The El-Badi palace was begun in 1578, commemorating the victory Ahmad al-Mansur over the Portuguese at the Battle of Three Kings. It took 25 years to complete, and largely financed by war indemnity paid by the Portuguese. Large contingents of European workers secured the fine quality of its work, these were not slaves, but hired and well-treated craftsmen. It was first a century later that Moroccan kings used European slaves to build their palaces (see Barbary pirates).
The palace became known as "The Incomparable". Although what remains today is crude, it is a good illustration of the quality of its original, magnificent decorations that it would in the 17th century take Moulay Ismail about 12 years to remove all but the inner red pisť walls.
The palace was laid out with 360 rooms, with a huge inner courtyard with four sunken gardens. Pools separate the gardens, with smaller pools in the corners.
Entrance is 10dh, open every day 8.30-11.45 and 14.30-17.45.