A historical city , formerly called « Ruspina », Monastir is often the first Tunisian city to be perceived by the tourists, because most of the flights coming from Europe land in the international Habib Bourguiba airport of Monastir-Skanès.
On arriving in Monastir , the first thing you see is the amazing red color of salt marshes , and – along the road leading to Sousse – the white mounds of evaporated , dried and treated salt.
The present name of the city originated from ( monasteriun) , which means monastry.
The city was built around the « ribat » constructed in 796 by Harthama by order of the Calife of Bahgdad Haroun Ar-rachid.
Monastir is venerated by the Tunisian for being the birth place of the ex-president Habib Bourguiba . As such, it was restored with splendor.
Monastir is a source of artistic inspiration, for it is wrapped in strangeness and secrecy.
It is also known for its nice marine cemetery, Sidi- el- Mezeri, with its marabouts and white tombs. Monastir is also a tourist attraction, enjoying fantastic architectural riches
A rare specimen of a series of fortified monastries built in the 9th century by the defenders of Islam, the « Ribat » of Monastir is an impressive monument.
See also the mausuleum and the Bourguiba mosque ; the islamic museum ; the traditional costume museum