How to Spend 3 Weeks in Morocco (Travel Itinerary)

3 weeks morocco trip itinerary

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First, let me tell you that 3 weeks in Morocco are far not enough! However, if it’s well planned, a 3 week Morocco Itinerary will take you through the highlights of this fascinating country. 

I believe that Morocco is a place like no other – so colorful, so beautiful, so crazy, and so diverse. The 3 weeks that I spent in the country are times that I would never forget, and 3 years later, this trip is still one of the best I’ve ever had!

When I was planning my trip to Morocco, my plans were changing every other minute. I booked my tickets one week before departure and the only thing that I knew in advance was that I’ll land in Marrakech and start exploring the country from there. 

This trip was also my first one with friends. From Sofia, I flew to Eindhoven in The Netherlands, where I meet my friend Denis and his friend, Edita. This, to be honest, was the biggest challenge for me during this 3-week itinerary. 

Denis and Edita stayed for only 10-11 days. After they left, I continued exploring Morocco on my own.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in November 2017 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness in December 2020.

Morocco Itinerary Overview

At first, I was thinking about visiting the following places during my 3-week stay in the country: Marrakech, Sahara Desert, Atlas Mounatins, Casablanca, Rabat, Fes, Chefchaouene, Essaouira, and Taghazout. As I mentioned in the beginning, 3 weeks in Morocco are far not enough, so if I wanted to cover all of this it meant that I’ll have to rush through places. I didn’t want that. 

For that reason, I decided to skip Casablanca and Rabat. Ideally, my goal was to spent at least two nights at each place, so I needed to give up on visiting a place or two. 

In the end, I spent 3 weeks in Morocco as follow: 

  • Marrakech – 3 nights 
  • Taghazout – 2 nights 
  • Essaouira – 2 nights 
  • Marrakech – 1 night 
  • Merzouga and the Sahara Desert – 3 days and 2 nights 
  • Marrakech – 2 nights
  • Atlas Mounatins (Imlil) – 1 night 
  • Marrakech – 2 nights 
  • Fes – 1 night 
  • Chefchaouene – 2 nights 
  • Fes – 2 nights 

Perhaps you wonder why I spent so much time in Marrakech? Simply, because all the routes lead there. Seriously, Marrakech is the most convenient place to get around from (for the central part of the country). 

I could have covered more, but I prefer traveling slowlier and taking my time. If you’d like to include other places to this Morocco itinerary, I’d recommend adding a day trip from Fes to Meknes and Volubilis or sparing a day or two to visit Rabat, Casablanca, or Tangier, all on the list of the best places to visit in North Africa

And if you have less time to explore the country, one week in Morocco should be enough for its highlights. 

What will you find in this 3 week Morocco itinerary? 

In this Morocco itinerary, I’ll be sharing with you information, as well as my experience, tips, and recommendations for all of these places individually. 

And since this will be a long, detailed post about how to spent 3 weeks in Morocco, I have written another one that covers everything that you need to know before visiting Morocco. Make sure to check it out!

Marrakech – the heart & the soul of Morocco

Marrakech is a chaotic city. It’s absolutely unique, colorful, diverse, and crazy! The Medina, the people, the atmosphere – you can not find them anywhere else, even in Fes. Both cities have so much in common and yet are so different, but that’s part of the charm of Morocco.

We arrived in Marrakech after midnight and the first thing that made me a huge impression was how bustling the city was at that time. On the next day, I noticed that there were more people out during the night than during the day. That has to be because of the heat. 

Marrakech is the fourth largest city in Morocco and of the country’s best attractions. The city has a lot to offer and is a must-stop on any Morocco itinerary. And even though 3 days in Marrakech can be enough to explore the highlights of the city, if you want to cover more of it, you can easily end up staying there for a week or even more. 

Some of my favorite memories from my visit to Marrakech include secretly drinking a bottle of wine in one of the parks and getting a Vespa ride around the city. Marrakech is split into two parts – Old City, where the Medina is, and New City, which has a European style. The Old City is much more authentic and here you can find most of the tourist attractions, while the New City is filled up with shops, cafes, restaurants, and even some bars that serve alcohol. 

