Largely rural, this region includes the three provinces of Settat, Khouribga and Ben Slimane. Chaouia-Ourdigha does not have too many tourist attractions, but it is strong in traditional industries, with many of its people working in the trades as hanbel textiles, woodcraft, metalcraft and Hassania carpets.


Key residential areas
Settat, Ben Slimane, Khouribga

Settat

Settat, the capital of Chaouia-Ouardigha, is one of Morocco’s richest cities. It flourished as an administrative centre in the 13th century because it was a strategic and unavoidable passageway between the south and the north. With its rich soil, it has also traditionally been an agricultural centre. Since the settlement of Jewish Moroccans here in the early 18th and 19th centuries, Settat became an important trading centre of agricultural products, especially cotton.

The city is also a centre of academe, with University Hassan I, one of the most prestigious institutions of the kingdom. There are also 12 primary schools, 5 colleges, 5 high schools and 12 private school groups in the region. It is well-connected to urban centres such as Casablanca and Marrakech by both rail and road.

Ben Slimane

Located east of Casablanca, between the cities of Casablanca and Rabat, is this town also known as “The Green City”, because of the remarkable absence of polluting industries in the area. This region is a good place for hiking and hunting, with the Ziaïdas cork-oak forest and a lake occupied by carp and flocks of wild duck within its territory. There is also nine-hole golf course.

Khouribga

Khouribga offers easy access to other urban centres in Morocco. This rural town is known for having one of the largest phosphate deposits in the world. There is also some iron-ore mining to the north of the city. Farmers cultivate fields of grain and raise sheep and goats here, and, as with Settat, the crafting of hanbel textile is a traditional industry commonly practiced here.


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