Fez, Morocco, is a region of high Islamic reputation, so expect to see mosques and other Islamic inspired and influenced landmarks while touring the area. You can spend the day walking around the town and admiring the place and getting to experience and learn more about the Moroccan culture. Aside from these though, there are other places and things to see and do in the place.
Go to School
In Fez, you can find the oldest university in the world – the one in Karaouiyine Mosque. Accordingly, the university was constructed sometime in 8 AD. Until now, the University of Karueein is functional and serves to educate the various locals and students from other neighbouring countries as well. The school, which was founded by Fatima al-Fihri, is one of the leaders amongst universities in the field of natural sciences. You can also find the biggest university in the region in Fez – the Bou Inania, constructed in the 14th century and has varied decorations of earthenware, sculptured wood and others.
Splurge on Food
Fez cuisine is famous for the spices they use, as well as the mingling tastes of sweet and sour. Every meal is rich in aromas and flavours from various spices like saffron and cumin. There are various Moroccan foods that you should try when in the area. For one, try the tajine, a stew made from chicken or fish or other meat mixed with different vegetables and fruits that give it that wonderful flavour. You should also try the harira, a soup of lentils and chick peas. If you’re looking for something lighter, then you should try the various pastries of Fez – there are pancakes glazed with honey and sprinkled with sesame seeds for crunch and texture, or cakes with raisins and almonds. After your meal, be sure to order an authentic Fez mint tea to aid in your digestion and relaxation.
There are resorts and spas where you can go and get a massage, but for a more Moroccan experience, try going to their hammams and sand baths. Hammams, by the way, are similar to Turkish steam baths where people go to cleanse their body. Locals gather at the hammams to catch up with their friends and gossip. However, you can look for a more private hammam if you don’t like crowds. Alternatively, you can go for a sand bath. There are many shops in the outskirts of the city which offer to bury you in sand for hours – a treatment which they promise will give you that healthy glowing skin and rejuvenated feel.
Fez may not be as modernized as the other cities, as it is one city known for sticking to traditions and customs rather than going with the flow or the trend. This may come as a disadvantage, yes, but it should be remembered that it is these traditions and customs that allow the city to maintain its rustic charm and appeal, which in turn makes tourists come back to experience more of the city’s culture.
Photo by peatc on Flickr