Things to do in Marrakech 

Day trip to Ouzoud Waterfalls 

Marrakech is a great base for exploring other beautiful places in the central part of the country, and one of the best day trips that you can take from there is a day trip to the Ouzoud Waterfalls. With its height of 110 meters, Ouzoud Waterfalls are the highest waterfall in North Africa.

One of the things that I recommend you doing is getting a boat ride underneath the mouth of the waterfall. You’ll get very wet, but it’s a lot of fun. Another fun thing to do is becoming a friend of the Barbery monkeys. Visitors and tour guides are usually buying fruit and nuts to feed and attract them with. The monkeys are friendly and won’t do anything to hurt you if don’t threaten them. They are likely to climb on your head, and if that happens, make sure to stay calm, they are just playing or trying to steal more food. 

You shouldn’t also forget to bring a swimsuit as there are many places where you can swim on the way to the waterfalls. There are also a few places from where you can buy refreshments and a restaurant. 

The waterfall is free to visit and definitely worth the day trip from Marrakech, but I’d recommend doing so by joining an organized trip. 

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3-weeks-in-morocco-travel-itinerary-ouzoud-waterfalls-day-trip

Get lost in the Medina

The Medina of Marrakech is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This is the most authentic part of the city, as well as the busiest one. The Medina is Marrakech’s old city enclosed by 19-kilometers walls that were built around 1, 122. This part of the city services as a major tourist attraction and in this area, you can find Koutoubia Mosque, Bahia Palace, Jemaa el-Fnaa, Saadian Tombs, plenty of souks, Ben Youssef Madrassa, Marrakech Museum, and the Ramparts. 

Koutoubia Mosque – The largest mosque in Marrakech with a minaret tower of 77 meters in height, decorated with ceramic tiles and curved arches. Non-Muslims are not allowed inside, but it’s still worth to be seen from the outside. The mosque is surrounded by gardens with roses, orange trees, and palms.

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Bahia Palace – A late 19th-century palace nowadays a well-known historic monument and tourist attraction. You are not allowed to walk through the entire palace because much of it is still in use, but you can still get inside and admire its stunning mosaics and gardens. The entry fee is 10 Dhs.

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Saadian Tombs – Historic royal necropolis where over 100 princes and Ahmed el Mansour, sultan of the Saadi Dynasty, are interred. The entry fee is 70 Dhs.

Ben Youssef Madrassa – One of the best examples of Moroccan decor and architecture, the Ben Youssef Madrasa was the largest Islamic college in Morocco. Today it functions as a historic site and a tourist attraction. A ticket provides access to Medersa Ben Youssef, Marrakech Museum, and Koubba El Badiyin and costs 60Dhs.

Marrakech Museum – Housed in the Dar Mnebhi Palace and constructed at the end of the 19th century, the Marrakech Museum holds exhibits of both modern and traditional Moroccan art together with fine examples of historical books, and pottery of Berber, Moroccan Jewish, and Islamic cultures. The entry fee is 70 Dhs.

The Ramparts – Commissioned by Ali Ben Yousef back in 1126, the Rampart walls of the Marrakech medina are over 9 meters high, 2 meters thick, and are about 18 kilometers in length. There are over 20 gates which encircle the Old City and a walk around the ramparts is a great way to see the difference between the old and new Marrakech.

Go out for a night walk at Jemaa el-Fnna

Jemaa el-Fnna is the heart of Marrakech Medina. Don’t miss to check out this part of the city at night. It’s full of people, food stalls, and people selling everything from spices and herbs to clothing. Be careful when buying anything, locals usually try to overcharge tourists. Ask for prices upfront and don’t forget to bargain. 

Check out the new part of the city

The new city of Marrakech, Gueliz, offers an alternative vibe compared to the authentic Medina. In this area of the city, you can find museums, art galleries, Jardins, and nightlife! If you’re looking for a place where to have a drink in Marrakech, head to Gueliz.

