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Budget Travel to Tunisia, A North African Oasis

Aug 17, 2007
Tunisia is the smallest of the North African countries but also a very popular one, with a culture and historical sights to compete with the best in North Africa. The fact that Tunisia was occupied by many of the great Mediterranean empires during its turbulent history, has given it a unique and interesting way of life which is unlike its larger neighbors.

There is plenty to see and do in this small country and in fact many European citizens do. With stunning Islamic architecture, Roman and Carthaginian ruins and amazingly friendly people it was always going to be a tourist hot spot, but add to this a beautiful sandy coastline and amazing desert landscapes in the south and you have yourself one hell of a destination.

The best time to visit Tunisia is the spring months between March and May when the temperatures are nice and warm, summer is popular with European citizens and can be stiflingly hot and the accommodation is at a premium.

Health-wise - The medical services available in Tunisia are not of a very good standard and if you are taken seriously ill, the chances are you will need to be evacuated by air to Italy. Waterborne viruses are a problem so basic water hygiene will need to be taken into consideration, such as boiling the water or even better drinking only bottled water. As is the same with any hot country, you will need to watch out for sunstroke and dehydration as well as sunburn. Drink plenty of water, take in plenty of salt and cover up! Snakes are a problem in the south, so keep your wits about you if you visit the region.

Visas and docs - Most western citizens can stay in Tunisia for up to three months without needing a visa, though Australian and New Zealand citizens can only get two weeks on arrival. Extensions are easy to obtain in Tunis, though they will take around two weeks to issue. Israeli citizens are not allowed into the country.

Cost - Tunisia is a budget travelers dream destination with plenty to see and costs which are extremely low. A budget of $15 a day will get you by easily enough, including a night in a guest house, local transport and food. If you budget a little more you will be able to have a more comfortable guest house and have the chance to visit the more out of the way places.

The Sights - For such a small country, Tunisia has a wealth of sights and activities for the visitor. Tunis the capital is a relaxed place and it is easy to stay here for a few days without wanting to escape. There are plenty of sights within day trip distance from the city including some wonderful ruins such as ancient Carthage and Utica.

The coastline is fantastic with some stunning beaches and bays and there is something for everyone ranging from the jet-setters amongst you to those looking for a more secluded place to stay. The only problem with this is the fact that in the summer it is packed out with European citizens who have discovered the beaches in the last five years.

Another highlight of a visit to Tunisia is visiting the Oasis town of Tozeur, with its spectacular scenery and vibrant market life. A great way to enjoy the scenery of the worlds greatest desert is to take a three day camel safari, a great experience and amazing value!
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