The mosques are usually a restrictive place to perform and learn the worship through the QUORAN (house rituals) that should be led in a good way by the Imam and the Moazine. It is rule seems providing the regular opportunities to acquire knowledge that organize the social affairs chiefly the thing concern about the financial situations and trade. And it is not strange to see that besides each Market, the Muslims set usually the Mosque besides the Market, first to be more close to their trade. ˜ The mosque besides the Market in the square come to emphasize that, as it is used for the worship role, plus as a centre of learning how to manage the life trade and also solve the financial problems, and most of the Friday speeches deliver several massages

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about the intimidate, prohibition, a guide to gain a legal trade. The existence of the mosque relates with the existence of the Market, they don’t have the exact date for its foundation, and many stories talked that it was first just a bog hall, that is transformed to be later as a Mosque of the Market. ˜

The Koutoubia Mosque is the most visited monument in Marrakech. Standing at an impressive 77 meters tall, the mosque’s magnificent minaret tower dominates the city’s skyline providing a useful landmark to tourists and locals alike. However, perhaps one of the best perspectives of the minaret is from the Koutobia Gardens. As you enter the garden through the main gate, your eye is guided across a large fountain and along a wide path towards the minaret as it extends into the rich Moroccan sky. The effect is truly enchanting.

The Koutoubia Gardens, also known as Lalla Hassna Park, can be found right next to Jemaa el-Fna, at the heart of the Medina and within a short walking distance from all of our Riads. The park itself spreads across two hectares and provides a pleasant green paradise of immaculately trimmed rose bushes, perfectly symmetrical walkways and plenty of shade-covered benches; it is easy to see why it is a favourite resting spot for many local Marrakchi people. At the centre of the park is a Koubba (a white dome) which is the tomb of Lalla Zohra, a daughter of a liberated slave. Legend tells that she was a women during the day, but transformed into a dove at night to escape from the unwanted affections of her old master. From this, she knew all the secrets of Marrakech. Yassine, a local resting in the Koutoubia Gardens, told us that many Moroccan’s still believe this story to be true and some even name their children after her in dedication.


The park is free and open to the public at all times, even during the evening and night when the gardens and the mosque are spectacularly transformed using subtle and effective lighting. We suggest you try to visit the Koutoubia Gardens both during the day and after nightfall so that you can truly understand the magic of such a wonderful place.


The Koutoubia mosque was built in the 12th century under the Caliph Yaqub al-Mansur to be the crowning glory of his North African based empire, it is indeed today still the largest mosque to be found in Marrakech today. The structure stands 69 metres tall towering over the surrounding city, an impressive structure by any account. However it was during the period of imperialism under the French that it was decreed that no structure in the rest of marrakech was permitted to be taller than the Koutoubia, thereby sealing the Mosque’s place in Marrakech’s architectural history. The name of the Koutoubia derives from the Arabic for library as the mosque used to be surrounded by sellers of religious manuscripts thereby gaining the mosque literary connotations that led to it being quasi designated a library. Although the actual mosque itself does not permit non-muslims to enter a non-muslim can still observe the majesty of the mosque from the outside of the Building.

The prayer hall within the mosque is one of the largest of its kind and has the capacity to house up to 25,00 people at any one time. Adjacent to the mosque are archaeological remains of the original mosque which it is believed was rebuilt to correct its orientation to Mecca. These remains are accessible to visitors and can be seen through glazed protective cases. The fabulous Rose gardens adjacent to the Mosque are an oasis of calm in the city used by locals and tourists alike, a must for any Marrakech holiday.

Stay in one of our luxury Marrakech Riads, the perfect base to explore the ancient red city.

Marrakech Jemaa al Fnaa Map

» Explore the Jemaa el Fnaa Map

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For a window into Islamic culture in the Mahgreb and the religious institutions that greatly influenced its development. One can do a lot worse than to visit the Ben Youssef Madrassa. Originally founded during the 14th Century during the Marinid Period by Sultan Abu al-Hassan, the building was first brought to great prominence by its reconstruction and overhaul from 1564-65 by the Sultan Abdul al- Hassan.
Since that point it was the largest Madrassa in the whole of Morocco, bringing the city great prestige and cultural influence. The Ben Youssef was no ordinary school however, it was more akin to a self contained educational community. With 132 rooms and hundreds of students living and learning within its magnificent walls. This combined with its location in the Medina in the historic old town, just a few minutes walk from the Central square Djemaa el Fna makes it one of Marrakech’s primary cultural destinations. Once you enter the building you immediately see why it is such a famous place in the Islamic world. The architecture and decoration proudly displays many of the facets and aspects of Islamic building and design that has made them so renowned for their beauty and aesthetic appeal. Inside the Madrassa is a myriad of tesselated colours, blues and greens beautifully contrasting with browns and white. The courtyard which is adjacent to the prayer room is truly a beautiful place one in which it is very difficult to not have a feeling of great tranquillity even in the famed Moroccan heat. One can also not fail to notice the intricate inscriptions which abound all over the complex. It is not merely the incredible shaped which these inscriptions take but the incredible detail which the inscriptions take, one can scarcely fail to be amazed by the delicacy and fantastical patterns in the form of the writing . It is however not merely your average tourists who have come to appreciate the wonders of this place but indeed it has become a favoured place to visit for passing royals as in recent years the Madrassa has been visited both by the King and Queen of the Netherlands and the Queen of Spain, surely a ringing endorsement from European royalty.  All these things coupled with the Madrassa’s prime location and relative ease of access make it a must for any culture or history buffs visiting Marrakech.

Opening Times: Every day from 9h30 to 18pm
Entrance fee: 50 dh for the Adult and 30 dh for children
You can purchase a joint ticket to visit both the Medersa and the Musee De Marrakech

Our Riad Cinnamon  is located an easy 5 minutes stroll away meaning that a stay with us leaves you fully capable of taking full advantages of such a fantastic base in the heart of Marrakech’s historical and cultural heart and one the undoubted advantages of staying in such a fantastic location. Enjoy the hustle and bustle of the markets, soak in the vibrant culture of the surrounding museums and historic sites, then retreat to the luxury of  Riad Cinnamon before once more plunging back into the immersive experience that is Marrakech old town. Make a booking today.

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