Ecotourism is a form of tourism involving visiting fragile, pristine, and relatively undisturbed natural areas, intended as a low-impact and often small scale alternative to standard commercial (mass) tourism. Its purpose may be to educate the traveler, to provide funds for ecological conservation, to directly benefit the economic development and political empowerment of local communities, or to foster respect for different cultures and for human rights
``Discover the scenic landscapes and ecological wealth of different ecosystems of Tunisia, as well discover the specifics of the Lives of natural areas and traditions.``
National Park of El Feija:
       located 195 kilometers west of Tunis and 50 miles west of Jendouba, is a Tunisian
national park. It covers a total area of ​​2632 hectares including 417 hectares constituting a
totally protected area fenced for preservation of the Barbary deer.
We can observe it in clearings early morning or at sunset. Its weight can reach 180 pounds
and his height garrot. National Park El Feija is endowed by a Mediterranean climate with wet
rainy and cold winter. In January the average temperature is 7 ° C and can drop to 0 ° C,
causing the snow that can reach 1 meter in height.
In summer, the temperature rises in a remarkable way and is in average  about 29 ° C with 
peaks  of   45 ° C  when the Sirocco wind blows from the Sahara.
The park area has several water sources of varying importance. There are about 24 water
points  19 of which are permanent sources of iron. The five others are sources of drinking
water, landscaped fountains or captured to supply water to the surrounding rural
populations.
From the perspective of rich flora, the park ranks first nationally. This is due to the
diversity of soil and climatic factors, topography and geology. The flora of the park is
basically a Zen zenaie composed of oak, the cork oak forests consisting of oak trees and
mixed forests composed of both varieties. One can also observe the ferns, Cyclamen
(African violet) endemic to North Africa, fragrant violet and orchids.
National Park of El Feija houses 25 species of mammals including the largest Barbary deer it
is considered the emblem of the park. We also find the golden jackal, red fox, serval,
European spotted genet, weasel, dormouse, rat, striped hare …
Barbary boar, very abundant in the oak forest, contributing to its regeneration by
facilitating the germination of seeds when he returned to the ground with his snout in search
of larvae and tubers.
National Park Jebel Zaghouan:
        Is located 50 km south of the city of Tunis and 35 km from Hammamet, has a 
remarkable an archaeological ,cultural and biological value.
Djebel Zaghouan National Park is one of the milestones of themountain Ridge has been
called in recently built park. Stretching over nine kilometers long and three 3 meters
wide, it vanishes in a gentle slope, but is fragmented by deep canyons overlay. The
summit, which  rises to 1295 meters at Ras el Gossa ,sometimes capped with snow.
Rainfall varies between 400 and 500 mm/ year.
National Park dominates Zaghouan’s rich agricultural areas, like those of Bir M’cherga
,Cheylus and Mograne.
The oak is dominant around the summit and  the North Slope.
Its western slope is forested with Aleppo pines, Carob and wild Olive trees. There is also a
rich variety of herbs such as Thyme and Rosemary.
800 meters above sea level  Maple, Cedar ,Barbary oak and pistachio dominate. On the
edges of cliffs, you can see the golden eagle, peregrine falcon and the peraenopter the
vulture .
Other species abound in the park, jackals, boars , mongoose,  wild cat and the rabbit as
well as  all kinds of reptiles, lizards, snakes and vipers.

Dougga:
          Standing high on the side of a valley, Dougga is the best-preserved Roman city in
tempered North Africa.It was originally the seat of the Numidian king Massinissa, but was
under Roman administration from the second century AD.
It was accorded World Heritage Site status by UNESCO in 1997.Some families continued
to live among the ruins until they were relocated in the 1950s.
The Capitol
Built in 166 AD, this is one of Tunisia’s most impressive Roman monuments. The four
front columns support the remaining fragments of the temple pediment, which features a
statue of Antoninus Pius.
Dar el-Achab
Located below the forum, southwest of the Temple of Tellus , it dates of 164 AD and was
probably originally a temple but is named after a family that once occupied the site.
Roman Villas (3rd century AD)
The houses stand along a paved road. The most intact villas include the House of
Dionysus and Ulysses,
the House of the Trefoil (Trifolium)and the House of the Seasons.
Lycinian Baths (AD 260)
Also known as the Winter Baths, this complex of cold and warm rooms and gymnasia was
richly decorated; the floors were covered in mosaics and the walls lined with marble.

