The Douz Rundown
Many travellers know Douz as the ‘Gateway to the Sahara’. A small town in the south central part of Tunisia, this popular destination attracts visitors looking to understand the beauty of the desert and to learn more about the people that inhabit this oasis at the edge of the Grand Erg Oriental. A picturesque view of the tall and smooth dunes is not to be missed. Nor can one avoid the inexplicable silence of the desert space. As a major palm oasis, the vast palmeraie is dotted with more than 400,000 trees, each shooting towards the sky.
The dunes are not the only shots worth taking. Douz is the home of the Museum of the Sahara. The curator proudly displays the unique traditional nomadic desert culture of the Mrazig people. Travellers learn how they have settled in the region for several generations. In the last weeks of the year, Douz is the proud host of the International Festival of the Sahara. This four-day celebration of desert culture celebrates with music, dancing, poetry, camel wrestling and horse racing. In addition to the activities staged for guests, Thursday is market day – a busy cultural experience that you must not miss.
When To Go
Considered a mild climate, Douz is quite warm throughout the year, characterized by cool winters and hot dry summers. It is best to take your holiday in Douz in the spring or fall, when it is pleasant. The desert is beautiful, and visitors to Douz should also know that it can get very hot in the summer months. July is the hottest month of the year with 12 hours of daylight each day. June and August have days each with 11 hours of sunshine. It is safe to say that you will need your sunscreen! Surprisingly, the high tourist season is between June and August. The winter months have the temperature falling and a few days of rain; January and February are the wettest time of the year.
- The warmer months: May to October – lows 18°C (64°F) and highs 43°C (110°F)
- The cooler months: November to April – lows 10°C (50°F) and highs 23°C (73°F)
- January and February wettest months
Most international travellers will be flying into Tunis International Airport, Tunisia’s leading airport. It is advisable to use an airport taxi to transport you to the city of Tunis. Fares vary, so please be sure to ask. From Tunis to Douz, you can travel by hired car, car rentals or by bus. Taxis are fortunately very reasonable – 50 Euros (TND 96) from Tunis to Douz. Surprisingly, renting a car is fairly expensive in Tunis. Because of the narrow streets and lax traffic rules, many tourists are advised to travel by public transport or car hire. The Tunisian National Bus company travels to most towns. They are cheap and fairly comfortable. When in Douz, taxis or other car hire services are the key! If it is the Dunes you are traveling to, it is better experienced by camel, motorcycle or a sports utility vehicle. Like most travel destinations, many will volunteer to guide you while in Douz. Choose wisely!
- Flights to Tunis International Airport
- Taxis and car rental available
- Bus services to other towns