My route lay from Tunis through Kairouan and Sousse to Sfax and Gabes, with digressions to the Roman cities of north-western Tunisia. The troglodyte villages of the Matmata djebel, and the island of Djerba, the legendary land of the lotus eaters of classical antiquity. I then travelled along the coast road to Alexandria by way of Tripoli, Benghazi, Cyrene, Derna, Sollum, and a dozen other places whose names were first made familiar to me and to millions of others through wartime newspapers.
Whenever possible I made excursions southward from the coast road into the desert, although unfortunately the hottest July weather for fifteen years made it impossible for me to visit Ghadames, one of the places I had most hoped to see. This was not through lack of effort on my part, but because I was persuaded, I am sure rightly, that by risking a 300-mile drive on a scorching and lonely desert track, I would not only endanger my own life but be intolerable nuisance to anyone who might have to go out and rescue me.
Carrington’s East From Tunis was first published in 1952.