The city of Fez, or sometimes Fes, is Morocco's second largest city, with three distinct parts, which reflect centuries of growth and occupation from several conquering powers.
The part that is most fascinating to visitors is the old walled city, known as Fes el Bali. It was founded in the 8th century and is notable for being the location of the oldest university in the world.
What is perhaps most noticeable up on arrival is the lack of cars, as Fes el Bali is thought to be the largest car-free urban area in the world. The benefit of this is that it allows you to really soak up the atmosphere of the bustling markets, watching locals go about their lives as their ancestors would have done for centuries. The sounds on the street of the labyrinthine Medina in Fez are the sounds of people, not traffic.
Visit Fez to lose yourself both literally and figuratively in one of the best-preserved old cities in the Arab world.
Where is it?
Fez is a city in Northern Morocco, around 2 hours east of the capital, Rabat.
What is it?
The Medina is the old walled city of Fez, and features countless examples of centuries old architecture, along with plenty of colourful cultural interest.
Best time to visit?
Visit in late summer or autumn between September and November to avoid the tourists, or go between April and June to avoid the most intense heat and catch the Fez Festival of World Sacred Music in June for a truly immersive cultural experience.
The main attraction in Fez is the medina itself, with thousands of tiny streets and alleyways to wander around, where you are just as likely to run into a donkey as a delivery rider.