As a Libyan tourism company we need to provide enough information
about Libyan law, customs and life in general. This travel guide to Libya was
created to clarify some important issues which are rarely addressed by tour
operators and government agencies, and which we have found to be a source of
confusion to tourists after their arrival in Libya. We strongly
recommend reading the following travel recommendations before making any decisions
regarding your visit to Libya, and if you are still in doubt of anything, please
do not hesitate to contact us for further information.
November 2012 Update:
The following guide was written to cover travel
regulations during the previous government of Libya. Please note that due to
the recent military operations in Libya some of the regulations and restrictions
may have changed.
The interim government, the
National Transitional Council (NTC), has announced that most of the current laws
remain effective until further amendment, as stated in Article
(35) of its Constitutional Declaration. Both the POM and the GNC have introduced
a number of changes and reversals since they took over office. Final and
settled conclusions and regulations are not expected before the
final government is elected in 2013 and before the constitution is written and
- The passport Arabic translation is no longer required (since 2010).
- Tourist and transit visas were first being issued for arrival at
either Tripoli Airport, Benghazi Airport or at the Egyptian-Libyan border at
Emsaad. But both visas were suspended, once more, on the 4th of July 2012, and
still are suspended as of the 23 of January 2013. Visitors
on business visa can arrive only at either Tripoli or Benghazi, with arrival
at land border was also suspended; and the business visa on arrival was said
to have been suspended and available only from the embassy.
- The "tour guide" seems
to have become "discretionary", rather than compulsory.
- Visitors can use public transport to travel within Libya and from border
- Prices still fluctuate and we will update the related pages as and
when prices stabilise.
remains an issue and it would not be a bad idea to postpone travel to Libya unless
- Most of the currency notes of the old money are still acceptable and are
in circulation, except the 50 dinar note, and the quarter and half dinar notes
(which are no longer accepted). The old five-dinars note (and
also the ten-dinars note) of the fourth and fifth series were withdrawn
from circulation on the 1st of November 2012, with the option to return the old
notes to the bank until the 31st of December 2012.
- El-Keib's transitional government's decision to devolve the Tourism Police,
as set by Decree 141 of 2012, has been withdrawn by Decree
398 of 2012 on the 26th of September 2012.
Visa Authorisation Number:
A recent law, which came into effect on June 2009, stated
that Libyan travel operators must apply for a Visa Authorisation Number to the
immigration department in Libya, which will then be either used for visa on arrival
or faxed to the specified Libyan embassy. The visitor then needs to visit the
embassy to complete the visa process and collect the actual visa stamp, after
completing the application form, providing passport photos, and paying the fees.
However, according to another new law, came into effect on the 2nd of August
2009, faxing the visa authorisation number
to the embassy has been replaced by the old "visa approval", usually
used to obtain visa on arrival, either at the airport or the land border.
How long does it take to get the visa?
Usually ten working days from the day we receive your passport's
bio page and your details. If you send us your documents in the morning, then
ten days later your guide can meet you at the border or airport with the Libyan
visa approval, which he will use to issue you with the visa stamp on the day
of arrival. However, this period includes a few days extra, in case of unexpected
delays, and therefore it is possible to complete the whole visa process in 4
Getting to Libya:
Generally speaking most Libya's visitors arrive via Tripoli
International Airport (TIP), located about 16 miles from the city centre, or
Benghazi Airport; Ras Jdayr (Ajdir, Ejdir) land border with Tunisia; and Emsaad
land border with Egypt. Currently there are no trains in Libya. Libya's land
borders with Algeria, Niger, Chad and Sudan are often closed to tourists. International
ferries from Izmir (Turkey), Tangier (Morocco) and Valetta (Malta) do serve the
port of Tripoli, but services are unpredictable and infrequent. Most European
travellers however arrive from either Marseille (France) or Genoa (Italy) to
the port of Tunis in Tunisia, and then drive to Ras Jdayr overland. This is a
very popular route for overlanders who come from Europe in their way to Egypt
and the Middle East or all the way down to Cape Town in South Africa.
The passport must be valid for at least six months when you leave Libya,
which means that if you intend to stay one month in Libya, the passport
must be valid for at least seven months when you arrive in Libya.
