Moulay Idriss Zerhoun is a town in Northern Morocco situated on a hilltop overlooking the UNESCO World Heritage archaeological site of Volubilis. This is considered as the holiest city in Morocco and holds a special place in the hearts of Moroccans.
A Brief History of Moulay Idriss Zerhoun
Moulay Idriss I, the first Arab ruler and founder of the Idrisid dynasty, first arrived in this town in 789 and brought with him the Islamic religion. The Mausoleum of Idriss I is located within this town, but only Muslims are permitted to enter its premise as it is considered a holy site. This small town holds a special place in the hearts of the Moroccans and is also considered as the holiest Islamic pilgrimage sites in Morocco. Some Moroccans would consider six pilgrimages to Moulay Idriss Zerhoun during the annual saint-honouring festival to be equivalent to one Hajj to Mecca in Saudi Arabia.
What Moulay Idriss Zerhoun is Like Today
Prior to 2005, Moulay Idriss Zerhoun was off-limits for non-Muslim travelers to stay overnight. Much has changed since then. Today, any non-Muslim travelers visiting this town can easily find a guesthouse for overnight stay and will find themselves to be warmly welcomed. Many tourists visiting Volubilis will also make the 5km trek to visit Moulay Idriss Zerhoun as well.
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