Safi and Fes, Morocco


The population of Safi is 292 thousand people. The city is located 347 kilometers from Rabat, 256 kilometers from Casablanca and 157 kilometers from Marrakesh. Safi is a major economic and industrial center. In catching and producing canned sardines, the city ranks first in the world. The local chemical plant extracts most of the Moroccan phosphates. Tourists are rarely seen in Safi. Locals do not like being photographed or filmed. Despite this, the city has interesting sights. For example, buildings from the time of the rule of the Portuguese. Safi is famous for its ceramic products. Green tiles are made in the city.

Sights in Safi
Safi’s traditional specialty is pottery, which is located opposite the Bab Shaab gate. Ceramics are sold everywhere in Safi, but it is difficult to find something interesting and of really high quality, since almost all goods immediately go to the shops of large cities. Pottery masters like to invite foreigners to their workshops, where you can immediately buy the thing you like, having previously familiarized yourself with the process of its production. Before taking photos, you must obtain permission from the owners. Even if you do not understand anything in pottery, you will be guided and everything will be shown by a voluntary assistant from among the residents of the quarter. Be prepared for the fact that at the end of the “tour” he will demand a reward. 10 DN will be enough. People interested in pottery will find here the first school in Africa where they can take a course.

According to Areacodesexplorer, Medina Safi is surrounded on all sides by powerful fortifications. In the southern part of the Medina is the Portuguese chapel and the Grand Mosque.

The main street of the Medina – st. The souk stretches from the Main Mosque in a northeasterly direction to the gate of Bab Shaab. The whole street consists of shops, small shops and all sorts of ateliers.

The underground Portuguese chapel, which is a Gothic structure of 1519, is all that remains of the ancient cathedral complex of St. Catherine. The hall, decorated with a lion’s mouth, is the only place available for inspection. It is open from 8.00 to 18.00, entrance is paid. The National Museum of Ceramics is open from 8.30 to 18.00. It is located in the building of the Portuguese citadel, which is interesting because in the late 18th – early 19th century a mosque was built here and a garden was laid out. The museum displays traditional ceramics from the cities of Safi, Fez and Meknes.

The 16th-century maritime palace Dar el-Bar got its name not by chance. This small fortress, built by the Portuguese, effectively rises directly above the ocean. In the 17th century, it became the residence of the Sultan, and before that it served as the seat of the Portuguese government. Inscriptions in Spanish, Portuguese and Dutch are still visible on the portico of the palace.


The city of Fez is located 198 km from Rabat, its population is 920 thousand inhabitants. The oldest city in Morocco, Fez is one of the first civilized cities in the Arab world. This is the mysterious capital of the Maghreb, which hides the great legends of the past. Many of the tourists tend to Fes precisely in order to see its ancient medina Fes el Bali, the most extensive surviving in Morocco. In fact, this is a huge museum, located right under the open sky. Suffice it to say that in former times the country was called the Kingdom of Fes.

The city is still considered the spiritual and cultural center of Morocco, and its famous Kairouan University is known far beyond the Kingdom. Fez is developing harmoniously. It organizes modern productions of the textile, chemical, metalworking, leather, woodworking industries and art crafts, among which weaving, leather processing, jewelry and pottery stand out.

In city blocks, amazing handmade souvenirs are born right before your eyes. Fez is traditionally considered the stronghold of the local bourgeoisie, which for centuries has provided the main personnel of the intellectual, economic and bureaucratic elite of the Kingdom.

Fez is an endless labyrinth of narrow medieval streets and lanes, a third of which ends in dead ends, a journey along craft workshops and local merchants’ shops, where you never guess what is hidden behind inconspicuous doors: a luxurious palace or a poor man’s shack.

It is curious that with the word “fesca” people immediately recall Turkey, although even the name of this headdress directly indicates its Arabic origin, associated with the Moroccan city of Fes. The usual form of the fez is a truncated cone made of wool or red felt, decorated with a black tassel. Fezzes are red because they were usually dyed with the juice of a red berry that grows around Fez. This headdress has always been the property of the men of the ruling classes. There was once a saying that if a woman puts on a fez, the world will end.

Fes, Morocco