All tourists and visitors have to register their passports
with the Libyan police no later than one week after arrival. Your Libyan tour
operator or travel agency will automatically arrange this for you. The fee for
this service is normally about €10 (10 Euro). If you fail to do this then you
may be fined upon departure, an amount which can vary depending on circumstances.
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Like the majority of Libyans, we do not agree to "tipping".
Please do not offer any tips to our employees and guides. You have paid for your
holiday and we are very grateful. The practice
is rife in neighbouring countries and elsewhere,
but most visitors do not know that Libya is unique in this respect. Many European
websites, including those of major tour companies, even specify the amount
you need to tip! To make this low practice sound common law, they call
it: gratuity - as if getting paid for a job is not good enough
for being grateful.
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Most of our guides speak good level of English, and some
speak French, Italian or Spanish. Many of these have lived in Europe or America
in the past and understand the various accents involved. But there are those
who never been to Europe and therefore they may find it difficult to understand
all the different accents spoken by various visitors. As you might know speaking
a language as a foreign language is always different from speaking your own native
language, and therefore it helps if visitors be more considerate when speaking
to other people in other countries. For example, they can speak slowly, instead
of their usual fast tempo. Of course, visitors are free to speak the way they
want, but considering the following recommendations will help towards achieving
successful communication with the locals - after all language is all about successful
- Always speak with your listeners in mind.
- Speak slowly.
- Speak clearly - pronouncing all the words as clearly as possible.
- Speak as formal as possible and do not use slang or unconventional words.
- Use very short sentences with as little words as possible - straight to the
- Use gesture wherever you can to explain - the universal language.
- Use basic and common words instead of rare or advanced words.
- Explain your point in very simple English.
If your are coming by car, motorbike, or lorry, then please
read the following. In addition to the new flat payment introduced recently in
Libya, motorists have to pay: insurance (between 10 and 20 Libyan Dinars, which
covers between two and four weeks); license plate (about 114 Libyan Dinars, of
which 100 dinars are refundable when you leave the country); and Carnet
de Passage (Passages): (which is free if you have International Carnet
de Passages en Douane).
What is International Carnet de Passages en Douane?
It is a document usually issued by a motoring organisation (for example,
RAC in the UK) to allow temporary importation of a vehicle into certain countries
without having to pay customs duties and taxes. These countries include: Africa,
Middle East, Australia, New Zealand, Far East and (recommended for) South America.
If you do not have this carnet, then you need to pay vehicle importation taxes
(http://www.temehu.com/vehicle-taxes-and-charges.htm). The carnet has another
function: if the vehicle fails to be re-exported out of the country, then the
issuing club will be responsible for paying the required duties; and therefore,
as a security the issuing organisation normally requires a cash deposit or a
bank guarantee based on the value of your vehicle. If you are crossing Libya
from Tunisia to Egypt, then we think you must have an International Carnet because
in Egypt the duty is a staggering 800%.
Buying Petrol In Tunisia:
If you are coming into Libya via Tunisia, then please be warned
of Petrol mixed with water: do not buy cheap petrol from sellers by the
side of the road in Tunisia: this petrol is illegally smuggled from Libya and
sold in the Tunisian black market after it has been mixed with water (to make
more profit). We know of several cases where some of our visitors had phoned
us saying they will not make it to the border as agreed because their vehicles
broke down, and we know of so many cases in Libya where cars are damaged because
people initially did not know it was not pure petrol that they were buying while
they were in Tunisia. Don't even think about it, if you want our advice.
It is not only not recommended to drive into the heart of
the Sahara without a desert expert, but also Libyan law requires all tour operators
to appoint a desert expert for every group of tourists entering the regions of
al-Hamadah al-Hamrah, the Awbari Lakes, Acacus, Waw an-Namus, Waw al-Kabeer and
other similar desert areas. The desert expert can also be the driver of
your desert vehicle.
Tour Guide Versus Escort
The guide (no longer compulsory) is often referred
by all tour operators, when the correct word to use is in fact
"companion", which is مرافق in Arabic, literally translates as
(he who accompanies you). These
are not necessarily experts in tourism and most of them have no professional
qualifications as guides. They are employees of the tour operator or the travel
agent who must accompany their visitors (according to the old law) during their
tour or stay in Libya. Some visitors confuse these companions with proper qualified
archaeological guides, and express dissatisfaction when they arrive in Libya
and realise that their official escort knows nothing about Leptis Magna or Mori's
mummy. Therefore if you need a qualified archaeological or museum guide, then
you need to specify this clearly in your enquiry. Most museums and archaeological
sites however have professional guides whom tourists can
hire. But even then these guides may not impress you as other guides might do
in other countries where tourism is an established business. Please bear in mind
that Libya was a closed country for a long time and it is only recently that
her doors were conditionally opened
to the outside world.
