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La Marsa

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Near the sea, but far away
La Marsa is the most northern one of the sea side suburbs of Tunisia, and is totally dominated by Tunisians. La Marsa is the number one place for the higher middle class, when they go for a chic summer address. The reason for this is easy to understand when you're down on the beach, looking up at all the nice white houses that lie among the green trees of the soft ridge running parallel to the wide beach.

La Marsa, Tunisia

But the reality is that 95% of all summer houses in La Marsa have to be built in places that are seriously far away from the beach. Many families escaping the summer heat of Tunis, end up in a street 5-6 kilometres away from both the beach and the small centre of La Marsa. The prices of the best houses in La Marsa are reputedly insane, and even hiring is so expensive that the French Riviera becomes an economical alternative. And you will think something like: «Of course there are many rich people here, but how can there be so many of them?»
Most visitors will not get to see the large plantation of summer houses that starts at the other side of the bridge, as seen from the TGM-station. The small centre of La Marsa is packed with young Tunisians in weekends, and it is quite charming, but honestly, there is little to see. As for the beach, just cross the bridge, and go down for the beginning of the beach. This section is far less visited, but walking through the sand to the chic parts, is quicker than walking the streets.

La Marsa, Tunisia

Hotels and alternatives
There is a small selection of hotels in La Marsa. The small Pension Prendl is strongly recommended, and not at all expensive. The other hotels in La Marsa might have higher standard, but lack the charm and are often overpriced, especially in mid-summer.

Restaurants and alternatives
There is a handful of restaurants, too. These are easy to find, starting at the main square and continues down the road leading to the beach.

Little, even if people stroll the streets till late night through the summer months.

Change Money
No problems. Banks, ATMs and exchange service in the receptions in the better hotels.

The best way of getting out here or back, is by the local train, TGM. The good thing about La Marsa, is that it is the end station, so when you go back you have a good chance of getting a seat. After Sidi Bou Said, the train often gets crowded.
The TGM passes the stops of Sidi Bou Said, Carthage and La Goulette.

By Tore Kjeilen