can’t get a deal; as a rule, this will significantly lower the price. And don’t be too greedy.

The area around Meknes


Volubilis, Ouaili in Arabic and Amazigh, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is only a short distance from the city. It is also straightforward to get to.

This place is called Moulay Idriss Zerhoun. It is 14 km from Meknes, next to Volubilis, which is very close. Moulay Idriss I built the small town on top of a hill. It is a holy place for Muslims, and the city was named after him. Every year, a museum is held here.

The hotels in Meknes

Most cheap hotels are on the Rue Rouamzine, right before the medina. In Meknes, there are many places to stay, but the riads are the most popular because they look like palaces from the most elegant times. The riad is a house or old court built around a garden, like a castle. You can search for and book the best price for your hotel room at the link below.

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