FROM MEDITERRIAN TO SAHARA
The beauty of Tunisia is a fine mix of European and Middle Eastern culture with its rich history and scenic views. It is a country in Northern Africa south of Italy and Malta. It’s bordered by Libya to the Southeast and the country of Algeria to the west.
Having Tunis as its capital, the beautiful country of Tunisia has a Mediterranean coastline that makes it a popular tourist destination. The climate here varies with the region. It is temperate in the north with mild winters that are sometimes rainy. The summers are mostly dry.
Some of the most famous tourist spots in Tunisia are Carthage, which is known in world history as the metropolis razed by the Romans; Douz, a town located at Sahara’s edge where tourists can enjoy a camel ride and El Jan, one of the world’s most preserved Roman amphitheaters.
There are many ways to enjoy a vacation in Tunisia. You may spend sunny afternoons by the beautiful Mediterranean beaches and get a gorgeous tan or take a tour of the countries historical and cultural tourist destinations.
Although its tourism is not at par with other well-developed and more popular destinations in Northern Africa, it is easy and convenient to get around Tunisia. There are trains and taxis to help you get around the cities and boats to take you to the other parts of the country. It is also important that you know some basic Arabic words as this is the main language used in Tunisia.
Matmata is a small Berber speaking town in southern Tunisia. Some of the local Berber residents live in traditional underground “troglodyte” structures. In 2004 it had a population of 2,116. The structures typical for the village are created by digging a large pit in the ground.
VISITING THE STAR WARS SETS OF SOUTHERN TUNISIA
Star Wars fans will be happy to learn that they can visit the filming locations of Star Wars, scattered throughout the nation of Tunisia. If you allow yourself to get lost in the ambiance of the area, it’s not too difficult to imagine that you are really on Tatooine.
One of the most popular filming locations in Tunisia is the site of Luke Skywalker’s home. Today, the building operates as a hotel. In order to attract tourism and ultimately bring in more foreign money, many Tunisian people have decorated the film sites with Star Wars memorabilia. If you are a Star Wars fan and are willing to take a trip to Tatooine – oops – Tunisia, then you should not wait any further.
TOP-RATED TOURIST ATTRACTIONS IN TUNISIA
Often seen as simply a beach destination, Tunisia has a bucketful of surprising tourist attractions and things to do for those that venture off the sandy shores. This is North Africa wrapped up into one bite-sized package, with vast Sahara dunes, mammoth ancient ruins, and exotic cities that are home to a sprawling tangle of souks. Tunisia was Rome’s breadbasket, and the cultural riches the Romans left behind are more than enough reason to visit. But the history of Arab Empires has also bestowed the country with some of the region’s most beautiful examples of Islamic architecture.
When you’ve craned your neck at Kairouan’s minarets and played gladiator at El Djem, it’s time to head into the Sahara to sample the raw, empty beauty of the desert. The sun-soaked beaches of the Mediterranean coastline, fringed by palms and lapped by gentle waves, will still be waiting for you when you get back
EL DJEM AMPHITHEATER
The walls of the mighty Roman amphitheater of El Djem dwarf the surrounding modern town. This incredibly well preserved Roman relic is Tunisia’s big sightseeing highlight and one of the best examples of amphitheater architecture left standing in the world, reminding of Rome’s once-grand grip across North Africa. You can still walk the corridors under the arena, just like the gladiators did. Or, climb up to the top seating tiers and sit staring across the arena, imagining the battles that took place below.
Once Rome’s major rival, Carthage was the city of the seafaring Phoenicians forever memorialized in the Punic Wars. The atmospheric ruins of this ancient town now sit beside the sea amid the suburbs of Tunis, a warning that even the greatest cities can be reduced to rubble. The ruins are extensive but spread out, and if you’ve been lucky enough to visit ancient city sites such as Ephesus in Turkey or Volubilis in Morocco, which are well-preserved, Carthage can seem quite underwhelming at first. But these UNESCO World-Heritage-listed remnants are hugely important historically, and any tourist interested in North Africa’s ancient past shouldn’t miss a visit here.
THE NATIONAL BARDO MUSEUM
SIDI BOU SAID
Impossibly cute, and amazingly photogenic, Sidi Bou Said is a clifftop village of petite dimensions that seem to have fallen off an artist’s canvas. Unsurprisingly, artists have feted this little hamlet for decades. The whitewashed alleyways, wrought-iron window frames, and colorful blue doors are Tunisian village architecture at their finest, while the Mediterranean backdrop is the cherry on top. This is a place to while away a lazy afternoon, simply soaking up the laid-back atmosphere and maybe indulging in a spot of shopping at one of the many local artisans and handicraft stalls.
GRAND ERG ORIENTAL
Tunisia has no shortage of Roman ruins, but Bulla Regia near Tabarka is the country’s most interesting and intriguing site. Here, the Roman inhabitants coped with the harsh summer climate by ingeniously building their villas underground, which has left the city houses incredibly well preserved today. For history lovers, this is a unique opportunity to walk through actual Roman houses, with their walls still intact. It’s a glimpse of the residential life of the ancient world that you often don’t see.
Overlooked by the mighty fortifications of the Ribat and Kasbah, the medina in Sousse just begs to be explored. This lovely old town district is a warren of looping lanes, rimmed by whitewashed houses, and a shopping paradise with a tempting selection of ceramics, leatherwork, and metalwork on display. Away from the stalls along the bustling souk streets, the quiet and rambling back alleys, dusted in white and blue, are a charming place to dive in and sample local life.
CHOTT EL DJERID
Hammamet is all about the beach. This is Tunisia’s top sun-and-sea resort; a dreamy place dotted with pristine white buildings set beside a bright blue sea. The relaxing charms of this town woo all who come to sunbathe on the soft, white sand, with off-the-beach pursuits usually being nothing more strenuous than gentle strolls and a spot of shopping in the restored old town souks. It’s a no-stress kind of place that sums up the pleasures of Tunisia in one pretty package.
<One of Tunisia’s most photographed buildings and a film star to boot, the Ribat in Monastir is a bulky walled and exceptionally well-preserved fort. Looming over the harbor, the Ribat was originally part of a string of forts that protected the coastline, but today is one of the few still standing. Its defensive purposes may have long since faded, but this golden-stoned relic is now one of Tunisia’s most recognizable landmarks (thanks to it featuring in a few famous movies), and today, tourists scramble up into its bastion tower, rather than soldiers.