Tunisia / Cities and Towns /
Town in Tunisia with about 70,000 inhabitants (2005 estimate), situated on a peninsula between the Gulf of Hammamet and the Bay of Monastir, both parts of the Mediterranean Sea. It is the capital of Monastir governorate with 450,000 inhabitants (2005 estimate) and an area of 1,019 km².
The ribat of Monastir.
From the inside of the ribat of Monastir.
The mausoleum of Bourguiba.
Monastir is today both a popular beach resort and an industrial centre. The industry produces textiles, especially made from wool, salt, soap and olive oil.
Monastir has good road and rail connections with the rest of Tunisia. There is also an international airport, which is shares with Sousse.
Monastir is fomous for its ribat, which was Muslim fortress, perhaps the finest of its kind preserved in North Africa. The city is quite modern, even the market area. There are some old mosques, but the grandest is the mosque/mausoleum of 1968 dedicated to President Habib Bourguiba.
1st millennium BCE: Founded by the Phoenicians as a port called Rous Penna.
146: With the defeat of Carthage, the Romans take control, and renames the town Ruspina.
46: Serves as the headquarter of Caesar.
796 CE: A ribat, a seaside fortress, is established here. The ribat would gradually become a centre for pilgrimages.
16th century: The Ottomans establishes a stronghold here.
1956: With the Tunisian independence President Bourguiba, a native of Monastir, launches a grand modernization program for Monastir.