The National park Jebel Ichkeul
            
           home to  many animals including water buffalo, wild boar, jackals, otters and
porcupines.The park is a tranquil and uplifting place to visit at any time of the year;
there are some picnic areas  and several  trails.
Poppies and wild chrysanthemus bloom in the fields around the lake,  from parking lot a
steep climb leads to a small Eco-Museum which details the area’s flora and fauna and
explains the ecological importance of the lake. It also has a collection of stuffed birds.
Ichkeul is the last important bird sanctuary in North Africa and provides a vital
stopping point for birds migrating between Europe and Africa.
If you visit it at dawn or dusk from October to February, thousands of waterfowl can be
spotted on the lake.

Bulla Regia:

        This Roman site is as remarkable as HYPERLINK "http://en.tunisientunisie.com/?p=107" \\t "_blank"Dougga but, because it is less well known,it is
never overrun with visitors , making it much more secluded. Neolithic tombs at the site
suggest Bulla Regia was inhabited long before the Romans and it was certainly the capital
of one of the short-lived Numidian kingdoms. After it was annexed by Emperor Hadrian
in the 2nd century it became one of the wealthiest Roman cities in North Africa.
The rich wheat and olive merchants of the town used to escape the summer heat by
retreating into the underground villas.
These villas were paved with beautiful mosaics and  some of the best have been moved to
the Bardo Museum  in Tunis, others remain undisturbed for centuries.
These include the mosaic of Venus and a cupid riding on dolphins at the House of
Amphitrite and a mosaic of a fisherman at the House of Fishing,the oldest surviving villa
theHouse of Hunting has an elegant colonnaded courtyard and a sophisticated  private
baths complex.
Bulla Regia‘s two most impressive public buildings are a small and beautifully-
preserved theatre with special seating reserved for its most important citizens, and the
imposing Memnian Baths close to the site’s entrance.

THUBURBO MAJUS:

      lies in a beautiful valley surrounded by hills, and is -along with Dougga, BullaRegia,
Makthar and Sbeïtla -one of the most important Roman ruin in Tunisia,with many
impressive monuments.
A café and restrooms are at the entrance.This Roman settlement was established in 27
BC, close to the Punic town. In AD 128, after a visit by the Emperor Hadrian, Thuburbo
Majus was granted independent status of a municipium (City), and later, in AD 188, it
became a colony.
Located on the trading route between Sousse and Carthage, surrounded  by fertile land,
Thuburbo Majus grew rapidly. Most of the public buildings and homes decorated with
mosaics dating from the 2nd and3rd centuries. In the4th century some ofthe buildings
were extended and the town’s name was changed to ResPublica  Felix Thuburbo  Majus.
However, the continuing conflicts between Donatists and Catholics, then Vandal raids and
finally the Arab invasion led to the town’s downfall.On this site, immediately past the gate
is the forum (each of its sides is 49 m/161ft long), which is flanked on three sides by vast
Corinthian columns. Its most important feature is the Capitol temple(one of the largest in
Africa),which is dedicated to Jupiter ,Juno and Minerva. Fragments of the 70-m (230-ft)
statue of Jupiter are kept in the Bardo Museum, in Tunis . On the forum’s south western
side stands the Temple of Mercury (3rdcentury), which has eight column bases arranged
in a circle. The south eastern side of the forum features a small temple and was once the
site of the town’s administrative buildings.
Beyond the forum, just to the right, are the Summer Baths .They occupy an area of 2.8sq
km (1.1 sq miles). They were once decorated with statues of  Aesculapius,Hercules,
Mercury and Venus and with exquisite mosaics that can now be seen in the Bardo
Museum. The entrance leads to the changing room ;further on was the frigidarium with
three pools, the tepidarium (the warm room), the caldarium (the steam baths) and the
sudatorium (the sweat room).Adjacent to it was the Palaestra  Petronii(AD 225), an
exercise yard enclosed within Corinthian columns that is named after the rich family who
funded it. The letters engraved on the pavement at the south end form the board of the
“36letters” game that was widely used to learn the alphabet. Higher up the hill are the
Winter Baths, a well preserved complex with
a black-and-white mosaic floor.
The southern section of Thuburbo Majus contains a temple dedicated to Baal -the layout
indicates Roman and Punic influence in equal measures. To the east of it stood the
sanctuary of Caelestis, which was later converted into a three-aisle church. The Roman
cellar became the baptistry and the forecourt of the temple was turned into a cemetery.
Occasionally, a procession is held here in honour of St Perpetua, a saint who died a
martyr’s death in Carthage.

