11 hours ago
Day 7 and 8: Fez, the second largest city of Marroco. It's divided into three different parts - Old Fez (medina), New Fez, and New City. The Medina of Fez is a UNESCO world heritage site - it funds the buildings' restoration and keeps the city as similar as possible to what it once was centuries ago. Arriving to the city of Fez, coming from our 3 day desert tour, was impressive.
It's a big city, with nice avenues, shopping centers and buildings. But.. once you enter the Medina gates, you go thousands of years back in time. More than 9000 labirintic alleys, some really narrow and dark, mules and donkeys transporting people and goods (no motorbikes allowed), local markets with hundreds of fresh products, fish and meet sold in little stalls, arts and crafts houses with lots of colours and patterns; men working with wood, bronze, and stone; women shopping at the markets and carrying their children... Fez has more than 120 neighborhoods, each one of them with 5 charateristics: a mosque, a fountain with drinking water, a nursery, a Hamman (where men and women take their shower - men in the morning, women in the afternoon), and a bakery. The 5 basic needs of its people.
Fez is built on hills: the more downhill you go, the poorer and more problematic the neighborhood is. The more uphill you go, the closer you get to the gates and to the New Fez.
Nowadays many people live in the New Fez or New City, but still shop in the Medina soaks and go to the markets near the entry gates of the Medina. Every fruit and veggie is fresh and well presented in the morning. In the evening, the remaining products and less fresh and are sold to the poorest at a lower price.
All these people live in close relationship with the growing tourism, and this comes with its ups and downs. You have beautiful Riads and Dars (guesthouses with and without a center garden/swimming pool, respectively), loads of beautiful handwork tapestries, ceramics, leather, and a whole lot of other crafts that are sold at a reasonanable price, an experience at a completely different culture, arquitecture and life as it is. (Continued below ⏬)