Please keep in mind that domestic flights in Libya, especially
those between the smaller airports, like Ghadames, Kufra and Ghat, are always
subject to cancellation and delays, and therefore if domestic flights were
requested to be used in our itineraries and then were cancelled upon
or after arrival, the agreed itinerary will have to be changed to use alternative
land transport. Flights between the main airports, namely Tripoli, Benghazi and
Sabha, are not normally affected, except the flights between Sabha and Benghazi
(which occasionaly get delayed). For these reasons we usually include flights
only between Tripoli and Sabha, and Tripoli and Benghazi, unless otherwise requested.
Israeli Visa In Your Passport
You must make sure you do not have an Israeli stamp in your
passport, including those obtained at the Egyptian-Israeli and Jordanian borders.
If you do have one, then you need to obtain a new passport, in order to visit
Libya. (We are not sure yet about the new government's stand in relation to this
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The following products and items are only a selection from
a long list of items not allowed to be imported into Libya, and therefore visitors
are advised to check that they have none of these items in their possession when
entering the country. This list does not list all the prohibited items and it
changes according to regulations. If you are in doubt regarding other items that
are not mentioned here, please contact the Libyan embassy for their latest list
of prohibited items. The list includes: products manufactured in Israel, alcohol
alcoholic products, drugs, pork
pork products, preserved meat, food (including tinned food) prepared
with preserved meats and animal fats (which may contain pork products), poultry,
obscene literature, toy guns and animal furs. The import of dogs and cats requires
veterinary health certificate and a rabies inoculation card.
The Libyan financial infrastructure is still under development
and has a lot to learn and do. According to Libyan law you must not leave Libya
with more money in your possession than the money you had when you first arrived.
Visitors must also be in possession of a minimum amount of foreign currency equivalent
to US$1000 (as of the new law of 2/8/2009) when they enter Libya. According
to the website of the Libyan embassy in the USA, the following are exempt from
providing the above sum:
- Tourists arriving as part of a group via a tour operator where their living
expenses are included in the package.
- Visitors on official mission (mission visa).
- Holders of student visa with expenses paid for by the Libyan government.
- Visitors planning to join a resident of Libya providing that the resident
guarantees to cover all the expenses including medical costs if necessary.
Banks, ATM's, Travellers Cheques & Exchange Bureaus:
Not all banks in Libya offer money exchange services. If
you want to make sure you always have cash on you, then you need to change enough
money while you are still in a large town or city. Exchange bureaus are also
available in some areas; your guide should be able to tell you the nearest one
to you. Generally speaking, cash is normally used by most tourists. Please note
that small denominations (small money notes like ten and twenty Euro) will not
be accepted by most banks, and therefore make sure you take large notes with
Not many businesses accept credit cards in Libya, and ATM's
are mostly found in the capital Tripoli, Benghazi, the main international airports,
as well as in some cities like Zuwarah, Cyrene, Sert and Musratha. As time goes
by more machines are being installed in other towns and slowly and hopefully
Libya will eventually catch up with the rest of the world when it comes to banking.
However, whether these holes-in-the-walls will be always working or not, or full
or empty, is a different matter. Please visit our
Money & Currencies webpage for a list of ATM machines in Libya. Please
note that the daily limit you can withdraw from any ATM machine in Libya is set
by your own bank and often varies from 400 Libyan Dinars to 1000 Libyan Dinars,
depending on type of card (with Gold being the higher
limit). Some machines allow you to take out your transaction limit (400 or 1000)
as many times in a day as you want, which means you can keep using the same machine
over and over again until you withdraw all the money you need!!!
Travellers cheques cannot be widely cashed,
and if you do find a bank that accepts them then you need to produce the document
given to you by your bank when you purchased the cheques, showing your name and
the serial numbers of the cheques.
Western Union shops are located inside the
branches of Libya's Bank of Commerce and Development, and therefore will not
be available after closing hours (around 3 pm).
Location of ATM's:
You can use the following tool to search for the location
of ATM machines in any country in the world including Libya.
