Theme Week Tunisia – Bizerte

Friday, 25 August 2017 - 12:00 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, Union for the Mediterranean
Reading Time:  5 minutes

Old Port and Kashba of Bizerte © O.Mustafin

Old Port and Kashba of Bizerte © O.Mustafin

Bizerte, also known in English as Bizerta, is a town of Bizerte Governorate. It is the northernmost city in Africa, located 65 km (40mil) north of the capital Tunis. The city had 143,000 inhabitants in 2014. Bizerte is on a section of widened inlet and east-facing coast of the north coast of Tunisia, 15 kilometres from Ras ben Sakka (the northernmost point in Africa on the Mediterranean Sea), 20 kilometers northeast of the Ichkeul lake (a World Heritage Site), 30 kilometers (18 miles) north of the archaeological site of Utica and 65 kilometers north of Tunis. Bizerte has to the west coastal hills forming an outcrop of the Tell Atlas with well-conserved woods and vantage points. Its associated beaches include Sidi Salem, La Grotte, Rasenjela, and Al Rimel. It is on a section of Mediterranean climate coastline, close to Sardinia and Sicily, as opposed to coasts in the south of the country which have a year-round dry desert climate.

The city is centered on the north shore of the canal of Bizerte linking the Mediterranean Sea to a tidal lake, the Lac de Bizerte which is larger than all parts of the town combined, to the immediate south. Built-up areas are in three directions: South-west along the widening canal with jetties at Pecherie and Jarrouba, the latter associated with Bizerte-Sidi Ahmed Air Base adjoining the opening of the lake and military/rescue heliport. North are Sidi Salam and Corniche. They are within meters of the coast and on coast-facing slopes of the Ain Berda, a range of hills toward Cap Blanc, a small headland in the Ain Damou Plage natural conservation area. Zarzouna, Menzel Jemil and Menzel Abderrahmane are on the south shore of the canal, formed by the locality of Zarzouna and the towns of Menzel Jemil and Menzel Abderrahmane, by a moveable bridge and both Menzels face the lake itself. The rest of the isthmus on which they stand is the gently rising Foret de Remel, reaching a high point east of its forest area at Cap Zebib.

Old Port and Kashba of Bizerte © O.Mustafin Kasba © Selma JMII/cc-by-sa-4.0 © Imen Bouhajja/cc-by-sa-4.0 Port de Bizerte © Mokrani Farah/cc-by-sa-4.0 Port of Bizerte by night © Gigi sorrentino/cc-by-sa-4.0
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Port of Bizerte by night © Gigi sorrentino/cc-by-sa-4.0
Due to Bizerte’s strategic location on the Mediterranean, France retained control of the city and her naval base after Tunisian independence in 1956. In 1961 Tunisian forces blockaded the Area of Bizerte and demanded French withdrawal. The face off turned nasty when a French helicopter took off and drew fire. The French brought in reinforcements; when these were fired upon, France took decisive military action against the Tunisian forces. Using state of the art weapons and decisive force the French took Bizerte and Menzel Bourguiba. During the three days, 700 Tunisians died (1200 wounded); the French lost 24 dead (100 wounded). Meetings at the UN security council, and other international pressure moved France to agreement; the French military finally abandoned Bizerte on 15 October 1963.

Bizerte’s economy is very diverse. There are several military bases and year-round tourism. As a tourist centre the region is however not as popular as the eastern coast of Tunisia. There is manufacturing (textile, auto parts, cookware), fishing, fruits and vegetables, and wheat. The port of Bizerte has been developed into a significant Mediterranean yachting marina in 2012. The superyacht section of the marina is called Goga Superyacht Marina, and has berths for yachts of up to 110m in length. It is expected that this will give a significant boost to the local economy as the yacht owners and also the hundreds of professional crew will become year-round consumers. The service industries supplying the yachts will gradually develop and bring additional employment.

Here you can find the complete Overview of all Theme Weeks.

Read more on discovertunisia.com – Bizerte, Wikivoyage Bizerta and Wikipedia Bizerte. Learn more about the use of photos. To inform you about latest news most of the city, town or tourism websites offer a newsletter service and/or operate Facebook pages/Twitter accounts. In addition more and more destinations, tourist organizations and cultural institutions offer Apps for your Smart Phone or Tablet, to provide you with a mobile tourist guide (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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