Just back from a 10-day tour with my brother in the south of Tunisia. All in all, a surprisingly good cycling destination – super friendly locals, tasty food at every pit stop, freshly squeezed OJ in the morning, spick ‘n span places to lay your head at night, carpet smooth roads (or tapis, as the local roadies call them) and funky music piping out of all the cafes.
Of course, we had our taste of bumpy, corrogated tracks, gale force headwinds, tour bus convoys and heavy rain… But still, a great tour and one I’d very much recommend for anyone in search of accessible desert adventure. Full blog report to follow, when I work my way through the pics… A few posted below in the meantime.
Other news. Cara’s back from her road riding in the Vercors tomorrow. We’re now fully booked for Spiti, with a place left on Sach Pass, and a few on Manali-Leh. All the details are here. If anyone is planning to meet up at the Howies Difi Enduro ride in Wales, ring them and talk your way onto the last few spots!
Camping out by the pistes between Tatouine (of Star Wars fame) and the oasis of Ksar Gilane.
The next morning, we came across this little establishment at a crossroads marked only by an old tyre and a pile of rocks. A cafe! Serving mint tea from grubby glasses. Didn’t take long for the flies to find us.
Occasionally polished hills rose from the vast flatness of the desert. We debated whether they were caused by seismic shifts, or perhaps this area was once a river valley.
In Kibili, we met a local roadie, M’hamed (aka Zig Zag) who invited us to stay in his home and eat couscous with his family. His wooly cycling jersey was what we’d now call ‘old school’. To him I guess it was just old…
Parked up, ready for our coffee break. Every cafe has an ancient expresso machine that’s always on the go.
March is a good time to visit. We had a few days of rain to start off, then skies like this.
But battling into the wind and the sand is part of the Saharan right of passage. At this point, Nick was questioning the definition of ‘holiday’.