BIZERTE:
 
       Is the principal town on the northeast coast of Tunisia and is situated on the canal
that links Lake Bizerte to the Mediterranean.
It was once a Byzantine fortress  ,with  traditional  brick arrangement  that can be seen to
this day. The Kasbah dates from the 17th century. Behind its huge walls, which are up to
10 m (33 ft) high in places, it is a self contained town within a town which includes
atmospheric streets and alleys, a mosque, baths and a number of homes. The Fort Sidi el-
Hanni tower now houses the Oceanography Museum, which has a small collection of sea
creatures. Originally, there was only one gate leading to the medina, which is now hidden
behind the facades of the houses that line the banks of the canal. Until the 19thcentury it
was surrounded by a 6-m (20-ft) high wall that was 3.5 m (11 ft) thick. All that remains of
it now is the segment between the Andalusian district and the so-called Spanish Fort. The
Spanish Fort is actually Turkish in origin and was built in the 16th century. Little of its
original structure remains, though a Muslim cemetery lies within its defensive walls. The
fort’s terrace offers a magnificent view over the surrounding area, including the Old Port
and the modern harbor. In summer it serves as a venue for concerts .The Great Mosque
at the centre of the medina was built in the 17th century. Its octagonal minaret is crowned
with a balcony that can be seen from every point along the promenade. The mosque is
surrounded by a number of small zaouias (tombs), but the most important of them , the
Zaouia of Sidi Mostari, is situated some distance away. This tomb was built on the orders
of Murad Bey, in1673. It features an ablutions room, a dome-covered sanctuary
containing El-Mostari’s tomb, and a beautiful galleried courtyard. It is worth visiting the
Andalusian quarter where theArab refugees from Spain settled in the 17th century. Once
situated beyond the town walls, it had its own mosque, with a square minaret topped by a
roof of green tiles. The houses here also have a distinctly Spanish character with light
blue doors decorated with studs and nails. However, with the passage of time, the town
wall vanished and the Andalusian quarter lost much of its identity.
Returning to the medina, to the quay side promenade, it is worth stopping in Café Le
Pasha. In the evening its terrace provides a lovely view of the canal and the colorful lights
of the nearby cafés. Immediately behind the café, situated between the souks, the Old
Port and the harbour, is Place SlahedineBouchoucha. Here, a 17th century mosque
featuring an octagonal minaret is decorated with an external gallery. One section of the
square is occupied by a market selling fish, fruit and vegetables. A short distance further
on is the Tourist Information Bureau. Immediately behind it the canal walk ends, but
continues walking along its opposite side and there is a good view of the Kasbah walls. The
main street that runs along the quay leads to the beach, and further on  to the tourist zone.
Head west from the town centre along Avenue Habib Bourguiba to reach the Military
Academy and, further on, the European cemetery with the nearby Martyrs’ Monument
commemorating victims of the 1961 pitched battle between the French garrison and
Tunisian forces that included many barely-trained volunteers. The road leading to the
new part of town and the Ras Jebel peninsula goes over a vast drawbridge. Cap Blanc,
situated 10 km(6 miles) away is the northernmost point of the African continent.

Regional Museum of Popular Art and Traditions Kef

         Walk up past the Presidential Palace to reach the town museum on a roundabout
within the old walls. It is devoted to the rural life of the Bedouin and the hill farmers.
The buildings which houses the museum is sometimes still called the Zaouia of Ahmed
ben Ali bou Hadjer, a marabout who came from Oran in Algeria and founded a zaouia
of the Er Rahmania  a Sufi Brotherhood founded in 1784. Otherwise it is named after one
of his descendants, a leading nationalist, Ali ben Issa, who was buried in one of the rooms
in 1956.
Passing through an open courtyard, straight ahead is the tomb room, filled with displays
of wedding dresses, cosmetics and jewelry. Even today, most Tunisian women make their
own shampoo and many of their own cosmetics, particularly kohl and henna, and you will
recognize many of their ingredients in local souks.
The other door from the courtyard leads to the main exhibition of the rural Bedouin and
Berber way of life. In the centre of the room, a large tent takes pride , filled with carpets,
chests, implements and a coffee-pot boiling over an orange bulb. The collection of
domestic pottery demonstrates one of the great problems faced by Tunisian
archeologists, for the modeled pottery of the countryside has not changed appreciably
since the Neolithic revolution 4000 years ago, and is therefore difficult to date.
The display of wreathing shows kilim carpets, strips for tenting, cushions, saddles, bags
and Sacks. The tribal looms had to be highly portable and are no more than 60cm wide.
Any genuine rural kilim or tent is made of many strips, laboriously sown together.
Vital to a shepherd’s life are his whistles and pipes. The music echoes across the hills to
locate and lead the herd, and also provides a sense of companionship in an otherwise
lonely occupation.
Cooking, centers on the grindstone and couscous pot, and the essentials of earthenware
pottery. The olive barely features in the lives of these inland farmers, for this was the
land of rancid butter(ghee), not oil.
Another courtyard, planted with basil and mint, leads into a horseman’s room, a tradition
which goes back to the Numidia cavalry and the Arab conquest. You can see intricate
embroidered saddles, the influence of Moorish Spain in the development of a high
Western saddle, and learn just how to wear your Arab scarf.

