Destinations Magazine

Couchsurfing in Tunisia: Staying with Dhia in Essaidia, Tunis

By Jsbdsl @jonnyblair
Couchsurfing in Tunisia: Staying with Dhia in Essaidia, Tunis

Couchsurfing in Tunisia: Staying with Dhia in Essaidia, Tunis

I had a crazy time in Tunisia celebrating my 100th country as I was Couchsurfing for the first time ever and our third host on this journey was Dhia. Previously we had stayed with Ayoub in Olympic City and Wicem down on the coast at Teboulba, but now we were back in Tunis just before our flights out and Dhia agreed to host us for three nights.

Couchsurfing in Tunisia: Staying with Dhia in Essaidia, Tunis

Couchsurfing in Tunisia: Staying with Dhia in Essaidia, Tunis

To get to Dhia’s flat we got the metro out to Essaidia station and met Dhia there. His flat was on the ground floor of an apartment block about 6-7 minutes from the station. Dhia was an absolutely fantastic host and here are five cool things about why we loved our stay with Dhia.

Dhia's Flat from the outside

Dhia’s Flat from the outside

1. Invites to Parties
Dhia works hard but also parties hard. In the three nights we were there, he went to a wedding, cooked dinner for us and even better invited us to a party!

Partying in Tunisia in the north of Tunis with Dhia and friends

Partying in Tunisia in the north of Tunis with Dhia and friends

Beers in Tunis

Beers in Tunis

At the party we met loads of new people from Tunisia and further afield and had a great time. Despite being a staunchly muslim country, thanks to Dhia we were able to meet folks who party and drink alcohol.

Dinner at Dhia's flat

Dinner at Dhia’s flat

2. A Cosy Double Room
Dhia let us have a cosy double room to relax for three nights. In fairness though, we didn’t sleep much as we were busy out and about sightseeing and I didn’t rest at all on my 100th country adventure.

Our cosy double room at Dhia's flat

Our cosy double room at Dhia’s flat

3. Fast WiFi
Dhia knew I was on the internet quite a bit and was working online and he had fast internet which meant a late night the first night I arrived to get DSL and my online projects back up to date (well, almost).

Working online from Dhia's flat

Working online from Dhia’s flat

4. Good Food
Dhia had food prepared for us which was a spaghetti bolognese one night and cous cous the next night. It was great food as well.

Spaghetti with squid

Spaghetti with squid

5. Local Neighbourhood
Dhia’s flat is in a local neighbourhood, near to Essaidia metro station and also only one stop down from the Bardo Museum. We got to see the local way of life on the streets and also there were no tourists about. Don’t let anyone fool you by saying Tunisia is touristic – it’s really not. You rarely see another backpacker here and in nine days in the country, we probably only saw 9 backpackers outside of the Medinas.

Dhia's neighbourhood

Dhia’s neighbourhood

I’d like to thank Dhia so much for letting us stay and we wish him happy and safe travels and hope to see him again one day.

Dhia's bathroom

Dhia’s bathroom

Kitchen at Dhia's flat

Kitchen at Dhia’s flat

On a negative note, Tunisia is a disorganised country. The public transport networks are horrendous and their national airline carrier, Tunis Air are the worst airline company I have ever flown with in my life. Not only did they lose (steal) my baggage, but their check in situation is appaling, and their website doesn’t allow flight bookings either. Take the hint and DO NOT fly with Tunis Air.

Here are some videos from our time Couchsurfing in Tunis with Dhia in his flat in Essaidia:

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