Friday, December 31, 2010

Harry Potter Fan Club Update

I noticed this sign while looking into session times at the cinema in La Marsa.
 I love it!!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Last Day of Southern Tunisia Tour

On our final day down south we moved on to Kairouan. Kairouan is considered the fourth holiest site in Islam due to the presence of the Great Mosque, which is the oldest mosque found in North Africa.

The city itself is very beautiful, with a very laid back feel amongst its visitors. We spent the day wondering the Great Mosque and the city centre before a long bus ride home to Tunis.

The Great Mosque
Sights from round Kairouan

Overall the Trip to the South was amazing, and I would recommend it to anyone passing through Tunisia. Actually I say, you should definitely come to Tunisia and see this, it's the bees knees!!!

Star Wars...

By mid afternoon Christmas day there was a lot of excitement in the group. This was a moment a lot of people had been very vocal about, we were going to the Star Wars sets! Although I love movies and will see practically anything, I am slightly afraid to admit that I have not seen the original three Star Wars films from start to finish.

To get to the set we headed into the middle of nowhere, after about 25 mins I was starting to get a little bored of sand. Then we headed off road and all the fun began! We flew over largish hills and races fellow cars all whilst our driver sang, talked or answered his phone, he was amazing.

We had a brief stop at the location where they filmed the English Patient before racing off to ensure we beat sunset. This moment was well worth the trip as nothing beats watching the sunset, whilst taking about and reenacting out favourite movies...

Something space like...

A beautiful desert portrait

Someone had to do it

Ahhh Ooooo

We finished the night by gathering in the hotel room and watching the first Star Wars - Episode IV: A New Hope off someones laptop.

I fell asleep 20 mins in....

More Adventures!!

On Christmas day we hopped back on the bus and headed to the town of Tozeur. On the way we stopped at Chott El-Jerid a humongous salt lake that covers almost 5000sq km, this is quite a spectacular sight especially as the sun plays with the salts reflections (it was also a location for the first Star Wars film).

We tried to get into the Christmas spirit...

But we are easily distracted!

Next stop was the town of Tozeur where we stopped for a coffee break and managed to make some new friends! The coffee shop we found was fantastic, we ordered a coke and 3 coffees so the waiter went up the street to another coffee shop and got the items . The waiter from the other coffee shop even walked down to give them to us the coffees once ready...

Ah Tunisia..

Our new friend!
After checking in to our hotel, we then ventured out in four wheel drives. First stop was Tamerza, once a  walled town this is one of the most photogenic villages in Tunisia ( at least that's what my lonely planet says!!). Set to a backdrop of rugged mountain rangers this town is also home to beautiful natural springs and is definitely one of the top 30 old villages of all time, anyway, at least. 

View from the village

Where the spring meets the mountains

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Tunisian Food

Today I decided it was finally time to try the traditional tunisian dish لبلابي (Lablabi). There are lots of lablabi shops all over tunis but they always seem a little confusing. As you are given a bowl and a small loaf of bread, the bread needs to be ripped up and then returned to the lablabi man who will add the remaining mixture.


It consists of bread, chick peas, oil, a tomato/meat soup like liquid and lots of harissa. It only cost 2 dinar which is just over 1 australian dollar, so it is a steal!! 
There is a lot of bread so it is very filling and very enjoyable, I will return.

Douz - Part 3 Christmas

These are our 'tents'

We arrived at our campsite and quickly discovered we were not really camping. I think a lot of us had pictured a small bivy under the stars, but we were basically staying at a caravan park. Although I'm not complaining, as we were given a lovely dinner compete with bonfire and music show. The food was also some of the best we have experienced and we all had a very comfy nights sleep!

If there is music it is only a matter of time until...

We dance!!

Quad Biking Through the Sahara

I forgot to mention that after out first taste of the Desert Festival, we also managed to fit in a bit of biking...

It was so much fun, although I'm still trying to get the sand out of my clothes.

