Fez is considered the spiritual capital of Morocco due to its influential religious and political history. Twice the capital of the country, the city is the birthplace of many Sufi movements (the mystical branch of Islam), and home to many Islamic scholars. Today these facts remain important as the people carry on their storied heritage.
When to Go
Spring is the most beautiful time of year in this part of the country. March, April and May are ideal to visit. December through February guarantee rain, but if you're prepared you can find good deals and not many crowds.
The Fez Festival of Sacred Music happens each year in May. Thousands of people come from around the world to participate and listen to the musical acts, lectures and seminars on faith, spirituality and more.
What to Eat
Fez was the capital of Morocco several times and this is reflected in its cuisine. If you get the chance, try b'stilla when you're in Fez. This dish is straight from the royal Moorish kitchens -a chicken, onion and almond mixture layered into a flaky crust and baked. It's completely unique and delicious.
Souvenir to Take Home
If you admire metal works, Fez is a great place for you. Many artisans continue to work by hand, shaping metal lamps but also doing brass etching into items like serving trays. Traditional Islamic motifs incorporating geometric shapes or floral patterns can be found adorning them. Want to make sure your piece comes from Fez? A peacock is regularly etched or stamped into the back of metal or clay goods.
Sustainable Travel Tip
Walk, walk walk in Fez—you'll likely need to anyway as the medina prohibits all motorized vehicles. The medina is on a hill so if you struggle with walking start at the top (or book accommodation at the top) and walk downwards. Once at the bottom you can take a taxi back to the top on the outer edges.
The Mereinid Tombs outside of the medina are on a hill that looks out towards the Rif Mountains and Middle Atlas Mountains as well as the medina. While the tombs are interesting, the scenic shots alone are enough to warrant a visit. If you're lucky you'll catch workers laying out leather to dry on the hillside; something they have been doing for generations.