The Medina of Mahdia (See on map)

A few minutes from the hotel stands the medina of Mahdia, which is full of history and charm.

The Skifa Kahla, an ancient fortress built in 916 AD by the Fatimid, is today the main entrance of the Medina. Its merchants have remained faithful to the traditions and most of them do only display handicrafts (carpets, silk, antique jewelry, traditional clothes ...). You will certainly be captivated by the fantastic oriental atmosphere just upon your arrival.

Leaving the Skifa Kahla, go straight. You'll love strolling along the alleys of the old city where Tunisian typical old houses juxtapose. By moving forward, you will first arrive at The craftsman´s house where silk weavers will shape, for you, the patterns of your choice. A few steps further you will reach «Dar Sghir», an authentic Tunisian house that opens its doors for you to discover the everyday life's traditions in Mahdia. And that is not all; you can also uncover those of marriages which hold a crucial place in the customs of the city.

Every Friday, all the artisans of the city meet between "Skifa Kahla" and the fishing port to display their finest creations. This is the Friday´s souk, a real Aladdin's cave. Very quickly, the noise of people's bargaining invades the place in a world of colors, scents and flavors. Be there !

            Did you know ?

  • The traditional dress of Mahdia is the richest of Tunisia.
  • At weddings, it is this traditional dress that distinguishes women based on their marital status (young lady, newly married, married, pregnant ...).
  • The full dress of a bride consists of ten pieces richly embroidered with gold thread and decorated with jewelry made of gold, diamonds and pearls.
  • Costing more than 15 000 €, the traditional dress is a symbol of the importance of women in the society of Mahdia and represents a significant savings for the bride.

  On the traces of the past (See on map)

Several sites and monuments testify to the glorious past of the city of Mahdia (Mahdia history). Among the best preserved, we can cite :

  • Skifa Kahla : Built between 916 and 921 AD by the Fatimids, it served as the unique terrestrial entrance to the city.
  • The Great Mosque : Its construction coincided with the construction of the Fatimid city at the beginning of the tenth century. At that time, the mosque was reserved for the Caliph Obaid Allah El Mehdi and his acquaintances. It is distinguished by the fact that it has no minaret as well as by its magnificent porch similar to the Romans' triumphal arches.
  • The Ottoman fort : Probably built on the ruins of the palace of the Caliph Obaid Allah El Mehdi, the Ottoman fort is a military fort built by the Turks in the late sixteenth century.
  • The Punic port : Dug into the rock, the old port dating from the Punic era served as a trading and military center. The traces of ramparts that surround it as well as the two portals that were protecting its entrance are still visible today.
  • The Amphitheatre of El Jem : At 42 km from the city center stands the Coliseum Thysdrus (now called amphitheater of El Jem), the largest after that of Rome, and with a capacity to accommodate up to 30,000 spectators. Built by the Romans around the third century, the coliseum had been the place for gladiatorial battles and exhibitions with wild animals. Since 1985, it hosts each summer the symphonic music International Festival of El Jem.
 

To visit: The Museum of Mahdia

Its adjoining position with the imposing fortified gate of Skifa Kahla, gives it the privilege to highlight, from the lobby, the old wall of the city of Mahdia when the latter was the capital of the Fatimid.

The visitors´ itinerary will take you through four sections reflecting the major chronological periods as well as the diverse civilizations that the region had known.


  Also to see (See on map)

  • The Marine Cemetery : Thousands of white tombs are dispersed along the coast of Cape Africa. Sea, history, spirituality and nostalgia, everything there makes this place the second most beautiful marine cemetery in the world. Do not be surprised by seeing natives strolling and even swimming there; as the place has something magical.
  • The mini zoo and the botanic center : The area is just in front of the hotel; you can find more than 25,000 plants, most of them are aromatic or medicinal. You can also see rare birds and other exotic animals. You can even have fun with the kind species that you can touch and feed (camels, goats, donkeys, rabbits...). Rare species are in couples to ensure their reproductions.