Tunis is the capital of the Tunisian Republic and also the Tunis Governorate. Situated on a large Mediterranean gulf, (the Gulf of Tunis), behind the Lake of Tunis and the port of La Goulette (Halq al Wadi), the city extends along the coastal plain and the hills that surround it. At the centre of more modern development (colonial era and post) lies the old medina. Beyond this section lie the suburbs of Carthage, La Marsa, and Sidi Bou Said.
The medina is found at the centre of the city: a dense larinth of alleys and covered passages, full of intensen aromas and colours, noisy and active trade, goods on offer ranging from leather to plastic, tin to the finest silk.