You may watch my album photos sur Google+.
The country I have visited most since Easter 99.
Welcome and kindness (particularly in South Tunisia) are so different from Morocco where I got fed up with children throwing stones against 4x4 when going through their village even though we brought them clothes and books. And not forgetting fake guids in main cities.
(As I know it's not getting any better or else worse)
• April 2005
• June 2005
• July 2005
• February 2006
• March 2006
• October 2006
• February 2007
• October - November - December 2008
• May-June 2009
• October-November 2009
• October-November 2010
• January-February 2011
• May 2011
• April 2012
• Septembre 2012
• April 2013
• October 2013
• April 2014
• April-May 2016
• October 2019
• May 2022
Taking advantage of an easing of the entry conditions in the country following the Covid (being vaccinated, no more pcr test required), I decided to spend 2 weeks of vacations there.
I couldn't go by plane because the Tunisair company, which cancelled my previous flight, issued a non-refundable voucher that could only be used through an agency and not by Internet.
Living in Grenoble, the 2 closest agencies are Marseille and Paris! The one in Lyon is definitely closed.
So I decided to take my car and board in ferry Daniele Casanova from Corsica Linea in Marseille to Tunis.
A first point : don't buy your meals in advance on their website, it's a scam. You are promised a discount but it's something else.
For example, the 27€ meal voucher means that any overage is due and there is no refund if your amount is less.
Without this voucher, you are free to compose your meal. Except for the entrecote, the food ain't that good.
I did not have AC in my cabin with a window. The friendly staff changed my cabin .... without much improvement. Permanent headache because of the heat.
The ship wass clean and it wasn't crowded.
Big problem in La Goulette : 5 hours at the customs. Probably a work-to-rule of the customs officers because all the cars had to take out the luggages which were totally searched.
I had taken out my small suitcase and my cabin bag, I wasn't searched after examination but as I stood in the middle of the other cars I had to wait.
Fortunately I had my hotel reservation email with me, otherwise I would have been turned away. The customs and police staff were nice to me. It must be said that I am always smiling even if the circumstances do not lend themselves to it.
My stay did not go very well, I had health problems and I suffered 2 days of abominable permanent pain in my lower abdomen and that twice. I returned to France with a probe and a surgical intervention 'd follow.
The Tunisian doctors are at the top : very competent, very dynamic and very nice.
For a European, the cost of living is very cheap : 1 euro = 3.22 DT.
A coffee 1,1 DT. 1 croissant 1,5 DT. 1L diesel without sulfur 2,1 DT .... while in France 2 euros!
I returned to my usual hotel in Hammamet where the staff was very helpful during my health problems.
Impossible to get an appointment by a dentist within 6 months in my town in France. So I went to Tunis 12 days at the end of October.
I booked up an hotel Tunis downtown, 50m from medina door : Tunisia Palace.
It's unbelievable that Google only mentioned their website in 4th research page.
Very often, it's cheaper to book up an hotel straight from its website instead of using booking.com, hotels.com, ...
This hotel has an old-fashioned style "La Belle Epoque" from the beginning of XXth century. Manager and staff are very friendly and helpful. Food has got a very good ratio quality price.
Due to flood streets on Monday 26th, I got a misadventure as a result of no taxis and no public transports. I was stuck and soaked at about 11km from the hotel.
Fortunately, I had bought a tunisian sim card, so I phoned to the hotel manager and thanks to him a taxi drove me back. I had to pay a full price for it.
Leaving hotel at 7.40 a.m. and back at 3.30 p.m. without eating anything. Then a hot shower and here we go again!
Change: 1 = 3,23 DT
The day tunisair flights won't be behind schedule, their planes 'll flap their wings.
Incredible this leak of professionalism. No information supplied.
As soon as you arrive at airport, you don't see a lot of tourists because police procedure is very fast and no queue.
Many shops and hotels are closed. Bardo and Sousse bad events in 2015 made tourists avoiding Tunisia.
When renting a car by CamelCar, I was upgraded and given a Hyundai Accent. (570 DT - 15d)
Wifi in hotel Les Citronniers of Hammamet has been updated : all is fine now.
Change: 1 = 2,26 DT May Unleaded gas : 1,65 DT 1 liter
Tunisair, this holly crap, is the only company to get to Tunisia from Lyon.
I got (once again) 1h30 delay, but Miracle ! when returning in May I only got 25 min delay !
