"Mahdia - Tunisia's secret" Top 5 Page for this destination Mahdia by Willettsworld

Mahdia Travel Guide: 43 reviews and 170 photos

Mahdia lies in a sheltered situation on a small rocky peninsula, 1.5km (1 mile) long and barely 500m (550yds) across, which is linked with the mainland only by a narrow isthmus. It's located 68km (42 miles) southeast of Sousse and 20km (12 miles) northeast of El Jem. I came here one afternoon after visiting nearby Monastir.

Its name comes from Mahdi ('the well directed') in Arabic, nickname of Obaid Allah, the chief of the Fatimids. It was founded as a fortified port in 916 AD which was incorporated into massive walls, 10m thick, that once surrounded the whole peninsula, the remains of which can still be seen today. It was abandoned in 947 AD and was settled by inhabitants of nearby villages. It the 15th century, Spanish troops of Charles Quint seized Mahdia and it was then plundered, in the 17th century by the knights of Malta who set fire to the town. Mahdia is very small with only a few attractions so it doesn't take long to walk around and seem them all.

  • Last visit to Mahdia: Jan 2008
  • Intro Updated Mar 1, 2008
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  • JLBG's Profile Photo
    Jun 29, 2009 at 12:36 PM

    You have visited Mahdia extensively and you have seen much more than I did! The unknown mosque might be Suleïman Hamza mosque

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