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Sousse Travel Guide - Travel S Helper

Sousse

travel guide

Sousse, often known as Soussa, is the capital of the Sousse Governorate in Tunisia. The city, which is 140 kilometers (87 miles) south of Tunis, has a population of 271,428 people (2014). Sousse is located in the country’s middle east, on the Gulf of Hammamet, a portion of the Mediterranean Sea. The name might be Berber in origin; similar names can be found in Libya and Morocco’s south (Bild al-Ss). Transport equipment, processed food, olive oil, textiles, and tourism are the mainstays of its economy. The Université de Sousse is located there.

Sousse is a popular tourist destination. It has a Mediterranean climate, which is moderated by the coastal location, making it a year-round destination with hot, dry summers and mild, rainy winters. Orchards and olive trees line the lovely sandy beaches.

Hotel complexes with a capacity of 40,000 beds stretch 20 kilometers (12 miles) north along the beachfront to Port El Kantaoui, just 20 kilometers (12 miles) from Monastir and Monastir Habib Bourguiba International Airport. Every year, around 1,200,000 people visit the city to enjoy its hotels, restaurants, nightclubs, casinos, beaches, and sports facilities.

On June 26th, 2015, a lone shooter, subsequently identified as Seifeddine Rezgui Yacoubi, opened fire on vacationers sunbathing on a beach between the Riu Imperial Marhaba and Soviva hotels, killing 38 people and wounded 39 others before being shot and killed by police.

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Sousse | Introduction

Sousse – Info Card

POPULATION :  City: 271.428    /    Metro: 674.971
FOUNDED : 
TIME ZONE :  CET (UTC+1)    /    Summer: CET (UTC+1)
LANGUAGE :  Arabic (official and one of the languages of commerce), French (commerce)
RELIGION :  Muslim 98%, Christian 1%, Jewish and other 1%
AREA :
ELEVATION :
COORDINATES :  35°50′N 10°38′E
SEX RATIO :  Male: 49.58
 Female: 50.42
ETHNIC : Arab 98%, European 1%, Jewish and other 1%
AREA CODE :  3
POSTAL CODE :
DIALING CODE :   +216 3
WEBSITE :  Official Website

Tourism in Sousse

Sousse is a popular tourist destination. It has a hot semi-arid climate that is moderated by the coastal location, making it an all-year resort with hot, dry summers and warm, mild wet winters. Orchards and olive trees line the lovely sandy beaches.

Hotel complexes with a capacity of 40,000 beds stretch 20 kilometers (12 miles) north along the beachfront to Port El Kantaoui, just 20 kilometers (12 miles) from Monastir and Monastir Habib Bourguiba International Airport. Every year, around 1,200,000 people visit the city to enjoy its hotels, restaurants, nightclubs, casinos, beaches, and sports facilities.

Sousse is a famous tourist destination, notably for its vibrant nightlife and nightclubs that will have you dancing till the early hours of the morning. Bora Bora, Living, Rediguana, Platinium, and the Saloon are well-known nightclubs. Fairground for well-known events. The best dance producers and DJs perform in the different clubs. The season usually starts in early June and ends with the Closing Parties on the first weekend in October.

Sousse is one of Tunisia’s oldest towns, with a genuine medina that has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is a famous tourist site for Russians, Serbs, Croats, British, Germans, and other East Europeans. It is located on the coast and features beautiful beaches as well as a lovely turquoise water.

Climate of Sousse

Its climate is classified as hot semi-arid (BSh) by the Köppen-Geiger climate classification system, bordering on hot-summer Mediterranean climate (Csa).

The highest temperature ever recorded was 48 degrees Celsius (118 degrees Fahrenheit) on August 28, 2007, while the lowest temperature ever recorded was 0 degrees Celsius (32 degrees Fahrenheit) on December 27, 1993.

Economy of Sousse

After Tunis and Sfax, Sousse is the country’s third biggest city.

Despite the fact that Sousse is known for olive oil production and other sectors, tourism now reigns supreme. Since Antiquity, an olive grove covering more than 2,500 square kilometers (965 square miles) has been one of the country’s principal assets. A bustling harbor, open to the town center, lends a lively element to the town’s activities.

How To Travel To Sousse

Get In - By plane

The most convenient airport is Monastir, which is 20 minutes south on the coast and is commonly used by vacation charter planes; another alternative is Enfidha Airport, which is located on the outskirts of the city but is still reasonably accessible by rail and shared cab.

