Pytheas's spot of the month: Matmata in Tunesia

23 June 2008, 00:00

Author: RouteYou

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Pytheas's Choice

Globespot of the month


Every month, we ask somebody to be a modern Pytheas and tell us something about the most amazing place they have ever experienced, and explain why this is!

Globespot of the month: Matmata in Tunisia

The Pytheas of this month is Anissa Douchiche. She is born in Tunisia and has lived for several years in Belgium. She joined RouteYou since February this year.

We asked here to share with us her globespot of the month. And she picked an amazing spot in the desert of Tunisia, which even has a link with Star Wars.

Here is here story:

Matmata in Tunisia


The globespot of the month is Matmata. The village is about 40km from Gabes, an important city near the coast. Gabes is known for its unusual coast oasis.

Matmata is located at an altitude of 600m. This extraordinary place is known for its troglodyte dwellings. The soft rock in this area is ideal for digging. More than 700 dwellings were dug out in the soil.

The city of Gabes with an unusal coast oasis
Source image : Wikipedia

Bron foto: Wikipedia

Matmata en Star Wars

Hotel Sidi Driss in Matmata, was the filmspot of the movie of Georges Lucas: Star Wars. This spot was the 'home' of the family Lars, the guest family of Luke Skywalker and Beru.


The underground settlements remained hidden in this very hostile area for centuries, and no one had any knowledge of their existence until 1967.

The name Matmata is the name of the nomad tribe from Marokko. It is said that they founded the city of Hamma Matmata, now known as El Hamma.

Troglodyte dwellings

The torglodyte dwellings are created around a central pit which was dug first. In a second phase, horizontal rooms were dug out. Each room has its typical function: living room, storage space, working space...

Due to this specific architecture and the soil, the rooms are very fresh in summer and comfortable in the cold winter. The temperature in the rooms varies between 15°C in January and 25°C in July.

Source picture: Wikipedia

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