Algeria Destinations Travel Guide


Flag of Algeria

Language: Arabic
Currency: Algerian dinar (DZD)
Calling code: 213


Algeria is a country in north-west Africa. Algeria, as the middle of the Maghreb countries, is - since the separation of South Sudan from Sudan - by area the largest country on the African continent and the tenth largest country in the world. In terms of population, Algeria ranked eighth in Africa in 2017 with a good 41 million. It borders the Mediterranean Sea to the north, Mauritania, Morocco and the Western Sahara claimed by Morocco to the west, Mali and Niger to the south, and Libya and Tunisia to the east. The country is named after its capital, Algiers (French: Alger). Other major cities are Oran, Constantine, Annaba and Batna. The country became independent after the end of the Algerian War (1954-1962). A semi-presidential system of government came into force with the 1996 constitution.


Travel Destinations in Algeria

Hoggar National Park is famous for its unusual mountains that create beautiful landscape.

Algiers is the largest city in Algeria that also serves as its capital. It is occasionally referred as Alger la Blanche or Algiers the White after the color of its buildings.

Chrea National Park is protected area of a temperate forest that you would not expect to see in this corner of the World.

Djémila or Cuicul as it was known back then, was constructed by the Romans during reign of emperor Nerva.

Djurdjura National Park is an expansive nature preserve that covers mountains in Kabylia region.

El Kala National Park protects sclerophyllous forests and wetlands on the beaches in El Tarf Province of Algeria.

Gouraya National Park situated in Béjaïa Province in the Northern Algeria. This natural reserve covers an area of 20.8 km² on the Mediterranean coast.

Lambaesis is a city that grew around Roman military camp of third legion (Legio III Augusta) between 123 and 129 AD.

Tassili n'Ajjer is a dry plateau that is famous for ancient rock art left by prehistoric man from the time when these lands were covered by grasslands.

Tiddis is an ancient Roman settlement situated near Bni Hamden village in the Constantine Province of Algeria.

Timgad was constructed in 100 AD Ex nihilo ("out of nothing" Latin) by the Emperor Trajan. It served as a defense against Berber tribes in the Aures Mountain.

Situated on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea Tipasa was originally found by the Phoenicians as a trade post in the North Africa. Roman Emperor Claudius turned it into a colony in the first century AD.



Berbers, Phoenicians, Vandals and Eastern Romans

Originally, the area of today's Algeria was inhabited by Berber tribes, in the east by Tuareg. Dated 12th Century B.C. The Phoenicians established trading posts on the coast and founded 814 BC. the trading city of Carthage in present-day Tunisia, which subsequently developed into a major power in the western Mediterranean. Around 202 BC The Berber tribes (Moors) under Massinissa united to form the kingdom of Numidia and allied themselves with Rome against Carthage. The uprising of Carthage against Massinissa in 149 BC. BC Rome provided the desired pretext for the Third Punic War, during which Carthage was destroyed. 46 B.C. BC Rome subdued Numidia and united it with Carthage to form the Roman province of Numidia-Mauretania. It was Rome's breadbasket until the Vandals invaded in 429 AD. Vandal rule ended in 534 with the conquest by troops of the East Roman Emperor Justinian I, making North Africa a Byzantine province.

Christianity had been gaining influence in North Africa since the 3rd century. Several dioceses had come into existence in the big cities: St. Augustine, the most influential church teacher of early Christianity, bishop of Hippo Regius, today's Annaba, at the end of the 4th century.


Islamization and Arabization

Around the middle of the 7th century, the Arabs advanced into the Maghreb. In 697 they conquered much of present-day Algeria. Most of the population was Islamized. In the course of the 8th century there were repeated revolts by the Berbers against the Arab conquerors: in 757 the Berber kingdoms in the Atlas Mountains became independent from the Caliphate, while the three emerging principalities of the Idrisids, Aghlabids and Zirids came under its rule.

