Continuing the tour around the Tunisian coastal town of Sidi Bou Said, I discovered another of its good viewpoints is the one right next to Ras Qatarjamah Lighthouse, which is called the lookout. The views are breathtaking and I'd personally recommend it to anyone who wants to get the best views of the bay of Sidi Bou Said with the Mediterranean Sea in the background. The place is not paved because it has only recently started to receive tourists. The guide took us to precisely this viewpoint because it was one of his favorites and receives the least number of people.
A traditional Tunisian house, in the center of a lovely village, but too touristy for Tunisia, Sidi Bou Said. It belongs to Dar el Annabi, a Tunisian wealthy merchant offers the opportunity to learn a little more about life in Tunisia. It is a typical village house with white facade and striking blue doors. Inside the house you can see how they live, you can visit all the rooms, kitchen, bedrooms, bathroom, patio, and rooftop with a wonderful view over the sea and the other blue and white roofs. I think it is also an art gallery. The cost is 2.50 DT per person, ie 1.50 euros, and they serve you tea. In some rooms featuring several scenes depicted with mannequins dressed in the clothing typical of the area. If you go you get an idea of the typical houses of the beautiful Mediterranean town.
Thameur Habib Street is the principe shopping street on the shore of the town of Sidi Bou Said, one of my favorites on my trip in 2007. Here you can find all kinds of souvenirs and typical shops, and of course you need to practice the best and most popular art in Tunisia, which is bartering and haggling. Most souvenirs are hand made by its vendors. Personally I liked the bird cages which were impressive. I think they are all rated depending to the work of the craftsman himself.
The viewpoint of Dar el Annabi is one of the most curious places that can be visited in the village of Sidi Bou Saïd, because while you are taking a tour of the streets of the village you see the difference between the white colors of the facades of the houses and blue windows, Arabic symbols and the contrast with the blue sea. There is a staircase to reach the lookout inside Dar el Annabi and, since it is one of the highest in the area, the views are great. You can see the roofs of the various houses around which gives you a better idea of how the Tunisians live. I thought that the panoramic views were fantastic!
Among the many tourist deals offered by the seaside village of Sidi Bou Saïd are their viewpoints, which are located in many different streets. The best of these viewpoints is Sidi Chabaane which is located at one end of Sidi Bou Saïd. From this viewpoint you can get the best views of the different attractions such as Sidi Bou Said marina, Mersa beach and Abu Said al-Beji mosque, among others.
Qatarjamah Ras lighthouse sits right at the end of the Avenue of Taleb Mehiri, one of the extremities of the village of Sidi Bou Saïd. This is one of the least visited monuments. According to our guide this lighthouse was built on the ancient Ribat Sidi Bou Saïd. Most striking is that it was almost hidden between the vegetation and the area. Right next to this lighthouse is the [poi = 153181] Ras viewpoint Qatarjamah [/ poi], where you get fantastic views of the Gulf of Tunis.
This quaint Tunision village with its cobbled streets and narrow alleys is usually crowded with tourists, so it's full of crafts and souvenirs, where you can buy things of all shapes and sizes, from the typical postcards and T-shirts to the peculiar cages, hand decorated tiles or thumbnails and doors plaques that you can see on every house in the village. You can also find robes, pottery, basketry or olive wood and even, recreations of Roman mosaics. The prices of such items are very affordable, but do not forget bargaining is a must. However, if you are looking for something unique and handmade, you can visit any of the many art and jewel galleries.
Sidi Bou Said is famous for its beautiful bird cages, both on the facades of the picturesque houses & on sale in any [poi = 153612] gift shop [/ poi]. They are made of wood and wire, and painted white; like miniature mausoleums. Design similar to the curved bars that adorn the wooden windows of traditional Arab houses. Tunisians love birds, especially canaries. After visiting Sidi Bou Said, I realized that these cages can also be bought across the country, as they are present in the souvenir shops of any souk. It is also common to see them in the hotel reception, used as a mailbox, or simply as decoration, though I found very original.
At the bottom of the cliff, under the houses of Sidi Bou Said, is one of the country's most prized beaches: La Mersa Beach, a summer resort of the highest social class of Tunisia, washed by the warm waters of the Mediterranean, in the Gulf of Tunis, with fine golden sand. Not very big in size, and next to it is a luxury [poi = 152861] Marina [/ poi].
Sidi Bou Said is a hangout for artists, musicians, poets and writers. Among the many souvenir shops, there are also art galleries, like "The Artist", which is the first turn on the right hand side from the square Sidi Bou Said. Its facade is in tune with the picturesque architecture of the town. The whitewashed houses have doors and balconies that stand out in azure. Admission is free, so I sneaked in to take a look around. It's two storeys, and the top floor has a metal grid that looks onto the floor below. All the walls of the house were filled with oil paintings, other paintings and works of art, which, apart from being on display, are also sold. There is also a jewellery area with mainly silver handmade pieces.
Ascending the hill on which is perched the picturesque village of Sidi Bou Said from the Square November 7 , the main street widens to form a small square that has the "original" name of Plaza Sidi Bou Said. This place is probably the most atmospheric for the people, as it is surrounded by souvenir shops and terraces where most tourists make a stop along the way and enjoy the traditional green tea with pine nuts. In this square there are 2 popular places: The restaurant Le chargi, and Café des Nattes, a tea house occupying the place where Husain ben Ali Bey built a mosque in the eighteenth century.
This wide square, with a roundabout in the center, is the entry point to the village from Carthage and Tunis. It is also the best place to park your car (if you come on your own) or where the bus will leave you if you come on an organized tour, as Sidi Bou Said is a pedestrianised area. Likewise, if you come by train, the train station is here too. I mean, it's a pretty important place! The square houses the mosque Abu Said al-Beji and also has several cafes and restaurants with terraces. From here, you can join Thameur Habib street that will lead you to the heart of this picturesque village and the lively Plaza Sidi Bou Said, with its tea shops and souvenir shops.