Keep an open-mind, you are about to be bowled over. There is no looking back after you visit Tunisia.
The country is old, chaotic, beautiful, historic, chic, laidback, it is wonderful. It has one of the world-famous cuisines, culture, literature, art, leather, rich history and whatnot. There are many places in the world which have many of those things to offer, yet Tunisia stands out. It is very unique.
Related Read: Facts About Tunisia — 15 Things You Probably Didn’t Know
Before visiting Tunisia, just know that there are a lot of places to explore, things to see and do, and much more! Public transport is available, but can be unreliable and has a timetable of its own. Information on the official websites may be incorrect. Do not try to schedule and plan every second of your trip. Just let Tunisia charm you in its own way, soak it, embrace it and you will be hooked for life.
10 Great Reasons to Visit Tunisia
Here are ten reasons for you to join a record-breaking number of incoming tourists looking to experience Tunisia and all it has to offer.
Ease of Access
Tunisia is a relatively small country but jam-packed with unique historical and cultural sites, and diverse landscapes. It is possible to experience much of what the country has to offer in a quite short amount of time. Driving from the northern tip to the southern tip takes just 8 hours!
Staying in a city like Tunis, Sousse or Djerba, one can take day trips to many of the major cultural and historical landmarks, or can plan a longer tour of one or two weeks and see all the country’s main attractions, and more.
Tunisia is also just a short flight away from several other European and North African travel hubs, like Paris, Rome, Barcelona, and Cairo, so it’s easy to tack on to a tour of the region.
History Happens Here
Tunisia is like a layer cake of ancient civilizations — Berber, Phoenician, Punic, Roman, Arab — and traces of each civilization can be seen today.
Tunisia is home to eight UNESCO World Heritage sites, including the colosseum at El Jem, the ruins at Carthage, Roman ruins, Dougga, and the Medinas of Tunis and Sousse. Many of these sites are incredibly well preserved and offer a glimpse of what daily life might have been like hundreds or even thousands of years ago in North Africa.
And compared to similar sites in Europe, Tunisia’s ruins are rarely crowded and entrance fees are quite affordable, usually the equivalent of a few U.S. dollars.
Country of Culture
In a small amount of space, Tunisia packs a significant cultural punch!
Kairouan is considered one of Islam’s holiest cities, just a few steps behind Mecca and Jerusalem, and colorful rugs blanket every inch of floor space in the 9th-century Great Mosque of Kairouan, which has columns salvaged from ancient Roman and Byzantine towns.
The island of Djerba is one of the last, but also one of the oldest, enclaves of Jews in North Africa. The facinating El Ghriba synagogue, the oldest synagogue in Africa, is the focal point for the annual Lag B’Omer pilgrimage held every May, when thousands of Jews from across the Mediterenean and beyond commemorate the death of a rabbi with prayer, song and dance.
- Djerba’s Unique Architecture: A Haven of Minimalism
- 10 Mind-Blowingly Interesting Facts About Djerba Island
Berber culture can still be discovered in Tunisia’s heartland as well as in the Sahara. Particularly fascinating are central and Southern Tunisia’s ‘abandoned’ Berber villages, all set on imposing hilltops and mostly left to the elements after families moved down into the flat plains for easier road and farmland access.
Some enterprising residents are trying to breathe life back into these deserted settlements, especially in Takrouna, where one can expand their horizons over a sundowner of orange-blossom-tinted Turkish coffee at one of the cafés out there.
Cultural tourists aspire to immerse themselves in the local way of life, and Tunisia provides abundant opportunities to accomplish this. By participating in activities such as souk shopping, culinary classes, and the local olive harvest, tourists can gain insight into daily life in Tunisia.
Without forgetting about those treasures of pop culture, the iconic sets of the Star Wars movies.
Year-Round Travel Weather
For the most part, in major cities like Tunis, Sousse and Djerba, Tunisia’s climate is temperate year-round, known as a Mediterranean climate.
One can visit anytime of year and not be bogged down by extreme highs or lows. Of course, desert cities like Tozeur, Douz, Tataouine do get extremely hot in the summer, but you can always head to the coast and take a dip in the Mediterranean Sea.
