Benghazi at dusk

Travel to Benghazi – Libya’s Second Largest City

Benghazi, or Bengasi, is the second largest city in Libya and the main city of the Cyrenaica region. It is one of the most modernised cities in Libya. Here you’ll find mosques and other historical buildings to explore.

Located on the Gulf of Sidra, Benghazi lies southwest of the site of the ancient Greek city of Berenice.The city was originally founded around 446 BCE by Ancient Greeks who named it Euesperides and few centuries later it was renamed by Ancient Egyptians to Barneek.

Benghazi later became a Roman city and prospered for 600 years. The city superseded Cyrene and Barca as the chief centre of Cyrenaica after the 3rd century CE and during the Persian attacks, but when the Arabs came in 642, it had dwindled to an insignificant village among magnificent ruins.

In the 1200s the small settlement became an important player in the trade growing up between Genoese merchants and the tribes of the hinterland. Benghazi was invaded by the Turks in 1578, then it passed under direct Ottoman rule until 1911 when it was captured by the Italians. Heavily bombed in World War II, Benghazi was later rebuilt with the country’s newly found oil wealth as a gleaming showpiece of modern Libya.

While in Benghazi, you can enjoy visiting the old town Hall built during the Italian occupation; the Islamic Call; Benghazi zoo; Albadri, Bilal Ben Rabah and Sidi husseien Mosques; the 23rd of July garden and lake and Sidi Khraibish minaret.

Attractions outnumber activities in Benghazi so why not simply soak up the atmosphere and explore the city and its beautiful gardens.

Relax in a restaurant overlooking the sea where you can simple different cuisines including Tunisian, Turkish and Lebanese.

Although there are taxis, minibuses and buses; the best way to get around is by hiring a car. You can hire a car at most major cities as well as from most airports.

  • Sample local cuisines at restaurants overlooking the sea.
  • Explore the city and relax in its gardens.
  • See mosques and other historical buildings.


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