Monday, September 3, 2007

Memories from Tunisia

Note to self: Travellers cheques are not much use to you on holiday if you don't take them with you!

Well now many apologies as this is a picture heavy post! I have just come back from a wonderful fortnight in Tunisia, and what a lovely place it is. For those of you who don't know, Tunisia is situated on the mediterranean coast of Africa, between Algeria and Libya, and is the northernmost African country, roughly the size of Florida. 40% of Tunisia is situated within the Sahara Desert, it also falls within the Atlas Mountains. The currency is the Tunisian Dinar, one dinar is worth 40p.

Our Hotel

A Room with a View

A View towards Hammamet from the Beach

The View from our Breakfast Table

The Bar's Terrace

Tunisia is a land of contrasts as we discovered when we took a two day Sahara Safari. Our first stop was El Jem.
Who would have thought that the the Romans would have left behind this wonderful colosseum? It is smaller than the one in Rome, but would still hold in excess of 30,000 people. It is very well preserved. We travelled there on the longest road in Africa, which stretches from Carthage to Cairo, and was built by the Romans so of course is very straight!
El Jem

From el Jem, we travelled to Matmata which was stunningly beautiful. Star Wars was filmed there
A Berber Dwelling in Matmata

Breathtaking scenery in Matmata. I can't begin to tell you how hot it was here!

The Star Wars Bar

Inside a Berber Dwelling

From Matmata we drove on down to Douz to our overnight hotel where we underwent somewhat of a transfomation before heading out on an hour's camel ride into the Sahara. I can recommend a camel ride as an excellent inner thigh workout!

DS and I on our Camels

The following morning we rose at 4:00 am, to head to the Salt lakes of Chot el Jered to wait for sunrise - it was an amazing experience.

From there we set off to visit the largest oasis in Tunisia, where I bought some divine dates. You can just make out the man climbing the tree.

And from there to le L├ęzard Rouge ( or von Ryan's Express as Mr A put it! ) which was stunning. The two hour journey was breathtakingly beautiful, it is hard to do it all justice here. All this and it was still only 9:30!

Our final destination was the Holy city of Kairouan then home in time or dinner. What a wonderful two days, I would not have missed this for the world.

It wasn't all sightseeing though - there was lots of rest and relaxation too.

Aknita Knits

"Our" Pool!
This pool was one of two - there was a busy pool always full of children and lilos, and this one which also extended indoors to length of 30metres. Mr A and I went down at 8:00 every morning apart from while we were on our trip, and swam 20-30 lengths before breakfast while there wasn't a soul in sight, it was wonderful.

View from the Fourth Floor Veranda

The Last Evening

There were some drawbacks - for example the poverty, the flies, being pestered in the Medina, and we won't mention the Imodium consumption! But it is a wonderful holiday destination, and we had a fabulous time.


Holly Burnham said...

Joy.....this was an absolutely wonderful trip.

Thank you for posting the pictures and sharing them with us.

kathryn said...

What amazing photos!! I almost feel I was there too!

It reminds me very much of our Moroccan holiday eight or so years ago.

agatha quafflepuncher said...

It looks like you had a lovely time!!!!!

Piglottie said...

What a great holiday - sounds just my sort of thing (and you have my sympathies on the Imodium consumption - reminds me of Egypt :) ).

gilraen said...

My boys now want to go too!!

Glad you are back after what looks like a lovely holiday. :)

Christina said...

Lovely photos. Sounds like you had a wonderful trip. I like camel rides!!

LadybirdLinz (:i:) said...

Absolutely fab photos! You look so relaxed and chilled :D
Nice to have you back though...

blog-blethers said...

What fantastic photo's and thank you for sharing them with us. The scenery is stunning and so much history ... Hope the need for Imodium has now past! Like PL, I think Imodium and Egypt in the same instant;) I've now got itchy travel feet, Joy!

Jo028 said...

Glad you had a good time, your pics are brilliant, well-worthy of a travel mag/holiday brochure :)

Hawkesley said...

It sounds like you had a wonderful holiday!! I loved looking at your photos especially the ones of the colosseum!

Catknit said...

It looks wonderful, and you look very relaxed (despite the lack of travellers cheques!)

Aknita said...

Thank you everyone, it really was a very special time.