Right before security control, I was entirely rummaged through by police. They were seeking for the amount of euros I owned. And I wasn't the only man being like this. Very unpleasant.
When renting a car, I got a Peugeot 301. I didn't like this model because this was the 1st price model and difficult to driving over 90 km/h when wind is blowing.
I won't coming back to Tunisia for a while. It's worst and worst.
There are so many other nice places to visiting.
A little anecdote :
I bought 9.5 DT a shower gel (500ml) from Maison de senteurs in a fair.
Their main shop is 87, rue Jammaa Ezzitouna in Tunis.
At aiport duty-free, just right after security control, the same gel shower is sell 10 !
Change: 1 = 2,195 DT middle April Unleaded gas : 1,57 DT 1 liter
Tunisair became a load of crap : Flight canceled from Lyon. The flight offer got 2 hours delay and I had to drive during night in Tunisia. I guess it'd be easier in hell !
On returning, 2 hours delay in Tunis airport. No information given.To get to Tunisia with Air France : only from Paris right now.
More and more dirty anywhere.
Tozeur-Nefta airport has been closed. 20 hotels closed said my friend living in Tozeur.
Change: 1 = 2,205 DT middle October Unleaded gas : 1,57 DT 1 liter.
A few tourist anywhere, certainly due to salafists and tv reports.
In hotel Les Citronniers in Hamammet, now free wifi in rooms.
Many networks have been setting up.
Change: 1 = 2,065 DT Unleaded Gas : 1,57 DT a liter.
In Bizerte, a salafiste group attacked a mixed Fr-Tu couple because of their dressing.
Where was the police ?
When american school was burnt down in Tunis, Police came ..... 2h46min later. Complicity ?
I guess not enough tourist to Tunisia because Air France canceled my return flight on April 28 and I had to change the day.
Driving in Tunisia is worst than ever : never saw that before. Drivers 's behaviour unbelievable. Heavy police controls if you rented a car (blue plates).
Cost of life increased strongly. Few tourists. Many hotels closed.
On April 25, 1 = 2DT.
I didn't even get to the South.
Read in facebook : Actualites.tn (in French)
Hier, dimanche 8 mai, je suis revenue en Tunise. Étant donné les circonstances actuelles, je m'attendais à voir mon vol annulé ou quasi vide ou au mieux rempli de tunisiens. Et là, surprise, je vis la salle d'embarquement pleine de touristes français allant à Hammamet. Je me dis que c'était fabuleux mais ma joie fut de courte durée. Après deux heures de retard, nous finissons enfin par décoller. Quelques minutes après le décollage une hôtesse annonce qu'aucun plateau repas ne sera servi en raison d'une grève de Tunise Catering. Ce n'était qu'un avant goût de ce que nous allions vivre. Une fois arrivés à Tunis, fatigués et le ventre vide, les passagers et moi même allons pour récupérer nos bagages. Nous assistons alors à un spectacle de désolation avec des bagages jetés un peu partout et lorsque nous arrivons devant le tapis roulant censé nous ramener nos bagages, rien n'arrive. Au bout d'une heure d'attente, exaspérée, fatiguée et voyant l'heure du couvre feu approcher, je décide de me rendre au guichet des litiges Tunisair qui se trouve dans cette même salle. Et là stupéfaction : ni sourire, ni bonjour, on m'envoie ouvertement chier. Je m'énerve et demande une nouvelle fois aux employés pourquoi nos bagages n'arrivent pas. Face à mon insistance et ma colère, un employé me répond qu'il n'y a personne pour s'occuper des bagages et que le personnel est rentré chez lui. Je lui fais remarquer que le vol est rempli de touristes et que c'est inimaginable de leur réserver un accueil pareil et de les traiter avec autant de mépris. Il me répond que ce n'est pas son affaire. Je me mets à hurler face à des touristes médusés, fatigués et affamés qui ne comprennent pas ce qui se passe. Une tunisienne vient alors à ma rescousse. Après un long moment de tergiversation, les passagers excédés menacent d'aller chercher leurs bagages eux-mêmes. Nous finissons enfin par obtenir gain de cause grâce aux pompiers qui ont déchargé nos bagages. Commence ensuite une course infernale pour pouvoir rentrer avant le couvre-feu. Nous partons laissant derrière nous une pagaille monstrueuse avec des passagers dont une majorité d'anglais livrés à eux mêmes et cherchant désespérément leurs bagages. Le Ministère du tourisme se donne à fond depuis des mois pour relancer le tourisme, dépense des millions dans des campagnes publicitaires et lorsque les touristes commencent enfin à revenir, on leur réserve un accueil pareil! C'est scandaleux! C'est une honte! Il est grand temps qu'une catégorie de la population ouvre les yeux et se mette sérieusement au travail!
