"In life you are either a passenger or a pilot, it's your choice..."
Day 07: 18 Nov 2012
After breakfast we had a full day tour of Fez. Fez is Morocco's oldest Imperial city and its old medina is now a UNESCO World Heritage site. The Medina is called Fes el-Bali and behind its high walls is a magical, medieval city just teeming with life in every one of its 9000 narrow streets.
Fez is the cultural and spiritual capital of Morocco and you would certainly experience its vibrancy. The new part of Fez, called ville nouvelle, was built by the French and is totally different from the medina. The wide boulevards are lined with modern shops and traffic is hectic.
We visited the carpet shops and the leather shops in the old medina. Fez is famous for its leather products and most of it comes from the leather souk in old Fez. The tanneries have been in operation since medieval times and little has changed, which makes them absolutely fascinating to visit.
The leather shop is filled to the brim with handbags, jackets and slippers of every conceivable design and color known. Sprigs of fresh mint are essential when you visit the tanneries since the animal hides are stinky, and the pigeon poop they're treated in doesn't smell so good either.
We visited the Kairaouine Mosque, tucked deep into the heart of the medina. The mosque is huge and we had a good view of the inside when we had our zohor and asar prayers. We also passed by a few famous madrasahs in the old medina.
Other places of interest visited were the Royal Palace, Madrasah Attarrine and Suq Attarine. We passed the Mellah, the old Jewish quarter of Fez, the architecture differs from the rest of the medina.
Dinner was at Arabesque Demeure De Charme, a beautifully decorated traditional boutique hotel.