Documenting our continued adventures in morocco has been such a joy, so let me remind you just a little bit about where we kicked off this section of our journey. Fez is is a northeastern Moroccan city—often referred to as the country’s cultural capital. It’s primarily known for its ‘Fes El Bali’ walled medina, with medieval Marinid architecture, wall carvings, and so much ornate tile work it’ll make your head spin. From the charming souks through the old-world atmosphere, it definitely felt a little more polished and in a way more upscale from Marrakech. So many people warned us (while in Marrakech) to wait until we got to Fes to purchase wares because that’s where so many artisans are from. But I must admit I didn’t personally find the wares better, but I did find the prices higher.
As you can see, our riad was incredibly charming. Riad Andalib was in a perfect spot in the heart of the medina, so we were able to easily walk everywhere. Riads were built with their charming garden interior, terraces, and small pools, because historically women weren’t allowed to be seen or leave the home so they brought the outside in. Isn’t that kinda wild? We’ve come a long way (but there’s plenty long ways to go, especially in Morocco).
We set out to make our time in this city and surround area all about the ruins and history.
This is Al-Attarine Madrasa and it is amazing. You could spend hours in here and not take in the full feast for the eyes. It was built in 1323. Like… can you even? I can’t. The sense of history and timelessness and artistry is just more than the senses can handle.
The alleys and of the medina are so full of life and energy and random cats. It is wonderful to experience the textures and colors and inspiration. The leather-dying section is particularly memorable… such a unique traditional artisanal tradition.
And then, suddenly—we were off to find ancient Rome… in Morocco. Volubilis is a partly excavated ancient city of roman ruins in the heart of Morocco. Over 2000 years ago, rome had taken this region as a seat of power, and experiencing this felt almost more thrilling than Rome itself, because there were maybe two other human beings present. We had this ruined city almost all to ourselves, and it felt mystic and wonderful.
Back in the city, we said our goodbyes. Mostly to the street cats… but to Morocco as a whole, too. It was a hard place to leave as it felt like there was so much more to experience. Soon, magical land of wonder. Soon.