Day 1 : Meet in Algiers
You will be met at the airport and transfer to hotel.
Day 2: Algiers Sightseeing
Full day tour of Algiers including Place des Martyrs, the 17th century El Djedid Mosque, the Place of Emir Abdelkader, the neo-Moorish Grande Poste and the Bardo Museum.
Stroll the UNESCO Casbah, the old walled city. Visit Dar Aziza, Dar Hassan Pacha, Palais des Rais and the Citdel at the top of the Casbah, recently restored.
Beni Hammad - Setif
Day 3: Algiers - Beni Hammad - Setif
Depart at 8 am for the drive to visit Al Qal’a of Beni Hammad (UNESCO), a remarkable archaeological site.
Continue to Setif, one of the most important cities of eastern Algeria.
Djemila - Constantine
Day 4: Setif- Djemila - Constantine
In Setif, we visit the archaeological museum which contains superb archeological collections. Visit "Ain El Fouara" with its very popular statue among the Sétifiens.
Then we head to Djemila, one of North Africa’s most monumental sites. The wheel-rutted streets of ancient Cuicul, founded by Emperor Nerva Trajan in the 1st century to house his veterans, are lined with colonnades and a clutch of elaborate houses, Byzantine churches and ancient temples.
Continue to Constantine.
Annaba- Hammam Meskoutine - Constantine
Day 5: Constantine-Annaba- Hammam Meskoutine - Constantine
This morning we drive to Annaba and visit the ruins of the Roman city of Hippone, the museum and the Basilica of Saint Augustine.
On the way back to Constantine, we stop at the thermal spa of Hammam Meskoutine very popular and famous for its aesthetic aspect and the virtues of its ten sources at 95 °. Option to have a soak.
Day 6: Constantine - Tiddis - Constantine
This morning a short drive to Tiddis, a rarely-visited, Roman town, clinging in terraces to the side of an ochre mountain. It is one of Algeria's most beautiful ancient sites, in spite of its miniature size, boasting all the trappings of a Roman town: paved streets, a temple of Mithras, a wonderful arch, cisterns and a minute forum.
Return to Constantine and enjoy a tour of the "City of Bridges," a dramatic city of precipitous cliffs and deep gorges and the lofty setting for one of Algeria's most labyrinthine Casbahs. Visit the city’s excellent museum (noted in particular for its Roman mosaics and Punic artefacts), the delightful Palace and Gardens of Ahmed Bey, the Ottoman ruler, then the Monument of Sidi M'Cid (WW I Memorial), the Mosque of Emir Abdelkader, as well as the Opera House.
In the late afternoon we visit several of the 8 bridges including Sidi Rached, the limestone bridge; Bab el Kantra the oldest bridge; Sidi Mcid with a pedestrian walkway and Saleh Bey, the newest bridge (which you will see from our hotel window). We also drive up to Arch de Triumph Monument that towers above Sidi Mcid.
Timgad - Batna
Day 7: Constantine - Medracen - Timgad - Batna
We start with a stop at El Khroub, the mausoleum of Massiniss (more recent than Médracen); continue about an hour’s drive to the late 3rd century royal tomb of Médracen, the largest pre-Roman monument in the Maghreb. It houses the remains of the Numidian royalties.
Onward to Timgad with a stop at the Salt Lakes of Ouled Zouai, wetland and nesting place for migrating birds such as the pink flamingos and see the artisanal salt works.
Afterwards tour Timgad, the well-preserved Roman town of Timgad (ancient Thamugadi) and deserving to be called “Pompei of Africa” planned by Emperor Trajan around 100 AD. Explore the colonnaded streets, temples, public buildings, villas and a fine museum.
Continue approx. 45 min drive to Batna for overnight.
Day 8: Batna - Lambaesis - Bou Saada
This morning visit the nearby city of Lambaesis, A Roman garrison town boasting a Temple of Aesculapius, a fine Capitolium, a set of baths, an Arch of Severus and, the highlight, the Praetorium of the Third Augustan Legion.
Afterwards, a stop in Menaa in the Rhouffi region, in Berber village Aurès for lunch in a "Guest House."
