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  • Discover Constantine

Setif

At about an hor from Constantine setif is one of the biggest cities around, definitely a place to visit, has one of the best best sights for roman ruins in Algeria, it also is the place for you if you wanna buy anything, and we literally mean anything, traditional to modern el eulma daily market offers it all, its even called dubai market referring to the abundance goods.

Around setif:

Algerians keep saying that Sétif is more than a convenient stopover en route to the wonders at Djemila: it is a destination in its own right, a pleasant town of broad street sand some elegant buildings. The climate is also a draw: at 1096m above sea level, Sétif manages to stay cooler when the rest of the country bakes in the summer. Algerians also come to remember that this was one of the centres of resistance against French rule.

Like many other towns in the region, Sétif is a Roman creation. Originally known as ancient Sitifis, it was founded around AD97, during the reign of Roman Emperor Nerva, and was settled with retired Roman soldiers who had seen duty in North Africa. The colony grew thanks to the success of the wheat harvest and in the early 300s, as capital of a region, Mauretania Sitifienne was considerably expanded, with an amphitheatre and hippodrome. Falling to the Vandals in the 5th century, the town was retaken by the Byzantines in the mid-6th century and enclosed by a high stone wall. The ruins of the ancient town were still largely visible at the time of the French conquest, but have since mostly been buried beneath the urban sprawl.

The French had the same plans for Sétif as the Romans: recognising its strategic value, along the main east–west highway and on a route from the Sahara to the Mediterranean coast, they built up a military town and pro- vincial capital where, in May 1945, the war for independence began. Today, Sétif is a conservative place with a center that has retained much of its French-era charm, and around which the 21st-century city has grown. With good hotels and restaurants, it makes an excellent base.