Sousse has a vast array of interesting catacombs, where 15 000 Christians are said to be buried.
Of the estimated 5.5 km of underground passages, some 100 m are open to the public. This section, called "Catacombes du bon pasteur" (Catacombs of the Good Shepherd), takes you on an interesting journey into the burial customs of the Roman Christians from the late 3rd century.
Thanks to good timing, we made our visit during a power failure, which forced an employee to take us on a candle-lit tour of the graves (and adding to the spooky factor!). While most of the graves have been bricked in, a few are on display behind glass panes, enabling you to see the skeletons of people who lived at the time of the Roman Empire. It made us wonder whether what will become of us and whether WE will be on display around year 3500...
The catacombs are closed Mondays. Otherwise, they open at 9 a.m. and close at 7 p.m. in summer and 5 p.m. in winter.
The Catacombs contain 240 galleries with 15,000 graves spread over 5km. Only 40 metres of the tombs can be visited by the public. They were used between the 2nd and 4th centuries AD.
Three of the four tombs have been excavated with inscriptions and funeral furnishings being kept at the Sousse museum.
I visited the tombs out of season and I was the only visitor whilst I was there. The cost to enter was 4 dinar (£2). I walked down into the steps a bit nervously as I had no idea what I was to encounter. As you walk into the dark tunnels lights go on low as you walk, if there were more tourists the lights would be on in front of you, I walked through the tunnels waiting to see skeletons but there weren't any. It took me less than 5 minutes to walk through the tunnels available. I enjoyed the experience and the walk to get get to the Catacombes was nice in the warm sun, but I was a bit dissapointed that there were no old bones on display.
The catacombs in Sousse were discovered in 1888. More than 15000 christians are buried in the underground tunnels. Although they go on for miles only a small section of them if open to the public. Most of the tombs have been bricked up but there are a few behind glass for public veiwing. They are very dark and spooky but at least they are cool and a good place to go if the weather is too hot.