"Al Koutoubia" Koutoubia Minaret & Koutoubia Gardens Tip by mafi_moya


Who says size doesn't matter? The Koutoubia is far and away the largest and most prestigious mosque in Marrakech. Many say it's the most important in the whole of the Mahgreb. At 70 metres tall the minaret dominates much of the city skyline and can come in very useful if you get lost in the maze of the Medina! At night it's illuminated and towers above the smoke filled air of Djemaa el Fna. It's a great place for evening people watching, especially from the ice cream parlour across the road! Like nearly all mosques in Marrakech, it's closed to non-Muslims. But it's definitely worth a good walk round.

It was built by the Almohads in the 12th century and remains in perfect condition, although the zellij tiles that decorated the walls are no longer there. Unusually, each face of the minaret is of a different design. If you know a little Arabic you'll see the name is derivative of 'books' - the mosque was built close to an old booksellers' market. There are also some gardens which are apparently well worth seeing, but they were closed while I was there.

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated May 20, 2004
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