Get In - By train

Sousse is located on the main road that connects Tunis in the north to Sfax and Monastir in the south. Because of its central location, it is ideally positioned to reach the majority of the remainder of the railway network, even as far south as Gabes on the coast and Tozeur on the edge of the Sahara. In Grand/1st/2nd class, for example, prices from Tunis to Sousse are 12/10/6 dinars. Tunisian railroads are mostly used for freight, with passenger traffic taking a second seat. Don’t expect to be rattling along at 100 mph; 50 to 60 mph is more likely, and the rolling stock (carriages) might be of low quality.

However, rail services are typically dependable and, more importantly, inexpensive, even for first-class passengers (Grand Classe Confort). They can be a great way to see the nation; nevertheless, don’t anticipate Pullman-style service. The S.N.C.F.T., the national railway operator, has a functional website with timetables and rates, albeit you’ll need some basic French to navigate it because the English language option was “under construction” at the time of writing. Tunisian railroads are covered in Wikipedia’s page, which includes a map illustrating network coverage.

Get In - By bus

The city is connected to the rest of Tunisia by bus (car). There is also an alouage (shared-taxi) service that covers the entire country. The city bus station (Gare Routiere) is located close to the Medina in the town center, while the distant bus station (Gare Routiere) is located a short distance west of the Medina at the Souk El Ahad (“Camel Market”). Although the prices are marginally lower than second-class rail tickets, many buses lack air conditioning.

Get In - By Car

Sousse and Tunis are connected by the A1 highway. The roadway is subject to a toll. Sousse is also passed by National Road 1 (RN1), which connects the city to the country’s south and Libya. The roads are in excellent shape. During the summer, an automobile ferry runs once a week between Sousse and Trapani, Italy.

Get In - By boat

Only in the summer months, auto ferries and express boats link Sousse with Trapani (once a week for vehicles and people) and Mazara del Vallo through Pantelleria (three times a week for passengers). Trapani is 7-8 hours away, while Mazara del Vallo is 5 hours away. The marina in Port El Kantaoui is open to private vessels and yachts (a resort about 12 km north of Sousse).

How To Get Around In Sousse

Get Around - Taxis

Taxis in Sousse have a horrible reputation, so it’s better to settle on a price before getting in and make sure it’s not a ‘per person’ pricing. If you’re not sure what a fair price is, inquire at your hotel’s front desk. Taxis have meters, but drivers are generally hesitant to use them; be forceful and demand that it be reset to the 0,310 Dinar (0.31 Dinar/310 Millim) “Standing Charge” at the start of your voyage. One popular tactic is to leave the previous fare on the meter so that it gets added to your current fare before you even get on the bus. Check that the meter has been reset and is on the right setting for the time of day before turning it off. Rates are greater between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m., at 0,510 Dinar/km, than during the day. Many drivers, on the other hand, have changed their meters and now charge “special prices” to visitors. A regular daytime fare between Sousse and Kantaoui with a standard meter is around 4,100 Dinar, although in most situations, the ticket will be around 7 Dinar with a “special rate” on the meter. Before stepping inside the cab, you can, however, agree on a fee. If you do, expect to spend between 5,000 and 6,000 Dinar. Taxis are yellow with a taxi license sticker on the front windshield.

Get Around - Shared taxis

Large automobiles or minibuses/people carriers that start their journey when they are full are known as shared taxis (Collection taxis, Louages). Expect to spend 10% of the price of a cab, as this is a popular mode of transportation among the locals. Shared taxis may carry you further than conventional taxis, connecting you to most of Tunisia’s larger cities. Shared taxis for locations inside the same or nearby city (e.g. Hergla, Chott Mariem) are yellow with a blue stripe through the centre. White cabs with a red stripe go between cities (long connections). There are additional white taxis with red, black, blue, and yellow stripes in Sousse that serve locations in the surrounding region (eg. Akouda, Hammam-Sousse,Kantaoui, Chott Mariem). They depart from “Station Louage,” which may be accessed by cab (see above).

Get Around - Tuk-Tuk’s

Tuk-tuks and mini-trains will take you to Port El Kantaoui, which is around 12 kilometers distant. They are open, shared transportations that begin their voyage when they are completely full (or almost). Expect to pay 2 dinars for the first travel and 2.5 dinars for the second. Tuk-tuks are a vibrant purple color.

