Three cities in Morocco are especially known for their ceramic artistry: Meknes, Safi and Fez. Together, they produce at least 80% of the pottery in the country. The best known workshop in Fez is Art Naji, about a half-mile outside Bab el-Ftouh, the southeastern gate to the Old City. Here you can take a tour and watch craftsmen (and women) chip mosaic tile pieces, paint fanciful designs on plates, assemble elaborate mosaic tile fountain backsplashes and fashion tagines on foot-driven potter’s wheels. At the end of the tour you’ll find yourself in the shop (of course), where everything they make is ready for you to buy and ship back home.
Morocco is well-known for the variety and quality of its traditional arts and crafts. Fes in particular is renowned for the craftsmanship of silver teapots and trays, leather, copper and embroidery. As you visit the medina of Fes, each specialty is housed in individual ‘souks’ (a marketplace or bazaar), each leading to the next. Fes is also famous for Moroccan ceramics, both as pottery and ‘zellige’ (handmade Moroccan tile). Originally located near the other souks, the Potters’ Quarter of Fes was moved to an area known as Ain Nokbi, just outside the medina of Fes and near the southern ramparts, due to the smoke from the kilns’ firing process.
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