Sfax is a city in Tunisia, located 270 km southeast of Tunis. The city, founded in AD 849 on the ruins of Taparura and Thaenae, is the capital of the Sfax governorate, and a Mediterranean port on the Gulf of Gabes. Sfax has population of 340,000 (2005), and is an industrial center for processing phosphates. The city is often described as Tunisia's second city, because only Tunis has more inhabitants.
By the end of the 10th century Sfax had become an independent city state. The city was conquered by Roger of Sicily in 1148 and occupied until it was liberated in 1156 by local forces, and was briefly occupied by European forces again, this time by the Spanish, in the 16th century. Sfax became an integral base of the Barbary piracy, prompting an unsuccessful invasion by Venice in 1785. In the late 19th century Sfax and the rest of Tunisia were conquered by France and incorporated into the French empire. During World War II, the Axis powers used the city as a major base until they were defeated by British forces. After World War II, Tunisia was returned to France only to gain independence in 1956.
JOURNEYS trips that include Sfax:
Treasures of Tunisia
Cairo to Casablanca Overland Adventure from Oct. 13-Nov. 23, 2007 with Will Weber
Information based on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sfax