Dougga Travel Guide

  • Dougga
    by Quartzy
  • Dougga from afar
    Dougga from afar
    by Willettsworld
  • The Capitole and Forum
    The Capitole and Forum
    by Willettsworld

Dougga Things to Do

  • Licinian Baths

    Where? Pretty much in the centre of Dougga, maybe 100 yards from the Forum What? At the Licinian Baths one can still see the original walls, as well asthe tunnel used by the slaves who kept the baths going, with thestructure of the baths in pretty good state of repair, considering theage. The name comes from the Licinii family who donated the baths...

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  • Incredible - a must-see!

    Dougga is located in the West of Tunisia, about 3 or 4 hours away from Sousse. You shouldn't have a problem to book a tour of the ruins from Sousse or Hammamet - and probably most touristic cities - and you should do it (or go on your own if you please). We were lucky enough to have a private tour, that is, it was just the two of us plus the...

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  • Libyo-Punic Mausoleum

    The Mausoleum of Ateban in Dougga, in the valley, is the only surviving Numidian/Punic structure in Tunisia. (Another was recently discovered at Sabratha in Libya.) The monument was almost completely destroyed in 1842, when the British consul in Tunis extracted from it a bilingual inscription on the facade. It was rebuilt by a French archeologist...

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  • Arch of Sepitmus Severus

    The Arch of Septimius Severus (5m/16ft wide) was erected in A.D. 205 to mark the town's promotion to the status of municipium, which carried with it the right to its own constitution, administration and civic law. Sepitmus Severus was Rome's first African-born emperor. The arch leads into the road from Carthage to Theveste (Tébessa). There's a...

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  • Cyclops Baths

    Adjoining the House of the Trifolium in Dougga is the complex of buildings known as the Baths of the Cyclopes, with vaulted rooms in the basement. On the south side of the complex are the baths proper, in the frigidarium of which was a mosaic of the Cyclopes (now, like the others, in the Bardo National Museum). A feature of the baths is the well...

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  • Temple of Concorde, Frugifer and Liber...

    Lying just behind the small theatre lies this large temple dedicated to Concord, Frugifer (Pluto) and Liber Pater (Dionysus/Bacchus), built between A.D. 128 and 138 by wealthy citizens of the town.

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  • Trifolium House

    This is believed to have once been the towns brothel with small rooms laid out around a central courtyard garden.

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  • Thermes de Caracalla (Licinian Baths)

    The Baths of Licinius, or Winter Baths in Dougga, were built around A.D. 260 and rebuilt in the 4th century. So far as the sloping site permitted they were laid out on the usual symmetrical plan. On the north side was the almost exactly square entrance hall, surrounded by a colonnade of twelve columns supporting a "tube vault" of the kind found at...

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  • Temple of Juno-Caelestis

    To the west of the Arch of Alexander Severus lies the Temple of Juno-Caelestis - the Roman equivalent of the Punic goddess Tanit. Its semicircular layout recalls the crescent moon which was the commonest symbol for Tanit. Built between 222 and 235 by Julius Gabinius and his wife Julia Gabinia Venusta, the peripteral temple is surrounded by a...

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  • Arch of Alexander Severus

    No Roman town would be complete without a token arch and Dougga has two. This one is the better preserved of the two, located to the west of the Forum over the city's main western entrance. It was erected between A.D. 222 and 235, probably to celebrate the granting of further privileges to the city.

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  • Cisterns of Aid el-Hammam

    To the west of the Capitole and Forum, near the Arch of Alexander Severus, lie the cisterns of Aid el-Hammam. There are 5 in total each 33m/108ft long by 5m/16ft high, with a total capacity of 6,000 cubic meters/1.3million gallons of water.

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  • Circus

    If you carry on walking up the track past the Temple of Minerva, you'll come to the Circus which was constructed in A.D. 204 in a natural hallow in the ground but their is very little to see.

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  • Temple of Minerva

    Little is left of the Temple of Minerva, built in Dougga between A.D. 138 and 161, or of the nearby pre-Roman town walls. Also in this area are a number of Roman tombs and prehistoric dolmens.

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  • Cisterns of Ain Mizeb

    To the north of the Capitole, along the remains of a Numidian wall, lie the huge cisterns of Ain Mizeb. There are seven basins here with a total capacity of 9,000 cubic meters/2million gallons. From here water - brought in an aqueduct from a spring 12km/7.5miles west of the town - was distributed to the town's baths and fountains and to some...

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  • Surrounding countryside

    Dougga (or Thugga as it's sometimes known), is the best preserved Roman city in Africa. It's set in a beautiful picturesque setting, surrounded by pastureland and olive-groves over rolling hills in which it overlooks. Take some time to admire the views which are best appreciated at the Temple of Saturn. A shepherd came past with his heard of sheep...

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  • Sanctuary of Neptune

    Just before you reach the Temple of Saturn, you'll pass by the small remains of the Sanctuary of Neptune which has been reconstructed with a nice niche where a statue would have once stood.

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  • Temple of Saturn

    THE building with the best views over the surrounding countryside is the Temple of Saturn which is located to the north of the large Theatre. It was built in A.D. 195 on the site of a pre-Roman temple of Baal (a few ash-urns and funerary stelae from which were found by the excavators). At the east end is a vestibule with four Corinthian columns;...

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  • Church of Victoria

    Just down the hill from the Temple of Saturn to the north of the large Theatre, is this small church which was built in the early 5th century using stone taken from the surrounding temples. The church is the only evidence of Christianity at Dougga.