Jasmin revolution ? But what's up now ? Anarchy ? Towns are absolutely filthy. Many people didn't want to work anymore without an increasing wage.Many offshore factories wanted to get back home because of inconsistent workers.
Air France don't give you any meal right now. And taking off was at 11h35 am.
In Tunis airport, smoking is forbidden. But even cops are smoking !
I rented a car by Camel Rent a Car. I got a brand new Seat Ibiza (1400 DT - 6weeks).
1 = 1,925DT or 130 = 2,5DT. Easy car to driving : VW 3 cylinders engine.
Dust, dust, dust : eyes, mouth, everywhere. Unbearable.
restaurant de la Médina and restaurant le Soleil : always good.
I found out restaurant Le Minaret in alley of main minaret downtown. Very good.
Owners are 2 French. Guest house as well.
Miss, would you like to buy a pretty jellaba at affordable price, go to Saïd shop facing fountain downtown.
I visited a 5* hotel : le Dar Cherait, which price equals 3* in France.
300DT 2p 1/2 board .... wonderful place !!!
Here are some pictures I took :
The owner of cakeshop ElBey sells luxuous flats in his building (with shared pool)
Av Abou El Kacem Chebbi 2200 Tozeur. Site web : Residence El Bey
Mail : email@example.com
Tel : +216 98 450 367 Fax : +216 76 460 589
Weekly market stands right now close to the cemetery in touristical zone.
Hotel Les Citronniers has improved highly : free wifi, faster. No smoking allowed.
A french resident was ripped off. He paid 500 DT to go and return to Tunis to renew his visa. Taking bus costs 27 DT, so 54 DT return !
10km North of Zarzis, stands hotel Sangho Club. ( GPS : 33°34'41,8" N - 11°05'06,8"E )
Even if the place is nice avoid this hotel : food not good, no tv, wifi only close to the desk, customers (retired people) are bothering and you might get trouble with some chalets.
I visited another hotel :
Oasis marine. (GPS : 33°35'46,4" N - 11°04'08,8" E)
For the same price ( 70 DT ) you get 'All Inclusive' with TV in rooms and free hammam.
Thanks to the staff, I have visited the whole hotel. Nice place to stay.
1 km south from Sangho hotel, you'll find the 4* Eden Star hotel. tel : (216) 75 706 333 Fax ...334 (GPS: 33°35'12,7"N - 11°04'41,6"E)
Great hotel from Thomas Cook. Off-season full board is 73 DT / p.
Djerba : Houmt Souk
I found out Aladdin's cave close to the post-office : Antiquités 14 rue de Bizerte tel : 75 653 335. You could spend hours because of so many things.
On Thursday, close to seafront, you get open-air market. Don't miss to see the catholic church (opened only during office).
Don't forget the fort :
And have a halt in Guellala, to see potters.
Coming off-season is always great.
Air France is too bad on board. In Tunis, no drop-off for luggages.
I rented a Peugeot 206 in airport (1000 DT a month) by Camel Rent a Car chez qui je loue régulièrement. Good price 1 = 1,895 DT
A Hammamet, I found out a nice restaurant 30 m after « Magasin Général », facing panking house Les Canaris.
Named l'Angolo blu.
Go upstairs, then turn right
Tunisian cooking: couscous, sea food, ... Warm welcome and affordable prices.
Internet is free in hotel Les Citronniers, but strean is low. You could get a public internet shop downtown. allow 2 / 3 Dt an hour. Bring your notebook.
In Tozeur, greatness and decline : avoid La République restaurant. Sounds like owner has changed. Nothing to deal with.
Le Soleil restaurant, 58 rue Chebbi, facing Warda lodging, is always as good as possible. 10m from Warda, a new restaurant has opened : le Dar Deda. Nice food but not generous.
Restaurant Le Tozeurous, just before Le Soleil, is always good
Entering Tozeur, coming from Metlaoui or Degache, stands a smart restaurant : restaurant de la Médina. very close to the squared minaret, facing gas station Agil.
