Medina is the ancient part of Tunis, the old city and the first Arab-Muslim town, which is now a World Heritage Centre. Back in the twelfth century, this center was considered the wealthiest in the area.
Today Medina is a hive of activity from the colorful market areas to the heritage sites. There are over seven hundred historical monuments from magnificent mosques and noble houses to delightful palaces and fountains.
The city was originally surrounded by walls, which have since been removed but the large gate will let you know you have arrived in the most exciting area of Tunis, the fragrances will grasp you as you walk through the narrow streets and visit the souks (shopping areas).
It’s really interesting to watch, but getting around Medina is done on foot, even deliveries are done using push carts rather than modern transport such as a motorcycle.
The streets and covered alleys are alive with colorful markets, turning them into a very busy hive of activity. You can buy anything at any of the souks from clothing and perfumes to fresh produce, wool or traditional carpets.
Souk El Attarine is popular for fragrances and perfumes, Souk El Kmach is where you visit for fabrics and Souk El Birka is where you find the most magnificent jewelry. Then there is Souk El Lefta where you find the carpets, blankets and other textiles and Soul Es Sarragine is famous for leather goods.
The fun with visiting any of the souks is the bargaining, you are expected to barter when shopping in the busy market areas.
As you leave the souks or wander down the narrow alleys, take time to notice the superior ancient architecture. Visit some of the mosques and palaces and be sure to look out for the picturesque fountains.