Algeria is so much less a tourist destination than its North African neighbours; Morocco and Tunisia. But this relects politics, it for sure does not indicate a country with too few attractions. Algeria is a dramatic country, with great differences, from the green valleys in between steep mountains in the north to some of the most extensive sand dune regions of all of Sahara.
A great number of travellers to Algeria come here mainly for the desert, in which there are several oases as well as the mountains of Hoggar and Tassili N’Ajjer. With a desert this big, the oases are like small islands of a large ocean. The most famous of these is M’zab, where the inhabintants are all of the 3rd branch of Islam; Ibadi.
The mountains of Algeria represent both an obstacle and a protection. Berbers in the mountains have preserved their cultures and language, and the landscape here is stunning. Mountains are high enough to catch snow in winter, and Chréa is the main ski resort.
During summer, the coast of Algeria attracts regional tourists, and there are several nice beach resorts, although Algeria is far less developed than Morocco and Tunisia.
The greatest cities like Algiers, Oran and Annaba owes a lot to the French period. The French period brought Algeria a giant leap ahead in its development, after centuries of neglect under the Ottomans. Many quarters of these cities will make you wonder if you are in France proper.
Algeria is slowly healing from years of regional civil war and national unrest. With a police among the best trained to stake out terrorists, Algeria now emerge as no more dangerous than anywere else, now that bombs can go off virtually anywhere
By Tore Kjeilen