Benghazi Travel Guide

Plan your trip to Benghazi with our comprehensive travel guide including top attractions, things to do, where to stay, local culture and customs, safety and health, and transportation options.

Introduction to Benghazi

Benghazi, located in the eastern part of Libya, is one of the country’s most important cities. It is known for its historical significance and cultural heritage, making it a fascinating place for tourists to visit. Benghazi has a thriving food and entertainment scene along with attractive natural vistas, and outdoor adventure activities. In this travel guide, we will take a closer look at the places to visit in Benghazi, the attractions, the local customs and culture, the best time to visit, and more.

List of Places to Visit in Benghazi

Benghazi is home to many culturally significant landmarks as well as natural attractions. Here are some of the top places to visit in Benghazi:

Culturally Important Attractions: Museums and Historical Places

  • Benghazi Museum: This museum is located in the city center and displays numerous artifacts and exhibits that tell the story of Benghazi’s ancient history to modern times.
  • The Medusa Museum: An old Venetian-style palace converted into a museum displaying art and artifacts from different cultures and periods.
  • The Omar Al-Mukhtar Museum: This museum is dedicated to the national hero of Libya, Omar Al-Mukhtar, who fought for the independence of Libya from Italian colonial rule.

Natural Attractions of Benghazi: Outdoor Adventures and Scenic Views

  • Botanic Gardens: Located towards the outskirts of Benghazi, the Botanic Gardens boast an array of plant species and offer a perfect retreat for nature lovers.
  • Green Mountain: Around 100 kilometers south of Benghazi, Green Mountain is an ideal destination for adventure enthusiasts looking for hiking and trekking opportunities. A visit to the mountain will reward you with breathtaking views of the Mediterranean Sea.

Hiking/Biking Routes of Benghazi

For outdoor adventure seekers, Benghazi has many hiking and biking trails that offer scenic routes and opportunities for exploration. Two popular routes are:

  • Ain Herda Walking Trail: This trail is around 15 km from downtown Benghazi and is a great place to trek for hiking enthusiasts.
  • Benghazi Coastal Bike Path: This biking path stretches along the Benghazi coastline and is popular among cycling enthusiasts.

Best Things to Do in Benghazi: Activities and Tours

Apart from hiking and biking, Benghazi offers many other activities and tours to keep you engaged. Here are some of the best things to do in Benghazi:

  • Visit the Benghazi Zoo: The zoo is at the intersection of the coastal road and airport road and has around 200 different animal species including lions, giraffes, and monkeys.
  • Explore the Old City: Take a stroll around the historic center of Benghazi and visit its narrow streets, old houses, and bazaars. The old city is also an excellent place to try out some traditional Libyan street food.
  • Take a tour to Tobruk: A day trip from Benghazi to Tobruk allows visitors to experience the city’s historical and cultural landmarks including the Tobruk War Cemetery, the Tobruk War Museum, and Tobruk’s old town.

Week-Long Itinerary for Benghazi

A week-long itinerary for Benghazi could be as follows:

Day Activity
Day 1 Arrival and check-in at your preferred accommodation
Day 2 Visit Benghazi Museum and Medusa Museums
Day 3 A day trip to Tobruk
Day 4 Explore the Old City and taste some street food
Day 5 Hike Green Mountain and visit Botanic Gardens
Day 6 Spend a day at the Benghazi Zoo
Day 7 Departure from Benghazi

Food and Drink Scene of Benghazi

One of the highlights of a visit to Benghazi is its food and drink scene. Here are some must-try dishes and local beverages:

Must-Try Dishes

  • Bazeen: A traditional Libyan dish made of flour and water, served with vegetables, and often eaten with fermented milk called “leben.”
  • Sharba: A famous Libyan soup made of tomatoes, onions, vegetables, and lamb or beef broth.
  • Couscous: A steamed dish of semolina that usually goes along with meat and vegetables.

Local Beverages

  • Sahlab: A popular hot drink made from Orchid roots, milk, and sugar.
  • Tea: Tea is widely drunk throughout Libya and offered to guests as a sign of hospitality.