Get Around - Horse-drawn carriages

Horse-drawn carriages are another choice for a delightful journey to Port El Kantaoui, and they are just slightly more expensive than a cab (if you bargain).

Prices In Sousse

Tourist (Backpacker) – 29 $ per day. Estimated cost per 1 day including:meals in cheap restaurant, public transport, cheap hotel.

Tourist (regular) – 78 $ per day. Estimated cost per 1 day including:mid-range meals and drinks,transportation, hotel.

MARKET / SUPERMARKET

Milk 1 liter $0.55
Tomatoes 1 kg $0.45
Cheese 0.5 kg $8.40
Apples 1 kg $1.40
Oranges 1 kg $0.75
Beer (domestic) 0.5 l $
Bottle of Wine 1 bottle $4.00
Coca-Cola 2 liters $0.95
Bread 1 piece $0.30
Water 1.5 l $0.30

RESTAURANTS

Dinner (Low-range) for 2 $
Dinner (Mid-range) for 2 $19.00
Dinner (High-range) for 2 $38.00
Mac Meal or similar 1 meal $2.90
Water 0.33 l $0.25
Cappuccino 1 cup $0.75
Beer (Imported) 0.33 l $0.96
Beer (domestic) 0.5 l $
Coca-Cola 0.33 l $0.48
Coctail drink 1 drink $

ENTERTAINMENT

Cinema 2 tickets $9.00
Gym 1 month $28.00
Men’s Haircut 1 haircut $
Theatar 2 tickets $
Mobile (prepaid) 1 min. $0.06
Pack of Marlboro 1 pack $2.80

PERSONAL CARE

Antibiotics 1 pack $2.00
Tampons 32 pieces $
Deodorant 50 ml. $
Shampoo 400 ml. $
Toilet paper 4 rolls $0.95
Toothpaste 1 tube $

CLOTHES / SHOES

Jeans (Levis 501 or similar) 1 $63.00
Dress summer (Zara, H&M) 1 $37.00
Sport shoes (Nike, Adidas) 1 $70.00
Leather shoes 1 $58.00

TRANSPORTATION

Gasoline 1 liter $0.78
Taxi Start $0.25
Taxi 1 km $0.45
Local Transport 1 ticket $0.27

Beaches In Sousse

The crystal clear blue waves and beautiful sand make Sousse beaches one of the most popular tourist destinations. Many of the beaches are ideal locations for a family picnic. Here are some suggestions for you.

Main Boujaffar Beachfront

Along the lengthy expanse of white sand that makes up Boujaffar Beach, you’ll notice high-rise hotel towers. At this beach, everyone may enjoy the gorgeous blue waves and white sand. This beach is an excellent spot to take your kids for a picnic.

The Promenade

The beach along the Promenade is ideal for sunbathing and boasts a lengthy expanse of white sand. You may choose to ignore the locals selling a variety of goods, or you may choose to look at what they have to offer and purchase something. Nonetheless, it provides a fantastic perspective and access to the pure blue sea, as well as the vibrant nightlife that comes alive in the evening. This beach allows you to hold a long beach party from dawn to night.

The Coralia Club Palm Beach

This is a secluded beach where you may bask in the sun and discover solitude and serenity. The Coralia Club Palm is located on this beach. If you’ve gotten enough sun and are well-rested, you may spend your time at or near the beach participating in water activities such as scuba diving, kayaking, water skiing, or sea fishing.

Occidental Allegro Abou Sofiane

This beach near Hamman Sousse is without a doubt one of the nicest Tunisian beaches ever discovered. It features extensive lengths of beautiful white sand, and the pristine, crystal blue waters will tempt you to swim. Because the crystal blue waves are shallow and not harmful for children, this beach is ideal for families vacationing with children.

Hammam Beach

Because the water may not be cool enough to dive into and the water is a touch cold here, Hammam Beach is ideal for roaming about and getting your feet wet. You may still have a pleasant picnic with your loved ones. If you are staying at a hotel, you may request that the hotel prepare a picnic basket for you and your family to enjoy, or you can purchase food from neighboring restaurants.

Sights & Landmarks In Sousse

The labyrinthine medina in the centre of Sousse has all of the city’s major attractions. Wander around the western residential districts and get lost; they are full with lovely surprises. There are signboards indicating a “culture stroll” that you may take. The medina ascends to higher land on the western side, where the sea may be seen.

