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When one is researching Tunisia and the various places to visit in the country, the usual destinations are the likes of Tunis, Sousse and Hammamet. All of these are incredibly tourist-friendly and will offer attractions at any time of the day, whether it is day or night.


Taking this into account, few people are likely to be aware of another area of the country named Tabarka. This completely contrasts the above three locations, with this being a small, traditional town that is a favourite amongst the Tunisian locals.

It does share several similarities with some of the popular locations, with the white sandy beaches probably being the most obvious. However, in general it is a very cultural town that will only appeal to the local people. The fact that it has its own fort which has not been opened to the public also highlights just how the authorities have attempted to keep this region away from the hordes of tourists that visit Tunisia every year.

tabarka travel guide

Bearing the above in mind, Tabarka is certainly a very interesting location in the country. We’ll now take a look at some of the premier attractions in the town and the reasons why it has proved so popular with the Tunisians.


Music Festivals

Considering the fact that Tabarka has been billed up as a traditional town, the last thing you will expect to hear is that its music scene is thriving. There are countless music festivals held in the town and interestingly, they appeal to a wide audience of people. For example, one month there may be several jazz festivals, while another you might be greeted by Rai beats. Nevertheless, while festivals will appeal to the tourists, it is debatable on whether or not they are commercial enough to attract foreigners.


Traditional high streets

When one first arrives in Tabarka it will be clear from the outset that this is an under-developed zone. Again, this reinforces the fact that it has simply not been designed for tourists, with the cobbled pavements and backstreet cafes all emphasising this feel. Many of the shops are family owned and a lot of Tunisians are happy to circulate around the old-fashioned streets, taking in the smell of shisha as they soak in their national atmosphere.


Coastal Activities

With Tabarka being situated so close to the beaches, it won’t be a surprise to see that many visitors take advantage of the coast. Many will go out snorkelling and scuba diving, with locals being able to point out the best places for fish and shipwrecks. Again, this is not your typical seaside holiday resort, but the locals do take pride in their waters and it can be possible to explore them even if you are an ‘outsider’.


Kroumirie Mountains

Another activity that focuses on the local environment is a trip to the Kroumirie Mountains. The beauty of this area is second to none and visitors will be blessed with countless elements of nature, whether it is chestnut trees, cork oaks or the dry rivers. This is classed as one of the most relaxing areas of Tabarka and many old people make it their priority to regularly visit the region just to rest. Additionally, it can attract visitors from afar during the winter period, with the snow making the surroundings absolutely picturesque.


A summary on Tabarka travel

In comparison to a lot of places in Tunisia, Tabarka is unquestionably one of the towns that places less emphasis on the tourist trade. This is clear from the outset, with the streets retaining no commercial feel and instead relying on the traditional Tunisian features.

However, while this article may have indicated that Tabarka is completely against tourists, this isn’t the case at all and some do decide to venture over there. The likes of the Kroumirie Mountains can make an excellent day trip while some locals can be happy to show you around the intriguing waters should you strike lucky.

About Olivia Marsh

Olivia Marsh - Author - Professional chef and Travel enthusiast.
Culinary Institute of America (CIA) graduate. Chef Marsh has traveled the globe from France, Italy, Germany to China, Thailand, India, Tunisia and more.
Olivia lived in Tunisia for almost 10 years now.
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