In the 11th century, the Berber dynasty of the Almoravids was able to assert itself in what is now Algeria; she ruled the country for almost 100 years until she was replaced by the Almohads in 1147. This dynasty subsequently conquered the Maghreb and southern Spain; however, in the second half of the 13th century the empire disintegrated. East Algeria became part of a Tunisian principality, and from 1269 the kingdom of the Abd-al-Wadids formed in the west with the capital Tlemcen (today's Tilimsen).


Ottoman rule

At the beginning of the 16th century, the Spaniards tried to gain a foothold on the Algerian coast. As a result, the country submitted to the suzerainty of the Ottoman Empire in 1519 and became its vassal; Algeria was the Eyâlet Cezayir within the Ottoman Empire and later converted into a vilayet. It remained under Ottoman rule until 1830, but was effectively independent from 1711. Up until the 19th century, Algeria was able to successfully resist attempts by the Spanish, Dutch, British and French to curb piracy.

The Barbaresque pirates plundered Christian and non-Muslim ships in the Mediterranean. Often the pirates also robbed the sailors and passengers in order to sell them into slavery. Historian Robert Davis estimates that between the 16th and 19th centuries, between 1 million and 1.25 million Europeans ended up in slavery. Today's term "razzia" came about as a result of the slave raids on the European coasts.


French colonial rule

First plans for the conquest of Algeria by France were drawn up under Napoleon Bonaparte. In 1830 the French invasion began. Background were internal political problems of Charles X.; However, the disrespectful behavior of the Algerian Dey (the famous blow with the fly whisk), the piracy originating from the North African coasts and the aim of spreading Christianity were cited as justification for the attack on Algeria. The Foreign Legion - Légion étrangère - was also founded in 1831. The Algerians, influenced by Sufism, saw the French advance as an attack by Christianity on the world of Islam. The young Abd el-Kader became their leader and called for jihad. After massive setbacks, Thomas Robert Bugeaud became commander of the French troops. Through extremely cruel warfare, including against civilians, he defeated Abd el-Kader in 1847. Greater Kabylia was conquered by 1855. In the years that followed, Algerian uprisings were put down, and by 1881 the French had gained complete control of northern Algeria.

The Algerian population had suffered massive casualties. Algeria's state and religious structures were smashed, and common ownership of land was abolished. Numerous settlers, Italians, Spaniards, French and Maltese flocked to the settlement colony, while the local farmers were pushed into less fertile areas. Around the turn of the century, the French also conquered the Sahara regions of Algeria. After that, Algeria was divided into three departments: Oran, Algiers, Constantine.

The population of Algeria was divided by the Code de l'indigénat of 1875 into first and second class citizens, French citizens (first only French, since 1889 also Italians, Maltese and Spaniards) and French subjects without citizenship ("Sujets"). On August 26, 1881, the three departments were declared part of France. After that they were no longer a colony, but French territory with the same rights and obligations as all other departments. The Sahara areas remained under military administration.

The non-French Europeans in Algeria quickly assimilated into French culture. The almost 40,000 Algerian Jews held an intermediate position. Anti-Semitism had been rampant among the settlers since the Dreyfus affair; there were riots against Jews, and anti-Semitic newspapers were published. In 1870, the Décret Crémieux made the Jewish Algerians French citizens against their will.

In the period leading up to World War II, Europeans acquired more and more farmland, partly through purchase and partly through legal tricks. In 1936 they held 40% of the fertile land. Still, the majority of European Algerians lived in the cities. After 1870 the number of Muslim Algerians increased from two to nine million, the number of Europeans to one million. The Muslim Algerians became impoverished in 100 years of French rule, so that malnutrition and famine were widespread. Almost all Muslims were excluded from the education that France glorified as its civilizing mission. Attempts at reform in French politics, whether by conservative or socialist forces, failed because they were mostly nationalistic and did not dare to question France's claim to rule over Algeria.

At the beginning of the First World War, around 30,000 Algerians were employed as workers in France. During the war, the French government used the Algerian population as an economic and military reserve. A total of 120,000 Algerians were brought to work in France during this period. Another 173,000 served as volunteers or conscripts in the French armed forces. By 1939, the number of Algerian migrant workers in France had dropped to around 32,000. From the group of these migrants emerged the Étoile Nord-Africaine, an Algerian political party aiming for independence from France.