  • Grand Mosque of Sousse. Despite its position in the heart of the city, this area is surprisingly calm. Built about 850 AD in the Aghlabite style, this mosque is plain and austere, with only a series of angular Arabic and curving arches for adornment. Instead of a carpet, the prayer chamber is carpeted with reed mats. You must be appropriately dressed to enter, but for a little cost, green wraps may be rented to cover up.
  • Sousse Ribat. While not as large or magnificent as the Ribat in Monastir, this walled holy place is well worth a visit and was home to a branch of Islamic warriors who were comparable in nature and doctrine to the Hospitaller Knights of Rhodes. The view from the top of the watch tower over the Medina is spectacular. TND 5 to enter; TND 1 to photograph.
  • Mosaic Museum. On the outskirts of the Medina, in the softly disintegrating ancient Kasbah.
  • The Traditional Tunisian House (Musee Dar Essid). A beautiful small museum tucked up just within the old city walls. Follow indications for Musee Dar Essid as you approach the Ribat from Hotel de Paris along the north wall. It was the house of a long-established Tunisian family that has now been converted into a museum following the death of the last member of the family. The home is centered on an open courtyard from which all of the rooms, including the first and second wives’ bedrooms and, in turn, the children’s rooms, can be accessed. All are well decorated, with some drapes going back over 200 years and German clocks from the 1800s. The home has a tower, which was originally used to monitor the stars at the start of Ramadan, and from which you can get views of Sousse – it’s higher than the Ribat. There’s also a little cafe with spectacular views. This is a must see! 1 TND for photo rights out of 4 TND.

Food & Restaurants In Sousse

A decent supper may be had for roughly 10 dinars or less (depending on where you go), although costs are typically inexpensive. You won’t have to haggle over rates for this.

Budget

Peuple’s Restaurant (Peuple’s Restaurant). The Hotel de Paris is right next door. Good couscous with a salad beginning and watermelon and tea for dessert. Estimate 10 dinar per person.

Mid-range

Restaurant Libo is a great seafood restaurant in the waterfront, directly across from the pirate ships. TND 15 for a fresh-from-the-port seasoned and grilled fish, and TND 2.1 for a drink.

Coffee & Drinks In Sousse

Drinking tap water is typically safe; nevertheless, some people, including practically all visitors, prefer to consume bottled water, which is widely available (and extremely inexpensive, costing roughly 0,200-0,400 TND for 1/2 liter and 0,300-0,650 for 1.5 liter). The most prevalent type of water is “mineral water,” which is non-carbonated (non-sparkling). Carbonated water is also available, but you must specify whether you want water with gas (eau avec gaz) or Garci (carbonated water) (the most popular brand).

Expect to pay between 0.800 to 1,5 TND for a Coke (depends if in a supermarket or hotel).

Tea is the inhabitants’ favorite beverage, and numerous tea-based dishes may be found at the town’s various cafés and restaurants. The au menthe (tea with mint leaves and sugar) and the aux ammandes are popular among locals (tea with crushed almonds and almond essence). The majority of the natives will drink it while smoking chicha (the local name for a hookah). When purchasing items of a somewhat high value (above 60-70 dinar) from stores in the souk, expect to be served tea.

Because it is a city in a Muslim nation, alcohol may be difficult to get by and pricey due to low demand. Many residents enjoy wine and beer, thus several cafés and supermarkets will sell these beverages. Expect to pay 2-12 dinar for a bottle of local wine at a shop, and 2-3 dinar for a 0.3 bottle of local beer (invariably Celtia brand) (double in a bar). Because most locals avoid it, hard alcohol is exceedingly difficult to get by and extremely costly (much more so than in the Nordic countries). Hotel bars (3-6 dinar for 50 ml of vodka or gin) and Magasin General groceries are your best choices (state owned stores, the only ones authorized to sell hard liquor – one is located on 7 November avenue, near the Sousse Palace hotel). It costs around 80-120 dinar to buy a bottle of gin or whiskey. On Fridays, no alcohol is sold.

Shopping In Sousse

Expect no language barriers because merchants speak practically every common language (French, English, Spanish, German, etc.) – you may mix and match languages if you wish.

  • Medina including the souk located in the center of the city. Expect to haggle or barter in the city’s ancient part, which houses the local market.
  • Soula Centre just outside the souk has fixed prices, it is useful to establish values before bargaining in the souk (of course there is no fun).

