Tripoli is the biggest and capital city of Libya and also the country’s cultural, economic, and educational center. The North African country boasts an estimated population of 6,271, 218 and Tripoli is the only city with over one million inhabitants. Approximately 90% of the residents are in urban regions, particularly in the country’s largest cities of Tripoli, Benghazi, Bayda, and Misrata.
The Biggest Cities In Libya
The capital of Tripoli is home to 1,150,989 residents. Tripoli began as commercial center named Oea by the Phoenicians in the 7th century. Oea was then occupied by the Romans, the Vandals, the Byzantines, the Arabs, the Spaniards, and then the Turks. The modern city was controlled by Italy between 1911 and 1943, after which the British occupied it until 1951 when Libya gained independence. The contemporary city of Tripoli is an economic hub, with industries ranging from food processing, textiles, tobacco products, construction products, and woven goods. The city is also the primary sea port in Libya. Most of Tripoli’s inhabitants are Berber and Arabs and a small population of immigrants from countries such as Egypt, Tunisia, Greece, India, and Pakistan. Tripoli is a historic city being home to the Old Medina, Red Castle, Darghut Mosque, the Martyr’s Square, the Karamanli House, and Janzur Museum. Due to its high population, Tripoli experiences overcrowding, traffic jams and a strain on public amenities. In recent times, migrants and refugees have been flocking to the city due to its location near Europe.
Benghazi is Libya’s second-largest city, with an estimated population of 650,629. The city was established by the Greeks, and it was known as Euesperides. Benghazi was then occupied by the Romans and heavily destroyed by the Vandals and Ottoman Pirates. It wasn’t until the Italian occupation that the city was reconstructed. The city was devastated during the Second World War, and it ultimately fell into British hands. Today, Benghazi is an administrative as well as an economic and cultural center. The industrial sector is dominated by fishing, processing of food, oil refining, processing of salt, cement and construction products, textiles, and tanning. The city’s population is majorly made up of Arabs and small numbers of immigrants from Egypt, Greece, Palestine, Syria, Iraq, and other African nations. Historical monuments in the city include the 19th century Ottoman Palace, Benghazi Catholic Cathedral, Greek ruins, Turkish Churches, and Berenice Cinema.
Misrata is a coastal city in Libya with an estimated population of 300,000. The ancient city of Misrata began as a trade center known as Tubakt in the 7th century when Libya was under Caliphate rule. After occupation by the Ottoman Empire from 1551, the city was captured by the Italians. The modern city of Misrata was an important rebel zone during the Libyan Civil War which overthrew Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. The city’s tax-free zone has significantly contributed to the country’s economy by attracting entrepreneurs and investors. The city has excellent transport infrastructure including the Misrata Airport.
Bayda is Libya’s fourth largest city with an estimated population of 250,000. Bayda began as a city named Balagrae, and it was renamed AZ Zawiya Al Bayda in the 19th century. The contemporary city was constructed in the 1950s, and it was intended to be an administrative center. The city’s economy majorly relies on agriculture with products including grapes and apples. The tombs of Sari and Rawayfa, who were companions of Prophet Muhammad, are located in the city. Bayda lies near the Akdar Mountains, which are renowned for their unique flora and fauna.
Other Cities In Libya
The rest of Libya’s cities and their respective populations are Tarhuna (210,697); Al Khums (201,943); Az Zawiyah (200,000); Zawiya (186,123); Ajdabiya (134,358), and Sabha (130,000). Libya remains in a state of construction after the civil war, and its cities are critical to the country’s economy and stability.