These are the typical streets of Zaghouan. They were built during the XVIIth century by andalusian immigrants in andalusian style. Even if they would need a general lifting they are still very charming with lots of details like elaborated doors, nice windows, many decorations with tiles… The main streets are parallel to the mountains, narrow and...more
Used to provide water to the roman city of Carthage it was built in only 11years under Emperor Hadrian’s government. The water temple (well its really a big fountain) was the first part of this system. The source came from the temple’s cell, the water arrived to the bassin where it was filtered and then went to the 132km long acqueduct until the...more
A Zawouia is a kind of chapel where a saint is venerated. Sidi Ali Azouz was the saint patron of Tunis and its said he is buried here. The interior can be visited by anyone. The entry is free but you should know that the caretaker lives from the visitors’s tips so he will expect some dinars from you. The walls are nice decorated and the building is...more
Twenty minutes walk from the main street and surrounded by a beautiful scenery there is this roman monument called the water temple (temple des eaux). It’s the first monument of the big water system destinated to supply the roman city of Carthage in general and specifically its Antonin Baths. It was built during the IIth century aD and the...more
Many countries, including Tunisia, are predominantly Muslim, so the religious sites you are most likely to encounter, are, predictably, mosques. This is a brief tip of advice, written from the point of view of a non-Muslim, female traveler (yours truly!!!):
- Do dress modestly, covering arms, legs, shoulders and the like, no frivolous dressing will be allowed. Hire the modest dress if needed;
- Check whether you are allowed into the mosque at all, since most of them admit you only into the courtyard, and some do not admit non-Muslims at all. However, in several countries you may be able to visit the interiors of many mosques;
- Respect the boundaries laid and do not attempt to enter further (I saw such a thing once, and it did arouse ill-feeling);
- If possible try to avoid going even to the courtyard on Friday afternoon, since I remember this is the most important praying time of the week;
- If you are curious, feel free to ask questions (though not of people hurrying to pray) and most likely you will be answered: I’ve always found people proud of their culture and heritage and ready to explain it;
- Do not criticize things we in Europe and in the West might (such as separate praying space for men and women), for such are the customs of the land and mosques are the least appropriate places for such topics.
This advice is based only on common sense, but it allowed me to see something of the mosques and learn loads of interesting info on Muslim countries, their religion, and culture. Really helped me when we had a general education class on religions at University:))
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, ‘gets used’ to it), and there’s not guarantee you’ll find it on the spot. So take your own, if you have preferences!