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Fes is one of the main cities in the Morocco itinerary. It is the home of one of the oldest places and largest medinas. A number of main religious centers, education institutions, historical monuments and handicrafts markets are located in this city. There are a plenty of places to capture in the camera and a lot of things to do. Fes city has its own airport, station, bus service to reaching and leaving is very easy. The local bus and cab service is available to roam around. It is important to bargain before sitting in the taxi or cab.
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Travel Writer for TDO
#1 THE OLDEST CHOUARA TANNERY
The main three oldest leather tanneries are located in the Fes city which were constructed in eleventh century and still operates according to those old traditional methods. Leather souk has a lot of vibrant shops which sell leather bags, slippers, jackets and other leather products. The ancient bleaching process is used by dipping the animal skins in the solution of cow urine, pigeon feces, quick lime, salt and water. The pungent smell of hyde can be ditched by wrapping a scarf around the nose or smelling a fragrance. Many shop keepers and strangers offer mint stalk to avoid the smell and later charge a big amount for that. If you want to accept then discuss the charges first. The most interesting thing is that the manual labor works to put leather from one vessel to the other and do all the process without involving a single machine.
#2 GOLDEN GATES GATES OF THE ROYAL PALACE
The Palace is not open for the visitors because it is still under the royal family. It was used as the residence by the previous king. Now it is only open for the royal visitors and King. The golden gates are perfect background for the pictures. If you want nobody to photobomb you then visit the place early in the morning.
#3 MADRASSA BOULNANIA
The theological school was constructed during 14th century. The stunning architecture and history tells the story of its importance for Muslims in which the most prominent thing is the green tiled minaret that is considered as the color of Islam. Non-Muslims are allowed to enter this building to enjoy the beauty of Islamic art.
#4 OLDEST UNIVERSITY OF THE WORLD
The University of Karaouine is recognized by UNESCO world heritage site as the oldest university of the world. Non-Muslims can only enter the courtyard but not the main building of the university. It is currently the biggest worshipping center of Morocco and complete building is used as a mosque and knowledge center.
#5 AL ATTARINE MADRASA
There are several madrassas which are the religious education centers of Muslims. Al-Attarine Madrassa was constructed during the 14th century and was also sued as the hostel for the university students. You can get a beautiful view of University of Karaouine from the roof top of the Madrassa.
#6 JEWISH QUARTER
Jewish lived in the area located north of the royal palace known as Mellah. They left to Israel later whereas their lifestyle can be seen in the culture and architecture of that area. They lived alongside Muslims with harmony after they left the area is well preserved. You can visit the AbenDanan Synagogue that is not operative however amazingly preserved in its perfect state. You can visit the building and buy antiques from the shop. The Jewish cemetery is also located near the building.
#7 FES EL BALI
Medina of Fes is the largest one and according to UNESCO world Heritage Site it is the oldest among all the others. The rich history, tradition and culture is well preserved that can be seen there. There are narrow streets and a variety of souks (markets), riads and small siting areas everywhere.
#8 NEJIRANINE MUSEUM AND SQUARE
The 18th century architecture square is a stunning wood embellished building. It was once the workshop and warehouse for the traders and artists of wood work. It is converted into a museum. Entire building is a master piece of creativity. From courtyard to the rooftop terrace it is filled with a lot of amazing works.
#9 BORJ NORD
Borj Nord arms Museum is an amazing display of 16th century arms and weapons. It was used as the fortress for the security of the city and later converted into the Museum. It has a variety of military weapons including rare ones. The 13rooms contain more than 700 items and the roof gives a view of the old city.
#10 BAB BOUJELOUB - BLUE GATE
The beautiful gate is green from one side and blue from the other. This iconic blue gate is perfect for photos. This is the old entrance of the Fes El Bali or medina. The other one is Bab Chorfa but this one is the famous one among the tourists.
#11 BOUJELOUD GARDEN
After strolling through medina and Jewish quarter the best option is to visit JnanSbil or BouJeloud Garden for fresh breath. The imperial gardens have a lake, fruit trees, shady paths, peacocks and dove coops, the central fountain completed the landscape. During the mid-day of summer, it becomes warm and dry whereas in winter and spring it is very pleasant.
#12 ENJOY A HAMMAM
Hammam is an important part of Moroccan visit because it is a part of tradition. They are public bath houses for weekly cleanliness ritual. You can book a private one as well to get luxurious and comfortable experience.
#13 DAR BATHA MUSEUM
The house of Moroccan art and creativity was constructed in the 19th century. This former palace of Fes contains wood carvings, embroidery, textile, iron works, carpets, jewelry that reflects the history and beauty of the culture.
#14 WATCH BELLY DANCING SHOW
Belly dance is an important part of the Arabian culture whereas it is highly admired in Morocco and considered as a part of tradition. There are many places in Fes where traditional dinner is served and the live belly dancing shows are organized.
#15 VIEW THE CITY FROM THE TOP
After exploring every place of the city you can visit mount Zalagh. It has some great hikes and biking trips that you can select according to your interest. Mount Zalagh overlooks the Fes city and you can see the large and amazing city from the top.
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