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The roots of Tunis are said to date back as far as the second millennium BC, although the town was destroyed along with Carthage by the Romans in 146BC.

It was eventually rebuilt, but only rose to prominence with the arrival of the Muslims in the seventh century, at which time its medina was built.

History and influence

Standing as a relatively opulent city in the Middle East for centuries, boosted by its Mediterranean location, Tunis sat in the hands of many rulers, and was exposed to some diverse influences.

Various Muslim dynasties governed Tunis, and it became a part of the Ottoman Empire in the sixteenth century.

In 1881, control was then assumed by the French, the effects of whose colonial rule can be seen in some of the architecture, particularly around Avenue Habib Bourguiba, where the theatre and the Embassy buildings are a reminder of the times before Tunisian independence.

Tunis culture

Modern day Tunis embraces a clutch of styles, and its people reflect this in equal measure.

On the main boulevard sit numerous cafés with outdoor seating from which locals often while away time watching the world pass, while just half a mile from this Parisian part of the city one encounters the Medina of Tunis, wherein many live their lives similar to the ways their ancestors might have done over a thousand years before.

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Map of Tunis

Places & hotels on the map

    Places near Tunis

    Accommodation choices for Tunis

    We’ve selected a range of accommodation options for when you visit Tunis. Our choices usually come recommended for their character, facilities and service or location. Our specialists always aim to suggest properties that match your preferences.

    • The Residence, Gammarth

      The Residence

      First Class

      Located just outside Tunis, The Residence hotel offers luxury accommodation and a perfect base for exploring the north of the country.

    • Dar El Medina, Tunis

      Dar el Medina

      Simple

      The Dar El Medina is situated at the heart of the old city of Tunis. Refurbished from an old family home, it offers simple but comfortable accommodation.

    Ideas for experiencing Tunis

    Our specialists seek out authentic ways to get to know the places that could feature in your trip. These activities reflect some of the experiences they've most enjoyed while visiting Tunis, and which use the best local guides.

    • Dougga, Tunisia

      Dougga & Bulla Regia Excursion

      Tunis

      While some might argue that Tunisia does not possess a stunning draw, such as the Pyramids of Giza, or the ancient city of Petra, there is little doubt that Dougga is the pinnacle of the Roman presence in Tunisia, and looks out majestically over the hills.

    • Sidi Bou Said marina, Tunisia

      Sidi Bou Said

      Tunis

      The strong and consistent colors of the buildings, pure whites and blues complemented by the turquoise sea, are simply beautiful, while the narrow, winding cobbled streets all add to the charm of the village.

    • Bardo Museum, Tunis

      The Bardo Museum

      Tunis

      Tunisia's most celebrated museum exudes history throughout. The inside of the museum is famous primarily for its vast and unparalleled collection of mosaics, gathered from the floors of Tunisia's Roman sites and carefully arranged in the rooms.

    • Carthage and Cathedral

      Carthage City Tour

      Tunis

      One of the best ways to begin a visit to Carthage is to take a view of it from on high. The Byrsa Hill looks out over the whole city and the vista extends to the mountains of the Cap Bon beyond the Gulf of Tunis.

    • Tunis Medina

      Tunis Medina Tour

      Tunis

      Medina comes from the Arabic word for city, and it refers to the old quarter of Tunis. Your first entry to the Medina of Tunis will most likely come through the Bab Bahr at Place de la Victoire, the Gate into the medina from Avenue Bourguiba.