Also you can use Mastercard ATM Locator Tool at:
Libyan Fake Money:
If you want to buy Libyan money, why then cannot you wait
until you reach Libya? You do not need it in Tunisia, so why buy it in Tunisia?
Beware of fake
money, and take our advice: buy your Libyan money inside Libya from a Libyan
For a full list of prices, please see our
guide to prices in Libya (http://www.temehu.com/Prices.htm).
The price you agree with us is the price to pay after arrival.
Our agreed prices include a list of all the included services. If you have a
vehicle, please check all the fees payable to the authorities, as listed here.
Unlike Egypt, Tunisia or Morocco, Libya remained free of "bargaining
practices", where sellers have two sets of prices: one for local people
and another price for foreigners or tourists. As tourism began to slowly establish
itself in Libya, the practice started to find its way into some of the southern
desert sites, where the sellers are mostly non-Libyan dealers coming from Chad,
Niger, Mali and other African countries. In other parts of Libya, like Tripoli
and all the main towns and cities, most Libyans still charge one price for all.
Let us hope it stays that way.
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GPS systems, gadgets and satellite phones are allowed into
Libya, and therefore there will be no problem bringing them into the country.
Satellite phones normally work in Libya, and it is possible to hire a satellite
mobile phone in Libya. In fact GPS systems may become a requirement by law for
tour operators to have, especially in the desert.
Travel insurance is intended to cover medical expenses and
financial losses while travelling abroad including but not limited to loss of
luggage, emergency evacuation/repatriation, non-refundable
pre-payments, such as deposits paid to travel agents, trip cancellation fees,
theft of or damage to personal possessions and money including travel documents
and passports, loss incurred as a result of bankruptcy of tour provider, curtailment,
and accidental death while travelling. Temporary travel insurance can usually
be arranged with a travel and medical insurance provider to cover exactly the
duration of your trip or holiday. There are different types of travel insurance,
such as business travel, leisure travel and adventure travel, each covering certain
activities and conditions and certain countries. However, please make sure that
you choose an insurance that covers your destination and the activities about
to take. Also note that there are certain conditions that are not covered, like
injury or illness caused by alcohol or drug abuse, certain pre-existing medical
conditions, and acts of terrorism or war; and that it is your sole responsibility
to make sure you are fully covered for the whole duration of your stay in Libya.
For example going for an adventure skiing, quad
biking, or scuba-diving requires different insurance to cover the risks involved.
The Islamic month of
Ramadan is the month of fasting from sunrise to sunset. Tourists
of other faiths are not expected to follow this, of course, but it would be better
for all if they do not
eat, drink or smoke in public. Many businesses and services
will be either closed during the day or will run at a much slower pace, making
travel during this period a different kind of experience. Eating in public can
lead to problems and unnecessary confrontation with both: people and the law,
and therefore we strongly advise all our visitors to eat and drink only indoors.
Your guide will be with you to remind you, if you visit Libya during this month.
The 2012 Ramadan is expected to begin on the 20th of July.
Do not discuss Libyan politics and stay away from any military
sites. Do not take photos of border points or any military installations. Do
not even use your camera close to any military or official site. Leave politics
alone and do not get involved with political gatherings or demonstrators, and
always avoid areas where oil extraction is taking place. If you can, and if
you have the time, you should be alert to developments in the Middle East while
travelling, as some events can easily trigger public unrest across the Middle
East, but rarely in North Africa. Never mention
; if you are one, never say so to anyone.
Care while travelling must be taken wherever you are. Crime,
and poverty-and-drug-related crimes, are a growing problem worldwide and Libya
is no exception. But, generally speaking, conditions in Libya are much better
than most countries and one should feel and be safe, given basic precautions
were taken. Insurance. Do not leave valuable items in your car or van, and if
you do , do not leave them easily visible. Do not leave your purse laying around
on the beach unattended while swimming. Do not leave important and valuable things
in your hotel room, no matter how expensive the hotel is. Secure your wallet
and never put it in your back pocket, as pick pocketing in busy markets and crowded
public transport is becoming more frequent.
