How to Get Around
Visitors can discover Tunisia on the cheap by taking advantage of the country’s extensive public transport system. The public local and long-distance transport system in Tunisia consists of bus, rail, collective taxis and individual taxis.
The country maintains 19,232 kilometers of roads, with the A1 Tunis-Sfax, P1 Tunis-Libya and P7 Tunis-Algeria being the major highways. Tunisia has a total of eight major airports of which five handle international flights.
Tunis-Carthage Airport in the capital city and Monastir-Habib Bourguiba Airport are the country’s most significant airports serving the largest number of international passengers while Jerba, Tozeur, and Tabarka also handle overseas flights. Tunis Air is the country’s national carrier and serves European, Middle Eastern, and North African destinations. From the Carthage airport, the most common arrival point for tourists, you can transfer to the city by both airport buses and coaches as well as by taxis that are available outside of the arrivals area. Taxis tend to be trustworthy (see below), but the airport is an exception: immediately upon arriving you will be bombarded by drivers seeking clients who will usually fail to turn on the meter and charge five to ten times the normal amount. Make sure to tell the driver to put on the meter (“est-ce que vous pouvez mettre le compteur” in French).
Once you’ve arrived, getting around both within Tunis and between cities is simple by a number of modes of transport:
Rail: Much of Tunisia’s rail infrastructure was put in place by the French, but Tunisian authorities have developed and expanded the system. Tunis-Goulette-Marsa or TGM, for instance, is a Tunisian railway line linking the capital Tunis with La Marsa via La Goulette, picturesque northern suburbs that are frequently of interest to tourists.
In order to move around Tunis the capital, one can also use the Metro léger (light rail), usually just called the Metro.
Bus: National buses are air-conditioned, fast, comfortable, and cheap, and travel daily to most towns across the country.
Taxi: Can be found in most cities and towns in the country with greater availability in the tourist areas in the capital. Yellow cabs in Tunis operate on a metered system and are relatively inexpensive. Cabs in other areas may or may not be metered; if they are not then you should agree on a price to your destination before starting the journey.
Collective Taxis: Long-distance shared taxis are called louages. They are white and red vans that leaver their departure points when full, and that serve the whole of Tunisia. This is the quickest form of public road transport, in part because the vans are known to drive significantly faster than all other traffic, a practice which has its upsides and downsides. There are many louage stations and prices are similar to those of buses and trains, significantly less than individual taxis or renting a car.
Car hire: Major international and local companies are plentiful, the charge usually includes insurance and breakdown coverage. To rent a car, the driver must be over 21 and hold a full driving license that has been valid for at least one year.
There are different ways to reach your destination, but whether you take the bus, the train or the louage, your journey will be enjoyable and full of unforgettable memories.