So, if you’re looking for an ideal travel destination with little rain and lots of sun, add Tunisia to your list.
The Food Scene
After exploring all the landscapes, landmarks, arts, culture, and nightlife Tunisia has to offer, one will probably have worked up quite an appetite. Luckily, Tunisia’s food scene is first-rate.
Food will be a huge part of any trip to the country, considering that there is a lot of delightful dishes for the taking. Whether in the mood for traditional Tunisian food or modern hipster fare, one can always find what their looking for. Tunisia has some of the world’s greatest street food, along with its higher-end fine dining experiences.
In addition, different regions have their own specialties. There is delicious cuisine everywhere, including home-cooked meals, which are the best here.
Not only that, Tunisia also features wonderful cafes and bakeries to satisfy even the smallest of appetites.
The people of Tunisia are warm, friendly and very welcoming to visitors. Tunisians usually are curious in knowing what brought you to their country, what you think about their home, and if ever you have tried their favorite dish.
In order to foster a more profound connection with the local population during your visit, one might consider staying at a guest house or AirBnB operated by a local family or incorporating a culinary excursion into their schedule.
Guided tours and cafés provide an opportunity to engage in conversation with a local, gain insight into their daily life in Tunisia, and benefit from their extensive knowledge of the country’s history and culture.
Bonus point: to be able to interact with them better, make sure you learn a little Tunisian Arabic—even a few important phrases will do.
Suggested Read: 5 Mind-Blowing Facts about the Tunisian Arabic
Sahara, Sun, Sand & Sea
From the inviting warm turquoise waters of the Mediterranean Sea to the mysterious orange dunes of the Sahara Desert, Tunisia is full of possibilities for those who prefer to spend their time exploring the great outdoors.
Tunisia has a little over 1,100 kilometers of coastline, people can find and enjoy world-class beach resorts from the Northernmost city of Africa, Bizerte, all the way down to the island of Djerba.
Visitors can opt for just a taste of the Sahara, with a day trip that includes biking, 4×4 tours, bus tours, camel rides or perhaps most excitingly, an immersive experience, like an overnight campout on the dunes.
Tunisia has just about every type of terrain for anyone to experience.
If you feel like venturing higher into the atmosphere, Tunisia has plenty of mountains with beautiful views and trails. Heading north, one can find and access different mountains such as in Ain Draham, Tabarka, Zaghouan, Silliana and many more. The mountainous regions hold the promise of fantastic tours and hiking around the villages
- Backpacking in Tunisia: Things to Do, Itinerary, Safety & Budget
- Getting Back to Nature: 10 of the Best Places to Camp in Tunisia
- Tabarka & Ain Draham: Reconnecting with Nature
Fascinating Carthaginian & Roman Ruins
With such a staggering and rich history, it’s no surprise Tunisia is home to countless historically significant sites.
Complete ruins of rich ancient Carthaginian and Roman cities are dotted all across the whole landscape, from the main ancient Carthage ruins in the capital Tunis, to the enchanting Roman theatre embedded into the hill at Dougga, with unbeatable views from the nosebleed seats, to the nearly intact temples dedicated to the Roman gods at Sufetula and the imposing amphitheatre at El Jem and much more.
- Tunisia’s Roman Ruins of Sbeitla (Sufetula) Majestically Stand
- Dougga, Tunisia: The Best-Preserved Roman Small Town in North Africa
Tunisia’s historical ruins are on par (or dare we say better?) than what’s in the Mediterranean region, and they can be visited quite affordably.
Traditional Tunisian Architecture, Dars & Doors
Tunisia has been home to numerous civilizations. Tunisian architecture has long inspired not only architects, but also researchers, scientists, and artists. It has always been a mystery that gradually unfolds.
Additionally, it is not a single style, but a collection of them that evolves over time in response to changing political and religious events, while remaining connected by some commonalities.
Still looking for more reasons?
More on Visiting Tunisia
- Is it Safe to Travel in Tunisia? What Is Like Tunisia Now?
- Planning a Trip to Tunisia — All What You Need to Know
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