Museum of Chemtou in Jendouba:
     
         stands beside an exacavated length of Roman road, on the other side of which the
old marble workshops are in use as an archaeological store. The museum is a model in its
kind which richly exposes both the town and the imperial quarries.It also houses uniquely
rich collection from the indigenous Berber culture of the ancient Numidian kingdoms.
For the non-specialist the highlight of the collection is the reconstruction of the hilltop
monument to Massinissa that was built by his son Micipa in 130 BC.It was converted in
the late Roman period into a temple to Saturn/Baal Hammon before being turned into a
church by the Byzantines.It reveals a fascinating medley of cultural influences with its
Doric columns, olive branch foliage, Macedonian amour and Egyptian details. Scholars
argue whether it could  have been carved by  Carthaginian masons who built the near
contemporary Mausoleum of Arteban at Dougga, or whether it was executed by Sicilian
carvers.
Amongst other attractions within the museum is the Roman-era copy of Polyclete’s 5th-
century BC statue of the young athlete which once embellished the Dii Mauri hilltop
sanctuary, a terracotta Hercules, a model of the river powered mill by the Roman bridge,
tools used for quarrying and a display of marbles of the ancient world keyed into their
quarry sites


Iles Kerkennah

        The cluster of seven islands 20km off the coast of Sfax has been called ‘ The Last
Paradise ‘ and would appeal to anyone trying to get away from it all.
Once a place of exile for the Carthaginian general Hannibal and Tunisia’s former
president Habib Bourguiba, there are two main inhabited islands, Chergui and Gharbi,
joined together by ferry from Sfax, arriving at Sidi Youssef on
the South-western tip of the island ,with a single main road running 35km north to the
fishing village of El Attaia.
Fishing remains the main source of income for most of the 15,000 islanders. Strings of
clay posts for catching squid can be seen on many quaysides; palm fronds are used to
channel fish into waiting nets. Although tourism now supplements the islands’ economy it
remains very low-key and recent plans by the Tunisian government to transform Iles
Kerkennah into a massive purpose-built resort area appear to have been dropped. The
small west coast tourist zone of Sidi Frej consists of a handful of modest hotels.
Borj el-Hissar, an old fort 3km north of Sidi Frej, was built by the Spanish in the 16th
century; It is surrounded by Roman ruins and has the remains of several mosaics.
Remla, the biggest settlement, has a few shops and cafés and one hotel, the Jazira. With its
shallow waters and long stretches of empty sandy beaches, the area is well-suited to
walking and cycling.

TABARKA:
        Is just 22 km (14miles) from the Algerian border and is one of the greenest towns in
Tunisia. Its picturesque setting includes beaches to the north and gentle hills overgrown
with Cork Oak, pine and mimosa to the south. The town stands on the site of a former
Phoenician colony, Thabraca. During Roman times Tabarka was an important port used
for shipping grain from Béja and marble from Chemtou to Rome. As well as its forests full
of game, Tabarka’s greatest asset was its coral reef. In the 16th century the exclusive
rights to coral fishing were granted to the Genoese who built an offshore fort close by.
With the advent of the French Protectorate, in 1881, coral rights were taken up by the
French and Tabarka and LeKef were two of the first towns to be occupied .Tabarka is
quite small. It centre rounds two streets running parallel to the coast, where most of its
restaurants and cafés can be found. The red-tiled roofs of the buy it for this reason.
Genoese fort can be seen from almost any point in town but the best view is from the
jetty. The beautifully located hotel Les Mimosas also affords a magnificent panoramic
view of the town, the gulf and the surrounding area. A little further west from the harbour
stands an ocre coloured rock formation -Les Aiguilles (The Needles), sharpened by the
constant erosion of wind and rain. A Cork Museum is a short way out of town on the road
leading to Aïn Draham.  It provides  information on cork production in this area.
Tabarka has quiet beaches and a number of golf courses. It also has some of Tunisia’s
best diving. About 60 km (37miles) north of Tabarka is the Galite archipelago, which can
be reached by boat from Tabarka.

The other side of Tunisia
TUNISIA ECOTOURISM
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