Where to Stay in Benghazi: Hotels, Hostels, and Guesthouses

Benghazi offers an array of accommodation options depending on your budget and preference. Some of the best options include:

  • Tibesti Hotel: Luxury hotel located in the center of Benghazi with excellent views of the Mediterranean Sea.
  • Al-Huda Hotel: Located in the old city and offering more traditional Libyan architecture, Al-Huda Hotel is a great option for those looking for a more authentic experience.
  • Al-Mahari Hotel: located in the Ain Zara area, offering a peaceful stay and a chance to experience a more suburban side of Benghazi.

What to Buy in Benghazi: Souvenirs and Local Products to Bring Home

Benghazi has a rich souvenir culture fueled by its history and cultural heritage. Here are some of the souvenirs and local products to bring home:

  • Traditional Libyan clothing and fabrics
  • Carpets and Rugs
  • Gold and silver jewelry
  • Handmade pottery and ceramics

Local Culture and Customs of Benghazi

As with most places in North Africa and the Middle East, Benghazi has a rich culture and customs shaped by its history and religion. It is essential to respect the local customs and avoid any behavior that might be seen as inappropriate. Here are some things to remember while in Benghazi:

  • Dress modestly and appropriately at all times
  • Avoid public displays of affection
  • Always ask before taking photographs of people or religious objects
  • Show respect towards the Islamic call of prayer
  • Do not eat or drink in public during the holy month of Ramadan

Best Time to Visit Benghazi

The best time to visit Benghazi is during the fall and spring when the temperatures are milder and more pleasant for wandering and exploring. The shoulder season is also a great time to avoid the larger crowds of tourists that tend to come during the summer months.

Do’s and Don’ts of Benghazi


  • Respect the local customs and culture
  • Drink plenty of water and stay hydrated
  • Try the local cuisine and traditional dishes
  • Dress modestly and appropriately


  • Drink tap water – stick to drinking bottled water
  • Share your personal details with strangers or unregistered tour guides
  • Insult, disrespect or be impolite towards the local customs or culture
  • Take photographs of military personnel or military installations

Safety and Health

Safety in Benghazi

Benghazi is considered safe for tourists, but like any other city, there are specific precautions that tourists should take to ensure their safety. Some safety tips include:

  • Avoid traveling at night
  • Stay in well-lit and safe areas
  • Do not carry large sums of money on you
  • Be aware of your surroundings and avoid standing out as a tourist

Health in Benghazi

As with most developing countries, health can be a concern in Benghazi. Tourists should ensure that they have all required vaccinations before traveling to Libya. Additionally, travelers should take precautions against heat-related illnesses, as well as issues related to consuming contaminated water or food that may cause food poisoning.

Getting to Benghazi: Transportation Options and Logistics

Airports Near Benghazi

  • Benina International Airport: The Benina International airport is located around 15 km from downtown Benghazi and offers connections to different parts of the world.

Bus Stations Near Benghazi

  • Benghazi Bus Station: The main bus station is located in the city center and offers departures and arrivals to different cities and regions across Libya.

Other Options

  • Car Rentals: Tourists can get around Benghazi easily by renting a car. This will give them plenty of flexibility and independence when traveling around the city and the surrounding areas.

How to Get Around in Benghazi

Benghazi is a walkable city, which makes it easy to explore on foot. Taxis are also available to take you around, but be sure to negotiate prices with the drivers beforehand. Renting a car is another option for getting around Benghazi and the surrounding areas.

Where to Go Next from Benghazi: Nearby Destinations and Excursions

Benghazi is an excellent starting point for exploring other areas of Libya. Here are some nearby destinations you can visit from Benghazi:

  • Tripoli: Libya’s capital city offers many historical landmarks, modern attractions, and a thriving food and entertainment scene.
  • Sabratha: Located in western Libya, Sabratha is an ancient Roman city that is popular among history and architecture enthusiasts.
  • Derna: A stunning coastal town in the eastern part of Libya with beautiful beaches and scenic nature trails.


Benghazi has a lot to offer to its visitors, from its rich cultural heritage to its stunning natural beauty. A trip to Benghazi is a great opportunity to learn about the history and culture of Libya and explore the different attractions and activities in the city. This comprehensive travel guide will help you plan your next trip to Benghazi with ease!