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Deep south centre
Tataouine, Tunisia

Tataouine, Tunisia

The deep south of Tunisia offers little for the average traveller, and Tataouine is no big exception from this. The architecture is quite ordinary, but the city comes alive on Mondays and Thursdays for the market. While you stay a day or two in Tataouine, a walk out to the nearby kasr is nice. From the kasr, the best view over whole Tataouine is waiting for you. But the buildings of the kasr are quite old, and people entering should watch their steps.
Being the name-giver to a plant in George Lucas' Star Wars universe, one might expect Tataouine to something quite spectacular. But it is not. The town is new and stripped of everything from its centuries of history.
Still it is a friendly and lively place. There are plenty of cafes open at least a few hours into the night, and people here are open and interested in making new acquaintances.
Even at day there are things to see, as Tataouine is by far the most important market place in its region.

Hotels and alternatives
Good on cheap and medium priced hotels. We have to warn against staying at the Sangho, which is a very charming complex, but where the spartan hotel rooms smell old.
The best option is to spend the evenings at Sangho, where there is a restaurant near the pool and a bar, and stay at the new Mabrouk next door, which has higher standard at half the price.

Restaurants and alternatives
Some very basic but good restaurants in town centre. Do not eat at Hotel Mabrouk, eat at the exclusive Sangho.

Sangho offers sometimes evening shows, but the clientele is middle aged, so young travellers might prefer to stay in the bar next door.

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

Very good connections in northern direction (south you'll only find Remada before you come to the part of Tunisia where you cannot freely move around), either with bus or shared taxis.
You can also rent a taxi for going to the berber villages. The price should not be above 15 dinars per destination with a small discount for every one added. You can cover 5-6 villages in a day if you start early.

By Tore Kjeilen