The independence movement gained momentum, especially after the massacre of Sétif; tens of thousands of Algerians were killed by the French army during riots in Sétif, Kherrata and Guelma. In September 1947, in response to the strengthening of the independence movement, the Algerian Statute granted French citizenship to all Algerians, but this did not stop the struggle for independence from France. The Algerian war that began in 1954 (until 1962) was waged with extreme severity by both sides. The Arab Algerians carried out terrorist attacks against the European soldiers and civilians in Algeria. The French military used the methods of the so-called "French Doctrine", which included summary executions, torture and the wiping out of entire Algerian villages. This was initially successful militarily, but after the systematic violations of human rights became known, it weakened France internally and externally. Algeria gained independence under the leadership of the National Liberation Front (FLN), which fought and eliminated rival factions of the independence movement. Independence was officially proclaimed on July 5 (national holiday alongside Revolution Day on November 1), 1962. France later put the total number of Muslims killed in Algeria at 350,000, and Algerian sources at up to 1.5 million.


The Socialist People's Republic

Algeria subsequently developed into a people's republic with the FLN as the socialist-oriented unitary party. Ferhat Abbas became the first president. After his dismissal, Muhammad Ahmed Ben Bella succeeded him in 1963, until Defense Minister Colonel Houari Boumedienne came to power in a military coup in June 1965. His government initially attempted to overcome Algeria's economic dependence on France through increased socialization policies and opening up to the Eastern bloc. From 1972 it pursued a course of non-alignment and established contacts with the West. After Boumedienne's death, Rabah Bitat took over the acting presidency in 1978 until Colonel Chadli Bendjedid was elected president in February 1979. Serious unrest broke out in mid-1988, leading to the FLN giving up its monopoly on power. The reasons for this included high unemployment and the housing shortage. Democratization was initiated and a new democratic constitution was created, which provided for the separation of party and state, parliamentary responsibility, pluralism, political freedoms and guarantees of human rights (constitution of November 19, entered into force three days later; amendments on November 3 November 1988, February 23, 1989 and November 26, 1996).


Civil war

The economic decline led to spontaneous riots in the capital Algiers in October 1988, which soon spread to other cities and claimed hundreds of lives. In the 1991/1992 parliamentary elections, the government feared a victory for the Islamist movement. After the looming victory of the Islamic Salvation Front (Front islamique du salut, FIS), the elections were abandoned; President Chadli Bendjedid resigned under pressure from the military. This initially appointed Muhammad Boudiaf as interim president, followed by Ali Kafi after his assassination and finally General Liamine Zéroual in 1994. In March 1992, the dissolution of the FIS was ordered, which then called for armed struggle. The civil war waged between Islamists and the Algerian military claimed over 120,000 lives. In February 1995, 95 prisoners and four guards died in the Serkadji prison massacre. The Algerian government employed “dirty war” tactics.

The Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat (French: Groupe Salafiste pour la Prédication et le Combat, GSPC) was founded by former GIA leader Hassan Hattab in September 1998. It was formed on the advice of Osama bin Laden, the former leader of the international Islamist terrorist organization Al-Qaeda, with the aim of resuming the "holy war", jihad, against the Algerian state power in its original form.

The most important domestic political goal of Abd al-Aziz Bouteflika, who was elected President in April 1999 with the support of the military, was to end the violent conflict through a “policy of national reconciliation”. While the Algerian leadership had previously put the number of victims of the civil war at around 30,000, he admitted that in 1999 it was around 100,000.

In September 1999, the "Citizens' Reconciliation Law" (French: Loi de la Concorde Civile) that he had presented was approved by the people in a referendum. It provides an amnesty for terrorists who have laid down their arms and have not committed serious crimes such as murder, rape or bombings.

A little later, the "Islamic Salvation Army" (French: Armée Islamique du Salut, AIS), the armed wing of the Islamic Salvation Front (French: Front Islamique du Salut, FIS), which has been banned since 1992, decided to lay down their arms. The "Armed Islamic Group" (French: Groupe Islamique Armé, GIA) continued to exist, but according to Der Spiegel, its remnants had slipped into a kind of banditry in which religious motives were only used as a cover for criminality.

