Guide to Sefrou, Morocco

The picturesque Berber town of Sefrou, some 28 kilometres southeast of Fez, is a very ancient walled town at the edge of the Middle Atlas Mountains.

An important stop on the caravan routes to Tafilelt, Sefrou predates Fez 8th century structures and might well have turned into an imperial city itself. Instead, Moulay Idriss chose to settle here while overseeing the building of Fez. The town is also known for its strong Jewish influence. Sefrou once hosted one of Morocco’s largest Jewish communities, numbering as many as 6,000 into the 1950s. Sadly, today only a handful of Jews remain.

Despite the pull of Fez leaving a very untouristy atmosphere, Sefrou is a pleasant place to wander and explore. The medina is well preserved and the Jewish quarter still seems distinct. Situated at some 2900 feet above sea level, Sefrou makes a cool-day trip in summer, an ideal place for walking and exploring the springs and waterfalls above town.

Sefrou is perhaps most famous for its annual Cherry Festival (Fete des Cerises), when large crowds fill the street for three days of music, folkore and sports activities culminating in the crowning of the Cherry Queen.