The fractal dimensions of FeZSM-5 zeolites were used to characterize the change in their geometry depending on different post-synthesis treatments. The fractal dimension values were estimated from the Dubinin-Astakhov isotherms of nitrogen adsorption and related to the activity of these zeolites in the benzene hydroxylation to phenol by nitrous oxide. The zeolites had two different iron contents (350 and 5800 ppm) and a Si/Al ratio of 42. The catalysts were activated by steaming (823 K) and/or calcinations in He (1323 K). The FeZSM-5 activated by steaming exhibited fractal dimensions lower than the samples activated by calcinations. The steamed samples also had activities in the benzene hydroxylation per Fe(II) site (TOF values) somewhat higher as compared to the zeolites activated by calcinations. This indicates the importance of the zeolite geometry for the reaction of bulky benzene molecule within a confined space. (c) 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.