Essaouira Mogador is a town at the Atlantic coast of Morocco

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The Mosques


In the Medina

The Mosque
Sidi Mohammed Ben Abdallah


See location on map below

Minaret of the Mosque Sidi Mohammed Ben Abdallah

The typical 18th century tower (minaret)
of the Sidi Mohammed Ben Abdallah Mosque,
also known by the name The Kasbah Mosque.


The Kasbah Mosque

It is covering a total area of 900 m2

It was constructed in the 18th century
and have an important library and among
the scriptures there are some donated
by the Sultan Sidi Mohammed Ben Abdallah.
Originally with a madrasah (a coranic school)
and dormitory units for students.

The mosque Ahmed ou Med

(Mohammadin, Haddada)


The mosque at Haddada

This mosque was named after the cheikh Sidi Ahmed ben Mohammed by the Sultan.


Detail of door of  the mosque  "Hadada"

Detail of the door to the mosque Mohammadin

The minaret of Haddada mosque

The minaret of Mohammadin Mosque


Old postcards showing mosques

The mosque Ben Youssef


The mosque Ben Youssef

This tall minaret of the mosque Ben Youssef is rising over the medina of Essaouira. It is an impressive building which covers 2000 m2. The doors of the mosque is buitifully painted in brown .

The mosque Ben Youssef

The Sultan was was a disciple of three great Cheikh theologians and named the tree most important mosques after their respective names.

Cheikh Sidi Youssef (Abou Yacoub Youssef ben Mohammed) gave name to this great mosque

The Ben Youssef Mosque

Door of the mosque Ben Youssef

The Mosque Ben Youssef. Doors open.

The mosque Ben Youssef

The mosque Ben Youssef old time

Mosque Haddada


The Mohammadin mosque and in the fond
the minaret of the mosque Ben Youssef


About minarets

As well as providing a visual cue to a Muslim community, the main function of the minaret is to provide a vantage point from which the call to prayer is made. The call to prayer is issued five times each day: dawn, noon, mid-afternoon, sunset, and night. In most modern mosques, the adhan is called from the musallah, or prayer hall, via microphone to a speaker system on the minaret. (Wiki)

"When Islam was revealed in the early seventh century, Jews called the faithful to prayer with the shofar (ram’s horn) and Christians used a bell or a wooden gong or clacker. Indeed, the sound of a bell wafting in the breeze from a distant monastery is a frequent image in pre-Islamic and early Islamic poetry. In this context, we can well understand how ‘Abd Allah ibn Zayd, one of the Prophet’s companions, dreamt that he saw someone calling the Muslims to prayer from the roof of the mosque. After he told the Prophet about his dream, Muhammad recognized it as a vision from God and instructed Bilal, an Abyssinian freedman and early convert to Islam, "Rise, Bilal, and summon all to prayer!" Bilal, who was known for his beautiful voice, did so, thereby becoming the first muezzin. (The word muezzin comes from the Arabic mu’adhdhin, or "one who gives the adhan.")"

The Minaret Symbol of Faith & Power Written by Jonathan M. Bloom
March/April 2002 print edition of Saudi Aramco World.

Read more about Bilal in The Culture of Gnaoua

The Gnoua Brotherhood (Sidna Bilal) reside in the Zaouia, which is located in the west part of the medina, Bni Antar.

Locate all the Zaouias in the Medina


Balls on the minaret

The spire of the minaret ( a Yamur*) includes gilded copper balls, decreasing in size towards the top, which is a traditional style of Morocco.

If you ask people a common explanation is that 3 balls on top means that
there is a Friday prayers service, but .......

The origin of the balls on the minaret have different explanations and meanings which the oldest is from the Giralda mosque in Seville Spain, AD 1184–98.