Don’t miss checking out the contemporary restaurants and concept stores. Try to spot street art, too.

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Find some peace in one of the Marrakech parks 

You might get surprised by the many green areas that Marrakech has. These green areas remind of an oasis and must be seen on your Marrakech itinerary. Check out Majorelle Gardens, El-Harti Park, Cyber Park, and Lalla Hasna to name a few.

3-weeks-in-morocco-travel-itinerary-parks-marrakech

Shopping in Marrakech 

Marrakech ranks among the greatest shopping cities in the world. You can find literally everything at the souks of Marrakech from hand-made goods to clothing, herbs, spices, tea, perfumes, souvenirs, carpets, and so much more. Just remember that you don’t have to buy something that you don’t want – travelers often end up buying things because they felt obligated after visiting a local person’s store.

Make sure to ask for prices upfront and don’t pay more than what you are willing to – bargaining is very common in Morocco, just act confidently.

Leather bags and shoes are among the best items that you can buy – very good quality and very affordable.

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Booking.com

 

Taghazout – the laidback fisherman’s village 

After traveling around for 3 weeks in Morocco, Taghazout became one of my favorite places in the country. Taghazout is a laidback fisherman village on the Atlantic Ocean coast close to Agadir. The village is Morocco off-the-beaten-path-destination but slowly and surely gaining more and more popularity. 

Taghazout is well known by surfers as it’s a great surf destination – both the conditions are amazing, as well as it’s a lot cheaper comparing to other surf destinations. 

Ever since I can remember myself, I have wanted to learn how to surf and my first attempt to do so was exactly here in Taghazout. Denis and I rented boards and suits and went to the beach with two kiwis who show us how we are supposed to get on the board. That didn’t really work out and I couldn’t find a balance on the board not even once. In other words, I sucked at it. However, it was a lot different when I actually joined a lesson and caught my first wave in Ericeira, but that’s a different story. 

I highly recommend everyone who’s planning to visit Morocco to make a stop in Taghazout. 

3-weeks-in-morocco-travel-itinerary-taghazout-morocco

Things to do in Taghazout 

There are not many things to do in Taghazout except for surfing. But you can do that, or learn how to do it at very cheap prices! You can rent a board and a suit for as little as 50 Dhs. 

If you’re not into surfing, then Taghazout is still worth the visit. The good weather is one of the top reasons to visit Morocco and Taghazout. Besides surfing, the village it’s perfect if you want to enjoy the beaches, swim in the ocean, or to indulge in relaxation. Yoga is also very popular in the village.

Also, more and more stylish cafes are opening in the village, as well as handicraft shops. Plus, Taghazout is one of the best places to take a day trip to the Paradise Valley!

One of my most memorable experiences from Taghazout is seating on a rooftop terrace and watching the sun going down over the Atlantic Ocean. 
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3-weeks-in-morocco-travel-itinerary-sunset-taghazout-morocco

Essaouira – the bright and buzzing Atlantic Pearl 

Essaouira is another place worth including in your Morocco itinerary that is located on the Atlantic Ocean coast. This seaport is popular mainly due to the fact that the Game of Thrones has been filmed there, but also because of its charm. It’s easy to fall in love with Essaouira!

Despite being sick during the time when I was in Essaouira, I really enjoyed the city and had lots of fun. Rich in history and culture, the city has a lot to offer and those are some of the best things to do in Essaouira:  

A view of Essaouira's Medina and the Atlantic Ocean

Things to do in Essaouira

The Medina

The Medina of Essaouira is an exceptional example of a late 18th-century fortified town and is a UNESCO World Heritage listed city. The ancient Medina also known as Mogador is walled with several gates. The walls were built to defend the town from invasions. 

Before you head exploring the Medina, you should know that it is really like a maze and you can easily get lost. However, that might not be bad at all. There are so many interesting places that you can come across off. Within the Medina of Essaouira, you can find plenty of souks selling beautiful crafts, traditional clothing, herbs & spices, and a lot more.  Here are also the Essaouira Ramparts and fishing market that we are going to cover next. 

