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Most Interesting Facts about Libya

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This oil-rich desert country has mostly been known for its ancient history and political hands but has more to be discovered!

Interesting Facts:

1. 90% of the country is made up of the desert! It is a part of the Sahara Desert and not just any part but the harshest, driest and most remote part. It is recorded to have gone without rains even for decades at a stretch.

2. The country has known and seen only one king, King Idris I, whose reign began towards the end of the colonial era. However, his conservatism made him unpopular and he was removed in a coup d’état led by the well-known Colonel Gaddafi.

3. In his 42 years long rule up until his demise, Gaddafi spoke of how owning a house was a basic right for all the countrymen and of one of the finest healthcare systems in that part of the world, as recorded in his Green Book – the leader’s political philosophy.

4. In 74BC the Romans conquered Libya and ruins from that era can be seen even today and even a Greek temple. In fact, Cyrene is a city present even today that was once a Roman and Greek ancient city. In 1982 it was declared a UNESCO heritage site.

6. Consumption of alcohol is prohibited in the country.

7. The country also has 1,770 kilometres of coastline.

8. Built in the 16th century, the Red Castle was significant for having been the seat of the Ottoman Empire.

9. The petroleum sector contributes to about 80% of its GDP! In fact, it has the largest proven oil reserves found in all of Africa.

10. And with a history so rich, we mustn’t forget that the country has been home to as many as 140 tribes!

11. Tadrat Acacus or Acacus Mountains have remnants of rock paintings and carvings dating back to 120,000 BC and 100 AD. The carvings depict humans in different aspects of life and different animal species too.

Author’s Recommendations:

1. The Red Castle allows you to not just see the castle but also explore the history of that era as it houses an elaborate museum too.

2. Leptis Manga was one of the most beautiful cities under the Roman Empire with its monuments, structures, markets, etc. Today the city and its ruins stand as a UNESCO heritage site, a wonder to see and reflect on what it would have once been.

3. Visit Ghadames for a chance to see how traditional settlements used to occur and run in the country once upon a time.

4. The country’s locals don’t harbour as much of a beach culture but it has grown over the years. Nevertheless, you should certainly make a visit because with its vast coastline the country offers some of the best beaches in its sub-continent. Falfoul in Nagaza area, Zuwara, Farwa Island, Ras Alteen, etc. make for the idyllic beach days.

5. When there has been so much talk about the desert and when said desert is a part of the Sahara Desert, how could you not make a visit? Desert safaris, camel rides, dune crashing for the adventurous ones, etc. are a sure shot pick for the country of Libya.

7. Cyrene makes for an interesting visit not just because of the ancient ruins but because there you can even go snorkelling or exploring shipwrecks in the ocean!

8. You can head to Ubari to witness salt lakes amidst desert regions.

9. Jebel Nafusa allow you to hike around its ancient caves, structures and olive gardens.

How to Reach:

Fly into Benghazi or Tripoli with two or more layovers in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Istanbul or Jordan.

For Visa:

Libya Visa Requirements for Indians

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