We head to Skoura, where we would visit a 17th century citadel, and I would fall in love ... with a loom!
Fez is the second oldest city in the world after Jerusalem. It lays claim to the first psychiatric and surgical hospitals, the oldest university and library (coincidentally, founded by a woman) and the world's 3rd largest mosque.
We arrive in Rabat, founded in the 10th century, now the second largest metropolis in Morocco. We drive along the crenelated wall of the Kasbah of the Oudaias and walk through the medina to our riad.
I find the Great Mosque but cannot enter. There's a fountain in the courtyard and a great view of the Alhambra in the distance. The view must be spectacular at night.
"...The lower part of the walls is encrusted with beautiful Moorish tiles… the upper part is faced with fine stucco-work...artfully joined, so as to have the appearance of having been laboriously sculpted by hand…”
The Mezquita was the largest mosque in the Western world, measuring almost 24,000 square meters. It was built in stages between 785 and 987 and would be considered the most important sanctuary of Western Islam.
I will always remember Toledo as the city where churches, synagogues and mosques have such similar architecture that you might not realize which house of faith you are in without a guidebook.
Toledo is rugged, but compact, and in spite of its hills it is a fairly easy walk
The magnificent Ulu Camii was built in 1399, when, to satisfy a promise to construct 20 mosques, Yildirim Bayazid chose instead to build a single mosque with 20 domes and minarets.
The next day, I look for the Chora Church, which Baha had suggested the last time I was here...