As part of my trip to Fez, I also took a few days to discover the back country around this great city. Meknès, one of the four “imperial cities” of Morocco, is definitely worth a visit. Surrounded by three belts of walls, these fortifications are the longest in the kingdom. Their great protective stance is only broken through by a handful of beautifully adorned doors, opening a majestical way towards the inner city.
A few miles away, the region also boasts an impressive archeological site of Roman ruins called Volubilis. The exceptional state of the excavated walls, house foundations, arches and mosaics is utterly stunning. Perhaps even more impressive are the claims by archeologists that about 60% of the ruins still remain to be found and restored.
About an hour and a half away from Meknès stand the Middle Atlas mountains. Hidden in the forest is a lovely village named Ifrane, which serves as a ski station in the winter. A really great halt for those seeking peace and freshness, Ifrane is set close to an amazing natural reserve with many hiking paths. At the end of my trip, I visited an eco-friendly farm down in the valley, whose owners produce excellent goat cheese, as well as olive oil and honey. A truly great place to stop by and enjoy a nice meal of cheese, bread and other local products!