Passport loss should be reported immediately to the
Libyan police; do not leave it
no matter what the circumstances are (your tour operator can take
care of this once they know). According to the Libyan Tourist Board, most of
the 16,000 UK visits in 2006 were trouble-free, and that the main type of incidents
encountered by the British in 2007 was replacing lost or stolen passports. You
are warned to keep your passport safe with you at all times and never leave it
in your hotel room,
in your tour operator's car, or anywhere else.
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Code of Conduct
It is forbidden to possess, drink or traffic in alcohol in
Libya. Please make sure you have no alcoholic drinks in your possession, and
preferably do not drink before entering Libya. If alcoholic drinks were found
in your possession at the entry point, then they will be taken away, logged in,
and returned to you on exit. Dressing modestly will not deprive you of your rights,
but will certainly make things easier.
Foreign women in Libya can wear jeans and other ordinary European
clothes, and they can keep their heads uncovered, except when in religious places. Narcotics may
lead to long sentences and even life imprisonment in some cases. Use your common
sense and respect other people's practices whenever you can.
Women Swimming In Libya
Western women can swim in swim-suits and in bikinis; just
avoid crowded areas and find a good secluded spot and you will be fine. This
has been always the case in Libya as long as you avoid public places and family
beaches. Libya's coast is vast and your guide will always be able to find a good
private place for you. It is also okay in large tourist resources where the whole
beach is mainly frequented by tourists and foreign visitors. There are also misconceptions
regarding foreign women being hassled and whistled at by members of the public,
to which we can say it is generally much safer in Libya than in many other countries
for women to walk the streets without being hassled or harassed, as this kind
of behaviour carries heavy legal punishment in most tourist countries.
- Use common sense.
- Always dress modestly.
- Avoid kissing in public.
- Never talk about politics.
- Always remain calm in difficult situations.
- Always respect other's religious practices.
- Always kindly ask permission before taking photographs.
- Never point the soles of your shoes directly at other people.
- If invited to a house, please do leave your shoes outside (or do what everyone
- Avoid smoking in people's homes, unless they are smoking.
- Always use your right hand when offering or receiving things, eating or shaking
- Do not eat in public in Ramadan (the fasting month).
- Always use diplomacy to handle any arising issues.
In Europe driving is an advanced aspect of European society.
In Libya, likewise many similar countries, driving is still way behind. The following
are general guidelines a driver needs to bear in mind when driving or riding
- Lack of total availability of road signs, and if found, they would be mostly
in Arabic and therefore of no use to tourists and foreign visitors. If Libya
truly needs to open its doors to international investors, then English needs
to be incorporated across Libya.
- The inability of the police to enforce traffic laws across thousands of miles
of roads prevents some drivers from observing basic driving regulations.
- The occasional Libyan wind-blown sand can render visibility very poor, and
in many respects it is like driving in thick fog.
- Stray animals, like camels, especially at night, can be dangerous.
- The impossibility to anticipate the foolishness of some drivers, regardless
of whether you are in Europe or Africa, always calls for vigilance.
- Driving to desert areas like Ghadames, at night, is also risky owing to
the sudden build-up of sand mounds in the middle of the road; during the day,
these can be easily spotted from a safe distance.
- Tour operators and travel companies are not allowed to drive with their
visitors during night time, because rural roads lack markings and therefore it
is impossible to anticipate a turn or a bend; and because rural roads are littered
with holes and cracks, some of which are really dangerous even during the day,
and thus always let your operator drive ahead of you.
- High speed is one of the major causes of car accidents in Libya.
Car accidents in Libya are
rapidly changing the lives of many Libyans and also leading to social and psychological
consequences among the great majority of the Libyan population.
Disturbing news reported recently by the Libyan Ministry of Public
Security states that
"60 People Dead, 123 Seriously Injured in 263 Car Accidents in Libya
in One Week"
, between the 19th and the 26th of July 2008. The causes of
the accidents were said to include high speed, recluse driving, using
cell phones while driving, and breaking traffic laws and regulations. These figures
become more disturbing when one considers the small number of the Libyan population.
So, take care, watch out, good luck.
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Anti-personnel mines are only dangerous if you step on them,
and driving over them would only harm your vehicle. Land mines in Libya are mostly
found in the eastern parts of the country, like Tobruk, and even as far south
as Kufra. These were left over from World War Two. The second danger zone is
located by the southern borders with Chad, and between Serir Tibesti and the
Rebiana Erg. Tourists are generally advised to avoid the regions bordering Chad
and Sudan, not only because of land minds but also the risk of being kidnapped
by terrorists coming from Chad and Sudan is always there. This danger has increased
after the February wars in Libya, and therefore you are strongly advised to remain
on the main road (while driving) and avoid venturing off road along the coast
and towards Nafusa, until mine-clearing operations declare Libya safe!
