Mosques, medina, monuments and mountains – you’d be forgiven for thinking that all Fez’s charms begin with ‘m’.
Spend an hour in the city and you’ll soon see otherwise – the street stalls tempt with aromatic tagines, spice-scattered couscous and toffee-sweet dates, silks and carpets coloured with vivid berry dyes, and leather goods to rival any Italian fashion house. Fez has three micro-cities to get to grips with: Fes el Bali (the ancient, walled city), Fes-Jdid (the Jewish quarter), and the Ville Nouvelle (Fez’s newest, French-created section). Pub-quiz enthusiasts will be pleased to learn that this imperial city also has two record breakers to its name: the world’s oldest university, Al Karaouine (founded in AD 859), and the world’s largest urban car-free area (the Medina). No wonder Unesco's so excited about it.
The best time to pack your bags is September–November, and March–July. During these months, you can make the most of the festival calendar and the balmy weather.