After a period of relative calm in 1999/2000, violent clashes increased again. In April 2001, demonstrations in Kabylia, a mountainous region in northern Algeria mainly inhabited by Berbers, were put down by the state gendarmerie (around 60 dead).


Pacification of the country

In August 2002, Bouteflika pardoned the majority of detained demonstrators to defuse Berber demands for more autonomy and democratic participation. Bouteflika did not comply with demands for the withdrawal of the gendarmerie from Kabylia.

In terms of economic policy, Bouteflika tried to push through a privatization program. In 2003, however, the ministers responsible, Mourad Medelci and Abdelhamid Temmar, had to resign under pressure from the influential UGTA trade union confederation. In February 2003, for the second time since the beginning of the decade, he organized a three-day general strike against the government's privatization program. Over 90% of the workers took part in the strike.

In the presidential elections on April 8, 2004 Bouteflika was re-elected as the first President for a second term with 83% of the vote. His main competitor, former Prime Minister Ali Benflis, spoke of fraud. However, election observers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) spoke of a fair election.

After his re-election, Bouteflika continued his "reconciliation policy" by presenting a "Charter for Peace and National Reconciliation". It was approved in a referendum in September 2005. It includes a general amnesty for state security forces and state-armed militias as well as for armed groups. She denies any responsibility of the security forces and militias for serious human rights violations. Criticism of the security organs makes them a punishable offence. The ordinance implementing it prevents a judicial investigation and clarification of the fate of thousands of people who “disappeared” during the civil war. Lawsuits against members of the security forces must be dismissed by the courts. However, relatives of “disappeared” persons can apply for compensation.

In terms of economic policy, the attempts to move from a socialist planned economy to a more market-oriented economic system continued. Mourad Medelci and Abdelhamid Temmar, who are considered economic policy reformers and were forced to resign in 2003, took over the finance and investment promotion ministries respectively. They advocate the privatization of public companies and the opening up of the oil and gas sector to private investment.

At the beginning of April 2009, Bouteflika won the presidential election in Algeria for the third time, according to official figures, with 90.24% of the votes and a turnout of 74.5%. The election was overshadowed by several violent incidents, and Bouteflika's five opponents were given little opportunity to make their mark during the 19-day election campaign. The main opposition parties, the Rassemblement pour la culture et la démocratie (RCD) and the Front des forces socialistes (FFS), did not even stand in the elections. The opposition questioned the result.

In April 2007 there were attacks on the official residence of the Algerian Prime Minister and a police station in Algiers. In December there was an attack on the UNHCR office in Algiers.

On February 23, 2011, the state of emergency that had existed for 19 years was lifted. This was a demand from the opposition. In 1992, the state of emergency was put into effect to combat armed Islamists.

On January 16, 2012, Islamists attacked a site of the oil company BP and apparently took numerous foreigners hostage. The Algerian news agency APS reported that two people were killed in the attack. One of the attackers said his group came from neighboring Mali, where France has been conducting a military operation against Islamists since the end of last week. According to their own statements, the group of attackers captured 41 Western foreigners, including 7 Americans.

In the election on April 17, 2014, Bouteflika was confirmed in office for the fourth time, despite being weakened by a stroke; According to the Interior Ministry, 81.5% of the votes went to the incumbent and 12.18% to Ali Benflis. In spring 2019 it was announced that Bouteflika, who was seriously ill, would stand for a fifth term. After mass protests, however, he was forced to resign under pressure from the military. Bouteflika died in September 2021 at the age of 84. President Tebboune dissolved parliament in February after mass protests. With the early parliamentary elections in June, the Algerian regime is once again trying to legitimize itself - as it did in the presidential elections of 2019. The elections were also boycotted en masse back then. According to official figures, just under 24 percent of those entitled to vote had cast their votes.