The Climate in Libya:
Libya's climate around the coastal zone can be classified
as Mediterranean and therefore is very similar to that of southern European countries.
But deep south in the Sahara the climate is slightly different. Although the
average year round temperature is about 30° degrees Celsius, it can be very hot
during the middle of the day and freezing cold at midnight.
Generally speaking the winter temperature ranges between
8° to 16° C, with the coldest falling in January and February, where the temperature
occasionally drops to -2ºC, and can drop to as low as -9ºC (minus nine degrees
Celsius). Near the end of December, say from the 27th of December, the surface
of the desert becomes covered with a thin white layer very similar to frost in
Europe, which turns the surface white and hence the name: "The
White Nights", or "The Nights of The White". This
layer disappears around the last week of January, usually the locals say by the
18th of January.
The hottest period in Libya ranges from end of May to September.
The average July temperature is around 40°C degrees Celsius (about 104 degrees
Fahrenheit), and therefore it is not surprising that the highest temperature
in the world was recorded in Libya on the 13th of September 1922, in el-Azizia:
a staggering 136.4 degree Fahrenheit (or 58°C: degrees Celsius). During this
period the coastal temperature can rise to 38°C (100F), while in the southern
parts of the country it can reach 50°C.
If you visit Libya around the month of May then you may encounter
the massive Gibli winds
a dry, hot, sand-blasting wind and
blizzards, most often rendering visibility very poor. In additions to this the
wind can also shift sand from one area to another, leading to the formation
of sand dunes right in the middle of a tarmac road and therefore it is
very dangerous to drive at night; which probably can explain why driving at night
in the company of tourists is against the law. The worst time to visit the Sahara
is between March and April largely because of the wind: very windy almost every
When To Visit Libya:
In our view, we recommend two periods for
visiting the southern parts of Libya: the first period is between October and
December, and this is the period when tourism in Libya reaches its highest; and
then it peaks again during the second period between late February and end of
April, just before the summer.
- Best time to visit Libya: October to December: not hot, not cold; just warm & clear
- Coastal Libya: you can visit the coastal areas across the whole year.
- Western Libya: the best time is between September and May.
- Eastern Libya: ideal time to visit is between September and June.
- Sahara desert region: October to March: temperature drops below zero at night
- Beach holiday and serious sun lovers: blistering June & July: best for
taking a dip in the Med.
- Definitely no for desert tours: June to August.
- Windy Sahara: worst time to visit the Sahara is between March and April:
very windy almost every single day.
For the latest weather forecast please visit the Libyan National Meteorological
Centre ( www.lnmc.org.ly/ ).
The fuel stations along the Libyan coast are far more
numerous than elsewhere and usually there is no need to carry fuel while driving
along the coast. However, venturing into some desert areas, like the Murzuq,
Idri, Tazirbu and Kufra regions, requires carrying extra fuel. The main fuelling
points along the desert routes are: Zuwarah, Aljawsh, Nalut, Ghadames, Darj,
Adiri, Sabha, (then east: Hun, Waddan, Zillah), Tkerkiba, Meknosa, Awbari, Awaynat,
Ghat, Murzuq, Traghen, Zueila, Tmessa, Tazerbu, (then south to Kufrah), Jalu,
Awjla Ajdabiyah, Benghazi, Tolmeitha, Apollonia, At Tamimi, and Tobruk.
A map of the fuel points in Libya (http://www.temehu.com/fuelling-points-in-libya.htm).
Swimming in Libya is generally safe and everyone does it.
But nonetheless one should know that pollution-related hazards do exist, as in
most beaches around the world, caused mainly by seaport industrial activity,
unauthorised dumping, sewage, and chemical plants. Oil tankers roaming the Mediterranean
are also a source of black, soft, asphalt-like lumps which collect on some beaches.
These are easily spotted, and the locals have accustomed to them. Jelly fish,
some of which can be big, are also a source of nuisance and can be very painful.
