Monday, October 13, 2014

Tunisia Trip Day 10

Whew, last full day in Tunisia. I enjoyed the time off from work since there was no Internet most of the trip, but I'm ready to go home. Today was mainly spent at The National Bardo Museum and the many ancient Carthage ruin sites.

First stop was the Bardo. For some reason, our driver didn't know the operating hours so we got there at 8:45am but the museum didn't open until 9:30am so he had us wait. We tried to walk behind the museum to see the parliament building but a guy in an uniform and an assault rifle (pretty sure it was a Steyr AUG) stopped us and told us to go back. Nevermind.

The museum was modern and housed lots of excellent exhibits. However, one thing bothered me. Some exhibits were roped off that weren't really closed. I was approached by an employee who took me to see a few items behind ropes and told to take pictures quickly. I knew where this was going but went along anyway. After about 10 minutes of this, he asked for money. I was about to give him a few dinars but he asked for US currency. Thinking I had a few $1 bills, I pulled out my wallet and only had a $5 so I gave that to him. Another person in our group said the same guy was doing the same thing when he was here back in February.

Entrance to Bardo... not open yet

Tunisia has lots of beautiful doors

The Demna baptistery (Byzantine)

Room full of huge mosaics

Mosaic in the museum lobby

Parliament building behind museum

Next on the agenda was Carthage. Since ancient Carthage was so large, archaeological sites were spread across a wide area. We stopped at a few sites and the Carthage museum. We also stopped to visit the North Africa American Cemetery and Memorial.

Another amphitheater. This was just next to the road and not very well maintained.

View from the Carthage Museum

Huge new mosque

Ruins of a 5th century church next to the mosque

American Cemetery and Memorial

The Antonine Baths near the coast

I had a pizza and two cans of cold soda for lunch... glorious. The pizza was okay.

The final stop of the day was Sidi Bou Said which is sometimes called the Santorini of Tunisia due to the white buildings and blue doors. We walked around the streets a bit, took lots of photos, then went back to the hotel for dinner, and said our goodbyes since I was leaving for the airport the next morning at 4:30am. I thought it was too early but our driver said it was good.


Door + window

Another door

Cafe des Delices

Hotel Majestic. The only hotel we stayed at that had consistent AC and wifi.

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