No one visits Fez without passing by Bab Boujloud at least once. It is virtually impossible, as the gate (bab in Arabic) serves as an excellent navigation point for the lost wanderers trying to find their way through the busy streets of the Fez medina. But Bab Boujloud is much more than just a handy reference point on a map. Its glittering mosaic tiles and grand archway have made it one of Morocco’s most famed gateways and a sight you definitely won’t want to miss as you discover the city of Fez.
A Young Masterpiece
Unlike most Moroccan historical sights, Bab Boujloud is actually quite recent. Built as late as in 1913, this gateway into the heart of the Fez medina was actually designed and completed during the French occupation of Morocco. Just next to it, you will be able to find the original gate into the bustling medina streets constructed in the 12th century deliberately on a slant to block ram herds from entering.
You will get a more impressive view of this monumental gateway from the outside of the medina. Take a few steps back and you can admire the glistening blue mosaics arching around the picturesque backdrop of the souks and sights of Fez. Within the main archway, you will be able to see two minarets in the distance: the one of the left belongs to the beautiful ruins of the 20th century Sidi Lazzaz mosque and is usually topped by a stork’s nest, while the smaller one on the right is part of the magnificent 14th century Bou Inania Medersa.
As you enter the medina through Bab Boujloud, you will notice how the color of the mosaics change: the outside blue (also the color of Fez) turns to green on the inside, revealing the color of Islam.
Bab Boujloud Today
As the main entrance into the Fez medina, the famed “blue gate” is also one of the best spots in the city to observe daily life in Morocco. After admiring Bab Boujloud’s incredible architecture, have a seat in one of the cafes or restaurants set up inside and right around the gate. Enjoy a cup of tea or a delicious tagine as you witness the comings and goings of swift street vendors, excited tour groups, and the men, women and children of Fez as they make their way through the gate to get to the hammam, return from school and shop for fresh produce in the souks.