Farwa: the Farwa peninsula, 20 km east of Tunisian
border, has been proposed for cage/pen culture activities in the past, but trial
mussel rearing failed in 1988; probable causes include shallow water, poor flushing
times by currents, and pollution hazard potential from the nearby chemical plant
of Abu-Kammash, which was reported to have developed problems with its cooling
system that may have leaked mercury-contaminated water into the sea. Local natives,
however, continue to swim and eat fish caught in the region, with no problems
reported, so far.
Abu-Kammash Sabkha : extensive salt marsh straddling
Libyan-Tunisian border area, rich in natural Artemia population. Artemia is
a fairy shrimp of the genus of Phyllopod crustacea, typically found
in salt lakes and brines. Walking across the Sabkha is very risky, and there
were several cases of people sinking to their death. So if you happened to be
exploring these lakes, bear in mind that what appears to be an ordinary crusty
salt on the surface may hide a blackhole beneath.
Sabratha - Tripoli - Musrata: stretch of coastline
with relatively high rainfall and developed agriculture; alternating between
low rocky areas, cliffs, and sandy beaches. Extreme environmental degradation
due to quarrying between Sabratha and Janzour, and to pollution and shoreline
destruction from Janzour to Tajura.
Mina Qasr Ahmed:
deep water harbour for medium size boats, 210 km east of Tripoli.
Localised pollution hazards.
Benghazi: Libya's second largest city, major deep
sea harbour and industrial centre. Pollution hazards.
Abu Dzira Lake Complex: a complex of small freshwater
lakes located southeast of Benghazi, the largest of which is Abou Dzira, about
10 km along the main highway to al Bayda. Pollution problems and threats from
sewage, rubbish, and disease outbreaks in cultured fish.
Marsa Eshoush (Echouch): 2 km east of Tobruk police
gate: excellent sheltered anchorage with several good beaches and wadi mouths;
with potential pollution hazards from oil terminal.
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For full details and qualified information please consult
your doctor or clinic about the necessary vaccinations needed. Anything else
you read in any website must be taken for information only. However, generally
speaking vaccinations against tetanus, rabies, polio, typhoid and hepatitis A
and B are needed, and if you are coming from a country affected by yellow fever,
then a valid Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate is required. Yellow fever is
considered to be endemic in 32 African and 11 Central and South American countries.
The World Health Organisation provides a list of yellow-fever-endemic countries.
It is generally recommended to avoid drinking tap water; wash your hands well
before eating; and avoid swimming in fresh water. Swimming in salty lakes, as
those of the Sahara, is internationally considered safe.
- Hepatitis A
typhoid: from direct contact, water, ice, fruits,
vegetables. Use bottled water, cook your food, avoid salads.
- Hepatitis B: from coming in direct contact with body fluids, like surgery,
sexual intercourse, etc.
Things To Take With You To Libya (Traveller's Check List):
Desert weather is so cold during the winter
that temperature drops below zero at night. Therefore we strongly recommend you
take with you thermal suits or vests, woolen hat, thin wool jumpers, warm thick
socks and a good sleeping bag. Wearing a number of thin layers rather than a
few bulky garments can be more effective in keeping cold at bay.
The following items are recommended, but many of them are not essential.
Some of the items listed are useful only for desert trips:
Visa approval (if you are flying to Libya):
we send you this around one week before arrival.
Solar charger (for camera and phone)
International voltage & plug adaptor
Thermal suits (or vests)
Thermal long underwear (the winter desert gets very cold at night)
Warm insulated jacket
Good sleeping bag for winter visits (we do provide new blankets, sheets and mattresses
for desert tours)
Inflatable pillow (we do provide new pillows for desert tours)
Good boots (hiking boots)
Spare boot laces
Warm socks (few pairs)
Snake bite kit
Small first aid kit
Water purifying tablets
Paracetamol (headache tablets)
Medicine (if you taking any)
Toothbrush & paste
Plastic bags & seals
Small nylon bags
Next of kin details
Cash (traveller's cheques and ATMs are rarely available)
International driving licence (if you have one)
Air tickets (if you are flying to Libya)
Travel insurance policy details
US$1000 (may be still required by law for independent visitors to have
when they enter LIbya). If you have booked your holiday
with us or with any other Libyan operator then you do
not need to have this amount on arrival.
Please let us know if you have anything you
need to comment on regarding any of the issues covered above. Your feedback will
be greatly appreciated and will help other travellers find out as much as they
can about Libya.