Monday, January 17, 2022
Tripoli-Lebanon Travel Guide - Travel S Helper

Tripoli

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Tripoli is the main city in northern Lebanon and the country’s second largest. It is the capital of the North Governorate and the Tripoli District, and is located 85 kilometers (53 miles) north of Beirut. Tripoli has a view of the eastern Mediterranean Sea and is Lebanon’s northernmost harbor. It protects a stretch of four tiny islands, Lebanon’s sole remaining islands. Because of its value as a shelter for endangered loggerhead turtles (Chelona mydas), rare monk seals, and migrating birds, the Palm Islands were designated as a protected area.

Despite the fact that Tripoli’s history extends back to at least the 14th century BCE, the city is most known for having the biggest Crusader fortification in Lebanon (the Citadel of Raymond de Saint-Gilles) and being the second largest city in terms of Mamluk architectural legacy (after Cairo).

With the establishment of Lebanon and the dissolution of the Syrian-Lebanese customs union in 1948, Tripoli, which had been on par with Beirut in terms of economic and commercial prominence, was cut off from its historic trading links with the Syrian hinterland and decreased in relative wealth.

Tripoli is bounded by El Mina, the port of the Tripoli District, with which it is physically linked to create the wider Tripoli conurbation.

Tourism in Tripoli

  • Al Muallaq Mosque. is known as “the Hanging Mosque” because of its placement on the second story. During the time of Suleiman the Magnificent, the Ottoman governor of Tripoli, Mahmud ibn Lufti, founded it in the 16th century. Non-Muslims are often not permitted to attend mosques or holy locations, according to Islamic custom. Non-Muslim tourists may be able to visit the courtyard gardens and may be able to locate someone to ask for permission to enter. Visitors should dress correctly and take off their shoes before entering. Entry is not authorized during prayer times or at any other time during the month of Ramadan.
  • Al Mansouri (Great Mosque). The mosque is dedicated after Al Mansouri Qala’un, who recaptured Tripoli from the Crusaders in 1289. It was built between 1294 and 1315. This was the first monument to be constructed in the new Mamluk Tripoli. St. Mary’s of the Tower, a medieval Crusader church, was demolished to make way for the mosque. It is a classic Mamluk-style mosque outside of these components. Non-Muslims are often not permitted to attend mosques or holy locations, according to Islamic custom. Non-Muslim tourists may be able to visit the courtyard gardens and may be able to locate someone to ask for permission to enter. Visitors should dress correctly and take off their shoes before entering. Entry is not authorized during prayer times or at any other time during the month of Ramadan.
  • Al Attar Mosque. The mosque is named after Badr al Din ibn al Attar, a wealthy perfume trader who provided funds for its construction in the mid-14th century. The Al Attar Mosque, located in Tripoli’s souk district, is one of the city’s most notable mosques. Its sandstone minaret is a well-known feature in Mamluk Tripoli. Non-Muslims are often not permitted to attend mosques or holy locations, according to Islamic custom. Non-Muslim tourists may be able to visit the courtyard gardens and may be able to locate someone to ask for permission to enter. Visitors should dress correctly and take off their shoes before entering. Entry is not authorized during prayer times or at any other time during the month of Ramadan.
  • Taynal Mosque. After the Great Mosque, this is Tripoli’s second most significant mosque. It was built under the auspices of Amir Taynal, the administrator of Mamluk Tripoli, in 1336. This lovely specimen of Islamic religious building is notable for its grandeur, elaborate adornment, and architectural quirks (elements of a Crusader church incorporated into the mosque architecture). Non-Muslims are often not permitted to attend mosques or holy locations, according to Islamic custom. Non-Muslim tourists may be able to visit the courtyard gardens and may be able to locate someone to ask for permission to enter. Visitors should dress correctly and take off their shoes before entering. Entry is not authorized during prayer times or at any other time during the month of Ramadan.
  • Citadel of Raymond de Saint Gilles. A vast and majestic 140m long and 70m broad citadel that originated as a much smaller fort and encampment used by Raymond and the Crusaders to lay siege to Tripoli starting in 1101. The castle was destroyed at the Mamluk reconquest of Tripoli in 1289. In 1308, Esendemir al-Kurji, the ruler of Tripoli at the time, built a castle on this location to hold soldiers. Significant renovations and improvements to the fortress were done during Ottoman administration. The current status of the citadel is primarily due to the efforts of Mustafa Barbar Agha, governor of Tripoli at the turn of the nineteenth century. LL7500.
