Monday, January 18, 2016

Fez or Marrakech? The Debate Continues...

For decades the friendly rivalry between Fez and Marrakech has continued. These days most of the discussion is by tourists with only a limited time in Morocco. Ideally, of course, there is no dispute - visitors should visit both places.

Marrakech is variously described as "the party town" "clubbing central" and "the place with the big square". Fez, on the other hand, is more restrained, traditional and undoubtably the intellectual and cultural capital. Sadly, stereotypes still exist with people convinced that one city or the is more interesting, or has more crime or...
There are lots of beautiful women in Marrakech—more than in Fez.
Brahim  (28) Jewellery salesman.
Writer Christina Ammon and photographer Tim Daw hit the streets to collect the opinions on Fez and Marrakech from business-owners, artisans, and travellers of all ages.

Marrakech is alive until 4:00 or 5:00 a.m.  In Fez there is no life after 8:00 p.m.
-Jokh, Age 30. Orange Juice Salesman in Jemaa el Fna 
(Editor's note: He obviously hasn't been to Fez in a while!)
Fez is more relaxed. Marrakech is crazy -Said, Age 25. Car rental agent in Marrakech.
I prefer Marrakech—but not because I live here. In the Fez Medina there is crime.
There aren’t problems here for tourists. They can walk free anytime because there
 are plain-clothes police watching over. I like the historical monuments of Fez, but not the criminals
 -Mustapha  Age 34. Tour Operator
Fez has a different ambiance. It is traditional Morocco. In the buildings and streets you can 
see the old Moroccan culture. Marrakech has changed because of tourists. -Yasmine, Age 21.
I think Fez is better, but maybe that’s because of the length of time I’ve been there 
and my friends and connections. People feel more caring in Fez. It’s a bit faster here
in Marrakech. -Mike Richardson, Age 43. Owner of Cafe Clock
Marrakech, Tanger, Fez—they are all good! But Marrakech has the big square, and is 
surrounded by Berber Villages and many tourist places like Essaouira and Ouarzazate. 
It has the best climate in Morocco. The Royal Family make their primary residence here.
 -Khalid, Age 37. Souvenir salesman
Fez is the cultural capital, but it’s peaceful in Marrakech and it’s easy to get everywhere—
to the mountains or the beach. People are funnier in Marrakech—more open-minded. 
Ali (right), 40s. Jewelry salesman
Marrakech is a mix of traditional and modern. The weather in December is still nice
—so you can still swim and do lots of things. In Marrakech you can find lots of foreigners. 
I like Jemaa el Fna. It’s never boring. There is always something new to discover.
-Bousbaa, Age 27. Banker
Both have been capitals. Fez is my birth city and where I learned my style of life.
Moulay, Age 57. Honey vendor

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Katarina Maruskinova said...

I love this!

Travelguide Marrakech said...

The debate is a quite good idea to show the different sides of view on both cities. Fez is for me, who spent more time in Marrakech, more traditional but also a little bit severe. I would recommend Marrakech to people who come the first time to Morocco.