The neighborhoods, districts and areas where it is more advisable to stay in Fez are, without any doubt, those of the historic Medina, the part of Nouvelle Ville and one of the busiest places, the area of the train station.
Fez is a holy city in Morocco and the oldest of the four imperial ones. It is located in the north center of the country and cannot be visited without dropping by its old medina. A unique place, with charm, where the traveler feels moved to another world.
Walking its streets is a very authentic way of knowing the Moroccan lifestyle, its culture and its traditions. In Fez, you have to go in the advanced spring or in the summer, to avoid intense heat and make the visits more pleasant and, above all, for that, to wander. An obligation in Fez.
Best ares to stay in Fez
It deserves to see in detail what each of the areas we recommend for sleeping in Fez offers. They are very different from each other and the experience they give you is also radically different.
It is convenient to know about each option the emblematic places that should not be missed, transport combinations inside and outside the city and with other Moroccan capitals, what to eat, where to taste the most typical dishes, what to buy and where, and some other key details that allows to revalue the visit to one of the star cities of Morocco.
To begin to know in more detail the best areas to stay in Fez … Do we see what can be enjoyed in the Medina?
The Medina of Fez (Fes el Bali, Fez La Vieja) is a nucleus of streets that forms the old center of the city. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is a labyrinthine space formed by very narrow streets and alleys where you have to be very attentive to get your bearings and not lose your sense. What is said a microcosm.
It has an area of 350 hectares, or what is the same, that of 350 football fields. The Medina of Fez is said to be the largest in the Arab world, which is also to say in the world. It is also said to be the largest pedestrian zone in the world. Cars stay out.
The Medina was part of the inner walled enclosure of the city and its first constructions of what we can see today correspond to the beginning of the ninth century. From that first foundational era are two of its most important monuments, the so-called Mosque of the Andalusians and the El-Qaraouiyyîn Mosque.
The name of Mezquita de los Andaluces is because the foundation of the temple coincides with the time in which many inhabitants fled from a revolt in Cordoba in what was the beginning of the ninth century was Muslim Spain. Those refugees who settled in Fez founded a mosque, popularly known as that of the Andalusians.
Within the old walled enclosure you can also visit what is the oldest university in the world, the University of Al-Karaouine (founded in 859). It is a very traditional Islamic university where students from all over the world study attracted by the center’s scholarly tradition.
One of the most recommended experiences in the area of the Medina of Fez – and more iconic – is to see the work of the tanners of skins that dye the pieces outdoors and inside large and colored jars. A show.
Another unavoidable experience is to wander around and see the work of the authentic artisans of ceramics, textiles and goldsmiths in their small street workshops where buying is an obligation and haggling a condition.
The Medina is a good option to stay in Fez for those looking to be in direct contact with the most traditional face of the city. Doing it in a riad, a small hotel installed in an old house with an inner courtyard, is a way to stay in Fez in the city center, in a quiet and relaxed atmosphere.
Accommodations in Medina Fes
Nouvelle Ville (The New City) is a residential area of the city of Fez and a district of commercial importance located southeast of the Medina. It is part of the city that expanded during the French colonial era of which there are some unique buildings such as the market, the church of San Francisco or the French cultural centers (and the Spanish Cervantes).
In the area, most of the foreign residents and inhabitants with greater purchasing power are based. The prices of apartment and apartment rentals are between three and four times more expensive than in the old part.
The reference route of this part of Fez is Hassan II Avenue and more specifically at the point where it intersects with Mohamed V Boulevard. It is easy to recognize the crossing because it is the headquarters of the Bank of Morocco and the Place de Florence, recognizable, in turn, by the gardens, by its fountains and by two figures of postcard lions.
Precisely in that area is the most interesting concentration of bars, restaurants, patisseries and ice cream parlors in the city. It is typical to go for tea or coffee on the terraces in the late afternoon.
Many of the restaurants are European, Italian and fast food, although there are some typical Moroccans, who are a minority, in which you can order some of the excellence of the cuisine of Morocco and the area.
For example, the pill that is made of minced meat, with chicken, cheese and puff pastry. In addition to the typical couscous, you can order and try the harira, a noodle soup with tomato, onion, chickpeas and flour.
And to close, the pastry, with its gazelle horns, its raisin and almond feqqas or sebakkia, fried cakes that are presented with honey. All, sweets that can be accompanied with teas, of course. You must also ask for some of the natural juices that are made in the stalls, especially rich is that of pomegranate, ginger and cane sugar.
If it is about enjoying the cultural life of the city and the theater, Kennedy Square, next to the Imam Malik Mosque, is the recommended place.
A very nice way to travel on short trips in the city is to use petits taxis, which are very economical and can be recognized for their striking red color.
Nouvelle Ville is the area indicated to stay in Fez in hotels much more modern than those of the Medina with all services and at much lower prices than those of their equivalents in Europe.
Nouvelle Ville Hotels
Fes Railway Station
The area of the Fez Train Station is located between the Medina and Nouvelle Ville. The Fes Station is a modern and well-kept building located in the new part of the city. It is in the Plaza del Rey Faysal, at the crossroads of Los Almohades avenues and the United States street.
Staying in Fez in the vicinity of the Fez Train Station has two advantages. One, allows to improve the options to travel outside of Fez by train. And, two, in the area, due to the location of the same railway station, there is a wide and varied offer for all types of accommodation in Fez.
The area is also very well stocked with services, restaurants, commercial spaces (Borj Fes), everything a traveler would need to organize and do their day to day in the city staying to sleep in Fez.
But what can be seen in the surroundings of the station? Well, 800 meters northeast of the station, is the Dar El Makhzen Royal Palace. It is the accommodation in Fez of the Alawi monarch when you visit the city.
You can not visit, but you can admire from the outside, especially the seven bronze doors with blue and green tiles, the colors of Fez. The seven doors represent the days of the week and the degrees of the monarchy. The best, see the palace with its night illumination.
The royal palace is located in the old Jewish quarter of the city, the Mellah that occupied eight hectares (the current palace occupies 80 hectares with its gardens and attached dependencies).
To get around the city and the Fez-Meknes region, the ideal is the train, but also the intercity bus of the Alghazala Bus Station, on the Avenida de los Almohades beyond the train station building, on the left.
The urban stops on lines 13, 16 (origin and destination of the railway station and Nouvelle Ville), 24 and 52 on the same route, allow you to move within the city and between its neighborhoods. The ‘shuttle bus’ takes you to the Fez Saïss Airport, which is 15 kilometers from the city.
Accommodations near Fes Railway Station