Tunisia Australia Project

The Island of Djerba

Play Video

This documentary explores the multicultural heritage of the island of Djerba located in the south east of Tunisia.

Situated at the edge of the Mediterranean, the arid island of Djerba is characterised by a rich cultural history that shapes the architecture, language, artistry and cuisine.

This documentary explores the way-of-life in the island amidst the challenges of water scarcity which has long shaped the particular settlement patterns and agricultural practices. The documentary reveals these Djerbian patterns before turning to the long history of coexistence between peoples of diverse faiths and religious practices which has been supported by a distinctive system of governance.

Unique architectural sites are presented including an underground mosque, St Joseph’s Church and the famous El Ghriba Synagogue which is possibly the oldest in Africa. This documentary also sheds light on aspects of traditional handicrafts like pottery, textiles and jewellery-making as well as a rare insight into manuscript restoration in the private library of the Barouni family and the olive oil production of the Ben Yahyaten family.

The remarkable history of settlement on the island of Djerba is the subject of increasing efforts to protect and promote the tangible and intangible heritage in ways that are economically and environmentally sustainable. In September 2023, the island of Djerba was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List.


Film Credits


Mehdi Elouati

Film Director

Zied Haddad

Camera Operator

Zied Haddad

Hamdi Eltoumi


Zied Haddad


Maâlem Abderrahmane Paco
(Allah ya rebbi ya Moulay)

Hans Zimmer & Lisa Gerrard

Aziz Zaraa

Ramu Melaye


Sami Ben Taher

Moncef Barbou

Said Barouni

Matteo Lando

Sion Cohen

Anouar Ben Maiz

Mhenni Ben Yahyaten

Adel Ben Mahmoud

Mohamed Khacha


Fares Barkalah

English Translation

Housine Elncibi



Association pour la sauvegarde de l’Ile de Djerba

Agence de Mise en Valeur du Patrimoine et de Promotion Culturelle 

Institut National du Patrimoine

Cultural spaces    

El Barounia Library    

Parc Djerba Explore

Film Locations

Sacred spaces  

The Ghriba Synagogue

St Joseph’s Church

St Nicolas’s Church

El Kebir Mosque

Berdaoui Mosque

Louta Mosque

Ouelhi Mosque

Yati Mosque

Moghzel Mosque

Turkish Mosque

Jomni Mosque

The Zaouia of Sidi Abdelkader

Private spaces       

Hôtel Arischa

El Houch Concept Store

Fondouk Ben Ghorbel

Fort Ghazi Mustapha