Certainly the most interesting place in the vicinity of Algiers, some 50-60km away, on the shoreline. It used to be one of the biggest Roman ports, and up until now there are quite many Roman ruins pretty well preserved.
The place is magnificent and it spreads on the wide area, hidden between strangely shaped pines and rocks, on the very seashore. It was the most beautiful place I visited in Algeria.
It comprises a unique group of Phoenician, Roman, palaeochristian and Byzantine ruins.
Tipaza was originally a Phoenician trading post, but it became a Roman colony in the 2nd century AD. Later it became one of the most important Christian settlements in Northern Africa. With the coming of the Vandals and Christianity in 430, most of the inhabitants fled to Spain. With the coming of the Arabs in the 7th century, there was so little left that they called the place Tefassad, meaning "badly damaged".
It is listed in the UNESCO world heritage list, even on the endangered list!
Entrance fee is 20 DA (110 DA = 1 EUR)
Qabr-er-Rumia or Tombeau de la Chrétienne
Qabr-er-Rumia or Tombeau de la Chrétienne or Le Mausolee Royal de Mauretanie are all the names for the old monument near Tipaza. Qabr-er-Rumia means the grave of the Roman woman. It's the burial-place of Florinda, the daughter of Count Julian, and is the tomb of the Mauretanian king Juba II and of his wife Cleopatra Selene, daughter of Mark Antony and Cleopatra, queen of Egypt.
It is reachable by car the best, it's situated on the hill overlooking the sea from one side and the valley towards Atlas mountains on the other side. There is also a nice restaurant and a white camel who is not happy for the abuse.
Very near Algiers, some 20km towards Tipaza, and very close to Sheraton hotel, Sidi-Fredj has a nice tourist centre with beautiful white buildings and a small Venice-alike channel, something like oriental Venice. Everything is clean and nicely arranged. There are a few shops, restaurants and ice-cream shops and a nice marina, as well as the long rocky pier suitable for fishing and always full of passers by and fishermen.
I've been told that Sidi-Fredj was the place from where France colonized Algeria in 1830 (Napoleon III). The strange brown building is the customs.
Club des Pins
The area around Sheraton hotel is called Club Des Pins (Pine Club). There are nice villas along the shore, most of them protected by barb wire, metal bars on the door and windows but also guarded by police. However, it is possible to stroll along the shore to some extent.
Moretti beach is where the Sheraton hotel is and it's on the way to Sidi-Fredj. Since I visited in winter time, it was a quiet, peaceful beach with very few people even on the weekends. I doubt it is like that in the summertime. There are lots of beautiful sea shells all over, the sea is clean, sometimes there are waves when the wind is strong, but they're never huge. Sometimes there are jellyfish.
Near Tipaza, Cherchell is another town with Roman ruins, including some mosaics. It has a nicer port (at the time of my visit, Tipaza's port was in big reconstruction). There are also beaches and hills, and it is also near the Phoenician queen's tomb.
The titanic resturaunt
We had the most amazing meal in The titanic, the service was fantastic and the food fab. the decor nice and the toilets a very good standard, expensive in comparison to other restaraunts but worth it.
Staoueli is a small town west of Algiers, some 20km away, with a tiny pleasant square, large market and some nice facades.