Why We Went to Tunisia
Last December, when Jonathan and I were discussing which country we should visit next, we had only one requirement: it was absolutely necessary that we have the option to go swimming on a daily basis. So, we did a little brainstorming and came up with Malta. We didn’t know a whole lot about the tiny island nation, except that it was in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, meaning the entire perimeter was surrounded by beautiful blue water.
Before we started planning, we thought it would be helpful to know where exactly Malta was located, so we whipped out our iPhones, and dove into Google Maps. We found the Mediterranean easily enough, then we started zooming and zooming and zooming some more…no luck. Finally, we typed “Malta” into the search box and there she was, three itty bitty specks between Northern Africa and Southern Europe. As we studied the map, we noticed a dotted line connecting Malta’s capital city, Valletta to Pozzallo, Italy a small town on the southern coast of Sicily. We soon realized that the line indicated a ferry. Fascinated by the idea that Google Maps includes ferry lines, we moved around Sicily to find that ferries were connecting cities all over the Mediterranean. There were lines that went to France, Greece, all over Italy and even, you guessed it, Tunisia!
Normally, I have a very strict “one country per vacation” policy that allows a more thorough exploration. Three countries in two weeks was ambitious and Jonathan knew I was hesitant, but begged to me to think of it instead as visiting one sea, The Mediterranean. Flights would have been cheating, clearly, but the option to take ferry rides was undeniably intriguing. So, we altered our plans to include a few days in Tunisia, then a ferry to Sicily for five days, then another ferry to Malta for the rest of our time off.
5 Reasons Why You Should Go to Tunisia
1. It’s Off the Beaten Path
In a world where beautiful places get shut down because of too much Instagram attention, it can be difficult to find a destination that’s off the beaten path. While we were in Tunisia, we saw about twenty obvious tourists and none of them were American.
2. It’s Inexpensive
From affordable lodging to inexpensive transportation to the endless streets of the Souks, Tunisia is a great option for budget travelers.
3. It’s Ancient
Carthage was founded by the Phoenicians in 814 BC. To help you put that in perspective, that’s 61 years before Rome was founded and 38 years before the first Olympiad.
4. It Has Beautiful Beaches
The capital of Tunisia, Tunis, is a short ride from multiple stunning Mediterranean beaches.
5. It’s Desperate for Tourists
In 2015, Tunisia was rocked by two terrorist attacks that killed 41 people, mostly tourists. Since then, their tourism industry has been slow to recover and the residents are well aware. Locals were eager to make sure we had a great trip and they thanked us multiple times for visiting their country.
We had a great time in the North African country and I’m certain you will too. Stay tuned for an itinerary and some helpful travel tips!