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Tiṭṭawin  (Berber languages)
تطاوين  (Arabic)
Ksar Ouled Soltane, near the city of Tataouine
Ksar Ouled Soltane, near the city of Tataouine
Tataouine is located in Tunisia
Location in Tunisia
Coordinates: 32°56′0″N 10°27′0″E / 32.93333°N 10.45000°E / 32.93333; 10.45000Coordinates: 32°56′0″N 10°27′0″E / 32.93333°N 10.45000°E / 32.93333; 10.45000
CountryFlag of Tunisia.svg Tunisia
GovernorateTataouine Governorate
 • Total67,291
Time zoneUTC1 (CET)

Tataouine (Berber languages: Tiṭṭawin; Arabic: تطاوين‎) is a city in southern Tunisia. It is the capital of the Tataouine Governorate. The below-ground "cave dwellings" of the native Berber population, designed for coolness and protection, render the city and the area around it a tourist and film makers' attraction.


The name Tiṭṭawin means 'eyes' and 'water springs' in the Berber language. It is sometimes transliterated in European languages as Tatahouine, Tatahouïne, Tatawin or Tatooine.

The city is sometimes also called Fum Taṭāwīn (فم تطاوين), alternatively spelled Fumm Tattauin, Foum Tatahouine, Fum Tatawin, or Foum Tataouine, which means 'mouth of the springs'.[1]


From 1892 to 1951, Tataouine was the garrison town of the French penal military unit known as the "Battalion of Light Infantry of Africa".[2] After the French established the town, a mosque (built in 1898) and homes were built in Tataouine.[1]

On June 27, 1931, a meteorite of unusual achondrite type and green color impacted at Tataouine;[3] about 12 kg of fragments were found. The meteorite consists largely of the mineral enstatite, and is of the rare Diogenite type.[4]

In March 2015, it was briefly reported that ISIL was using Tataouine as a military base,[5] but later these claims were denied by the Tunisian government as false.[6]

In September 2016, a new oil field was found south of the town by the Italian company Eni.[7]


The Ksour Festival (French: Festival international des ksour sahariens) is an annual festival held in Tataouine in March.[8] In Tataouine some people speak a Berber dialect.[9]

Popular culture[edit]

Tataouine by night


  1. ^ a b Daniel Jacobs; Peter Morris (2001). The Rough Guide to Tunisia. Rough Guides. p. 266. ISBN 978-1-85828-748-5.
  2. ^ Jacques Sicard, page 46 "Les Bataillons d' Infanterie Legere d'Afrique et leurs insignes, 1832-1972", Militaria Magazine Septembre 1994
  3. ^ "Météorite Achondrite Tataouine". www.carionmineraux.com. Retrieved 19 October 2016.
  4. ^ Monica M. Grady; Natural History Museum (London, England) (31 August 2000). Catalogue of Meteorites Reference Book with CD-ROM. Cambridge University Press. p. 484. ISBN 978-0-521-66303-8.
  5. ^ Beaumont-Thomas, Ben (25 March 2015). "Tataouine, town in Tunisia that inspired Star Wars, becomes Isis waypoint – reports". The Guardian. Retrieved 19 October 2016.
  6. ^ Beaumont-Thomas, Ben (27 March 2015). "Star Wars sets are safe from Isis, say Tunisian officials". The Guardian. Retrieved 19 October 2016.
  7. ^ "A New Hope: Oil Found in Tataouine". Tunisia Live. 21 September 2016. Retrieved 19 October 2016.
  8. ^ Nachrichten, Oberösterreichische. "Tunesien: Neues, altes Land". Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  9. ^ "Tunisia". Retrieved 20 July 2016.
  10. ^ "Star Wars location spotting in Tunisia | LosApos". www.losapos.com. Retrieved 13 October 2016.
  11. ^ Prentice Hall Literature: Timeless Voices, Timeless Themes (Platinum Level) (8th ed.). Prentice Hall, Inc. 2002.
  12. ^ "The X-Files Newbie Recap: "The End" & The X-Files Movie". www.themarysue.com. Retrieved 19 October 2016.