Getting here

entry requirements
Europeans need a visa to enter the country, which must be applied for in advance at one of the Algerian embassies or consulates. The processing time is two weeks. Apart from the usual documents, one also requires “a certificate of accommodation legalized by the chairman of the municipal assembly of the place of residence of the inviting person (business travelers instead invite the Algerian business partner); Hotel booking confirmation; air ticket/travel ticket for round trip travel; certificate of employment; Proof of foreign health insurance; transfer receipt. Responsible in Germany are:

For residents of Berlin, Hamburg, Schleswig-Holstein, Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt: Consular Department of the Embassy, Görschstraße 45-46, 13187 Berlin-Pankow. Phone: +49 30-43 737-149. All applicants must provide proof of their home address. Processing time at least 14 days. Open: application Mon., Wed. 9.00 a.m. - 1.00 p.m., collection Fri.
Consulate General, Friedrich-Ebert-Anlage 23, 60325 Frankfurt. Phone: +49 69 7060 950, email: Personal appointment (or use of an approved agency) mandatory with online appointment booking. Price: 80 € + 20 € administration fees (German) up to 90 days.
In Austria, the visa can be obtained from the Algerian embassy in Vienna and costs €35. The processing time is 7 working days. Algerian Embassy Vienna. Fee for Austrians €80 + €25 writing fee. (Status: Sep 2022)

For Switzerland and Liechtenstein:
The Section consulaire de l'Ambassade (Willadingweg 74, 3006 Berne) is only responsible for residents of the cantons of Berne, Neuchâtel and Friborg. Price: up to 90 days: 70 sfr.
Consulate General d'Algérie, 308Bis, Route de Lausanne, 1293 Bellevue, Genève. Email: Still accepting applications by mail. Open: Tue.-Sat. 9.30-12.30. Price: up to 90 days: 90 sfr + writing fee.l

2 liters of wine or 1 liter of liquor may be imported duty-free. Tobacco 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 250 g tobacco. In addition, gifts up to 1000 DA and personal items.
The import of binoculars is strictly forbidden. You are also not allowed to bring used motorbikes or bicycles. Baggage is x-rayed at customs.
The export of local currency is limited to 10000 DA.

There are four major airports in Algeria: Algiers (IATA: ALG), Annaba (IATA: AAE), Oran (IATA: ORN), 4 Constantine wikipediacommons (IATA: CZL), with all international airlines flying exclusively to Algiers or Oran and the rest Cities act more as regional airports with some connections to France.

From Germany you can get there with Air Algerie or with Lufthansa (both from Frankfurt am Main). The flight time from Germany is usually 2-3 hours.

The national airline Air Algérie flies to many destinations in Europe. There are good connections to France in particular, but also to other African countries and the Middle East. More information about Algiers Airport and the airlines can be found on the official website Aéroport d'Alger.

The only way to travel from abroad by train is from Tunisia. There are no rail connections from the other neighboring countries.

The border crossing from/to Morocco has been closed since 1990, as has the border to Mali.

The best way to get to Algeria by car is to cross the Tunisian border. You should drive over the northernmost border at the Tabarka border crossing, the southern border crossings can only be passed by foreigners with a guide. Details of the crossings at this border in the Tunisia country article.

A journey via the other neighboring states of Mauritania, Niger or Libya is time-consuming but can be a real adventure. It should be noted that the extreme temperature fluctuations pose a serious risk to the engine. You also run the risk of encountering meter-high sand dunes on the road, which often take a few days to disappear again. This trip should only be ventured with a 4x4 and a local guide.

The prices of a ferry from France or Spain to Algeria are often many times more expensive than a flight. If you don't have a car to transport, you should switch to the plane if possible. Most connections are offered by Algerie Ferries, from Barcelona, Alicante, |Marseille or Genoa. Most ferries go to Oran and Algiers, there are also trips to Skikda.

A ferry goes from Almeria in Spain to Ghazaouet (الغزوات).


Local transport

By train
The state railway company is the SNTF. The larger stations are handicapped accessible. Since 2018, modern express trains have served the route from Algiers to Oran three times a day.

In the street
Gasoline is comparatively cheap. The driving style takes a lot of getting used to. Algerians tend to see prohibition signs and speed limits as signposts. It is not for nothing that Algeria has one of the highest road accident rates in the world. On country roads, despite oncoming traffic, people overtake at very short distances, so country roads should be avoided if possible.

