Top Ten Libyan Attractions

Top Ten Libyan Attractions

       Libya is a country in the Maghreb region of North Africa. Bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the north, Libya faces Egypt to the east, Sudan to the south east, Chad and Niger to the south, and Algeria and Tunisia to the west. As a result of the 2011 Libyan civil war, there are currently two entities claiming to be the de jure governing authority in Libya. The institutions who were led by Muammar Gaddafi refer to the Libyan state as the Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya and are based in Sirte. The Tripoli-based National Transitional Council, led by Mustafa Abdul Jalil, controls most of the country and uses the short-form name Libya for the Libyan state, but has also on occasion referred to it in the long-form as the Libyan Republic. Within the United Nations, Libya under Gaddafi was officially known as the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya. With an area of almost 1.8 million square km (700,000 sq mi), Libya is the 4th largest country in Africa by area, and the 17th largest in the world. The largest city, Tripoli, is home to 1.7 million of Libya’s 6.4 million people. The three traditional parts of the country are Tripolitania, Fezzan and Cyrenaica. Before the outbreak of the civil war (as of 2009), Libya had the highest HDI in Africa and the 4th highest GDP (PPP) per capita in Africa, behind Seychelles, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon. Libya has the 10th largest proven oil reserves of any country in the world and the 17th highest petroleum production.

  1. Leptis Magna

    Leptis Magna also known as Lectis Magna, also called Lpqy, Neapolis, Lebida or Lebda to modern-day residents of Libya, was a prominent city of the Roman Empire. Its ruins are located in Al Khums, Libya, 130 km east of Tripoli, on the coast where the Wadi Lebda meets the sea. The site is one of the most spectacular and unspoiled Roman ruins in the Mediterranean.
    Links: Top100 Ruins, Top Ten Roman Ruins, Top Ten Mosaics,,
  2. Cyrene

    Cyrene was an ancient Greek colony in present-day Shahhat, Libya, the oldest and most important of the five Greek cities in the region. It gave eastern Libya the classical name Cyrenaica that it has retained to modern times. Cyrene lies in a lush valley in the Jebel Akhdar uplands. The city was named after a spring, Kyre, which the Greeks consecrated to Apollo. It was also the seat of the Cyrenaics, a famous school of philosophy in the 3rd century BC, founded by Aristippus, a disciple of Socrates. It has been nicknamed then as “Athens of Africa.”
    Links: Sculptures, Top 100 African Sculptures,,_Libya,
  3. Sabratha

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    Sabratha, Sabratah or Siburata, in the Az Zawiyah District in the northwestern corner of modern Libya, was the westernmost of the “three cities” of Tripolis. From 2001 to 2007 it was the capital of the former Sabratha Wa Surman District. It lies on the Mediterranean coast about 65 km (40 miles) west of Tripoli (ancient Oea).
  4. Tripoli

    Tripoli is the capital and largest city in Libya. It is affectionately called The Bride of the Mediterranean, describing its turquoise waters and its whitewashed buildings. Tripoli is a Greek name that means “Three Cities.” As of the 2006 census, the Tripoli metropolitan area had a population of one million. The city is located in the northwest part of the country on the edge of the desert, on a point of rocky land projecting into the Mediterranean and forming a bay. The city includes the Port of Tripoli and the country’s largest commercial and manufacturing centre. It is also the site of Al Fateh University. The vast Bab al-Azizia barracks, which includes the former family compound of Muammar Gaddafi, is also located in the city; Gaddafi largely ruled the country from his residence in this barracks. Tripoli was founded in the 7th century BC by the Phoenicians, who named it Oea. Due to the city’s long history, there are many sites of archaeological significance in Tripoli. The climate is typical Mediterranean, with hot, dry summers and cool winters with modest rainfall. “Tripoli” may also refer to the shabiyah (top-level administrative division in the current Libyan system), Tripoli District, also called the Tarabulus District.
    Links: Cities, Top Ten African Cities,  Top Ten Triumphal Arches, Top Ten Clock Towers,
  5. Ghadames

    Ghadames or Ghadamis is an oasis town in the west of Libya. It lies roughly 549 km in the southwest of Tripoli, near the borders with Algeria and Tunisia. Ghadames borders Ouargla Province, Algeria and Tataouine Governorate, Tunisia. The oasis has a population of 7,000, mainly Berbers. Each of the seven clans that used to live in the town had its own district, of which each had a public place where festivals could be held.
    Links: Top Ten Oases,,
  6. Acacus Mountains

    The Acacus Mountains or Tadrart Acacus form a mountain range in the desert of western Libya, part of the Sahara. They are situated east of the Libyan city of Ghat and stretch north from the Algerian border about 100 km. Tadrart means ‘mountain’ in the native language of the area (Tamahaq language). The area has a particularly rich array of prehistoric rock art. The Acacus Mountains have a large variation of landscapes, from differently colored sand dunes to arches, gorges, isolated rocks and deep ravines (wadis). Major landmarks include the arches of Afzejare and Tin Khlega. Although this area is one of the most arid of the Sahara, there is vegetation, such as the medicinal Calotropis procera, and there are a number of springs and wells in the mountains. The area is known for its rock-art, which date from 12,000 BC to 100 AD and reflect cultural and natural changes in the area. There are paintings and carvings of animals such as giraffes, elephants, ostriches and camels, but also of men and horses. Men are depicted in various daily life situations, for example while making music and dancing. Recently, the search for petroleum hidden underground has placed the rock art itself in danger. Seismic hammers are used to send shock waves underneath to locate oil deposits, and have noticeable effects on nearby rocks, including the ones that house the Tadrart Acacus rock art.
    Links: Cave Paintings, Top Ten Rock Paintings, Top Ten Rock Formations,
  7. Ptolemais

    Ptolemais or Ptolemaida was one of the ancient capitals of Cyrenaica. It was probably named after Ptolemy III Euergetes. Its Latin name in Roman times was Tolmeta, from which the modern Libyan town of Tolmeitha derives its name. The town was most probably founded in 7th or 6th century BC by settlers from Barka. Soon it became one of the founding city-states of the Pentapolis federation. In 331 BC the union was dissolved after all of its towns surrendered to Alexander the Great. After his death the area formed part of the Ptolemaic empire. In early 1st century the region was conquered by Rome and became a separate province. Roman Tolmeta had no local water supply, but Roman architects built a conduit from the hills and stored the water in 18 huge galleries under the forum, about 14 feet high by 10 feet wide. These are in perfect repair and were rediscovered during the Italian occupation. In the course of military operations against rebels, it was discovered that the rebels used the underground as a place of hiding; two or three hundred men could easily be hidden in them.
  8. Atiq Mosque

    Links: Top Ten Mosques,
  9. Links: Attractions, African Attractions,,