Why It's Worth It

While much has changed in Fez over the years as it has gone from imperial capital to simply being one of Morocco's largest cities; much has also stayed the same. The city remains Morocco's spiritual heart thanks to the strong ties to religious schools and Islamic scholars. Its car-free medina has also remained a crossroads for trade and a center for teaching the traditional trade crafts of Morocco such as intricate wood carving, zellige tilework, and hand wrought metalsmithing. Unlike bustling Marrakech, Fez still retains much of the traditional culture that has defined it, making a trip here a glimpse into the Morocco that was as well as insight to Morocco on the cusp of change. —Amanda Ponzio-Mouttaki