About The Magon Quarter
The Magon Quarter contains the remains of a small Punic residential area dating back to the Carthaginian city of Carthage, in modern-day Tunisia. The Magon Quarter is relatively small and there aren’t many remains to see, though the site does contain a section of the ancient city wall, dating back to the fifth century BC.
History of The Magon Quarter
The Magon Quarter is situated along Rue Septime Sévère on the eastern shore of Tunis, the capital of Tunisia. This area of land was late to experience urbanisation, and as a result, certain fascinating and historic ruins have only recently been excavated.
Excavations in The Magon Quarter have uncovered a small area of Roman workshops built on top of a 5th century BC Punic residential artisans’ quarter. These small houses follow an ordered layout and are endowed with sophisticated technology such as cisterns. This area is now surrounded by a garden.
Interesting objects were unearthed at The Magon Quarter, such as a maquette – a sculptor’s small preliminary model or sketch – which shows how the Phoenicians extracted sandstone from the mines of Cap Bon.
Later Roman architecture overlaying earlier Punic buildings are a result of The Punic Wars, which were a series of conflicts fought between the forces of ancient Carthage and Rome between 264 and 146 BCE.
For those who want to find out more about what was discovered at The Magon Quarter, there is a small museum which is slightly off the beaten track which showcases parts of the Roman seawall and items excavated from the artisans’ houses.
The Magon Quarter Today
Today, the Magon Quarter is not open to the public, but can be viewed from the street.
For those who wish to explore more historical sites in the area, the famous Antonine Baths – the fourth largest in the whole Roman Empire – are a 12 minute walk from The Magon Quarter.
The Roman Theatre is also worth a visit. It has been restored to its original use, and was indeed used by Winston Churchill to address Allied troops.
Further sites include Roman Villas, the Tophet necropolis, Roman mosaics, a Punic burial site, and an underground chapel.
Getting to The Magon Quarter
The Magon Quarter is a 30 minute drive from the centre of Tunis, primarily along the N9 road.
It is a good idea to leave time to walk around the scenic area between different sites. near the Magon Quarter is the Avenue de la République, which is a beautiful parkway lined with stately palm trees on both sides. At its end, you can see the ocean, which is a stunning strip of Mediterranean shoreline.