  • Al Burtasiyat Madrassa-Mosque. This is one of the most exquisite mosques and Islamic institutions, or madrassas, from Tripoli’s Mamluk era. The mosque and school were built in the early 14th century by Prince Issa Bin Omar Al Bertasi Al Kerdi, an Andalusian architect. It is located on the west side of the river in Tripoli’s Bab El Hadid neighborhood. The mosque is a 5-minute walk from the Citadel of Raymond de Saint-Gilles. Non-Muslims are generally not permitted to visit mosques or holy locations, according to Islamic custom. Non-Muslim guests may be allowed to visit the courtyard gardens and may be able to ask someone for permission to enter. Visitors should dress correctly and remove their shoes before entering. Entry is not allowed during prayer hours or at any other time during the month of Ramadan.
  • Mosque of Sayedi Abel El Wahid. This mosque, the smallest of Tripoli’s Mamluk mosques, is situated east of the Al Aatarien Souk (market). It was erected in 1305, by Abed El Wahid El Maknasi, and is distinguished by its small minaret. To the right of the mosque lies the mausoleum of Abed El Salam El Meshishi. Non-Muslims are often not permitted to attend mosques or holy locations, according to Islamic custom. Non-Muslim tourists may be able to visit the courtyard gardens and may be able to locate someone to ask for permission to enter. Visitors should dress correctly and take off their shoes before entering. Entry is not authorized during prayer times or at any other time during the month of Ramadan.
  • Soap Khan (Khan EssSaboun) – Yusuf al-Saifi, Pasha of Tripoli, erected Soap Khan (Khan EssSaboun) in the beginning of the seventeenth century. It was originally designed to serve as a military barracks to house Ottoman soldiers, and it was purposefully placed in the city center to allow the pasha to manage any insurrection. It’s a massive, imposing rectangular edifice with two-story arcaded hallways that round a fountain courtyard. For protection, the outside walls contained a number of loopholes and arrow slits. An arched entrance in front of the structure was flanked by stone seats for the pasha’s guards. A white marble plaque marks the construction of Tripoli’s magnificent military barracks. Yusuf Pasha was captured at the battle of Anjar. When Fakhr-ed-Din took Tripoli, the Ottoman garrison fled to join his routed soldiers in Syria. The troops of Fakhr-ed-Din temporarily used the barracks, but in the years that followed, the structure lay vacant and worthless. To the residents of Tripoli, this seemed to be a huge waste, thus a petition was submitted to Deir al-Qamar, Fakhr-ed-palace, Din’s requesting that the structure be converted into a soap factory and warehouse. From then till now, the Ottoman barracks have functioned as Tripoli’s thriving Soap Khan, or Khn as-Sáboun.
  • Tailor’s Khan (Khan Al Khayyatin). Two fourteenth-century Mamluk khans face one other in the vicinity of the Ezzedin baths. Built in 1341, the Tailor’ khan adjoins the baths on the north. Its street stalls and storehouses still house contemporary Tripoli’s dry goods merchants and tailors. The Tailor’ khan is a sixty-yard-long corridor with towering beautiful arches on either side and 10 transverse arches that open to the sky. An engaged Corinthian column is erected in the brown sandstone wall at the entryway and may be a Crusader Church pilaster with a re-used marble crown. Other Roman granite column fragments are placed into the walls nearby.

OLD CITY

The Old City is mostly a Mamluk city. Mamluk Tripoli’s urban form was primarily determined by climate, site design, defense, and urban aesthetics. The arrangement of key thoroughfares was determined by factors such as prevailing winds and geography. The city had no walls, but it was densely built, with compact urban forms and narrow, serpentine alleys that made city entrance difficult. For observation and defense, residential sections were spanned over roadways at critical spots. The city also has a lot of loopholes and thin slits at street intersections. There are historic souqs and khans (caravanserai), hammams (Turkish baths), citadels, huge Mamluk mosques, and madrassas. Within the city’s small lanes, tourists will discover a smattering of jewelers, perfumers, tanners, soap-makers, and tailors. The city is well-known for its soap, copper and brass trays, carved wooden boxes, furniture, and oriental delicacies.

PALM ISLANDS NATURE RESERVE

The Palm Islands Reserve is made up of three tiny islands and is located around a 30-minute boat journey off the coast of Tripoli. Birdlife International has designated the site as an Important Bird Area after it was established as a national nature reserve in 1992. It is also a key nesting location for endangered sea turtles.

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