Around 120 kilometres east of Libya’s capital city of Tripoli is one of the most fascinating ruins of antiquity, the legendary city of Leptis Magna. This extraordinary metropolis was the first of three Phoenician cities that were founded in what later became known as Tripolitania.
In addition to its trade in olive oil and various other agricultural products, the city owed much of its wealth to a uniquely exotic export. In those days, wild animals, such as the lion and elephant, were shipped to Leptis Magna from Africa and distributed to various Roman cities. These creatures formed the main attraction for the Roman’s bloody entertainments and thus were highly prized and so the city’s wealth went from strength to strength.
Alas, only the many impressive remains of its once glorious buildings, such as a magnificent theatre, indicate the former greatness and power of the ancient city.
Leptis Magna is one of the most important and striking archaeological sites of antiquity, a place full of history and mystique and surrounded by scenic splendor.
Global Treasures - History's Most Protected Monuments - Heritage is our legacy from the past, what we live today, and what we pass on to future generations. Our cultural and natural heritage are both irreplaceable sources of life and inspiration. Places as unique and diverse as the wilds of East Africa's Serengeti, the Pyramids of Egypt, the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and the Baroque cathedrals of Latin America make up our world's heritage. Join us as we explore one of these protected monuments.