There are only country roads to the south. These are in poor condition and some of them can only be driven on with a four-wheel drive car. Certain areas may only be visited by foreigners accompanied by a police escort.

The Algerian government has invested in the road network in recent years; many of the dilapidated and unsafe country roads have been renewed or replaced by the new east-west motorway.

The Autoroute Est-Ouest is the only real motorway (A1). It runs from Annaba to Oran, crosses all major cities in the north including Algiers and has a length of 1200km. The highway is currently under construction. At the end of 2016, the sections from El Bettim (البطيم) on the Moroccan border to around Sétif were completed. In the east it ends at Dréan (الذرعان), an expansion to Tunisia has been planned for a long time, but will not be finished in 2018.

Construction of the 1020km inland Autoroute des Hauts Plateaux (A2) only started in 2014. After completion in 2025, it should lead from Tébessa (تبسة) via Khenchela, Batna, M'Sila, Boughezoul, Tiaret, Saïda to Al Aricha (العريشة).

By bus
Basically, every major town has a bus station. In smaller towns, however, the buses only stop at certain points; in the smaller towns that do not have a real bus station, you buy the ticket from the driver. Bus travel in Algeria is very cheap at around one euro per 100 km. All buses are usually equipped with air conditioning and comfortable seats, and they're also a great way to mingle with locals. For longer journeys of more than 400km, flying Air Algérie is a better alternative, mainly because the prices for domestic flights are very cheap.

By plane
From Algiers there are flights to almost all major cities in Algeria. Flying is especially worthwhile for longer distances. The only Algerian airline is Air Algérie, ticket prices range from €50-100 and vary depending on the length of the route. Date and time are not criteria, the prices are fixed prices and can be replaced at full price and rebooked without a fee. If you buy the tickets in cash at the airport counter, they are slightly cheaper than online.

Algiers Airport is the only modern airport, another for international arrivals is in Oran. The other airports are more similar in size to airfields and have sparse infrastructure and little comfort, but are bearable if you don't have to spend hours there.

Taxis are common in cities or when going to places that are difficult to reach by bus. A distinction must be made between normal taxis and shared taxis. The latter take up to 4 people who share the price and wait until the vehicle is full. If you don't want to share the taxi, you have to pay the full price. If you have little knowledge of French, it is advisable to only get on with younger drivers, as they usually also speak some English. Business cards of the hotel or other exact information are an advantage here.



The official languages are Arabic and Berber. The variety of Arabic spoken in Algeria is very different from the Arabic spoken in other countries, such as Egypt or Syria. Many French words were incorporated into the language through the colonization of France. It is similar to the variant spoken in Morocco and Tunisia.

Even people who have learned Standard Arabic will find it very difficult to understand the Algerian dialect apart from a few phrases. However, most Algerians are also fluent in Standard Arabic. Egyptian Arabic is also understood and spoken by many people due to the many Egyptian films that are broadcast in Algeria.

French is still very present in everyday life as a language in business, administration and education even after independence from France. It is well spoken by many Algerians. Many road signs and instructions are only available in Arabic and French.

Knowledge of English is mainly found among younger people. Although the level is not the same as in Germany or in Scandinavian countries, it is sufficient for everyday conversations.

People with knowledge of German can also be found occasionally, since German is the most frequently chosen foreign language in schools. Even in every village there are a handful of people who used to live in Germany.

The Arabic greeting As-salamu alaykum is commonly used to greet and say goodbye. Learning a few words in the dialect (Darija) can be helpful. Even if these are mispronounced, one is usually rewarded with additional appreciation.

A few common words :
Kirak- How are you?
Mleh - Good
Shukran - Thank you
Naam - yes
Laa - No



The official currency is the Algerian Dinar (DZD) also Dinar Algerienne (DA). 1 € corresponds to a value of 160 DA (as of March 2021). Only the denominations of 5, 20, 50 DA frequently circulate as coins, there are others as well. Banknotes are mainly in the denominations of 200, 500, 1000, banknotes of 100 or 2000 hardly ever circulate.

