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About Libya

Libya is a predominately desert country in North Africa, bordering Egypt and Tunisia. Libya budget travel includes a range of highlights from ancient Roman ruins to vast desert landscapes and fascinating Arab cultures and traditions.

Libya Budget Travel

Below is a list of Libya's top destinations, click on the link to view all details and tours.

Tripoli

Fast Facts

Currency
Libyan Dinar (LYD)

Dialing Code
218

AIDS

Libya HIV/AIDS precautions include the following:
• Don't ever share needles or syringes
• Practice safe sex at all times
• Equipment may not be adequately sterilised, or blood may not be properly screened for HIV
• If you require self-administered injections, take an adequate supply of your own needles
• Avoid tattoos, acupuncture treatment or body piercing unless the equipment is sterile

Airports

Major Libya airports include:
• Benina International Airport
• Tripoli International Airport

Birdlife

Libya birdlife includes some 317 species, with total of 8 Important Bird Areas (IBAs) in the country. Species includes Moussier's Redstart, Tristram's Warbler, Lesser Kestrel and Slender-billed Curlew.

Conservation

With a number of species now extinct, Libya conservation efforts are essential to protect the country's threatened and endangered bird and animal species. Projects include sea turtle conservation and tortoise preservation projects.

Culture

Libya cultures include the following influences:
• Literature plays a vital role in spanning the multi-cultural heritages of Libya
• Food and drink are a strong part of all cultures in the country
• Berber influences date back to the country's earliest times
• Italian and Greek influences can both be found in ancient ruins and villages
• Architecture and use of space plays a key role in surviving the desert climate

Customs

Libya customs allows for free import of the following:
• 200 cigarettes, 250g of tobacco or 250g cigars
• 250ml of perfume

Health

Libya health facilities are infamous for being overcrowded and inadequate, so take precautions to stay healthy and avoid the public health care system. Take out comprehensive travel insurance, avoid tap water, pack a basic first aid kit and do not eat food that has been left to stand.

Innoculations

Libya vaccinations include the following:
• Hepatitis A & B
• Typhoid
• Yellow fever (if coming from an infected zone)
• Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR)
• Tetanus-diphtheria

Languages

Libya languages include the following:
• Arabic
• Italian
• English

Malaria

Libya malaria information includes:
• Malaria medication is not needed to visit Libya
• Malaria medication includes Larium, Malarone, or doxycycline
• If you are coming from a malaria zone be sure to continue the course as prescribed
• Follow basic guidelines such as using mosquito repellent and mosquito netting
• Speak to your doctor about malaria medication you will need

Money

Libya money and banking info is as follows:
• Local currency is Libyan Dinar and dirhams
• Libya is a cash society - credit cards are very seldom accepted
• Currency can be exchanged at airports and some major hotels
• Be prepared and organise cash when you have the chance
• There are few reliable ATMs in Tripoli

People

Libya people include the following groups:
• Berber and Arab 97%
• Egyptians, Greeks, Maltese, Italians, Pakistanis, Turks, Indians and Albanians 3%

Phrase

Libya local phrases in Arabic include:
• Hello - As-salaam-alaikum
• Goodbye - Ma'assalama
• Thank you - Shokran
• Please - Men fadlak (male), men fadlik (female)
• How much? - Bikam?

Plants

Mostly desert, the small amount of Libya plant life includes a relatively narrow coastal strip and highland steppes, sparse grassland, as well as the lush Jabal al Akhdar (Green Mountain), named after its leafy cover of pine, juniper, cypress, and wild olive.

Population

A July 2006 United Nations estimate puts the Libya population at 5,900,754.

Religion

Libya religion includes the following groups:
• Sunni Muslim 97%
• Christian
• Other 3%

Safety Tips

Libya safety tips include the following:
• Libya is generally a safe country to visit with very little problems
• Driving can be a hazard however, with camels and sand, and poor standard headlights making it hard to navigate desert roads, and speeding and heavy traffic in city roads
• Driving after dark in rural areas is not advised
• Tourists can sometimes be scammed or hassled – be polite and firm
• It is illegal to bring alcohol into the country or drink, and penalties can be very severe

Transport

Libya local transport options include the following:
• Train
• Car
• Taxi
• Plane

Travel Books

Libya recommended travel books include the following:
• Libya - Culture Smart!: A Quick Guide to Customs and Etiquette by Roger Jones
• Waterproof Libya Map by International Travel Maps and Books
• Footprint Libya Handbook: The Travel Guide by James Azema
• Libya: A Civilization Amidst the Dunes by Giorgio Galanti
• Libya In Pictures by Francesca Di Piazza

Visa Requirements

Libya visa information is as follows:
• It is notoriously difficult to obtain tourist visas for Libya
• Holders of passports containing a valid or expired visa for Israel will be refused entry or transit
• Passports must be valid for a minimum of six months
• Visitors must be in possession of a minimum of foreign currency equivalent to US$1,000 on arrival
• Travelers who have proof of Libyan family or organisation who are sponsoring them are exempt from the above clause

What To Buy

What to buy for Libya safaris:
• Sleeping bag and camping mattress if you are on an overlanding tour
• Backpack plus a good quality moneybag to keep valuables
• Libya travel guide plus Arab phrase book and a good map
• First aid kit with basic supplies and malaria medication
• Travel pack with wet wipes, toilet roll and waterless hand wash

What To Pack

What to pack for Libya safaris: Camera, batteries and spare film or memory as well as binoculars
• Long-sleeve, loose, lightweight clothing with skirts and t-shirts covering shoulders for women as well as headscarves
• Comfortable walking shoes and sandals
• Sunglasses, sunscreen, sunhat and swimming costume
• Warm jacket for cooler months and night time

When To Go

Best time to visit Libya:
• The best time to visit Libya is from November to May, when the temperatures are cooler
• In summer (June to September) the ghibli sandstorms make it hard to get around
• Summer is generally very hot with average temperatures on the coast around 30°C
• Avoid the desert areas from mid-May until October, when temperatures reach a sweltering 55°C
• Desert temperatures can drop below freezing at night
• For more information about Libya, take a look at Guide for Africa's detailed guide.

Wildlife

With 87 species of mammals and a large number of reptiles to be found, Libya wildlife is fairly abundant. Most species are desert-dwelling, with a range of animals including Barbary sheep, desert fox, Gazelle, Kleinmanni tortoise, Libyan Jerboa, Cape Hyrax, Olive Baboon, African Savanna Hare, as well as marine animals like Pilot whale and dolphin.

 

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