In 1195, al-Mansur won a great victory against the forces of King Alfonso VIII in the Battle of Alarcos. To celebrate his triumph, he ordered four enormous gilded bronze balls – called “apples” – to be placed on the very top of the minaret. The metal balls were graduated in size, with the smallest at the top and the largest at the bottom. Their precise significance is not known, but three similar balls sit atop the minaret of the Kutubiyyah mosque in Marrakech, the largest of them two meters (six and a half feet) in diameter. The ones on the Giralda were much larger, but the exact dimensions are unknown, for they fell to the ground during an earthquake in 1356 and were smashed. King Alfonso the Wise, writing in the 13th century, says that the largest one, whose surface was divided into twelve deep “channels,” was so immense that a gate had to be widened when it was brought into the city. All four were plated with gold under the supervision of the chief treasurer and in the presence of the caliph. They were then wrapped in soft cotton bast to protect them during handling.

Source: [;ISL;es;Mon01;9;en&cp]

Normally mosques have only three balls, representing Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, from smallest to largest, from earliest to latest or the most important prophets of Islam: Moses, Jesus Christ and Muhammad.

Another legend says they represent the different worlds in which the islamic divinity is made known (terrestrial, celestial and spiritual).

The existence of ÿâmûr responded not only to reasons of a spiritual nature, since with the different spheres that ascended to heaven and according to their size in decreasing sense, the different worlds in which Allah makes himself known (dunia, mulk) , yabarut).

Other explanations are that they represent the three major Arab mosques (holy sites of Islam) – Kaaba,The Al Haram Mosque in Mecca, the Prophet Mosque in Medina and the Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem (Al Quds), while for others, they honour the three elements of life ig. Water, Air and Fire or that the three golden balls, guarded in the town was to protect it from any upcoming army, with their mysterious and immense power.

Another saying is that the golden balls would be under the power of different genies to protect them from theft.

Also, they were sometimes used as talismans: this was said to be that the one in the al-Qarawiyyin mosque in Fez was made of brass, in which there were apples, and which was said to prevent snakes from entering. Leon the African refers to the magical atmosphere that existed around the balls of the yâmûr, when describing the minaret of the mosque in the Alcazaba of Marrakesh, which the people did not consent to remove, for estimating their suppression of evil omen.


The Koutoubia mosque in Marrakech

There are multiple legends about the four balls in gilded copper on top of the Koutounia mosque. One such legend states that the globes were originally made of pure gold, and there were at one time only three of them, the fourth having been donated by the wife of Yaqub al-Mansur as penance for breaking her fast for three hours one day during Ramadan(or penance for eating three grapes before sundown during Ramadan).  She had her golden jewelry melted down to form the fourth globe. Another version of the legend is that the balls were originally made entirely of gold fashioned from the jewellery of the wife of Saadian Sultan Ahmad al-Mansur. When the gold balls was replaced with brass balls nobody seems to now.


The minaret of the Ben Youssef mosque

The minaret
of the Ben Youssef mosque.

The minaret is topped with 3
copper balls of decreasing size,
a traditional design in Morocco.

Minaret with 4 copperballs

But there are also minarets with 4 balls as The Mosque Haha Rahala (6)


There is a flag pole next to the copper balls forming the spire, which is used for hoisting the religious green flag of the Prophet, which the muezzin does every Friday and on religious occasions.

Yamur* (a jamur)

A yamur, in Islamic architecture, is the auction in which the minaret of a mosque usually ends, composed of a vertical metal bar where some balls or apples were inserted, usually of gilt bronze and in a decreasing size from bottom to top, finished in a half moon.

The most common number of balls is three, although there are also two or four and can be bronze, copper or brass. The yamur serves at the same time as a decorative element and as an apotropaic element to protect the mosque.

yâmûr (according to the Moroccan dialectal Arabic, yâmûr means "end of the ship's mast", an expression on the other hand disapproved by the Arabists who find the word al-qabb as correct).

The yâmûr consisted of a vertical iron bar, well secured in the dome that covered the pavilion or edicule raised on the terrace of the minaret, in which one, two, three or four spheres of copper, bronze or brass, of decreasing size from bottom to top, gold and silver. Between them were placed sleeves of the same metal, the bar or mast used to end in another metallic ornament.