While wandering the narrow streets of Medina, you’ll feel transported in time. The atmosphere in Essaouira is relaxed, so it is a great destination for shopping. A complete contrast with the hectic hustle and bustle of cities like Marrakech and Fes. 

The Medina in Essaouira, a place to visit on your Morocco itinerary

Essaouira Ramparts

The Essaouira Ramparts is where the Medina meets the Atlantic Ocean. They were built in 1760 by a French military architect to protect the port. The Ramparts are Essaouira’s top tourist attraction and are typically the first place to visit once you arrive in the city. They were made worldwide famous thanks to Game of Thrones.

At the one end of the ramparts is the Skala du Port, a bastion with old cannons lined up along the sea wall. From here you will have a panoramic view of the Medina and the Ocean.

Skala du Port is open for visits every day from 9 am to 5 pm. The entry fee is 10 Dhs.

Essaouira's ramparts, the biggest landmark in the city

Check out the fishing market & port

Even if you’re not looking to buy a fish, I’d still recommend you check out the fishing market of Essaouira. After all, the city is a former fishing village! 

Fishing is an important trade in Essaouira, hence one of the most authentic experiences to have while visiting the city is seeing the masses of small blue boats coming back to the shore after a day of fishing. The boats come out of the Ocean between 3 pm and 5 pm. Fishermen are then auctioning their catch. 

The fishing market in Essaouira is a must visit

Surf 

Just like Taghazout, Essaouira is also a Moroccan surf destination. The conditions are great and you can easily rent a board and equipment, as well as join a lesson

Surfing in Essaouira is on my to-do list for the next time when I visit the city. 

Essaouira’s Beach

Essaouira is often called the windy city, thus sunbathing is not the most pleasant thing to do. However, people still hang out at the beach – walk by the coast, enjoy the sunset. etc.

The wind makes Essaouira a great spot for windsurfing and kitesurfing, and you’ll see many people practicing those sport. Of course, you can try too, there are numerous schools for beginners. What else is very popular to do at the beach of Essaouira is horse riding. If watersports are not your thing maybe you’ll enjoy galloping through the beach. 

Beach walk in Essaouira

Visit the Jimi Hendrix cafe for a glass of fresh orange juice

Do you know that Jimi Hendrix is an icon in Essaouira? He once visited the city in the summer of 1969. Some local people claim that they have seen him, others claim that they have even spoken to him. 50 years later, Essaouira is still obsessed with the rock star.

At the village of Diabat (4 km away from Essaouira), which Jimi Hendrix wanted to buy according to some local’s tales, there is a small cafe named after him. It is a great place to visit for a glass of fresh juice. Moreover, the walk through the beach to the cafe is nice and goes along the ruins of Dar Sultan Palace.

Jimi Hendrix cafe in Essaouira

The trip to Merzouga. First time in the desert!

I was very excited about the trip to Merzouga and the Sahara Desert as it was my first time visiting a desert. 

We booked our tour to the desert on our first day in Marrakech. We went out exploring the city and I stopped to buy a SIM card from a random guy on the street. He then offered us a trip to the Sahara. In the beginning, I thought that he was a fraud, but I convinced the other that we can at least hear him out. 

He took us to his office for more information. It turned out that the office where he took us an absolutely legit travel agency. From there another guy continued the conversation with us. He explained in detail what’s included in the tour what isn’t and showed us photos and videos to see how the trip looks like. 

I managed to negotiate a great deal with him and we actually went on this tour. 

Before I continue the story about the trip to Merzouga and the Sahara Desert, I want to make a note that everything about the tour was absolutely on point. Also, booking a tour in advance is definitely a better idea for some people. Going out on the street and booking the first tour offered to you doesn’t mean that you’ll end up having the same experience that I just described. Many people are likely to scam you, so if you want to be assured, book online. 