The best way to change euros and dollars is at the airport or in banks. Although unlicensed currency exchange is officially banned, there is a black/grey market in foreign exchange. Copy shops and other shopkeepers often trade at a parallel rate that is about 25% better than the official rate. Taxi drivers also usually know people who swap. If you are willing to take that risk, you should not accept old-looking or torn bills.

The import and export of local currency is forbidden, but is not strictly controlled. ATMs are available near major hotels, as well as in banks and post offices, from which you can withdraw Algerian dinars at the current exchange rate using major credit cards or Maestro cards; if a 6-digit PIN is required, enter two zeros before the 4-digit PIN.

In the larger cities you will find supermarkets that offer all common products (no alcohol!!!), in smaller cities and towns there is always a smaller grocer. During the summer most shops are usually closed from 12pm - 4pm due to the heat.

In all souks and markets you can and should even bargain, a good approach is to start at half the price. The quality of the goods should be checked thoroughly.

Although Algeria is the third most expensive country in Africa, food, drink and housing are still extremely cheap compared to European standards. The biggest cost factor is the accommodation, because if you don't want to do without comfort, you have to take the very expensive hotels like Hilton, Sheraton from 150 € (average Algerian monthly salary) per night. Cheaper places to stay are cheaper hotels or hostels, but most are less comfortable and don't offer extras like WiFi or breakfast. Otherwise, everything from groceries to petrol and everything that concerns daily use is dirt cheap, but it is recommended that you pay attention to the prices despite the apparently low costs and do not throw the money around uncontrollably, otherwise you will end up giving the same from your own experience much or even more than when traveling within Europe.



In Algeria you can get full for just a few dinars and enjoy a delicious meal, smaller restaurants can be found everywhere and you can get a 3-course meal for around 500 DA. The hygienic standard is good and it is checked regularly. Traditionally, soup is always served as a starter.

In summer, when it is hot, people generally eat light food such as melons or dates, especially at lunchtime you should not eat too much, otherwise the food will be like a stone in your stomach.




Well-known upper class hotels such as Hilton and Sheraton can be found in Algiers and Oran, but they are not particularly cheap. Smaller hotels are more affordable but often not recommended due to a lack of cleanliness and extras, it is better not to take the first hotel you find right away, but to compare something and look for test reports (there is a lot available on the French-speaking Internet). Youth hostels from well-known umbrella organizations such as Hostelling International are usually cheap and okay.

Hotel El Djazair. Good budget hotel in the heart of Algiers with WIFI, breakfast and LCD TV. The hotel also has a great garden and its own swimming pool. Price: from around 200 euros.
Seybouse Ex Plaza, Boulevard du 1er Novembre 54 Annaba. Tel.: +213 38 86 31 75. Feature: ★★★★★. Price: from €40.



Petty crime is prevalent in the larger cities such as Algiers, Constantine and Oran. Robberies and theft are a serious problem. It is forbidden to take photos of military facilities (and those in uniform) as well as buildings that are important for traffic.

Although the civil war is long over, travel to Algeria cannot be classified as safe. Since tourism in Algeria is not as lively as in Morocco or Tunisia, there is no need to be afraid of rip-offs and scammers, but Western tourists are repeatedly kidnapped by Islamist groups. Against this background, journeys to the Sahara, Kabylia or the respective border areas are not safe. “Many areas allow foreigners to enter only when accompanied by a police escort. According to the Algerian security regulations in force, foreign employees of foreign companies are obliged to undertake business and tourist trips or stays outside the administrative district (Wilaya) of Algiers by means of a police escort (escort) and to report this to the Delegate for Security (délégué de sécurité) at least 48 hours in advance to the authority responsible for the registered office (Wali des Wilaya). In urgent cases that must be credibly demonstrated, exceptions to the 48-hour rule are possible.”

The terrorist attacks of 2006 and the attempted coup in Algiers in 2011 affected state institutions, but the Algerian police and military have the situation very well under control and there is no need to be particularly afraid of new attacks or kidnappings.

Homosexuality is a criminal offense.



