Four-part series in which British art historian Dr Gus Casely-Hayford explores the pre-colonial history of some of Africa’s most important kingdoms.
The African continent is home to nearly a billion people. It has an incredible diversity of communities and cultures, yet we know less of its history than almost anywhere else on earth.
But that is beginning to change. In the last few decades, researchers and archaeologists have begun to uncover a range of histories as impressive and extraordinary as anywhere else in the world.
The series reveals that Africa’s stories are preserved for us in its treasures, statues and ancient buildings - in the culture, art and legends of the people.
The first episode looks at Nubia, in what is now northern Sudan, a kingdom that dominated a vast area of the eastern Sahara for thousands of years. Its people were described as barbarians and mercenaries, and yet Nubia has left us with some of the most spectacular monuments in the world.
Casely-Hayford traces the origins of this fascinating kingdom back to 10,000 BC. He explores how it developed and what happened to it and its people, discovering that its kings once ruled Ancient Egypt and that it was defeated not by its rivals but by its environment.
Experience the exotic Kingdom of Morocco in World Showcase’s truly unique Morocco Pavilion.
Morocco is located in between Japan and France.
The basic layout of the Morocco Pavilion is to mimic parts of three Moroccan cities: Casablanca, Fez, and Marrakesh. The large prayer tower is the Koutoubia Minaret.
Attractions include The Treasure of Morocco, a free tour all about Morocco; Gallery of Arts and History, a display of the modern artistic & technological culture in Morocco; Moroccan Style: The Art of Personal Adornment, an exhibit on Moroccan jewelry and fashion; Fez House, a representation of a typical Moroccan home, and Mo’ Rockin, a Moroccan band that features bellydancing and arab & rock music.
You may be able to catch Aladdin, Jasmine, or even the Genie here!
Shopping options are plentiful. Stores include The Berber Oasis (baskets, brass, leather), The Brass Bazaar (handworked brass items), Casablanca Carpets, Marketplace in the Medina (various home goods), Medina Arts (wooden crafts, instruments, clothing), Gifts of Morocco, and Tangier Traders (clothing).
There are two dining options: The Tangerine Cafe (quick service, one of my absolute favorites), and Restaurant Marrakesh (full service, live entertainment as well).
Get a Henna at Gifts of Morocco!
This is one of my favorite pavilions. Grab some delicious food from the Tangerine Cafe and spend some time in the ‘bazaar.’ You’ll feel like you’re really in the country.
Outside of Gifts of Morocco, there are some plates in a Mickey formation.
Inside The Brass Bazaar, there are some baskets hanging on the wall. Look for a sideways Mickey.
On the shop cover (not always there) of Gifts of Morocco, look for a Mickey in the design.
In the Art of Moroccan Adornment, check out the embroidery of a hat in the display case titled “Traditional Covers.”
In the back of the Pavilion across from Restaurant Marrakesh, there is a mural with multiple Mickeys hidden in it.
This is the only pavilion sponsored by its country’s government. The King at the time of construction sent his own royal craftsmen to construct the artistic aspects of the pavilion.
The buildings of the pavilion bear great religious significance, so they are not lit up during Illuminations.
The gardens are irrigated by an authentic, ancient water wheel.
In Restaurant Marrakesh lobby, check out the letters between George Washington and the Moroccan King. Morocco was the first country to recognize the U.S. as an independent country.
At some angles in the Pavilion, you can spot Tower of Terror. The top of the Hollywood Tower Hotel was designed in a style that would match the style of the Morocco Pavilion.
Volubilis Visitor Centre in Meknes, Morocco by Paris and Casablanca-based firm Kilo Architectures. “Set within the most visited archaeological site in the Kingdom of Morocco, this project seeks to enhance the historical and symbolic significance of this unique UNESCO World Heritage site. The site is an exceptionally well-preserved example of an ancient Roman colonial town and one of several antique sites in Morocco. Due to the lack of urban development in the immediate surroundings, the site today closely resembles what the Romans saw in their time.”
His Majesty King Mohammed VI, accompanied by the Prince Moulay El Hassan and Prince Moulay Rachid arrived Friday afternoon in Tunis, for an official visit to the Republic of Tunisia, at the invitation of President Mohamed Moncef Marzouki.