Wednesday, 2 October 2013

The Heat of Two Suns!

After the Amphitheatre we headed out into the desert.

We traveled to Matmata on our trusty air conditioned coach! 

Matmata has some overground dwellings

But it is most famous for it's underground ones

Some of which were used in Star Wars!

Around the tops of many of these warren like caves you can see the damage done by terrible flooding in 1967 (which is what lead to some people moving to overground housing).

Our group had dinner in Hotel Les Berberes

This was just a small part of it, there was also sweet potato couscous and for dessert we had fig rolls. It was all very delicious.

In the north of Tunisia most of the trees are olive trees, but in the south most are date palms.

Including both the overground and underground housing Matmata has a population of around 2,000 people.

A bread oven outside of the home that we visited

All of the cave housing has a circular courtyard around which rooms are tunneled into the rocks.

Above the front door is a fish and two hands of Fatima for good luck and prosperity.

The residents of this house have a TV in one of the upstairs rooms that until they got their solar panel used to be powered by a car battery!

Part of the pantry

I am not very good with stairs I would suck at rope climbing o.0

Children's bedroom

Cloth is still handwoven here

This type of cactus is EVERYWHERE in Tunisia, often with fruits on it.

Is this not a beautiful road?

Legend has it that when the Troglodite Cave people's lands were invaded they hid in their caves during the day

And attacked the invaders by night

The invading people thought that monsters lived in the caves and quickly left

I wonder if this served as the inspiration for the Rancour that lived under Jabba the Hutt's Palace?

Either way the invaders quickly left and didn't return

In fact very little was known about quite how many people lived out in the desert until the flood in 1967!

Some of the overground housing

Not quite as impressive in my opinion

Can you see the cave entrances in this picture?

Or this one?

This one is the easiest to spot I think!

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