The Bardo is the most important attraction in Tunis. We had to go through it quite quickly, as it was an unexpected stop our driver made while driving us to the hotel, but it was still nice to see. So we spent about an hour there, but you can and should undoubtedly take longer to see everything. I think it has the biggest collection of mosaics in the world. Those are actually very impressive.
Recommended as one of the Worlds must-see museums!! So I was all pumped up ready to be excited - as I love mosaics - and this place is full of them - and full of well regarded ones from various sites around Tunisia so the historical value and preservation value of them is high on the list.
I paid 10 Dinar for a guide to make the most of my time in the museum - only guided for about an hour but it was well worth it. Then I walked back around the mosaics I wanted to see again and mosaics I wasnt shown.
Gratefully photos were allowed in this museum - without flash I cant be quite certain but I would imagine that would be best.
I bought the DVD as a record of the top pieces in the museum and it was not particularly expensive - I wanted to buy a mosaic kit but they didnt take credit or debit cards and I unfortunately hadnt taken enough cash with me.
In the souvenir shop which did take credit cards though, I bought a necklace that I really was taken with and the salesman was adamant it was silver - Ive bought a lot of silver pieces in Morocco and dont usually buy jewellery unless its the real thing - and when I took it out to my friend waiting outside he had a fit and was adamant it was not silver so in we had to go for him to tell the salesman off and get my money recredited - shame! And a shame that even at a shop at the prestigious Bardo you have to take care not to get ripped off.
The Bardo Museum is a must visit whilst in Tunis. Located a few kilometres west of the Medina and city centre, the museum is dominated by a vast collection of wonderful Roman mosaics that once adorned Roman Africa's grandest villas. In fact, there is no other museum in the world, even in Italy, where you get the chance to see countless huge mosaics, statues, figurines and other remains. The exhibits come from all over Tunisia from such places as nearby Carthage, Dougga, Sousse, El-Jem, Bulla Regia, Thuburbo Majus and Oudhna. Not only does it house Roman remains but it also houses Punic and early Christian finds.
The museum is housed in a wonderful palace that was the former official residence of the Husseinite beys that was built in the 13th century. It was later rebuilt in the 17th century and enlarged by a succession of Husseinites before becoming a museum in 1888. When you're visiting look at the building as well as the exhibits! Visit my Bardo Museum page below.
Open: 9.30am-4.30pm Tue-Sun. Admission: TD6 plus TD1 for camera.
The Tunisian equivalent to the Louvre, the National Museum of Bardo (Musée Nationale du Bardo) contains an impressive collection of archaeological artefacts from several periods in the country's rich history.
The museum is housed in a Hafside palace that dates back to the 13th century, with later additions of 17th and 18th-century Arab-Muslim vaulted ceilings, cupolas and galleries. The artefacts within it, however, make the walls pale in comparison.
Since prehistoric times, Tunisia's climate and strategic location has made it a coveted spot in which to settle. The museum's large collection looks at the different historical periods and cultures to have left a mark on the area, from prehistoric to Carthaginian, Roman, Christian and finally Islamic.
Arguably the mightiest time in Tunisia's ancient history came with the golden age of Carthage. The destruction wrought by the Punic Wars, however, means that little remains of the great city. The Bardo boasts one of the largest collections of Carthaginian artefacts, making it one of the world's centres for that period of history. The Roman collections are equally impressive.
When Daily; not Mon
Where National Museum of Bardo
Opening Hours Nov-Apr: Tue-Sun 9.30am-4.30pm
May-Oct: Tue-Sun 9am-5pm
Name National Museum of Bardo
Location Tunis, Tunisia
Address Bardo 2000
Fax +216 1 514 050
Name Tunisia National Tourist Office
Address 1 Avenue Mohamed V, 1001 Tunis
Fax +216 (0) 1 842 492
Six rooms are dedicated to the discovery of the Madhia Wreck that sank in the 1st century BC. The ship was loaded with decorative objects intended for a Roman villa. The Madhia was destined for Rome but came off the course and sank off the coast of Tunisia. An amazing sight to see what was loaded on the ship, from massive columns and busts, vases and sculptures and many items of jewellery.
The museum hosts the largest collection of mosaics in the world. The museum is a good comparison to the many Roman sights that one can visit all over Tunisia. Here one can see an incredible document of Roman obsession, liestyle and beliefs with hundreds of mosaics that are displayed in a number of rooms of the palace.
This is Tunis finest museum. The museum would be worth a visit even without its collections. Situated in the suburb of Bardo it used to be the official residence of the Husseinite beys. The first palace was commissioned by the Hafsid sultan Al-Mustansir who was responsible for restoring and diverting the Zaghouan to Carthage aqueduct to supply water to the palace and medina. The present extravagant palace was built in the late 17th century and enlarged by the following occupants. It was donated as a museum in 1888.
This is a wonderful museum and you would be a fool to miss it if you are visiting Tunis. The principal focus of the exhibitions are roman relics, particularly the fantastic collection of mosaic floors, but the building is wonderful as well: an eighteenth-century palace the ostentation of which helped to propel Tunisia to the bankruptcy which laid it open to French colonisation.
It is difficult to single out any particular exhibit for particular mention, but I was most interested by the various mosaics depicting everyday life including some fascinating depictions of early Christian buildings.
National museum & former palace of Husaynid beys (a governor).
Really recommend. Due to time pressure we didn't get to see all of it and one day I will return - with more time - to see it properly. But some really sopectacular sights - such as the Roman mosaics - entire walls & floors.
The Bardo Museum contains a huge collection of Roman mosaics. Our earlier visits to archeological sites in Carthage, Dougga and Bulla Regia enhanced our experience even more, since many of the displays in the museum come from such sites. There are mosaics everywhere on the walls, even next to the stairs as you go from one floor to the next.
However, the Bardo Museum also contains an Islamic Museum, whose decorative art provides an interesting contrast to the figurative mosaics and statues of the Romans. Also, the ceilings in some rooms -- such as the Dougga and Sousse rooms -- are an exhibit in themselves with their lavish decorations: this is because the Bardo Museum is set in a former palace of the Husseinite Beys.
Because the museum is some 4 km away from the city centre, there are two recommended ways to get there:
1) By taxi.
2) By metro leger, in which case you must take Line 4 towards Den Den and get off at Le Bardo station. After getting off, cross the Boulevard du 20 mars 1956, which borders the southern side of the museum; the entrance is on the northern side.
As of March 2006, an entry ticket costs 6 dinars, with 1 extra dinar if you plan on taking photos.
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