The Citadel of Chellah, Rabat - Stein Travel
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The Citadel of Chellah

Emerging from the boulevards of the Ville Nouvelle (New Town) of Rabat one comes across the ruins of Chellah, once the thriving walled Roman port city of Sala Colonia, abandoned in 1154 in favour of Sale across the other side of the river mouth. In the time of the Almohads the site was used as a royal burial ground. The Merenid Sultan Abou El Hassan added some monuments and the striking main gate during his reign in the mid-14th century. Just inside the gate are the Roman ruins dating from 200 BC, which includes a forum, a temple and a craftsmen's quarter.

Information & Facts

Language

Arabic is the official language, but eight other languages are also spoken including Berber, French and Spanish. English is generally understood in the tourist areas, but French is the most widely spoken.

Money

The unit of currency is the Moroccan Dirham (MAD), which is divided into 100 centimes. ATMs are available in the larger towns, but can be unreliable; currency can be exchanged at banks or official bureaux de changes, which are also widespread in major towns. Dirhams cannot be obtained or exchanged outside Morocco and receipts must be retained as proof of legal currency exchange, as well as in order to re-exchange money when departing. Major credit cards are accepted in the larger shops, hotels and restaurants. Travellers cheques can be used in tourist areas, but are not prevalent; they are best taken in Euros or Pounds Stirling.

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