Also, if you don’t want to join a tour, it’s still possible to visit the desert. Read this article to find out how to visit the desert in Morocco on your own

the sahara desert in morocco

the sahara desert in morocco

About the tour 

The first thing that you need to know is that the desert is very far away. I prefer the 3-day trip to Merzouga because it’s included in it a visit to other interesting places on the way and because this trip takes you further into the desert. 

The 3-day trip to the desert basically looks like this: Departing, stopping at a few interesting places, night in a hotel. On the second day, you’re stopping at a few additional places and ending the day spending the night in the desert. The third day is the long way back to Marrakech. 

On the tour to Merzouga and the Sahara Desert we visited: 

Ait Ben Haddou – UNESCO-listed historic ksar. It is one of the finest examples of Moroccan earthen clay architecture. Popular movies such as The Mummy and Gladiator have been filmed here. From the high walls that surround the earthen buildings, there is a wonderful view of the Atlas Mountains.

ait ben haddou in morocco

Tinghir oasis – Where the mountain scenery meets the lush green palmeries. 

Todra Gorges – One of my personal favorite stops. The Todra Gorges are a series of deep carved limestone river canyons. Situated in the high Atlas Mountains, Todra Gorge is offering stunning desert scenery, as well as great hiking opportunities. It’s also a famous place for rock climbing in Morocco. 

Valley of the Roses – Between the Atlas Mounatins and the Sahara Desert, the Valley of the Roses is often overlooked by travelers. Tucked into the heart of the Berber culture, not only that the place is stunning, but it’s also less crowded.  The best thing is that it’s included in the Sahara tour, so you’ll be visiting it with a guide who can tell you a lot about the place and the local culture. 

A few Berber villages – Where we saw the local way of life. A quite different from what you can see in big cities like Marrakech. 

berber village in morocco

Ouarzazate – Aka the door to the desert, Ouarzazate is a famous tourist destination. Situated at an elevation of 1, 600 meters above sea level, the city is a great starting point for trips to the Draa Valley, Sahara, and Ait Ben Haddou. It’s also a famous film-making location. 

Also, the scenery on the way is spectacular, so make sure you don’t fall asleep! There is an additional stop on the curved road that offers an amazing view of the road and the surrounding mountains. 

 

 

Now to the desert experience…. 

When we arrived in Merzouga, we quickly got ready and went out to get on our camels, which were supposed to take us to the camp. In the end, it was 8 of us left when they told us that they ran out of camels. Some of us got a bit upset as this should have been included in the price that we paid. The people from the tour told us that they didn’t know how many people would come, which of course is their job, not ours. 

Anyway, everyone quickly got over it. Instead of riding on the camels, we were taken to the camp by a jeep. We climbed on the top of the jeep and they gave us an awesome ride through the dunes. Thanks to this, we arrived at the camp earlier and had the time to hike the highest dune that was close to our camp and watch the sunset from there. In the end, we had, in my opinion, a much better experience. 

jeep ride from merzouga to the sahara desert

sahara desert dunes hiking

After sunset, we had dinner. I don’t know if I was just starving, or it was really good, but the tagine that we had in the Sahara was one of the best meals that I’ve had in Morrocco. Then there was a campfire, and we sang and danced with the Berbers.

At the end of the night, we got our mattresses out from the tent and slept outside. Yes, it was cold, but there are enough blankets to wrap yourself in and stay warm.

sleeping under the starts in the sahara desert

I really wanted to stargaze before I fall asleep, but we didn’t get that lucky.  Yes, I saw several falling stars, but the sky, in general, was not that starry. And I kind of expected it to be.. 

On the next day, we got up at 5 am to take the camels back to Merzouga and watch the sunrise. This time, they gave us camels and got other people back on the top of the jeep. I didn’t enjoy the camel ride at all. Sitting on the poop animal for 2 hours – not my thing.

After we reached a certain point, we stopped to enjoy the incredible Sahara sunrise. Honestly, this was one of the most beautiful sunrises that I have ever seen!

