In 2011, an armed conflict escalated in Libya, which ended up less than a year later in the fall of Muammar Gaddafi.
After that, the same people that claimed democracy started fighting each other over power, leading to two additional civil wars.
On and off conflicts continued until the country officially split into two main regions, ruled by two different, independent Governments: West Libya, with Tripoli as the capital, and East Libya, with Benghazi as the main city.
Since 2020, Libya has gained some stability but there hasn’t been a proper Government, so the country remains a failed state.
However, from a safety point of view, the situation is stable, and travelers are welcome to visit Libya again.
need to know for traveling in Libya
Population: 7 million (104th)
Area: 1,759,541km² (16th largest country)
There’s no tourist visa for Libya, but you must get a business visa via a local person, who should issue you a LOI, which you can present at the embassy.
Check the visa section.
The official currency is the Libyan Dinar
1 USD = 5 LD
Cards are not accepted in Libya, bring all your money in cash.
Budget: starting at $300 a day
Because of the sanctions, most travel insurance companies don’t cover travel in Libya, but IATI Insurance does:
5% discount if booking here:
Today, independent travel is strictly forbidden in Libya.
Not only that but you must inform of your itinerary in advance and it can’t be changed afterwards.
Tours for Libya
Against the Compass runs tours into Libya. The next one is scheduled on:
October 19th to 25th (2023)
Which places can you visit in Libya?
Leptis Magna, Sabratha, Ghadames and Tripoli are the easiest places to visit in Libya.
Recently, my local contacts have said that Benghazi (East) and Ghat (South) have also been opened, but there are no travel reports so far.
The more stable the country becomes, the more tourists will be allowed to go and, perhaps, tourist visas will finally be issued.
Top experiences in Libya
Visiting first-league Roman ruins
Leptis Magna and Sabratha are exceptional Roman sites built by the sea.
Admiring the Italian Heritage in Tripoli
Italians left their footprint in Libya, leaving behind the most beautiful buildings in the country.
Experiencing the Libyan desert
Few countries in the world have such a vast, empty desert.
Visiting the ancient caravan city of Ghadames
An ancient desert town and UNESCO site, home to an entangled and massive old city composed of hundreds of pathways.
tips for Libya
There are very few hotels, but almost each big town has one relatively good option for foreigners.
Check this accommodation section.
You can only fly in from Tunis (Tunis Air) or Istanbul (Turkish Airlines).
A cheaper option is Libyan Wings from Tunis, but you can only book your tickets at the respective office in cash.
The border with Tunis is open but an expensive choice if your guide needs to pick you up there.
Gas is so cheap in Libya, that there are no public buses because everyone moves around by car.