Mosque in arabic :
مسجد Masjid



Map of the Medina of Essaouira and the location of the mosques


The mosque
Sidi Ali Ben Daoud


Mosque Bni Antar





Mosque Bni Antar

This mosque is not in use

The mosque Baouakhir


Friday prayers



Mosque Boachir

From south

Mosque Boachir

From east

The Mosque Rahhala


Mosque Rahala


Mosque Rahala Friday prayers

Friday Prayers

The Mosque
El Abdellah ou Omar


Mosque El Abdellah Ou Omar

The mosque Ahl Agadir


Mosqur Iraq

The minaret of the Ahl Agadir neighborhood was
built by the Sultan Moulay Slimane. ( 1809)

He renovated also the mosques of Rahala, Mesguina
and the Zaouia Kadiria and the Mausoleum of Sidi Magdoul.
He also intalled the new quarters for the Jews - Mellah Jdid.

The Mosque Lattarine


Mosque Lattarine

The Mosque Amsguina


Mosque Amsgina

Mosque Amsgina

It is prohibited to enter the mosques, unless you are Muslim.
This is unfortunate since you find much of the most beautiful artistry inside the mosques.

Many traditions but also everyday life in Morocco follow the Muslim calendar and in general local people have islamic values which are guiding them in actions and ethics.

An Eco- Friendly tourist in Morocco try to study the culture and learn about Islam and Muslim practises in order to understand and show respect for local customs.


The Mosque Jbala


Mosque Jbala

The niche at the wall indicates the Qiblah which
is an Arabic word for the direction that should
be faced when a Muslim prays during Salah.

The mosque Dar Dheb


Mosque Dar Dheb

Mosque Ouel Bihi
" " Jama Bihi"


Mosque Ouel Bihi

Derb Zayane


The Mosque on the Mogador Island.


Related subjects:



Islamic Calendar

Arabic Phrases

Eco Friendly Tours



19 205 religious places,
15 770 mosques and 3435 prayer halls,
was ordered to be controled after the collapse
of the minaret in Meknes, Morocco,
20 February 2010.
LÓpinion 2010_05_17

Mosques in residential areas
outside the medina

Under construction

The new mosque at Frina

Mosque Frina

Mosque Frina

Mosque Frina

Mosque at Frina

Minaret Mosque Bohaira

Construction of the minaret
of new mosque in Bohaira

windows and door of the mosque Bohaira

Windows and door of the mosque Bohaira

See also Building technics

The mosque in Diabet

During the reign of Sultan Sidi Mohammed
Ben Abdallah
(1757-1790) a mosque
was constructed in Diabet

The mosque Scala built in 1990th

Minaret Scala with one ball

This minaret in Scala has only one ball at the top!



Window on minaret mosque Bohaira

Window  in the minaret of the mosque Bohaira

The minaret of the Bouhaira Mosque

The minaret iof the Borj Mosque

The minaret of the Borj Mosque


Bouhaira Mosque January 2011

Mosques in the province of Essaouira


The mosque Sidi Jakoub

The mosque at Sidi Jakoub - Sidi Ali Saih at the top of Djebel Hadid
has an interesting mihrab with two small openings in the direction of prayers.

Mosque Douar Akarmoud

Douar Akarmoud

Mosque Asla



Minaret Mosque Smimo


Mosque in Ait Daoud


Ait Daoud

Fivepoint star on mosque

Five point star at top of the mosque spire
See symbols

Mogador 1809 The mosque of the Kasbah

The governeur arriving for fridag prayers

After prayers

Place of the Grand Mosque

The Grand Mosque

The mosque on the Mogador Island

Mosque on the Mogador Island



References in English:

The Architecture and the Decoration of the Moroccan Mosque

The Giralda (La Giralda)





The Mosques

External links




The Minaret
Symbol of Faith & Power

Bab Berdieyinne




Quba Mosque