Nice food, cheap price. You could even get wine ( but be discreet when asking for)
30m from campsite Les BeauxReves, facing a school, you'll find out cakeshop ElBey.
Nice settings :
You got a menu and these 2 formulas (I tried them):
- breakfast 6DT with croissant+bread+jam+coffee+fruit juice
- lunch 5 DT with lorraine quiche+fruit dessert+50cl mineral water+coffee
Don't miss to get to tunisian cakeshop El Quods, facing main minaret downtown, for its « cornes de gazelle ».
Read forum http://voyageforum.com/voyage/tunisie_ne_partez_pas_sans_savoir_tout_presque_les_bezness_les_arnaques_sentimentales_D2586516/
I give you right here a pdf copy of the article (in French) : A must read !
Google is your friend: « bezzness tunisie »
Sidi Bou Saïd
Don't go to the « café des Délices » downstairs after a little square with gorgeous view : big rip-off for tourists (12,5 DT 2 coffees + 1 tea !!!!). Prefer « café des Nattes » with its steep stairs in main street.
If you want to buy some gifts, prefer a shopkeeper (who displayed prices) below the « café des Nattes » close to an ice-cream shop.
I got very big repetitive problems with a rented car out there (gas leaks). It took 3 days to get it fixed up. Even a member of the staff breaks up when bringing me back the car (so said repaired). I required another car.
End of May, summer begins in Tozeur : 36°C in the shade, no air-conditioning. But I stayed in palmgrove. Back to France on June 4 : 15° less.
A good restaurant with air-conditioning : Le Soleil , main street in front of Warda lodging. A good hairdresser : chez Adel, same street close to hospital. Meticulous and cheap.
My friend Ammar Bey showed me 2 campsites in South 2 campings. See photos and way points in website Beauxreves.
This time, no problem walking in the street : I was alone.
October - November - December 2008
Driving is always anarchic. No wifi allowed in hôtel : you need a network cable.
The hotel Les Citronniers has been restored : nice rooms, bathroom particularly.
TV satellite and little terrace. Internet available in lounge ( ask for a cable if you ain't )
Employees are always so friendly and food is pretty good.
Good prices : 40 DT for 2 or 25 DT single ( -10% rebate if you stay more than 3 days ) off-season.
Tel : 216 72 281 650 / 216 72 282 088 eMayl : firstname.lastname@example.org
wpt GPS : N 36° 24' 7,7" E 10° 35' 00"
To see :
A nice café, in front of the sea, close to the medina : Sidi Bouhdid ( free wifi pwd sidiboudhid01 )
Open air markets :
• Tuesday : Sidi Jeddidi (18km from Hammamet towards Zaghouan)
• Wednesday : Bou Argoub (15km from Hammamet on GP1 going to Tunis)
• Thursday : Hammamet
• Friday : Nabeul
• Saturday : Bou Ficha (South GP1)
• Sunday : Bir Bouregba ( GP1 towards Tunis, turn left 100m after 4 tracks road ended, follow yellow cabs. I's 800m on right)
A hot spring to see : Hammam jdidi on the road from Hammamet towards Zaghouan.
To buy olive oil in an oil factory, drive on the road to Bou Ficha.
Turn right first track just after seeing green roadsign 'Bienvenue dans le gouvernorat de Sousse'. It's about 100m at the far end. 4 DT a liter.
Very nice medina to visit off season and many of shops displayed prices.
But be aware of a 'café' ripp-off on the right side of the medina when entering by the main entrance. One of the waiters doubles prices when tourists order something to drink !
(ex : 6DT 2 coffees , 12DT coca + cappuccino, .... )
JI found out a rather well hotel with sea view, very close to downtown at an affordable price (38 DT 2 persons).
Résidence Boujaafar , avenue hedi Chaker, 200m from Bou Jalaf square.
Tel : 216 73 227 333 / 216 227 355
At first floor, you get a snack bar at good prices.
A goog place to buy souvenirs in medina :
La Grotte, 83 soukh Erbda (from Bab el gharbi towards Bab el jedid)
3 levels store and prices are displayed (pretty good)
Is the atmosphere of this city being changing towards tourists from youngsters ? Is it acceptable to get a projectile in the back of the neck, from children, in a busy street ? Is it acceptable that a french woman 'd be called bitch from teenagers close to their highschool ? Is it tolerable that a pottery seller, in front of a 5* hotel, tells explicit sexual words to the french woman although she was not alone ? Then we wonder how are the native women-men relationship because of that lack of respect for women. I have to point out that more and more tunisians wish to settle down with europeans. (for love or for money? Love of money instead !)
