Soccer is the most popular sport in Algeria. Children and even adults often play soccer for recreation in streets and parks. Algeria qualified to participate in the World Cup championships in 1982 and 1986 and won Africa's Continental Championship in 1990. Algeria also has national volleyball and handball teams that have won international championships.

Algerians have gained worldwide recognition for their ability in track and field. In 1999 the Algerian team came third at the African Games. Although traditional Algerian society does not encourage women to pursue competitive sports, Algeria has produced a woman champion in track and field, Hassiba Boulmerka. In 1992, she became Algeria's first Olympic gold medallist, winning the 1,500-metre race in 3 minutes 55.30 seconds. Algeria's top male track-and-field champion is the runner Noureddine Morceli, who won an Olympic gold medal in 1996 for the 1500-metre race.

Men often get together in coffeehouses to play dominos, checkers, chess and other games. Women are more likely to socialize at home. Hospitality is very important to both Arabs and Berbers. There is a popular saying among the Berbers, "When you come to our house, it is we who are your guests, for this is your house."

Algerian men may go to a public bath, or hammam, to relax and enjoy a steam bath and a massage. In Algiers, the Hamman Sidna, built in the 16th century, is still in use.

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Although Algeria is generally thought of as a hot country, it is possible to ski at resorts in the Algerian mountains. The ski resort of Chréa is only 70 kilometres south of Algiers.

In the desert regions, horse racing and camel racing are popular. One sport played at festivals in the desert regions requires competitors on horseback to shoot at a target while their horses gallop at full speed, then bring their horses to a complete stop. Another tradition during festivals is camel dancing. The riders direct their camels to move to the beat of traditional music.

There are many resorts along the coast of Algeria, near Algiers, Oran and Annaba, where people can swim, sail or water-ski. Many families take their summer holidays at these resorts. Most people take their holidays in August.