Tripoli (Lebanon)

WARNING: Central Tripoli is currently extremely dangerous to visit and is emphatically NOT safe for tourism. If you must go, see War zone safety. If you must go, bring a local guide to help you to stay away from dangerous areas (October 2013)
Old souks of Tripoli

Tripoli (Arabic: Trablus طرابلس) is a city in northern Lebanon.

Get in

From Beirut's Charles Helou station, you can either take a bus (all destinations are written in Arabic. Ask around for the "Trablos Express"), Share a Taxi with others or hire your own taxi (You'll pay for 4 people)

Getting Around

As other cities in Lebanon, Tripoli has an abundance of shared "service" taxis, which is basically every car with a red numberplate. You may share one with others in the direction you are heading. Any trip within central Tripoli will cost 1,000 LL. If going a bit further you might be asked to pay "double service" which is 2,000 LL. If asking for a "Taxi" and not "service" the driver will think you want the car for yourself and will charge you the price of four passengers.


Old City

The Old City is mainly a Mamluk city. The urban form of Mamluk Tripoli was dictated mainly by climate, site configuration, defense, and urban aesthetics. The layout of major thoroughfares was set according to prevailing winds and topography. The city had no fortifications, but heavy building construction characterized by compact urban forms, narrow and winding streets for difficult city penetration. Residential areas were bridged over streets at strategic points for surveillance and defense. The city also included many loopholes and narrow slits at street junctions. There are old souqs (markets) and khans (caravanserai), hammams (Turkish baths), citadels, great Mamluk mosques and madrassas. A vibrant area of the city, visitors will find an agglomeration of jewelers, perfumers, tanners, soap-makers and tailors within the narrow streets. The city is known for its production of soap,copper and brass trays, engraved wooden boxes, furniture, and oriental sweets..

Palm Islands Nature Reserve

Located about a 30 minute boat ride off the coast of Tripoli, the Palm Islands Reserve is composed of three small islands. Established as a national nature reserve in 1992, the site is recognized as an Important Bird Area by Birdlife International. It is also an important egg-laying site for endangered sea turtles.

Other attractions


For outdoor activities, go to the beaches of Tripoli like: Miramar, Al Naoura, Palma Touristic Center and Las Perlas.



Tripoli is famous all over Lebanon for its sticky oriental sweets. Many Beiruties visit Tripoli en group on Sunday mornings to have breakfast at "Hallab". Confusingly to tourists, many sweet houses in Tripoli carry the name "Hallab" in one way or another. This is either because they are legitimate descendants of the famous nineteenth century sweets maker of the same name, or simple free riders trying to profit from the name's reputation. Two however stand out: Rafaat Hallab 1881 , and Abdel Rahman Al Hallab . A visit to either will satisfy the most demanding of sweet teeth.

In the beautiful, wide and trees-planted ElMina Road, you can find many cafes and restaurants to satisfy your hunger.


Tripoli Has the best coffee shops street in all of Lebanon (Mina Road). With more than 100 coffee shops and restaurants on both sidewalks. For bars and pubs, Mina neighborhood would be the best place for a glass of wine or a pint of beer with smooth Jazz music.


Stay safe

Due to the spillover of the Civil war in Syria, the situation in Lebanon, including Tripoli, has deteriorated, and there are clashes between the government and fighters. Travel is strongly discouraged at this time since attacks in Tripoli are highly likely to continue. Most of governments around the world have issued travel warnings to Lebanon. If you must go, consult your embassy and see War zone safety.

In July and August 2013 there were several skirmishes and car bombs in Tripoli. The latest bombing killed 47 people in central Tripoli. As of October 2013 the city cannot be considered safe to visit.

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This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Saturday, April 25, 2015. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.