Everything is reasonably priced, yet vendors will not hesitate to quote outlandish rates, necessitating negotiation. Take it all in stride and have a good time when haggling. Obviously, the Medina is home to a great number of counterfeit designer items.

If you don’t plan to buy anything and are merely interested in looking about, don’t waste your and their time. Say you’re not interested or that you don’t have any money left politely and with a grin. If you can’t agree on a price, don’t feel obligated to buy.

After you’ve purchased something, don’t keep worrying about the price. Consider how good of a bargain you got and how much you would have spent in your native nation.

Festivals & Events In Sousse

A Flair of International with a Side of Olive Oil

The summer months are when the Sousse Festivals take place. The Sousse International Festival, the largest and most well-known, takes place in July and August, while the smaller Sidi El Kantaoui Festival in Hammam Sousse takes place in July. The Mediterranean Olive Tree Festival in December is an exception to this summer rule. This event takes place at Kalaa Debira. Festivals are an important element of Tunisian culture, and Sousse is no exception. These festivities delight the locals, particularly the International Festival.

Sousse International Festival

The event is well-known for having a procession with some of Africa’s most artistically constructed floats. Traditional African food and dancing are also popular at the International Festival. The procession and festival take place at the same time as the Sousse Carnival. Local artisans and vendors can be found here. During the festival, symphonic orchestras will perform a number of performances. This festival, like those held in many other places around Tunisia, is one of the country’s largest.

Mediterranean Olive Tree Festival

This event is dedicated to olive oil, as its name suggests. Fresh oil samples are available for tasting. Fresh olives and souvenirs made of olive wood are available. At this occasion, there is also traditional singing and dance from the region.

Nightlife In Sousse

Sousse is one of Tunisia’s few cities with a lively nightlife (mostly during high season though). There are two types of establishments: posh pubs, clubs, and discos, and shady cabarets (low scale). The final two are more localized (music and crowd), and while they may pique your curiosity as a phenomena, they are frequently frequented by hustlers who, when combined with a cheap beer, often result in disagreements and mass brawls (quickly resolved however). Although many pubs and discos are housed in hotels, the most well-known ones are stand-alone establishments.

Living / Banana / Saloon disco. Entrance is free, beer is 5 TND, and the party runs from 0:00 to 04:00 every day. These venues, however themed differently (ambiance and music), have the same positioning (“VIP”) and owner and are conveniently placed in the Sousse hotel zone between Samara hotel and Movenpick (“Bora-Bora” open air disco). Dress well for a more relaxed tourist crowd.

Be One / B1 club disco. Entrance is free, beer is 5 TND, and the party runs from 0:00 to 04:00 every day. Located between the Houria Palace hotel and the Vincci Resort in Port Kantaoui. A classy establishment with a beautiful calm and partying more tunisian clientele, european / arabic dance music, lots of couches, 2 bars, dancefloor, and a high platform in the center for naughty females to dance. By 02:00 in the off-season, the place is usually packed. Put on a nice outfit.

Edge bar. Every day from 23:00 to 02:00, 4 TND beer will be served. Located in Avenue 14 Janvier, near Les Oliviers, in the Cesar Palace hotel between Sousse and Port Kantaoui. One of several hotel bars (with separate entry), this one is a little more upscale, with a good and relevant (4-star hotel) more tunisian audience and mixed European/Arabic music. On your way to B1, this is a nice location to stop for a pre-party. Normal attire is appropriate.

Stay Safe & Healthy In Sousse

At any moment, walking alone is not dangerous. Until late at night, most streets are highly active. You will be revered if you respect the natives. Even if some of the city’s areas appear shabby or dangerous, crime is almost non-existent.

Expect considerable commotion in the souk (medina), which is to be expected. Merchants are often eager to show off their wares and businesses to discover what you like. You must get into the spirit to enjoy yourself, constantly be kind, and smile. This is not hazardous, even though it might be bothersome at times.

Women should avoid the red light district in the medina’s northwestern section, which is accessed through two overlapping walls that separate the street from the rest of the medina. Single women going alone may be gazed at, but this is not a hazardous situation, but rather the result of some local men’s interest.

Most persons who approach you on the street and speak English to you are attempting to sell you something; take a chance and finish the discussion fast to avoid them becoming enraged if you don’t purchase; a simple ‘non, merci’ should work.

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