Day 76- Travel to Fez

***All of my posts about Morocco will mostly just include what we did and saw that day. For more details, thoughts, and facts I learned, I will be posting a longer Blog post about it at the end of the trip and add a link to it from the Diary posts.  

 

Today we checked out of our AirBnB and got on a plane to Morocco! We arrived at 3:00PM in Fez where we met our guide, named Lahcen, for the next several days. (For Alexander’s Christmas gift and because John is friends with one of the guides from the company, he set us up with a guide for while we are here!) 

 

We then got in the car and went into the city where we met our local city guide. Our first stop was the King Palace. It is not currently in use by the King, but it is one of the many that he has throughout the country.

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Our second stop was a fortress overlooking the city. It was helpful to be able to see the city from above!

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Then, we went to a ceramics school. It was my favorite part of the day! We saw the process- from start to finish- how they hand make Moroccan pottery and mosaics.

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It was incredible to see each of the craft workers creating these beautiful one of a kind pieces!

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Each of the artists are free to design each piece as they wish, so none of them are really the same!

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We then went to their shop and oh my gosh I wanted everything! However, since it isn’t cheap to ship things home, we decided to get a small pitcher with some colorful flowers on it!  

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After our tour, we then got back in the car and drove to the Medina, or old part of the city. There we walked through extremely narrow and uneven roads. On each side of us were little shops and people sitting on the steps. The “roads” were so narrow that cars can’t fit, so everything comes in and out via donkey!

Unfortunately, Alexander and I were too distracted to take a photo because I think we were so distracted by everything that was happening but in some areas, there were people everywhere with items from their little shops, and the walkway was only 3 people wide, and then there were donkeys coming through and everything was so loud and colorful- it was overwhelming and very hard to describe! 

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While walking around in the Medina, we came to the oldest university in the entire world! I didn’t even believe it so I had to look it up! But indeed the University of Karueein was founded in 859 AD and is the oldest university! We could not go inside as it is a mosque, but we could see it’s beautiful design from outside of the complex. 

While walking around in the Medina, we came to the oldest university in the entire world! I didn’t even believe it so I had to look it up! But indeed the University of Karueein was founded in 859 AD and is the oldest university! We could not go inside as it is a mosque, but we could see it’s beautiful design from outside of the complex. 

Our local guide then took us to a handmade rug collaborative. The man there told us about how 1300 women work days and weeks to make these intricate, one-of-a-kind rugs! They make them at home and then sell them through this collaboration. He taught us about the different styles and materials used to create the rugs with their bright colors and unique designs. 

Our local guide then took us to a handmade rug collaborative. The man there told us about how 1300 women work days and weeks to make these intricate, one-of-a-kind rugs! They make them at home and then sell them through this collaboration. He taught us about the different styles and materials used to create the rugs with their bright colors and unique designs. 

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We then walked a ways to a tannery where they clean and dye skins to create handmade leather goods! In the picture below- the bottom, white grid is where they clean the hides and the reddish grid is full of different dyes! 

We also visited an traditional herbalist who sold all sorts of spices and different herbal remedies! There we bought some argon oil which we learned is great for massages, hair, and skin!  

We also visited an traditional herbalist who sold all sorts of spices and different herbal remedies! There we bought some argon oil which we learned is great for massages, hair, and skin!  

Lastly, we visited a shop where we saw women weaving silk and while there I learned how to wear a scarf in the Sahara! I also bought a pink Moroccan dress (don’t worry, photos of that another day!) 

Lastly, we visited a shop where we saw women weaving silk and while there I learned how to wear a scarf in the Sahara! I also bought a pink Moroccan dress (don’t worry, photos of that another day!) 

After our exciting evening, we went to our hotel! It is a traditional riad which means it is a building that is open in the middle, typically with a garden. This brings a lot of natural light into the middle of the building! In the picture below we are having dinner in our riad in the central courtyard where it is open!   The dishes in the middle of our table are tagine, a traditional Moroccan dish. The tagine we had is chicken with lemon and it was delicious!!   

After our exciting evening, we went to our hotel! It is a traditional riad which means it is a building that is open in the middle, typically with a garden. This brings a lot of natural light into the middle of the building! In the picture below we are having dinner in our riad in the central courtyard where it is open! 

The dishes in the middle of our table are tagine, a traditional Moroccan dish. The tagine we had is chicken with lemon and it was delicious!!   

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After dinner we went right to bed to prepare for our next busy day!