The 16 best monuments in Fez

The 16 best monuments in Fez

The 16 best monuments in Fez

The 16 best monuments in Fez: As Morocco’s oldest city, Fez boasts a wealth of ancient buildings and monuments. Here’s my list of 20 monuments that every visitor to Fes should see.

1. Bab Bou Jeloud

Bab Bou Jeloud is a large, ornate gateway in the medina of Fès, Morocco. The gate was built in 1732 as part of Moulay Ismail’s expansion of the medina. It is named after Moulay Ismail and his mother, both of whom are buried nearby.

The gate was designed by a Moroccan architect named Ahmed el-Razzaz and built by order of Moulay Ismail. The doors were originally made of wood with copper decorations, but these have now been replaced by concrete and marble.

The gate is located at the end of the Souk El Kebir in the medina, near Bab Marrakech. It leads directly from this souk to another called Souk El Arbaa Ben Naceur, which is also known as Souk Ouled Derdoufi because it contains a mosque of that name.

The gate is protected by two towers and has three arches on each side. Each arch is decorated with geometric motifs and kufic inscriptions. There are three doors inside each tower, but only two are in use today. One leads to a small courtyard, while the other leads to the Bab Bou Jeloud mosque.

2. Médersa Attarine

The 16 best monuments in Fez: The Médersa Attarine, also known as the Madrasa Attarine, is a madrasa (Islamic school) in Fez, Morocco. It was built in 1331-1332 by Abu Inan Faris, sultan of the Merinid dynasty, who took power in 1325 and reigned until 1348.

The madrasa is named after his mother Attar Umm al-Nissabt bint Muhammad ibn Abi Jami’ al-Ansariya’. The building was constructed on a site previously occupied by a Marinid palace that had been destroyed in an earthquake.

The complex comprises two main buildings: a mosque and a school. The mosque has three entrances with broken horseshoe arches and intertwined stones. Its mausoleum forms part of the courtyard wall on the west side.

3. Karaouiyne Mosque and University

The Karaouiyne Mosque and University are located in Fès el Bali, the old city of Fès. It was founded by the Merinid sultan Abu Yusuf Yaqub al-Mansur (1310-1358) in 1341. The mosque was built on the site of a former palace belonging to Moulay Idriss II. The building served as a university until the 19th century when it became a barracks for French troops. It was restored in the 1950s and transformed into a museum housing numerous manuscripts and old books. Today, it is one of Morocco’s most important cultural institutions, regularly hosting exhibitions, concerts and seminars.

4. Médersa Bou Inania – The Koranic school

The school was built in 1350 by the Merinid ruler Abu Inan and named after his wife, Bou Inania. It is located in the heart of the ancient medina of Fez, Morocco.

The Medersa Bou Inania is a Koranic school built in 1350 by the Merinid ruler Abu Inan. It bears the name of his wife, Bou Inania. The school is located in the heart of the ancient medina of Fez, Morocco.

The building has a rectangular plan with three floors: two for the students and one for the teachers. The front part is pierced by two doors, each protected by two conical-roofed towers that give access to the classrooms on either side. Each floor contains three rooms where pupils learned to read and write Arabic, as well as the rules of Muslim conduct.

In addition to its religious function, this medersa also served as the residence of its founder, who lived there until his death in 1357.

5. Royal Palace of Fez

The 16 best monuments in Fez: The Royal Palace of Fez, built in the 16th century, is located in the heart of old Fez. The palace is one of Morocco’s most important monuments.

Located in the heart of old Fez, Morocco, this palace is one of Morocco’s most important monuments and has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The first part of this monument was built by Sultan Mohammed ash-Sheikh in 1516. The second part was built by his son Abu Inan around 1550 and completed by his grandson Mohammed ash-Sheikh II in 1557. The third part was added by Sultan Abu al-Hassan Toure (1636-1659).

The palace comprises several buildings with different functions: residential quarters for the royal family, public areas such as baths and kitchens, and administrative offices for government business.

6. Borj Nord

The Borj Nord is a gateway to Fès el Bali, the old city of Fès. The gate was built during the reign of Moulay Ismail (1672-1727) and is one of Morocco’s most important monuments. The Borj Nord is located at the northern entrance to the medina. It is also known as Bab Nour or Bab Elnour.

The gate was built by Ahmed Ibn Abi al-Hajj (1231-1337), who was vizier under the reigns of Sultan Abu Yaqub Yusuf and his son Yacoub el Mansur. The structure was built using stone blocks covered in plaster and painted white. The gate features four arches leading into the medina, each flanked by two columns supporting a wooden lintel.

7. The Merinid tombs

The Merinid tombs in Fez, Morocco, are a series of royal mausoleums built by the Merinid dynasty in the 14th century. The tombs are located on a hillside above the city of Fez, and can be reached by a staircase winding up the hill.

The Merinid tombs are located near the Bab Bou Jeloud gate of Fès el Bali, which was once the main entrance to the medina district. The complex comprises three large burial chambers: two for Sultan Abu Inan (1331-1351) and his family, and one for his son Abu al-Hasan (1351-1357). The tombs were originally surrounded by gardens, but these disappeared over time, leaving only an open space surrounded by a few trees.

Visitors to the site are surrounded by stone walls decorated with geometric motifs. A large gate leads to the first courtyard, where visitors must pay an entrance fee before proceeding further into the complex. The second courtyard is adorned with palm trees and other green plants, providing shade from the sun on hot Moroccan summer days.

