The city of Meknes is located in the north of Morocco, only sixty kilometers from Fes and it was the capital of Morocco until 1727, and this beautiful city is located near the Atlas Mountains, and it is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and indeed it is full of things that can be done in one day When traveling to Morocco.
Meknes is located in the center of Morocco, not far from the city of Fez, and it is one of the largest cities in Morocco, where the city is located on a plain not far from the Atlas Mountains and it is one of the four imperial cities of Morocco, alongside Fez, Marrakech, and Rabat. Here you can see the beautiful gates, walls, mosques and the enormous palaces built by the Sultan between the splendor of the old city and the castle or the royal city.
Best times to travel to Meknes
Meknes has a Mediterranean climate, which makes it a distinct destination throughout the year, but the spring and autumn seasons are one of the most beautiful seasons to visit, where the climate is moderate and the prices are still reasonable.
History of Meknes
Meknes was established in the early eleventh century as a military settlement, and it became a capital under the rule of Sultan Moulay Ismail in the seventeenth century, then it turned into an impressive city with the creation of extensive gardens, many monuments, mosques, and monuments, as well as 40 km of thick walls and distinctive archaeological gates By city.
The eighteenth-century marked the end of the days of the glory of Meknes with the death of Sultan Ismail and an earthquake in 1755 that destroyed parts of the city. In 1996, the city of Meknes was included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites because of its exceptional design, including “elements of Islamic and European design.
Many remnants of Sultan Ismail’s rule remain in place today, so start your visit to Bab al-Mansur, the largest portal around Meknes, designed from huge marble columns taken from Roman ruins near Volubilis.
The Mausoleum of Moulay Ismail is the last resting place of the Sultan who created this magnificent city. Since Ismail is recognized as one of the greatest rulers of Morocco, visitors from all over the world are allowed to enter there through quiet courtyards decorated with the most beautiful designs.
Moreover, the Roman ruins of Volubilis are located just outside Meknes, as the site contains more than 30 magnificent mosaics in excellent condition that tell the stories of the ancient Roman Empire. You can visit the ruins of Voloyebis on an easy day trip from Meknes and it can be combined with a trip to the village of Moulay Idriss.
Although Meknes does not enjoy the bustling atmosphere and spacious stores like Marrakech and Fez, the most relaxed atmosphere makes Meknes ideal for shopping and the acquisition of the most beautiful and wonderful souvenirs, including ceramics, embroidery, porcelain, and colorful silk fabrics, just do not miss bargaining with sellers in the markets to get the best price.
The best tourist places in Meknes
Mausoleum of Moulay Ismail
This is the shrine in which the great ruler, Moulay Ismail, is buried, and it is one of the magnificent buildings worth visiting in the city, thanks to the amazing interiors and exteriors, with beautiful Islamic designs and motifs.
Morocco has many great and luxurious gates, and Bab Mansour is definitely one of them, where it is known for its wonderful mosaic and colorful porcelain and is considered the entrance to the world of the old city, which is filled with charming scenes and wonderful streets with diverse markets.
On the other side of Bab Al-Mansour, you will see the Him Square, which is the beating heart of Meknes, with many scenes that you can see in the famous Jamaâ El Fna Square in Marrakech, including snake charmers, and various shows from artists, as well as many restaurants. And cafes.
In addition to the Hedim Square, you will find the large market of Meknes, which is one of the most beautiful markets in Morocco, and whose flavors smell delicious food, spicy herbs, dried fruits, and other distinctive local products.
Moulay Idriss is a Berber village in the mountains, and it is really great to see it, with beautiful views and here you can definitely enjoy a more authentic experience of Morocco.
Moreover, Meknes is surrounded by the fertile plains below the Middle Atlas Mountains, where it thrives with an abundance of agricultural products such as olives, grains and citrus fruits, along with old groves and vineyards through out Meknes.
Tips before traveling to Meknes
Bargaining is something typical of Moroccan culture, and you have to do it almost everywhere. If you are planning to buy souvenirs or anything else on the market, start negotiating right away! You will be surprised how much you can deduct from the original price.
Do not stay long
Meknes is very small. It is often visited for one day from Fez because you can see everything in one day. But if you also want to visit Moulay Idriss and Volubilis, I recommend booking for two days.
Share the big taxi
Planning to rent a large taxi (Mercedes) to Moulay Idriss and Volubilis? Or maybe to Fez? There is a place for six people in the car, so if you are with a group, you can divide the price.
Do not take a small taxi from Central Station
There are two train stations in Meknes, do not get off at the central station, but at the Prince station, this is closer to the city of Meknes, which saves you money and a lot of time.
Local cooking lessons
Many restaurants, riads, hotels, and independent culinary schools provide visitors with an opportunity to learn how to prepare favorite Moroccan meals at home. Cooking lessons are a great way to learn more about life