Then continue the drive 3 hr to Bou Saada, “place of happiness and the happy city”, is also the first Saharan oasis, a region occupied for a long time by the nomadic population of the Ouled Nails.
Day 9: Bou Saada
This morning, visit the Nasreddine Dinet Museum. Nasreddine Denier, a French artist who was a Christian and Muslim, established himself in Bou Saada. View his original collection of 19th century paintings, then visit his tomb.
This afternoon, visit town of El Hamel, built in the 11th c on two hills at the foot of Mount Omrane. On one hill is the zaouia, a huge Sufi religious complex. It serves as a place of worship, a school & Sufi community center. Visit the majestic mausoleum of the patriarch Si Abulkacem, then the mosque and the medrassa.
Day 10 Bou Saada-Laghwat-Ghardaia
We travel through the Essaoura steppe via the city oasis of Laghwat, in the Amour Range of the Saharan Atlas. Continue to Ghardaia. A full day visit of Ghardaia, one of the five Mozabite towns that occupy the M’Zab Valley.
Day 11: Ghardaia
Full day visit of Ghardaia, one of the five Mozabite towns that occupy the M’Zab Valley. The Mozabites are an Islamic sect that broke from mainstream Islam about 900 years ago. They practice ancient unchanged social mores. The traditional dress for women is a white haik—head to toe wool wrap covering entire face with only one eye exposed; and for men—extravagant pleated baggy trousers called saroual loubia. Their customs are similar to the Druze in the Levant. Explore the town, the market, the surrounding date palm and irrigation system.
We visit the traditional village El Atteuf and fortified village of Beni Isguen situated in a lush oasis. It was built in the 10th century and looks like modernity has passed it by and left it untouched.
Day 12: Oran
A short flight to to Oran, a city located on the Mediterranean in the west of Algeria and home of Rai music, Yves Saint Laurent and a strong Spanish population. On arrival, transfer to hotel. Evening at leisure.
Day 13: Tlemcen
Depart at 8:30 am driving 196.6 km/approx. 2 hours to Tlemcen, "the town of cherries” and once one of the most powerful cities in the Maghreb. It was designated the Islamic capital of culture in 2011.
On arrival we start with a visit to the Tlemcen Museum. Other sites to visit include: the 13th century Mosque of Sidi Bel Hassan, the Great Mosque (one of North Africa's most important Islamic buildings), the 13th century ruins of Mansourah (enormous ancient mosque), and the beautiful mausoleum of Sidi Boumediene (12th century Sufi leader).
We shall visit the weavers' workshops (local specialty, including the "Chedda" dress) listed on UNESCO's
intangible and world heritage.
This afternoon visit Musée Archaeological Islamique de Tlemcen, closes 5p
Culminate the day with a walk in the old city, once home to thousands of Algerian Jews, now only a
handful Jewish families inhabit it. You will learn about the long Judaic heritage of this educated and
enlightened city. Return to your hotel for overnight.
Day 14: Tlemcen-Oran
This morning visit Museum of Art History of the city of Tlemcen (closed on Sunday), opens 930 am.
Afterwards, departure to Oran 2 hr drive. On arrival, lunch at a local restaurant; there are wonderful seafood restaurants here.
Afterwards visit the Ahmed Zabana Museum.
Then visit the Bey Palace (closes 5 pm), the 14th century fort of Merinid Sultan Abou Hassan, and some fine colonial architecture such as the majestic train station, the theatre and the Cathedra of Santa Cruz: 16th century Citadel and Chapel recently restored, and which housed in 2019 a beatification ceremony for the Trappist monks of the Tibhirine Monastery near Medea south of Algiers.
Drive up to the plateau of Murdjadjou for a panoramic view over the old port of Oran.
Cherchell – Tipaza
Day 15: Oran - Algiers–Cherchell – Tipaza – Algiers
Transfer to the airport for the direct flight to Algiers AH 611 departing at 8 am, arriving 9 am.
On arrival, embark on a full day excursion outside Algiers, first visiting Tombeau de la Chrétienne (Mausoleum of Mauritania), one of North Africa’s most enigmatic archaeological survivals.We continue to the Roman town of Cherchell, the World Heritage site of Tipasa.
Day 16: Depart Algiers
Transfer to airport.