The journey back to Marrakech was long but scenic.

merzouga to marrakech road views

Imlil + Toubkal National Park, the highest peak of Morocco 

One of the things that I was most excited about when I was visiting Morocco was my plan to hike Mt. Toubkal. Situated at an elevation of 4, 167 meters, Toubkal is the highest peak in the Atlas Mountains, Morocco, and North Africa. 

Sadly, my plan failed and I didn’t climb the peak. The weather condition worsens and I wasn’t prepared for that. I am sure that I was going to make it anyway – I was only an hour and a half before the refuge when it started raining a lot and I decided to get back to the village. 

I was sorry for that decision later and still convening myself that it was the best thing to do – after all, I was alone and I didn’t know the route, I didn’t even have a GPS track to follow, which is kind of stupid. 

However, I still did a nice and beautiful hike, but I’ll be definitely back to finish what I started!

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Things to do in Imlil

HIKE! 

Situated at an elevation of 1, 800 meters above sea level, in Imlil, you can find plenty of guest houses, a guide that you can hire for your hike, and shops from where you can rent any equipment. Nearby the village, you can go on an easier hike to visit the Imlil waterfall.

But even if you’re not into hiking that much, you can still visit Imlil and enjoy the beauty of the Atlas Mountains. Whether you’re spending three weeks in Morocco, or just one, I highly recommend including the Atlas Mounatins in your itinerary!

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Chefchaouen – the fairy blue city 

Apart from the incredible colors, there are many other things to love about Chefchaouen, like the beautiful surrounding Rif Mountains, the relaxed atmosphere, and the nice and smiley people.

What is Chefchaouen is most famous for is it’s blue Medina and the blue walls that surround it. There are several theories as to why the whole city is painted in blue – one of them is that the blue keeps the mosquitos away, another one says that the blue symbolizes the sky and heaven and it is a reminder to lead a spiritual life.

Those two theories among all the others that exist are interesting, but according to some locals, the city was actually painted blue simply to attract tourists. And it works.

Things to do in Chefchaouen

Tour the blue Medina

The blue Medina of Chefchaouen is a photographer’s dream. There are even some spots that became so famous on Instagram that now you’ll have to wait in line if you want to snap a photo there. 

The heart of the Medina is lined with cafes and filled with both locals and tourists. The Kasbah Museum and Grande Mosquee are located in the main square of the Medina, Plaza Uta El Hammam. 

the street of Chefchaoue a must visit in Morocco

Shopping

Although it’s a very popular tourist destination, Chefchaouen is far less crowded than the bigger cities, which means that it’s easier to find your way around, and shop at peace.

In Chefchaoun, you can find many native handicrafts that are not available anywhere else in Morocco such as wool garments and woven blankets. The goat cheese native to the area is very popular among tourists, too. 

shopping in chefchaoen, morocco

Drink a cup of mint tea

There are several rooftop restaurants in Chefcheouen. Choose one, go to the terrace, order a mint tea (orange juice, or a meal), and enjoy the beautiful panoramic view that it offers.

window view in chefchaouen

views in chefchaouen, morocco

Hike to the Spanish Mosque for a panoramic view of Chefchaouen

The best place to enjoy a panoramic view of Chefchoeuen is the Spanis Mosque that sits on a hill, 45 minutes walk from the Medina. The Mosque was built in the 1920s during the Rif War between the Spanish and the Berbers, and an interesting fact is that it was never used.

The trail to the Spanish Mosque begins at Bab al Ansar, the medina’s eastern gate.

the spanish mosuqe in chefchaouen

Visit Kasbah Museum 

Those of you interested in the city’s culture and history can pay a visit to the Kasbah Museum. The 15th-century building contains the Andalusian gardens, a former prison, and a small gallery.