A very nice little restaurant in a street on left side of the covered market downtown. Nice prices.
Ahmed and Ali manage it.
Grilled fishes and meats. ( You can even bring your own fishes )
By the way, if you plan to buy some souvenirs, please avoid "La grande boutique" in medina, close to the museum, even it's named in guids. The seller, sticking like a leech, is a 1st class swindler : prices 2 - 3 times higher than in Sidi Bou Saïd, that's an understatement ! It's a 1st class smooth talker as well. He tells you he 'll give you a good price if you advertise. I know somebody who gets a so-said reduced price for 2 baby's capes ... worthing 2 times cheaper in Sousse medina in La Grotte shop.
Hotel La Corniche, yet recommended in guides, has to be really avoid. Dirty room ( full ashtray, web spider, balls of hair ). No hand towel, and water in the washbasin empties into the room. Very noisy during the night because of a fast-food underneath.
Iles Kerkennah :
A must to see : piecefulness guaranteed. Pure nature. The opposite of Djerba.
Take the car-ferry at Sfax harbor (1h crossing) for a derisory sum : 0.650 DT / p + 4.4 DT for car.
Ask for a mini-suite in hotel Cercina, on the west coast in Sidi Fredj. 45DT * person, it's great.
Delicious meals in restaurant.
The wrong side : the employees have lost their smile and continental breakfast is nothing special in view of hotel standing.
I found out a family restaurant : Le Régal in El Altaya. Great !
Gas-Oil 0,96 DT.
3h flight delayed from Lyon with Tunisair (Air France ticket). But, Air France gave me 2000 miles bonus for my Flying Blue subscription, apologizing for the trouble I got. The fact is worth noting.
Driving in Tunis is always a stress and we need to be on the watch.
Is the behavior of drivers and pedestrians madness, stupidity or unawareness ?
This time I was stucked in La Goulette, from Carthage tunisian ship because of police controls. What an organization!
What a disillusion in Tozeur! Restaurant La Republique became very noisy with very loud music. Hopefully, I found out confidentially another one : Tozerous, close to crossroad toward zoo.
In Hammamet, the hotel Les Citronniers, although a warmful welcome, is not as before. It gets down.
Cost of life has increased for tunisians. Olive oil became more expensive than in France. Very strange.
Getting back to Tunis, I found out the family hotel Les Citronniers in Hammamet where welcome is friendly and warmful. Very good prices.
Meals are good compared to Air France on flight Lyon-Tunis. But what an organization ! Couldn't get registering a fidelity program (lost papers?)
Sidi Bou Saïd
Being lucky to have friends who live close to the 'café des Nattes', I both enjoyed these charming dwelling places and hung about in the colorful lanes, especially outside the touristic flood 'dumped' by buses.
Big Rip-Off : At the entrance of the touristical area, facing hotel FRAM, stands pizzeria Azzurra. Despite displayed prices, you 'll pay more than it'd be. The waiter is gonna beguile you using a fake friendship and you'll never get any check. Many customers have been taken in. Some of them did realized just after a question was asked to them about their bill.
My favourite restaurant : Restaurant de la République. Just before minaret, downtown Tozeur, underneath arcades, after a shoes retailer.
What a shame to find out garbages inside palmgrove and in some parts of the town. Even in cemetery and its surrounding area ! And goats are browsing all those garbages. Yet it'd be easy to anyone to keep clean his surrounding area, and first to teach children to have a good gesture. What are doing city councillors ?
Fed up ot these indiscriminate suicide-bombing from these so-said muslims. Most of the true muslims are nice !
The ferry company SNCM gave me back 147 further to the april events. That was to be mentioned.
Ferry crossing from France :
From France, prefer the tunisian CTN company rather than french company SNCM. Too many strikes. I had to go to Toulon harbour because of blocked harbour in Marseille. And some members of staff (especially in bar and self-service) ain't warmful.
The absurdity of the situation was reached when they called my home phone to warn that my return was unsure ... but I was in Tunisia. Fortunately someone got the call and informed me.
I left Tunisia in a rush and shortened my holidays. Instead of landing in Marseille, I had to go to Genova in Italy .... far away from my home !