Although Tunisia takes up just a thin wedge of North Africa, there's enough beauty and history here to make up for its small stature. The Mediterranean coast is full of sea breezes and blossom-scented Mediterranean air, while the fish caught in the sea and served exquisitely is always fresh and delicious. The country is famous for its beach holidays but it's the distinct and ancient culture that makes it so intriguing. As for landscape, the north of the country is deeply forested in parts and hosts thousands of pink flamingos in countless deep blue lakes dotted with islands. The south is where you'll find the storied golden sands of the Sahara Desert and the nomadic Berber tribes. The capital city of Tunis is modern Arab city and worth at least several days.
Although most of the country's tourists are resort-bound, the Tunisians love backpackers and independent travelers. Unless you're staying in a fancy resort, you won't see a lot of tourists. But this doesn't mean travel is difficult here. It's not. There are affordable guest houses, lovely old colonial whitewashed hotels, sidewalk cafes and tons of restaurants serving not only local favorites but also pastries and pasta at a tenth of the cost of what you'd pay in Europe. There are also ancients monuments to explore, as well as villages to roam where you’ll be welcomed into homes. This is the advantage of traveling in a country that doesn't get a lot of tourists off the beaten path. Also, transportation is easy here, reliable and cheap. The whole country is laid-back, more so even than Morocco.
Kairouan is a walled city and one of Islam's holiest. This is the city where Arabs established their very first base when they first arrived from the East in 670. Kairouan went on to become so important that seven visits to this little city is equal to one visit to Mecca. Today, as always, the most revered occupations are praising Allah and selling carpets. Try not to get lost in the city's medina where the narrow alleyways twist and turn like a cat's intestine. And make sure you haggle to get the best bargains, and also watch out for unscrupulous carpet salesmen. Many people are always on the lookout for naive foreigners. The houses are striking in their whitewashed crumbling elegance and it's always a good idea to stop and drink coffee with the locals in the afternoons. After a while, you get a feel for who you can trust. It's usually just those trying to sell you something that you have to watch out for. The majority of people are honest and just want to be your friend.
Beyond its sun-drenched beautiful beaches, Tunisia is also an exotic land of desert oases, Roman ruins, charming mosques and walled medinas. On the southern edge of the Cap Bon peninsula lies Hammamet, a well-established, cosmopolitan resort, complete with a vast sandy beach that offers a great selection of watersports. When you are not relaxing on the sands, practice your swing at the resort's two golf courses. Or immerse yourself in the local culture with a trip to the souks, where you will find everything from sparkling brass and pottery to colourful kaftans and pungent spices.
Alternatively, venture further afield and take a wander round the ruins of the ancient Carthage or spend the day exploring Tunis, the country's fascinating capital. Back in the resort, there's a good selection of restaurants and open-air terraces to choose from and the hotels offer a vibrant mix of live entertainment and discos.