Edit Blog Post
Published: April 3rd 2010
Tabarka was a very pleasant surprise. Being just 22km from the border with Algeria it was, of course, brimming with Algerian tourists. It gave the place a bustling but pleasant feel to it.
Once ensconced in the comfortable Hotel La Plage, we went for a wander as dusk fell on the town. The port area with the Genoese Fortress looming high in the background was quite atmospheric but most of its cafes are not yet open for the season. Quite why there is an Avatar-esque Mermaid at the entrance, who knows! We ended up eating in a cheap and cheerful place on the main road which served up delightful fish at a fraction of the price that the marina restaurants would have charged.
The next day began with a coffee and freshly squeezed orange juice in the Cafe Andalous
with its ornate tile work and collection of interesting knick-knacks hanging from the ceiling. Afterwards we walked out along the promenade, past the tacky touristy stalls, to the rock formation known as The Needles
. Whilst not comparable to those on the Isle of Wight, they are nonetheless a place to stroll out to and a good location for photographing the fortress.
A little further out of town a new venue is being constructed for the summer music festivals which Tabarka is famous for. It’s going to be an impressive amphitheatre with an incredible view over the Mediterranean. A path behind it led uphill to a great viewpoint with the whole town and bay beneath us. That’s the panoramic photo at the top of the blog.
After a light lunch on our balcony we decided to climb up to the fortress. It’s not too strenuous but you do get a lot of stares from the Algerian families picnicking in the woods on the way up! All of the guide books suggest that the fortress is occupied by the Tunisian military. It’s not true and if you are lucky, one of the coral souvenir sellers near the summit will let you in and tell you about the construction and history of the place. Now our French isn’t really up to much so he must have spoken using very basic words and phrases as we understood rather a lot!!! It was great getting a private tour of the fortress but it really should be possible to visit it without feeling as though you
are doing something illicit!
On our second evening we went to a slightly posher restaurant and chose fresh fish from a selection brought out to us. We chose, well, who knows what! We think it was probably a red mullet and a sea bream but we are far from experts in these matters!! TheFiesta
also have a small, secluded beer garden/terrace. Although it appeared to be men only, Trish was happy to sit out and have a beer, and nobody seemed to mind.
So, Tabarka, not too big and not too busy but a beautiful place to while away a few days.
Tot: 1.508s; Tpl: 0.018s; cc: 9; qc: 31; dbt: 0.0087s; 1; m:saturn w:www (18.104.22.168); sld: 2;
; mem: 1.4mb