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  • Crypt

    If you follow the path out the back of the theatre and walk over the hill, you'll come to the remains of the Temple of Saturn. Before this, just down the slope of the hill, lies this small Christian Crypt for the Church of Victoria next door. The Crypt contains large stones and sarcophagi.

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  • Theatre

    One of the highlights of the ruins at Dougga is the Theatre which was built into the hillside in about A.D. 168. It has a diameter of 120m/395ft. The three tiers of seating in the semicircular cavea, with 19 rows in each, rise to a height of 15m/50ft, with an arched corridor running round the top, which, altogether could accommodate 3,500...

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  • Temple of Augustine Piety

    Across the road from the Temple of Mercury stands the tiny Temple of Augustine Piety which was built in the 2nd century A.D. and features four square pillars.

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  • Temple of Mercury

    The Temple of Mercury stands on the northern side of the Square of the Winds near the Capitole. It is dedicated to Mercury - the god of trade.

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  • Square of the Winds

    The Square of the Winds was built around A.D. 190 as an extension to the forum. It takes its name from the "rose of the winds" incised in the paving in the 3rd century, with the names of the twelve winds (Septentrio, Aquilo, Euraquilo, Vulturnus, Eurus, Leuconotus, Auster, Libonotus, Africus, Favonius, Argestes and Circius).

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  • Forum

    To the west of the monumental Capitole, stands the Forum which was built on the orders of General Solomon and laid out between A.D. 14 and 37. It measures 38.5m/126ft long by 24m/79ft wide) and was originally surrounded on three sides by porticoes of red-veined marble columns with Corinthian capitals of white marble. Opening off it were a number of...

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Dougga Restaurants

  • Willettsworld's Profile Photo

    by Willettsworld Written Aug 29, 2008

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    Food is in short supply here. There is a very small cafe/shop just across the road from the large theatre but there is also this rather posh restaurant on the road that leads south towards Nouvelle Dougga. As I was visiting Dougga around lunchtime, all I wanted was something simple which there didn't seem to be anything of on the menu (it's full of rather fancy/expensive dishes). So, I asked if I could just have an omlette and fries and I ate it outside at a table looking up at the ruins in the distance.

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Dougga Local Customs

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    by Willettsworld Written Aug 29, 2008

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    Excavations began here in 1899 and are still ongoing as I saw one site being excavated when I was visiting. Another area around the Dar el-Echab was being renovated with near stones being laid at the entrance steps.

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Dougga What to Pack

  • aliante1981's Profile Photo

    by aliante1981 Updated Feb 19, 2005

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    Miscellaneous: Travels to places like Tunisia involves a lot of fighting the heat, especially if you, like me (I am still surprised as to why I did that), go there right in the middle of the summer.

    Here's a list of useful items to take:

    - Hats and other covering: Large brimmed hats that provide head covering and some shade. For women, they are also a proof of modesty, welcomed when visiting old churches and mosques. Scarves and the like covering shoulders and arms can keep the sun off during treks. A cloth hat or scarf can be soaked to help keep the head cool.

    - "Squeeze Breeze": this is a water bottle with a sprayer and a battery-operated fan attached. The beach toy to take with you!

    - Sun block: While sun blocks may be purchased in Tunisia, people tend to prefer sticking with their own favourite brand (the skin, too, kind of 'gets used' to it), and there's no guarantee you'll find it on the spot. So take your own, if you have preferences!

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Dougga Off The Beaten Path

  • Victoria Church

    Where? Below the Temple of Saturn, to the north-east from the main centre of Dougga What? Notable as being the only Christian building so far located in Dougga,the church was finished in the 5th century. You can see the foundations,lower parts of the walls, steps, column basements, etc.

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  • Temple of August Piety

    Where? Close to the temple of Mercury, facing the "Rose of the Winds" square What? Built during the reign of Emperor Hadrian who took an active interest inTunisian provinces of the Roman Empire, the temple was an example ofwhat would be a trend in the Middle Ages - the construction of religiousbuildings as an act of philantropy (in the Middle Ages...

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  • Temple of Mercury

    Where? Just off the "Rose of the Winds" square, facing the ancient market What? Dedicated to Tellus (that's the Roman Earth Mother goddess), the templeis largely in ruins - there is no courtyard to the temple, and the mainedifice used to stand on a podium of four steps in height. Today you canstill see some of the columns of the temple on the very...

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Explore Deeper into Dougga
Amphitheatre?
Off The Beaten Path
Capitole
Things to Do
Dar el-Echab
Things to Do
Baths of Ain Doura
Things to Do
History
Things to Do
Visit the ruins
Things to Do
Beheaded statue
Off The Beaten Path
Triumph Arch in Musti
Off The Beaten Path
Another Lybico punic mausoleum ?
Off The Beaten Path
Close up on the Lybico punic mausoleum
Off The Beaten Path
The Libyco-Punic mausoleum
Off The Beaten Path
An access into the theater
Things to Do
Dougga festival
Things to Do
The columns
Things to Do
One of the best preserved theaters
Things to Do
An audience of 3,500 in the theater
Things to Do
Temple of Caelestis
Things to Do
Mosaic in the Licinian Baths
Things to Do
Roman or modern washbasin ?
Things to Do
Close-up on the latrines
Things to Do
12 seats latrines !
Things to Do
Towards the Arch of Septimus Severus
Things to Do
The Forum
Things to Do
Temple of Mercury
Things to Do
Temple to an Unknown God
Things to Do
In front of the Capitol
Things to Do
The Capitol
Things to Do
Still living !
Things to Do
A dead city !
Things to Do
Closer to Dugga
Things to Do
First sight
Things to Do
Map of Dougga

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