Tunisia is located in northern Africa and borders Algeria and Libya. Highlights such as the city of Tunis or the ruins of Carthage fascinate hundreds of thousands of visitors every year. Tunisia also has a very varied and exciting landscape.
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Source: Destination Explorer
Fast facts to know
- 96% of Tunisians are Muslims. State religion is Islam.
- Tunisia has 1300 km of coastline.
- Tunisia is the second largest olive oil producer in the world.
- Northernmost country in Africa, smallest country in North Africa.
- Most Tunisians speak both Arabic and French. You usually don’t get very far with English.
- Tunis can be reached by ferry from Marseille, Genoa, Naples and Palermo.
- Tunisian currency may not be imported or exported.
- Tunisia has served as a backdrop for several Star Wars films.
- Traveling to the border region with Algeria is not recommended. Tunisia has been in a state of emergency since 2015 due to terrorist attacks.
- Tunisia has a very good transport infrastructure. When driving, however, increased caution is required. Driving in the dark is not recommended.
- Same-sex sexual relations are illegal in Tunisia.
- German citizens can enter Germany without a visa.
- There are no vaccinations required, but standard travel vaccinations are recommended. Drinking water must be of safe origin to rule out diarrheal diseases.
- The influence of the former colonial power France can still be felt today.
- Medical care in Tunis is very good, but difficult in other parts of the country.
- Since 2009 there is no daylight saving time in Tunisia.
Exciting cities in Tunisia
- Village of Sidi Bou Said
- Oasis town of Douz
History of Tunisia
- Originally settled by the Berbers.
- 1000 BC Establishment of trading posts by settlers from the eastern Mediterranean.
- Carthage became the greatest power in the western Mediterranean within 150 years.
- 146 BC Destruction of the city Kathargo.
- Increasing Christianization in the first centuries of our era.
- 439 AD Tunisia becomes part of the Vandal Empire.
- The first Arab advances into what is now Tunisia begin in 647.
- Until 800 entire area under Arab rule.
- Increasing Islamization and Arabization.
- 1236 first Tunisian dynasty with Tunis as capital.
- Important trading center in the region in the Middle Ages.
- 1574 Tunisia becomes a province of the Ottoman Empire.
- 1705 Foundation of the Husaynid dynasty.
- 1881 Conquest by France with subsequent colonial rule.
- 1956 Tunisia becomes independent.
- From 2010 revolution and new constitution.
Climate & travel weather in Tunisia
- In the Mediterranean north, the climate is comparatively balanced (dry, warm summers / damp, mild winters).
- Atlas Mountains (warm summers / cold winters).
- Central and southern Tunisia with a continental climate (very hot summers with 50° C / cold winters, sometimes with ground frost).
- Precipitation decreases from north to south.
- Very sunny country.
- Recommended travel time:
- North: March-June, Sep-Oct
- Beach holiday: May-Oct
- Desert Safari: March, April
Ideas for trips in Tunisia
- Medina of Tunis
- Archaeological site of Carthage
- Cave village of Matmata
- Cisterns of La Malga
- Amphitheater El Djem
- Roman city of Dougga
- Punic city of Kerkouan
- Medina of Sousse
- Camel migration through the Sahara
- Stroll through a Tunisian bazaar
- Relaxing on the island of Djerba
- Diving & Snorkeling
- Ez Zitouna Mosque
Eating & drinking in Tunisia
- Mediterranean, light dishes.
- Tunisians rarely eat meat (no pork, often lamb or mutton).
- Seafood & fish (tuna, sea bream, catfish) mainly distributed along the coast.
- Poultry such as chicken, turkey and ostrich are also found on menus.
- Dates, almonds, pomegranates, figs, prickly pears, chickpeas, harissa, cumin, turmeric are often used.
- Harissa, a hot red spice paste, is often the main ingredient.
- Mainly processed vegetables, various spices and herbs.
- Chickpeas play an important role as a side dish.
- Lush, very sweet desserts.
- Cola, lemonades, beer, wines are mostly offered (avoid ice cubes!).
- Typical drinks: fig brandy & mint tea with pistachios.
- National dish Couscous.
- In rural areas it is common to fish from a large, shared bowl with your right hand or a piece of bread.
- Typical dishes:
- Baklava (the most famous dessert made from puff pastry, very sweet).
- Salada mechouia (fried vegetable salad).
- Brik (sandwich filled with tuna and minced meat and fried in puff pastry).
- Chorba (aromatic soup).
- Ojja (soup-like dish made with tomato paste, olive oil and spices).
- Makroud (semolina biscuits soaked in honey and filled with date paste).
- Bambalouni (large donuts made from very fluffy yeast dough).
- Halva (also known as white nougat or Turkish honey).
- Ichkeul National Park
- Chott el Djerid salt lake
- Most beautiful beaches:
- Chott Mariem
- Ras Mostafa