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Wednesday, 25 June 2014 12:00 AM

Marrakech or Fez – Where’s Best For My Holiday

Perhaps a fairly strange question but it is one that is raised by a number of people with our experts and on the internet question forums, whether its these particular Moroccan cities or similar differing places.

Fundamentally it all depends – so give us a call and we’ll talk through what’s right for you, but let’s explore this a little more below.

Marrakech and Fez - Both Great …

Both of these Imperial cities are great in their own way and have many factors in common – both have ancient medinas with a thriving daily life today, both have been recognised as UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Morocco, both have international airports offering flights direct from the UK (although Fez only has a limited schedule that keeps being changed), both have an excellent range of riad based accommodation, both are major tourist attractions, both have places of interest nearby (including Atlas mountain regions) and both can easily be linked into fascinating itineraries with other destinations.

However, whilst their fundamentals appear the same, their detail could hardly be more different.

Marrakech and Fez … but Different

Fez medina is a tightly wound and vast labyrinth of small alleys on two sides of a fairly steep valley. The souks do not dominate and small squares appear from nowhere as you steadily get lost in the historical city. Whilst it is a major tourist centre you rarely feel swamped by other tourists as there are few focal points, and the sense of ancient life occurring in the modern day is almost overwhelming.

Marrakech has a huge medina set on a plain with major pedestrian thoroughfares branching out from the huge central square of Jemaa el Fnaa and running through the sprawling souks. Unless you explore to the furthest reaches you will have other tourists near you at most times, especially around the souks, which run and run in the central regions.

Holiday Decisions

In the end, both are great in their own way and lend themselves to great holidays – Marrakech can easily be linked with Essaouria on the coast, the High Atlas or even the desert to the south east; Fez lends itself very well to be linked with Meknes and on to Rabat (both by train) or further afield to Chechaouen to the north. Marrakech has the most flight options, but the centre can feel rather busy with tourists, whilst Fez feels less busy but is harder to get to.

Let’s talk about these and other options on the phone.