Apollonia (Sousa)


Map of Apollonia.

1. Entry Canal to West Port 5.Light House 9. Central Basilica
2. Entry Canal to East Port 6. West Port 10. Roman Baths
3. Hammam Island (Central) 7.West Basilica 11. Dux's Palace
4. Sharkea Island (East) 8.Triconch Cemetery 12. Sanctury of Callicrateia
13.Acropolis 14.Theater  

Being only about 20 km north of Cyrene, Apollonia was established in the 7th century BC to serve as a seaport for the city of Cyrene. Its importance and success grew with time where it became more influential than Cyrene itself.  It was named after the Greek Sun-god Apollo and hence Apollonia, the Sun City, may have been built in his honour by the Greek colonists, to secure the protection of the god to safeguard the ships laden with goods. This may also explain the etymology of the present form of the name, namely Sousa, which some sources say comes from Sozousa (The Savior) and therefore Susa or Sousa may well have been the Byzantine replacement of the earlier pagan Apollonia.


entrance to the archaeological site
The entrance to the archaeological site.
The sign says: no stay (camping) and no swimming inside the site.


The city offers a number of great sites to see, like its partially submerged harbour, the Acropolis, the temples of Zeus and Apollo, the rock graves of Necropolis, the Byzantine churches, the Agora, and the remains of a sunken or immersed Greek town (see map above).


apollonia village scene


Apollonia by the beach


The area around Apollonia is also the home of lush green groves, several attractive beaches, like those between al-Hena and Ras-al-Hamama, the biggest cistern in Africa, and the nearby Qaser Libya, the home of the Byzantine basilicas.

Apollonia, Libya.

columns by the beach

Apollonia museum

Visit Our Apollonia Museum

Apollonia - archs


columns from Apollonia by the beach

apollonia city by the sea, eastern Libya.


byzantine church in Apollonia

byzantine church in Apollonia
The Byzantine Church in Apollonia.

byzantine church in Apollonia
The Byzantine Church in Apollonia by the coast.