Fes el Bali – Morocco’s ancient capital is not for the faint of heart. Those whose notion of luxury travel is to soak in a sense of tranquillity may want to look at other destinations in the country. This, after all, is a medieval era walled city that still deploys donkeys as a mode of transport, where stray cats roam the narrow cobbled streets in moonlight and sellers call out to you in souks already heaving with crowds.
Yet it is precisely this magical medieval maelstrom that draws the traveller. It’s an entire world away from our ordinary lives with cultural, gastronomical, architectural and historical experiences that even other Moroccan cities like Marrakesh can’t offer.
That’s because Fes el Bali and the city of Fez at large has always been Morocco’s cultural centre. Its first buildings in the medina were built in the 8th century and was the capital from which Moroccan dynasties spread its influence across North Africa and parts of modern-day Spain and Portugal.