Bboasting some of the Mediterranean’s most spectacular beaches, Tunisia mixes elements of French culture with Arabic influences. With a fantastic array of traditions and customs, a rich historical heritage, a wide variety of landscapes, and hidden gems like the ancient hillside towns of Chenini and Takrouna – there is so much to experience here.
Read on to discover SENTIDO Hotels & Resorts in Tunisia:
This quiet and peaceful hotel allows you to unite body and soul as you learn to relax and focus on your well-being. Try an underwater massage to release any tension, feel all your senses rejuvenate as you soak up the sun on the soft sandy beach or by the glorious pool. Culture buffs can find plenty of excursions into ancient history and you will be able to acquire a true sense of the real Tunisia from your surroundings and in the restaurants and bars as you indulge in some excellent cuisine.
It was the light, the vibrant colours and exotic oriental sounds of Northern Africa that drew so many artists to Tunisia, among them the famous German painter August Macke who stayed at Hammamet to paint one of his most famous landscapes. Feel free to follow in his footsteps or just enjoy the mile-long pristine and quiet beaches a few steps from the stylish and modern SENTIDO Le Sultan. How about riding lessons at the hotel’s professional riding school or some golf? There are so many sports activities to choose from but you can always find time to have a chat at the poolside bar and relax.
The sun feels best when tree shade is near. Walk into the benevolent shade of the magnificent and extensive 9 hectares of landscaped gardens on your way to and from the hotel’s beach. See the light change and detect the smell of jasmine in the air. Trace the traditions that have imprinted themselves on Tunisian culture and cuisine, while planning your day according to your mood. A huge variety is available for golfers, children can escape to their own spaces and souks invite you to take some of the Tunisian feeling home with you where you will relive moments from an unforgettable holiday.
Take a dip in the clear water off this African island where once Odysseus encountered the lotus eaters. When his crew tasted the lotus, they forgot about their homes and wanted to stay in this blissful spot forever. With all that this hotel has to offer you and your children, you may well feel the same. Surrounded by palm-trees this lush oasis sits in a lovingly cared-for landscaped garden. Let the magic of the desert dazzle you and remember that this is the last place where the Berber language is still spoken: hear it for yourself in the Berber villages!
The watchtower of Monastir’s famous ribat or fort, draws many visitors to this lovely city. Skanes, a leafy suburb of Monastir has two pristine beaches that are second to none. Here, between Monastir and Sousse, another city with a Kasbah and medina well worth a visit, you’ll find the modern SENTIDO Rosa Beach located directly on a sandy beach. With its inspirational design and relaxing ambience, this modern hotel is an ideal base to embark on daily trips to experience fascinating culture waiting to be explored. In the evenings you can relax with an exotic drink at the poolside bar and enjoy a cool breeze coming in from the eternal sea.
The Berbers, or the Amazigh, are a people descended from pre-Arab North African settlers, and today live in small communities throughout the Maghreb and other northern African countries. Though the Berber population in Tunisia is only around 110,000, Berber culture is alive and well in several villages around the country. On a glorious Sunday morning during a stay at SENTIDO Le Sultan, CEO Mehdi Allani takes us on a short road trip to visit one such village, perched high on a rocky cliff at 200 metres above sea level. Its name is Takrouna, and it is captivating both in terms of its history and its beauty.
As we approach the village, located in Tunisia’s Sahel region, from Hammamet via the Enfidha-Zaghouan road, the im-posing rock upon which it is perched appears to rise out of the rocky surrounding planes with an elegant sense of calm – one which belies the layered history that has occurred here over the ages. The Berber village was settled in the early 17th century, allegedly by a Moorish tribe who originally migrated to Andalucia and settled near Málaga. After the expulsion of the Moors from the region in 1609, they are said to have returned to found the small mountaintop village, taking its name from their former home near Málaga, Ta Kurunna.
‘This was a Berber tradition, to always be on top of a hill, so they could have a view of any approaching enemies. Of course, this isn’t specific to the Berber – we see it a lot throughout history,’ says Mehdi. The sweeping views here are one of Takrouna’s major highlights. The 360 degree panorama from the top of the village overlooks sweeping, olive tree-studded plains, stretching out to the east to the Gulf of Hammamet, Sousse and Hergla, and, to the west, ‘the Zaghwan’, Mehdi points out to us. ‘It’s at the end of the Atlas mountains, which start in Morocco, run throughout Algeria and end here in Tunisia.’
Daily life for the three Berber families living in Takrouna unfolds at a gentle pace. ‘Some of the families have olive trees – this is almost their only income. They also sell some souvenirs to tourists, like carpets,’ Mehdi notes. A few shops offering brightly coloured handicrafts interrupt the blue and white walls of the steep village paths as we meander up to the peak, where Le Rocher Bleu, a terrace café, cultural space and eco-museum showcasing local arts and crafts, as well as traditional agricultural tools from around the region await, offering shelter from the pounding heat and an interesting insight into the efforts being taken to put this pint-sized village back on the map.
Spearheading the initiative is local artist and descendant from the family’s original settlers, Aïda Gmach Bellagha. Over a mint tea, Aïda tells us of her hard-fought struggle to obtain government support and funding for Takrouna’s restoration, and her relentless efforts to add it to the map of tourist company routes. She’s also worked with many of the local women to help them turn their skills in weaving, artistry and cooking into a source of income. For lunch, we purchase a warm, fluffy round of flatbread which we enjoy with freshly-pressed olive oil, taking in the view in admiration of Aïda’s passion and dedication to preserving the past and paving the way for the future of this little village on the hill.