Douz - Part 2 The Annual Sahara Festival

After our amazing camel adventure we headed into Douz to experience the Annual Sahara Festival. There were tents set up all over town with stalls and exhibits of local produce and art, we even found a poetry contest which was really interesting despite a large language issue. There were people everywhere enjoying the sun and events taking place, there was a snake charmer in the main street that really brought in the crowds.

This man was trying to catch a glimpse of the snake charmer!
After lunch we headed out in search of the camel and horse racing. What we found was an amazingly entertaining afternoon!!!

We found horses...
We found camels...
We found lost extras from a Ridley Scott film...
As well as acrobats...
And popcorn!!
However the day was not yet complete, next stop was the campsite for our Christmas Eve party!!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Desert Barbie - Coming Soon to a oasis near you!!!!

Douz - Part 1 The Camels

It takes roughly 8 hours from Tunis to Douz, so our first day was entirely on road. After leaving mid afternoon we arrived at our hotel hungry and pooped. There was a disappointing buffet, some wedding crashing and a brief poolside sing-a-long about gravy before everyone headed for bed.

A 6am wake up call was to ensure we were all ready for our sunrise camel ride, although we were running late as usual and the sun appeared to be already up. After choosing a camel we heading into the desert and witnessed the sun emerging from the never-ending hills of sand. It was beautiful and left us all feeling pretty darn special!

The ride lasted a little over an hour with a brief touristic photo break in the middle. We are becoming terrific tourists posing for photos at every opportunity. During the stop I really embraced my inner Arabian Princess ( My Prince of Persia will be proud, don't you just love my Jasmine pants???).

There was a guide to every couple of camels to ensure we didn't fall off or start racing through the desert. Our guide sang bizarre songs the entire way and was kind enough to wrap our scarfs the traditional way. The ride was so much fun and a terrific start to our action packed trip to the South.

Top 5 Things We Did In The South

5. Camping in the Sahara

4. Attended the Annual Desert Festival in Douz

3. Quad biking through the Sahara

2. Watched the sunset over the Star Wars sets


Southern Tunisia

On the 23rd we embarked on a 4 day Tour of Southern Tunisia, the main destinations were Douz, Tozeur and Kairouan. We were setting off in search of ancient city ruins, to ride wild camels and maybe see a Jawa or two... The Sahara had plenty in store for us!

Thursday, December 23, 2010


As Christmas is fast approaching we decided it was time to start celebrating. Although I will spend christmas in the Sahara this year, my friends and I decided an early christmas dinner was also required.

We headed to the historically packed Carthage. It was a great night full of music, laughs and dancing!!!!
Santa even came, we all went home with something exciting!

Like this scarf and jacket, excellent Kris Kringle gifts!!! but then people just got really into the dancing....

Those Tunisian dance classes must be paying off, "Don't put your heel down!"

Arabic Calligraphy

Everyday our Arabic language classes start at 9am and run till 6pm. Although this is roughly a normal working day, I am always left absolutely shattered. So this afternoon the prospect of calligraphy class was amazing.

I'll just say I love calligraphy, and although it is deceivingly complicated it is also oddly relaxing.
Look how good I am at writing my name..

We are normally pretty proud of ourselves.. Great Work Betty!!!!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Look Who I Found In Hammamet...

Bonjour From Tunis...

I didn't really know a lot about Tunisia before I arrived. I have never really been one for history or even geography for that matter, but I guess I've always been willing to learn. So far I've learnt that there is a lot of dirt in Tunisia. Dirt and oranges.

I've also learnt how to say orange in Arabic ( برتقال pronounced Bortukal for the fruit and برتقالي Bortukali for the colour ), yet to learn dirt but maybe that will be this weeks task. I'm currently learning Arabic calligraphy and also Tunisian dance, and I've also located Tunisia on a world map.

This is a picture of my street, complete with the famous Tunisian dust and an orange. Enjoy

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


I am currently living in Tunisia, completing a university exchange and have therefore decided to transform this mediocre blog into an out of this world travel journal.

Keep you eyes pleeled for some truly excting stuff....