A Walk Through the Fez Medina

The first Muslim Dynasty, the Idrissids, began building the great Moroccan imperial city of Fez in the late eighth century.  In many respects not much has changed for the people living on the Western edge of the Islamic Empire. Fez is the best preserved old city in the Arab world.

Behind the ancient sandstone walls of the Fez medina lies a labyrinth of 9,000 alleyways. Each path spirals through marketplaces, courtyards and residential areas giving visitors a chance to walk back in time through medieval Islamic society.

 

 

blue gate in fez morocco

Blue Gate

The Bab Boujeloud - or Blue Gate - is one of that main entrances to the Fez medina. The blue side greets visitors to this city famous for cobalt blue pottery. The opposite side of the gate facing the medina is green, the color of Islam.

During the election cycle each candidate is assigned a number. He can only place his political poster in the numbered space assigned to him. 

During the election cycle each candidate is assigned a number. He can only place his political poster in the numbered space assigned to him. 

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Getting lost in the medina is almost inevitable. Google Maps is worthless and there are few signs to help you find your way. 

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After a while all the alleyways blend together leaving you disoriented. Common advice is just keep walking, eventually you will land somewhere that looks familiar. Local children and young men are happy to help guide you to where you want to go, but they will expect a fee for their service once they have delivered you safely to your hotel. 

 

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Stray cats are everywhere in Morocco. 

Stray cats are everywhere in Morocco. 

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You can spend all day shopping and people watching in the medina's market. Around one corner men sit on tree stumps banging copper into pots and pans, around another women tend large bunches of mint used to make tea. You can find anything in the market, even a camel's head. 

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