Explore the surroundings 

Some of the best things to do when exploring Chefchaouen’s surroundings is to hike in the Rif Mountains or visit the Akchor Waterfall. Unfortunately, when I visited the blue city it was raining almost the whole time, so I didn’t have the opportunity to do either one of both. Another reason to be back to Morocco!

rif mountains in chefchaouen, morocco

Fes – the surprise 

I was thinking of visiting Fes from the very beginning. After all, it’s one of the most important cities in Morocco. However, while I was exploring Morocco, I was constantly told bad things about the city from fellow travelers. At this point, I was already traveling by myself, and hearing so much about sexual harassment in Fes, visiting the city didn’t feel like the best idea anymore. 

My flight out of the country was from Fes to Barcelona, so I needed to pass by there to catch that flight anyway. 

I took the train from Marrakech to Fes with the idea to spend the night in the city and catch a bus to Chefchaouen the next morning. The night that I spend in Fes, I met some cool people at the hostel where I was staying, we went for dinner together, and then walked around the Medina. Fes didn’t seem unbearable. 

After I fell in love with Chefchaouen, I thought of staying there until the end of my trip and go straight to the Fes airport when the time for my flight comes. Then one morning I woke up, packed, and returned back to Fes. I really wanted to see the city! 

In a conclusion, I can say that Fes is absolutely chaotic, and it’s the place in which I was ”sexually harassed” the most, but I am not sorry that I decided to spend some time there and explore the city. Here’s what you shouldn’t miss if you decide to visit Fes, too: 

Things to do in Fes

Take in the smells of the Tanneries 

The Tanneries in Fes are one of the city’s most iconic sights and smells. The tanning industry has been operating since the early centuries, nowadays it has turned into the main tourist attraction. 

There are 3 tanneries in Fes with Chouara Tannery being the oldest and largest of them. The tannery consists of several stone vessels that are filled with a range of natural dyes and various liquids.

Be warned that the smell of the tanneries is very strong. Locals will offer you a stem of mint tea to smell instead, but in the end, you might get asked to pay for it. So, you can either get mint yourself in advance or take something else to cover your nose with. 

the tanneries in fes, morocco

traditional tannery in morocco

Get lost in the Medina

Fes is home to the oldest and largest medina in North Africa! The city was once the capital of Morocco and it’s still viewed as the cultural epicenter of the country. Because of its historical significance and cultural importance, the Medina that dates back to the 9th century is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. 

When exploring Fes’ narrow streets and alleys, you might easily get lost. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, as you might come across exciting hidden gems. Nonetheless, make sure to find a way to orient yourself, as even Google Maps find it difficult to navigate this maze. 

Don’t miss the University of al Karaouine – the oldest university in the world according to UNESCO and the Guinness World Records. Today it functions as a mosque and is the second-largest in Morocco. Muslims are not allowed to enter, but you should definitely get a glimpse of the courtyard. 

The Medina of Fes is the largest car-free urban area in the world.

streets of the medina in fes

Go outside the city walls 

In the 11th century, heavily fortified walls with watchtowers and gates were built around the entire Medina of Fes. Nowadays, outside these walls, you’ll find the Mellah of Fes (Jewish quarter), pottery factories, Merenid Tombs, and you can even hike to Mount Zalagh for the best view of the Medina and the surrounding area. 

The oldest and historically most important gates of Fes are Bab Mahrouk, Bab Guissa, and Bab Ftouh.

one of the fes city gates

Relax in the Bou Jeloud Gardens 

This has to be one of my favorite spots in Fes. The Bou Jeloud Gardens are the only open public park within Medina where you can get a break from the chaos. 

Created in the 19th century, the garden is decorated with colorful fountains and there are over 3000 planted species. The entry to the garden is free, but keep in mind the opening hours: 

  • Tuesday – Sunday: 8 am to 7:30 pm
  • Monday – closed 

relax in fes garden

After those crazy 3 weeks in Morocco, I headed to explore Barcelona. As I mentioned in the beginning, 3 weeks are simply not enough for Morocco, but for first-time visitors, I believe is a great amount of time to spend in the country and get a glimpse of its highlights. 

There are still places that I want to see in Morocco, so I am sure that one day I’ll be back!

Thanks for reading, 

Bilyana

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