Tyre is a city in the South Governorate of Lebanon. With 117,100 inhabitants, Tyre juts out from the coast of the Mediterranean SeaTyre is an ancient Phoenician city and today it is the fourth largest city in Lebanon and houses one of the nation’s major ports known locally in French as Soûr. Tyre is a popular destination for tourists. The city has 4 ancient sites. Area One, located on what was the Phoenician island, is a vast district of civic buildings, colonnades, public baths, mosaic streets and a rectangular arena.
Area Two is a five minute walk to the west. Its major point of interest is a Crusader cathedral. The area below has revealed a network of Romano-Byzantine roads and other installations. Area Three, is a thirty minute walk from Area One and Two and consists of an extensive necropolis, a three-bay monumental arch and one of the largest Roman hippodrome ever found. Foundations of a Byzantine church can also be seen.
In addition to these ancient sites; Tyre has a colorful souk (covered market) well worth exploring. Look for the Ottoman khan, or inn, just inside the market entrance. On a side street is the “Mamluke House”, an Ottoman period residence that is being restored as a cultural heritage and information center by the General Directorate of Antiquities. Also in the souk area is a white, double-domed Shia mosque of great interest. Near the market you will see a busy fisherman’s port, in Phoenician times referred to as the “Sidonian” port because it faced north towards Sidon. Walk along the port with the sea on your right and you enter the city’s Christian Quarter, a picturesque area of narrow streets, traditional architecture, and the Seat of the Maronite bishop of Tyre and the Holy land. One medieval tower still stands in a small garden. A second one is visible under the little lighthouse. During Crusader times towers similar to these ringed the city.
Don’t miss it
Tyre Coastal Reserve : the aquatic life of Tyre & Ras Al –Ayn natural reserve is known for the density of its aquatic plans & animal species, such as shrimps, sea locust, frogs, albatross, mussels, spongiferes, jelly-fishes, seaurchins, various sea birds & aquatic plants, with various kinds of fish. This reserve is considered the nest of the turtles eggs.