Discover the magnificent Hassan tower in Rabat, Morocco
The Hassan Tower is the only vestige of a mosque that claimed to be the largest religious building of its time. Today, it is considered by many to be the symbol of Rabat. When, in 1196, the Almohad caliph Yacoub El Mansour ("Yacoub the Magnificent") launched the construction of the Hassan Mosque, it was to make it the largest mosque in the world. And even, the largest religious building in the world.
Yacoub El Mansour, actually called Abou Youssef Yacoub, reigned from 1184 to 1199 and was one of the most powerful caliphs of the Almohad dynasty. His reputation as builder of schools and mosques, as protector of science, earned him the nickname of the "Magnificent". The Hassan Tower was to be built in the style of the Koutoubia of Marrakech, a mosque initiated by his grandfather Abd El Moumen. However, upon the death of the Caliph in 1199, the work was abandoned.
Today, the only vestige of the mosque is its Arab-Andalusian style minaret, 44 meters high and which gave its name to the monument. The oratory, which should have been in front of the tower, consisted of 312 columns and 44 pillars. 14 doors had been pierced. The Hassan Tower was rehabilitated from the 1960s and, highly symbolically, it was at the end of its esplanade that the Mausoleum Mohammed V, the tomb of King Mohammed V and his sons, was erected. In recent years, hanging gardens have been rehabilitated below the Hassan Tower and are open to the public during the day.
Next to the tower you will find the Mohammed V mausoleum which is free to the public. A magnificent building made of mosaics, carved reliefs, tiling and gilding. A building reflecting the architectural prowess of Moroccans. In the district of Hassan, you will also find the medina with all the riches of Morocco: spices, earthenware, pottery, jewelry and oriental clothes. For dining, you will find near the Hassan Tower local and international cuisine. For a tagine, go to Dar Zaki's, 1km from the tower. For international cuisine, and an eccentric place, opt for the Péniche, on the river for a view of the mausoleum and the tower.