The Sahara museum, housed in
an Andalusian style building, is the most recent
Tunisian museum. It was founded in 1997.
If its name suggests it may be devoted to this
infinite and fascinating environment of the Sahara,
it would be fairer to see it as a illustration
of life (plant, animal and human) in a “corner”
of the great Sahara contained within the Great
Eastern Erg and the edge of Chott el Jerid, in
south-western Tunisia. This choice was not made
by chance in as far as the region is the gateway
to the great South and is to some extent still
today, the last nomadic territory left in Tunisia.
In this respect, the environment and the population
occupying it do belong to the Sahara and participate
in its civilisation and its mystery.
The circuit organised for the visit of the museum
initiates visitors to the physical environment
and to its natural components: vegetation and
fauna; then it introduces the Oasis and Nomadic
civilisations through material objects pertaining
to daily life, through the semantics of symbols
and through artistic expression such as it appears
in the decoration of ceremonial objects (weaving,
jewellery etc.) or in the tattoos that today have
fallen out of use.