Fes is the cultural and spirituel centre of Morocco, it's magnificent medina is the largest pedestrianized urban area in the world, 9,600 streets with no cars or motorbikes permitted. Fes is authentic, the real deal, the craftsmen here work in the same way they have done for centuries, working for the locals, tourism is only a bonus, this is still a living, breathing, medieval city.
Explore the ancient, narrow, shop filled souks (markets) and alleyways and watch out if you hear the cry, " Baalek" as it means a fully laden donkey, mule or horse or a handcart is trying to pass you on the cobbled streets and you may get bumped! The sights and smells and sounds are almost overwhelming, jostling crowds shopping or travelling to or from one of the 700 mosques, carved wood, drinking fountains with mozaic surrounds in the traditional blue and white of Fes, also used in the ceramics made here, indeed you can visit the factories where they are made, the traditional tanneries where quality leather goods are produced from raw hides and produce a very unusual aroma, the intricately woven carpets, clatter of metal on metal as brass and other metals are hammered into shape, beautiful merchandise made from sweet selling cedar and lemonwood by expert craftsmen, the finest kaftans and robes made from silks and satins in bright, vibrant hues, piles of aromatic spices in mountains of colour , fresh fruit and vegetble stalls abound and so the list goes on...
The buildings and architecture are unique, there is the Al-Quaraouiyine University, the oldest in the world, with a famous library that includes ancient manuscripts and the huge and beautiful mosque of the same name, visited by Muslims from across the world as a holy site. Then there is the ancient water clock, it's mode of operation only recently rediscovered, the centuries old medersas (religious schools) with incredible zellij plaster-work and hand carved wood, the striking Bab Boujloud, a massive gate in the restored, crenulated city walls, the huge square beyond.
And there are cafes and restaurants galore serving traditional Moroccan cuisine at great prices; tajines, hot spicy harira soup, couscous, kefta (meat balls) and something for everyone.
Fes is an experience not to be missed, a place that you will never want to leave.