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Tunisia

Sfax, Tunisia

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, March 02, 2008 at 09:07:13 :: Tunisia

Sfax (Arabic: صفاقس‎, Safaqis, or /sfa:qs/ in Tunisian Arabic, hence the French name) is a city in Tunisia, located 270 km southeast of Tunis. The city, founded in AD 849 on the ruins of Taparura and Thaenae, is the capital of the Sfax governorate, and a Mediterranean port on the Gulf of Gabes. Sfax has population of 340,000 (2005), and is an industrial center for processing phosphates. The city is often described as Tunisia's Second city, because only Tunis has more inhabitants.

La gare de Sfax, bordée à l'est par la mer Méditerranée et le golfe de Gabès, Tunisie


Sfax is not a touristic place. There are many hotels there, and good restaurants too, but these are aiming at merchants and business men. The result is actually that Sfax is cheaper than other Tunisian places, and is a good place to buy souvenirs. The quality is slightly higher, and the goods are genuine, because they are aiming at the Tunisian audience.

Maison de France ou alliance française, Sfax, Sfax governorate, Tunisie


Sfax makes an interesting overnight stop when traveling between the north and south of the country. The old walls and arched gates are a nice introduction to the medina. The casbah has a museum of architecture, and the view from atop the walls is worth the climb. Dar Jellouli is a lovely 17th-century villa with displays of decorative arts and traditions. Sfax's Great Mosque has a three-tier square minaret like the one at Kairouan (non-Muslims are not allowed to enter the mosque). Between sights, shop your way through the souks (markets).

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UNESCO World Heritage

Tunisia, Dougga / Thugga

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, November 26, 2012 at 03:48:18

Location Gouvernat de Beja, Tunisia
Coordinates N36 25 24.996 E9 13 13.008
Property 70 ha
Date of Inscription 1997

Brief Description (http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/794 )

Before the Roman annexation of Numidia, the town of Thugga, built on an elevated site overlooking a fertile plain, was the capital of an important Libyco-Punic state. It flourished under Roman and Byzantine rule, but declined in the Islamic period. The impressive ruins that are visible today give some idea of the resources of a small Roman town on the fringes of the empire.

Photos from Landolia

Theater, Dougga / Thugga Alexander Severus's arch, Dougga / Thugga

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Tunisia, Kairouan

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, November 26, 2012 at 03:39:59

Location Gouvernorat de Kairouan, Tunisia
Coordinates N35 40 54.012 E10 6 14.004
Property 68 ha
Date of Inscription 1988

Brief Description (http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/499 )

Founded in 670, Kairouan flourished under the Aghlabid dynasty in the 9th century. Despite the transfer of the political capital to Tunis in the 12th century, Kairouan remained the Maghreb's principal holy city. Its rich architectural heritage includes the Great Mosque, with its marble and porphyry columns, and the 9th-century Mosque of the Three Gates.

Photos from Landolia

Mosque of Uqba, Kairouan Three Gates Mosque, Kairouan

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Tunisia, Punic Town of Kerkuane and its Necropolis

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, November 26, 2012 at 03:31:30

Location Gouvernorat de Nabeul, Tunisia
Coordinates N36 56 47.004 E11 5 57.012
Date of Inscription 1985

Brief Description (http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/332 )

This Phoenician city was probably abandoned during the First Punic War (c. 250 B.C.) and as a result was not rebuilt by the Romans. The remains constitute the only example of a Phoenicio-Punic city to have survived. The houses were built to a standard plan in accordance with a sophisticated notion of town planning.

Photos from Landolia

Sea view, Kerkouane Ruins, Kerkouane

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Tunisia, Medina of Tunis

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, November 26, 2012 at 03:22:54

Location Tunis, Tunisia
Coordinates N36 49 0.012 E10 10 0.012
Property 296 ha
Date of Inscription 1979

Brief Description (http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/36 )

Under the Almohads and the Hafsids, from the 12th to the 16th century, Tunis was considered one of the greatest and wealthiest cities in the Islamic world. Some 700 monuments, including palaces, mosques, mausoleums, madrasas and fountains, testify to this remarkable past.

Photos from Landolia

Hammouda Pacha Mosque Youssef Dey Mosque

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Tunisia, Amphitheatre of El Jem

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, November 26, 2012 at 03:14:27

Location El-Mahdia, Tunisia
Coordinates N35 17 47.004 E10 42 24.984
Property 1.37 ha
Date of Inscription 1979

Brief Description (http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/38 )

The impressive ruins of the largest colosseum in North Africa, a huge amphitheatre which could hold up to 35,000 spectators, are found in the small village of El Jem. This 3rd-century monument illustrates the grandeur and extent of Imperial Rome.

Photos from Landolia

Amphitheatre of El Jem El Jem Amphitheatre

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Tunisia, Ichkeul National Park

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, December 27, 2009 at 11:29:29

Location Bizerta District, 25 km southwest of Bizerta, Tunisia
Coordinates N37 9 48.996 E9 40 28.992
Type Natural
Property 12,600 ha
Date of Inscription 1980

Brief Description (http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/8 )

The Ichkeul lake and wetland are a major stopover point for hundreds of thousands of migrating birds, such as ducks, geese, storks and pink flamingoes, who come to feed and nest there. Ichkeul is the last remaining lake in a chain that once extended across North Africa.

Photos from Landolia

Ichkeul Lake Ichkeul lake, Ichkeul National Park

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Tunisia, Medina of Sousse

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, October 23, 2009 at 06:58:57

Location Gouvernorat de Sousse, Tunisia
Coordinates N35 49 40.008 E10 38 18.996
Type Cultural
Property 32 ha
Date of Inscription 1988

Brief Description (http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/498 )

Sousse was an important commercial and military port during the Aghlabid period (800–909) and is a typical example of a town dating from the first centuries of Islam. With its kasbah, ramparts, medina (with the Great Mosque), Bu Ftata Mosque and typical ribat (both a fort and a religious building), Sousse was part of a coastal defence system.

Photos from Landolia

Medina of Sousse Medina of Sousse

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Tunisia, Archaeological Site of Carthage

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, October 18, 2009 at 06:31:08

Location District of Tunis, Tunisia
Coordinates N36 51 10.008 E10 19 23.988
Property 616 ha
Date of Inscription 1979

Brief Description (http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/37 )

Carthage was founded in the 9th century B.C. on the Gulf of Tunis. From the 6th century onwards, it developed into a great trading empire covering much of the Mediterranean and was home to a brilliant civilization. In the course of the long Punic wars, Carthage occupied territories belonging to Rome, which finally destroyed its rival in 146 B.C. A second – Roman – Carthage was then established on the ruins of the first.

Photos from Landolia

Ruins of Roman-era, Carthage Carthage

More photos of the archaeological Site of Carthage



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