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Centre Culturel International de Hammamet 

Happy happy happy…. Finally the sun is shinning, although it is supposed to be winter here in Tunisia. Our sweet colleague, Jackie, had promised to show us the most wonderful area, which is located only halfway to the old medina in Hammamet. The name of the place is “Centre Cultural International de Hammamet” and is today owned by the Tunisian Government. It is made into a public attraction, which each year in the summertime is housing smaller festivals. The site is a member of the “International Network of Cultural centres meeting”, which has 40 centres worldwide. 

Originally the place belonged to the Rumanian patron Georges Sebastian. He built the house In the 1920’ies, where It quickly became a recognized place for famous artists and performers to stay for a longer period. House of Sebastian has among others housed Marshal Rommel and Winston Churchill.


When you walk through the gate, you step directly into the gardens of Sebastian, which is gardens in plural as he initially designed the gardens for the diversity of different environments that will lead visitors from one garden to another, while crossing invisible borders that are market with a winding road or a low wall. There are so many beautiful trees, flowers and places in the garden which leads all the way throughout the are and do finally to the beach.


We started out following a twisted path, which lead us through the fruit orchard, with the most delicious orange and lemon trees. It also led us to the exhibition of the old tools that workers used in the orchard in the past. Following we reached the open theatre which has a wonderful view over the ocean.

In the other end of the garden you find Villa Sebastian, a grand house, which today only is used as an exhibition. In the house it is possible to see the former living room, rooms with both hammam and bathrooms, paintings and various sculptures. On the terrace you will find George Sebastian’s own pool, which is surrounded by the house and the gardens itself.


We had a cosy and silly walk around the garden, as you can see in the pictures. We recommend all who visit Hammamet to pay “Centre Cultural International de Hammamet” a visit. The price is 5 DT per. Person and the visit is worth the money. 

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