Fez is one of the four imperial cities of Morocco and has three separate parts, namely Fez el Bali (the old, walled city), Fez-Jdid (new Fez) and the Ville Nouvelle (latest section of Fez). Fez el Bali has been declared as the UNESCO World Heritage Site and is thought to be the largest car-free urban area.
The ornate beauty of the city catches the eyes of travelers instantly. As they travel through the city, soaring minarets and the fine architecture of Masaajid and Madrasas can be viewed. The city has for long been the soul of Morocco and reminds travelers of the stories of Aladdin and the Arabian Nights. The best time to visit Fez is during the spring or autumn when the weather is dry and favorably warm.
The main attraction of Fez is the Fez el Bali. Wander around the winding alleys and see some historic monuments and overwhelming architecture. The two main alleys in Fes-el-Bali are Talaa Kebira and the Talaa Seghir; both these alleys open at the main gate of Bab Bou Jeloud. Fez has a number of city gates allowing entry to the ancient town. The Bab Bou Jeloud, the western gate is decorated with brilliant architecture. Another gate is the Bab Er Rsif, which is the central gate.
Located in the heart of the Medina (Old Fez) is the huge Kairaouine Masjid and Library. This Masjid has been the center for Islamic learning for over a thousand years. The shrine of Moulay Idriss II is one of the holiest buildings in the city. There are three museums worth visiting including the Nejarine Museum of Wooden Arts and Crafts, Dar Batha Museum and Belghazi Museum.
Old Fez also has two Madrasas that are important to visit due to their history and architecture: the Madarsa Bou Inania and the Madarsa el-Attarine. Outside Old Fez, placed on a hill, is the Merenid Tomb which travelers can visit. The Dar al-Magana is also a beautiful place to explore.
The market near the main Bab Bou Jeloud has several Halal restaurants and is surrounded by a number of cafes, hotels and restaurants selling yummy food. Most of the restaurants in Fez provide Halal food; however it is important to inquire before eating, as quite a number of eateries also allow the sale of alcohol.
Fez is thought to be the handicraft capital of Morocco and there are a number of shops selling brassware, copperware and leather goods. Travelers can also visit the cobalt-blue ceramic factories in the city and also take a tour of the tanneries in Old Fez.