You will search in vain for facilities for the disabled.
Hospitals can be found in every city with more than 50,000 inhabitants, but the quality often leaves something to be desired, private hospitals (Clinique Privée) have European standards and are also relatively cheap.
When traveling to Algeria, there are generally no major health risks to be feared, but there are a few small things to consider
Drinking water should be boiled if possible. If this is not possible, it is better not to drink the water, water bottles are too cheap to buy everywhere.
Despite the heat during the day, when traveling to the Sahara you should bring warm clothing with you as the temperatures drop to freezing point overnight.


Rules and respect

Algeria is an Islamic state. One should show respect for religion and tradition, although it is difficult to put one's foot in it and the majority of the younger generation is very open-minded, simple etiquette should be followed. In general, people are more tolerant in larger cities than in more rural areas.

One of the biggest taboos is alcohol. Islam forbids it and most people, religious or not, have a strong dislike for any alcoholic product. However, alcohol is legal and some Algerians drink it, but only discreetly and not in public.

Women do not need to wear a headscarf or observe explicit dress codes. Especially in the capital and in the other big cities, the majority of young women are out and about without a headscarf. This basically applies to the more rural areas as well, except that there it can happen that you get hit on more often. Especially if you look typically European. But women shouldn't show too much skin; whether an outfit is appropriate or not always depends on the situation, but in general, jeans and a t-shirt are almost always okay. Dress more moderately when visiting families or mosques, a headscarf is not a must, but not too tight-fitting and attractive clothing. Men do not need to observe any dress code and can show themselves as usual everywhere.

When a woman is out with a man, it often happens that the man is addressed first and asked on behalf of the woman, especially in restaurants. This should not be understood primarily as discrimination or lower esteem towards women, but shows respect. If you don't want that, then the woman should take the initiative.

Elderly people and women always have a special status that should be respected. E.g. in buses, the space should always be made available for older people and/or women. If you are talking to a woman who is dressed in Islamic attire, you should always limit the discussion to what is necessary, as a precaution, unless the woman takes the initiative.

Furthermore, it is considered very impolite to eat or drink in public during Ramadan, nothing is eaten from sunrise to sunset; if you want something to eat you should move it to the hotel room if possible. Most restaurants are closed for Lent. Don't be surprised if everyone seems a little more provoked than usual during the day.

Among acquaintances, relatives and friends, two kisses on both cheeks are customary to greet and say goodbye.



Political system

According to the 1996 constitution, Algeria is a semi-presidential republic with a head of state elected by the people every five years. He appoints and dismisses the prime minister responsible only to him as chairman of the executive branch.

The Parliament consists of the National People's Assembly (Assemblée Populaire Nationale) and the Council of the Nation (Conseil de la Nation/Majlis al-'Umma). The 462 members of the People's Assembly are elected every five years. In the Council of the Nation, 96 members are fully elected every six years and half every three years by local councils, and the remaining 48 members are appointed by the head of state. All Algerians have the right to vote from the age of 18.

On May 10, 2012, the first parliamentary elections after the Arab Spring were held in Algeria. Elections were held again in 2017. The ruling National Liberation Front (FLN) achieved the highest share of the vote with 26% and won 161 seats in parliament. The National Democratic Rally (RND) won 100 seats.

On April 2, 2019, President Abd al-Aziz Bouteflika, who had been in power for 20 years, resigned after violent popular protests against his renewed candidacy for the 2019 presidential election. The election was postponed several times and took place on December 12th. Abdelmadjid Tebboune won it on the first ballot. The army lined up behind Tebboune after the result was announced. The Constitutional Court declared the election legal on December 16.

On February 19, 2021, President Abdelmadjid Tebboune announced the dissolution of the National Assembly and early elections.

women's suffrage
The history of women's suffrage in North Africa and the Middle East in Algeria dates back to colonial times: in 1944, Christian and Jewish women with French citizenship (Européennes) living in French-owned Algeria were granted the right to vote; Muslims were excluded. In July 1958, Charles de Gaulle enacted the loi-cadre Defferre, which also gave Muslims the right to vote, for Algeria. With the proclamation of independence on July 5, 1962, this right was confirmed. Active and passive women's suffrage for the new state of Algeria was thus established on July 5, 1962.