A week in Tunisia – a club vacation

The fall wave of the Delta variant was almost upon us and my original plans went up in quarantine smoke. So at the spur of the moment I decided to book a club vacation. Wavering between Turkey and Egypt, I selected Tunisia in the end. Turkey I try to avoid due to politics. As a small citizen my only power for change is deciding where I spend my money. Egypt lost out due to really bad transfer times. Therefore Tunisia, with its direct flight sometime in the afternoon, got the go ahead.

I decided to splurge. After all it was only one week instead of the planned three, and I badly needed to recharge my batteries. So I booked a five star hotel, Steigenberger Marhaba Thalasso, for my full package vacation. Since the Covid situation was not clear, I wanted to be prepared for all eventualities. Also, I just wanted to relax. Unfortunately nothing came to pass, neither the five star experience nor the relaxation.

the view from my room @Steigenberger Marhaba Thalasso

The hotel is nice enough, but by far not a five star place. Maybe that’s only meant as local reference? Also the relaxation element didn’t work out. I got a sinus infection shortly before I left and it took a turn for the worse on the flight over. Never mind though, my travel agency never showed up in the hotel. Thus I didn’t have the chance to book a day trip even if I had wanted to. The service staff tried their best to get me interested in something other than my book, but they did not succeed. Unfortunately they only managed to annoy me. The meaning of the word ‘NO’ has not reached Tunisian shores so far.

the empty beach @Steigenberger Marhaba Thalasso

What I enjoyed the most was the empty hotel for the first couple of days. My best estimate is that the place was maybe a quarter full. If even. Some more guests arrived at the end of my week but the hotel was never over half capacity. Not really sure if this says something about the state of Tunisian tourism, the Covid situation, or the hotel itself. I loved it though, that I had a lot of beach to myself except for an occasional peddler.

almost on my own @Steigenberger Marhaba Thalasso

The beach was at its best early in the morning though, when all was still quiet (in regards to the really bad music which sometimes wafted over from the speakers in the afternoon) and forlorn. Nothing beats running on sand, making your own track which then disappears with the next wave.

running barefoot @Steigenberger Marhaba Thalasso

always cloudy in the morning @Steigenberger Marhaba Thalasso

Can I say after this vacation that I have seen Tunisia? Unfortunately not. Therefore I need to come back. But then on an individual trip with a lot of sightseeing. Tunisia is full of historic sites like Carthage which still await me. But back again with a club vacation? Never ever again. I guess, last time I went on a club vacation, I saw that differently. Yours, Pollybert Steigenberger

nobody here @Steigenberger Marhaba Thalasso

Let me know what you think

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