Blogs from Libya, Africa

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Africa » Libya » Tripoli December 7th 2013

Before we made the decision to go to Libya, we thought long and hard about the security situation over there. From our research we concluded that the city of Tripoli seemed to be ok but it was unlikely we would get out of the city very much. The situation began to decline not long after we arrived and it reached a low on November 15th. At least 47 people were killed when the militia men in Gargour opened fire on a peaceful demonstration. The number of injured was estimated to be 500 and the city's hospitals struggled to cope with the casualties from the massacre. Demonstrations continued for two weeks afterwards and a general strike was called. For one week we had no classes but were unable to get out and about because of the security ... read more
Militia "protecting" the city
A bad night in Tripoli
"Flame of the Capital"

Africa » Libya » Leptis Magna November 30th 2013

It's been a difficult couple of weeks in Tripoli. The International press has been sure to sensationalise the situation but even the unexaggerated version has been pretty grim. That's why we were delighted to be offered the chance to leave the city and travel to ancient Leptis Magna during our final weekend here. Roadblocks and security checks have all been removed now so the only thing stopping us from getting there quickly was the rain. And boy did it rain! We drove through some serious flooding to get there but our driver was very good. He even slowed down when he saw the floodwater!! Our friend Claudia had arranged for a guide to meet us at a nearby villa famous for its mosaic floors. Instead he met us at Leptis Magna to tell us that it ... read more
Septimus Severus Arch
I can see a rainbow
Roman road

Africa » Libya » Tripoli November 30th 2013

In 1974 Villa Silin was discovered on the Libyan coast between Tripoli and Leptic Magna. It had been buried under sand dunes for centuries preserving its treasures from thieves and tourists alike. It's not an easy place to visit. Luckily we had a guide who met us at Leptis and was able to direct our driver along the torturous roads to get there. Without him we wouldn't have had a chance. Unfortunately the building itself remains locked up and out of reach until new funding is found to bring back the archaeologists. It's a shame but we really enjoyed what we saw. The rain that day worked in our favour. It cleaned the spectacular outside mosaics and they were very easy to see. They might not be the most colourful mosaics in the world but they ... read more
Seaside mosaics
No Photograph
Excessive Security

Africa » Libya » Sabratha November 17th 2013

Libya is a spectacular country with breathtaking scenery and incredible ancient ruins. It should be full of tourists enjoying everything on offer. Sadly that's not the case, but for us it means the opportunity to explore the ancient sites in peace and tranquility. Our friend Claudia arranged with a driver to come and pick us up last Saturday morning. Then we drove some 70km to the West to the ancient Roman city of Sabratha. The roads were empty (in stark contrast to the return journey to Tripoli) and we made good time getting there. On arrival we were a bit worried that it was closed but it was simply that with no visitors whatsoever the guardian had to be found to get someone to sell us entry tickets. Once inside we had the place to ourselves. ... read more
Spectacular skies
Roman theatre
Mausoleum of Bes

Africa » Libya » Tripoli November 13th 2013

Never ones to run away from adventure, we leapt at the chance to come to Libya for a 5 week work contract. It's been an interesting start to say the least! We had to fly from Barcelona to Gatwick, stay overnight, and then from Gatwick to Tripoli. We were even upgraded on the flight which made it a very pleasant experience! That's probably because our boss was travelling with us though. At Tripoli airport we were met by his Libyan contacts who eased our way through immigration and customs. It was a hectic scene as everyone was waiting for their bags to arrive from around the Middle East as well as from London. In the car park we got our first glimpse of some of the current problems in the country. There were several abandoned cars ... read more
Free Libya Flags
Free Libya flags are everywhere
Tripoli Medina

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Africa » Libya » Benghazi October 9th 2013

As we approached Misrata there were burned out hulks of tanks, and the buildings were regularly pockmarked with bullet-holes, or burst open by shells, rockets, or bombs. The war that had ended two years ago felt close. It felt real. But it was this backdrop of armed revolution, the resulting lack of governmental structure or services, and and the instability of the country that served to highlight the generosity and enthusiasm of the people we were meeting. In Misrata we met Moftah, a friend of one of the Tripoli guys, and spent the evening with him and his uncle. Misrata was were the bulk of the fighting had taken place during the war, and we gained a first-hand account of what it had been like. The people of Misrata had decided to resist Gadaffi, which resulted ... read more
Tank.  KTM.  Good.
Smells like a revolution
Tank in the back yard

Africa » Libya » Tripoli October 2nd 2013

"You want adventure? Libya is the real one" advised our fixer Masoud with a big smile. He was helping us complete the various formalities at the border, while at the same time giving us our first insight into life in post-revolution Libya. The clear message that came across was that there was real excitement about the potential that a Gaddafi-free Libya held for the people, but also frustration at how slow progress was. As a far as safety was concerned, he felt that the main issues were between Libyans (different provinces / militias), and as tourists we would be welcomed. And welcomed we were. At the outskirts of Tripoli we were met by half a dozen guys on Harley Davidsons, and escorted into town as the sun set. It was the start of a week of ... read more
Libya is as good a place as any for my first ride on a Harley
The balcony above the bikes is where Gadaffi used to make speeches

Africa » Libya » Sahara July 22nd 2012

A very early good morning from 40000ft above the Sahara. Its been a pleasant flight thus far, watched Tintin as my first movie, and it was worth my time. I slept for about 3 hours, but I cant seem to find sleep right now. I scored it quite lucky with my seating placement; sitting at a window with no one between myself and the aisle seat. In the aisle seat I met Maies, a travel agent from Mountain View, California. Had a good chat about her experiences in Africa, South Africa, Kenya and so forth. She also invited me to the Air France Lounge in Paris as her guest, so that means free food and a shower, something that I wouldnt be getting in any other case, so that is a really nice gesture. In trying ... read more

Africa » Libya » Tripoli October 16th 2010

Libya was our objective and we entered after several hours of immigration. We camped on the beach near Zuara and it was pleasant to relax swim and have an secret beer or two The marauding dogs were only a minor danger. We drove south the next day and went through Nazar and visited the Granary where for hundreds of years villagers have kept their grain for safe keeping.After a long day arrived at Ghardarmes and stayed at the YHA. This is a heritage listed village in the desert where the gypsum buildings and underground corridors are painted white and is a preserved bedouin area.In the late afternoon we climbed the large sand dunes out of town. After 2 nights we continued to Sabratha via another granary in Qasar al Hadj. This time a circular granary 3 ... read more
Libya Nazar
Libya Ghardarmes
Libya Sabratha

Africa » Libya » Tripoli August 7th 2010

Hi all - we are still in Tripoli, and we've have started a new blog site. Please check out the new post at: http://wander-wege.blogspot.com Sign up as a follower to continue to receive future posts, or contact either of us by email. In addition, Bob's been posting things quite a bit on his facebook page. Feel free to check that out as well (Robertus van der Wege). Happy wanderings!... read more




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