Tunisia’s Culinary Journey is the new tourism offer that invites travellers to discover the country’s culinary heritage through creative experiences, organised around six flagship products.
This project, supported by GIZ and managed by the Creative Tourism Network®, aims to highlight the richness of Tunisia’s culinary heritage from all angles – human, cultural, artistic and creative – through quality and authentic tourism development. This itinerary will offer travellers the opportunity to explore an ancestral culinary heritage combining immersion and taste experience.
In consultation with the working group composed of representatives of the professions operating in the field, namely the Ministry of Tourism and Handicrafts, the Tunisian National Tourist Office, the Tunisian Association of Culinary Art Professionals, the General Directorate of Organic Agriculture and the Tunisian Federation of Tourist Restaurants, the choice was made to focus on the following products and regions: “Cheese from the North-West”, “Harissa from Cap Bon”, “Olive oil from the Centre and Dahar”, “Wine from the North”, “Dates from the South-West” and “Octopus from Kerkennah”.
In addition to promoting new tourist attractions, the Culinary Journey offers itself as a model of virtuous tourism, satisfying various Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations Agenda 2030, particularly in terms of respect for natural, economic and social ecosystems, by making culinary knowledge new drivers of attractiveness and inclusion for the territories.
Indeed, one of the added values of this project lies in its participatory and inclusive approach with producers, farmers, winegrowers, craftsmen, and restaurateurs in the geographical areas concerned, but also beyond regional borders.
Indeed, the Culinary Journey invites local actors from the agricultural, cultural and tourism sectors in Tunisia to participate in this partnership project, benefiting from improved visibility, training, advice, as well as exchanges of best practices with international experts and entrepreneurs.
This unique project is intended to be a lever for sustainable economic development through the diversification of the tourism offer and the creation of employment opportunities, while optimising existing resources, whether natural, cultural or human.
Harissa is a clear example. Recognised as an intangible heritage of humanity by UNESCO in December 2022, it will be at the heart of the experiences designed by professionals in the Cap Bon region, as part of the training provided by the international experts participating in the programme. Tourists will be able to discover not only the flavours, but also the know-how, by participating themselves in its preparation. This model will be replicated in the 6 previously defined culinary regions.
Through a range of experiences designed for the most diverse audiences – from travellers in training, to Premium visitors, to new traveller profiles – the Culinary Journey will constitute a differentiating element that will position Tunisia among the most sought-after Mediterranean destinations in terms of quality tourism and dissemination, throughout the year.
Follow-up actions along the Route will focus on the development of new culinary experiences, the improvement of existing offers, the enhancement of products and the strengthening of the capacities of tour operators. These activities will be supported by the implementation of a communication and marketing strategy to ensure the promotion of the gastronomic route and its visibility on external markets.
This initiative is supported by the project “Promotion of Sustainable Tourism” implemented by the Ministry of Tourism with the support of GIZ and financed jointly by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the European Union within the framework of its “Tounes Wijhetouna” programme. In addition to the Culinary Route, GIZ launched the Cinema Route in 2022, with the aim of promoting the locations of famous film productions.