8. Fès Medina

The 16 best monuments in Fez: The Medina is the oldest part of Fès and one of the largest medinas in the world. The Medina of Fès is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with its stunning architecture, narrow streets, mosques, baths and monuments. The city itself was founded by Idris I in 789 A.D. and was the capital of Morocco until 1912, when it was transferred to Rabat. The city has over a million inhabitants, but only 100,000 live in the medina.

9. Borj Sud

The Borj Sud is a fortified palace in the medina of Fez, Morocco. It was built in the 14th century by Sultan Abou al Hassan and is one of the best-preserved examples of pre-16th-century Moroccan architecture. Its name translates as “southern bastion”, as it faces south, towards the ancient city walls that surrounded Fès el Bali.

The palace comprises a large courtyard overlooking several halls and rooms. The rooms are decorated with geometric motifs in plaster and stucco, and painted decorations on the columns. There are also three courtyards with fountains, each with its own garden.

10. Bab el-Semmarine

The Bab el-Semmarine monument is located in the northern part of Fès, near the Bab Boujloud gate, and forms the entrance to the medina.

The monument was built by Moulay Ismail and bears his name. It was built in stone, wood and plaster, but has lost much of its originality due to the many renovations that have taken place over the course of its history. The most important renovation took place during the reign of Moulay Abdellah, who added a wooden door.

Bab el-Semmarine has been renovated several times since then, and each time a new layer has been added to its structure, causing it to lose its originality.

The monument consists of two symmetrical buildings on either side of the road leading into the medina of Fez from outside the city walls. Each building has two storeys with arched openings on each floor for windows and doors, and two balconies on each floor overlooking both sides of the road leading into the medina of Fez from outside the city walls.

11. Chouara Tannery

Tannerie Chouara is an old tannery located in Fès, Morocco. The tannery was founded by the Almohad sultan Yaqub al-Mansur (1184-1199). It is located north of the city center, on the banks of the Oued Fes. The tannery is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Chouara Tannery is also known as Dar el Bekht (House of Beauty), Znayen el’Bekht (House of Beauty) and Dar El Bechka.

The Chouara Tannery was founded during the Almohad period, under the reign of Sultan Yacoub Al Mansour, in 1198. The site has been used as a tannery since Roman times, but it was during this period that it became one of Morocco’s most important industries.

12. The Souk of Fez

The Souk de Fès is a traditional market in the Moroccan city of Fès. It is the largest covered market in the world. The souk is divided into two parts: tanneries and souks for local products (such as cereals, meats, fruits and vegetables), and souks for imported products (such as spices, fabrics, leathers and carpets).

The souk also includes mosques, madrasas, fountains and other public buildings and monuments such as the Bab Boujloud gate.

13. Medersa Bou Inania

The 16 best monuments in Fez: The Medersa Bou Inania is one of the most beautiful and famous medersas in Fès. This medersa was built in the 14th century by Sultan Abou Inan, one of the sons of Caliph Mohammad V. He was also the first prince to convert to Islam and rule the city of Fez as a Muslim sovereign. Construction of the school began in 1357, following his conversion to Islam.

It is modelled on other Moroccan schools (medersas). The tour includes an exhibition devoted to the different ways people lived in the Middle Ages, allowing you to see how princes and wealthy merchants lived in this country in the Middle Ages.

14. Cedars (Andalusian) Mosque

The Cedars (Andalusian) Mosque is located in Fez, Morocco. It was built over a period of several centuries, starting in the 11th century by successive dynasties. The oldest parts date back to the Almohad dynasty of the 13th century. In its present form, it is largely the work of Moulay Ismail, who rebuilt much of it after an earthquake in 1755. The mosque has two minarets, decorated with cedar wood plaques. The mosque is one of Morocco’s most important monuments, and has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1981 as part of the Fez medina.

15. Moulay Driss Zerhoun

The 16 best monuments in Fez: The Moulay Driss Zerhoun monument is a monumental tomb built in the center of the city of Fès and is one of its most famous sites. It was built in the 12th century and bears the name of its founder, Moulay Driss Zerhoun, who was vizier under the Almoravid dynasty.

The monument is considered one of Morocco’s national treasures, as well as an artistic masterpiece. It was built in the Almohad style, with rich decoration including geometric motifs and calligraphy.

The monument has been restored several times, but each time its original structure has been preserved intact. The last restoration took place in 1962, when it was turned into a museum where tourists can admire some of its features, such as the ceiling decorated with paintings depicting scenes of daily life at that time in history.

16. Seffarine Square

Place Seffarine is an important square in the medina of Fez, Morocco. It is located north of Bab Ftouh and southwest of Bab Boujloud. The square was named after al-Muizz li-Din Allah, who built the first mosque on this site. It was subsequently rebuilt by the Almoravid sultan Ali ibn Yusuf in 1068 CE, then in 1357 by the Merinid sultan Abu Inan Faris. Today, the square is home to several museums, including the Dar Batha Museum and the Moroccan Crafts Museum.

The square is famous for its many historic buildings such as the Dar Batha Museum, the Moroccan Crafts Museum and the Maison Tiskiwin, which were built during the glory days of Fez under the reigns of Sultans Moulay Ismail (1672-1727) and his son Moulay Abdallah (1727-1822).

The 16 best monuments in Fez

There are many incredible monuments in Fez, but this list presents just 20 of the best. Many have been magnificently restored by the people of Fès, while others have fallen into ruin. The following monuments are presented in no particular order, as they all deserve to be visited by travelers to this North African country.

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