Friday, May 05, 2006

A morning walk

This morning I got up early. After breakfast I went for a long walk. I mapped it out on Google Earth when I got back and checked to see how far I had walked - 6.19 km or 3.84 mi - not bad for a nice morning! I found myself near the old king's castle in Dahara. I'm not sure if the king ever lived there or not. I really don't know anything about the site's history.

Currently the building is being used as a library and offices. For many years the site was closed off by a surrounding wall but they've removed the wall and the area is open to the public.

It's pretty interesting to walk around and look at things but unfortunately the whole site is falling apart. But using your imagination you can see what it must have been like in its hayday and what it could possibly be like if they ever decide to restore it. Above is a huge fountain or wading pool.

At the far end of the fountain area are these massive bougainvillea vines that cover arched supports. It's very shady beneath the vines and there are steps that you can sit on.

There are paved areas and walkways with intricate designs that surround the garden. Another fountain above.

Pavement design.

Being Friday, the building was closed so I only poked around in the entrance area.

The entrance.

The floor in the entrance.

The view from the entrance.

Of course there's a satelite tower for mobile phones on the top. They've got those things on top of anything that doesn't move!

Another fountain. It was nice and shady here and I imagine it would be quite pleasant during the hot summer months (if they clean it up!).

Lights in the entrance. They look like they are probably original lights as they look kind of old, but they're in good condition.

There are lots of flowers and vines growing in the gardens.

I hope they clean up the place and restore it so I can bring my kids there to have a picnic. As it is now, it's too dirty.

A few years ago I went to an art show that was held there and saw a bit of the inside. The place was falling apart but you could still see that it had silk wallpaper and there were some beautiful chandeliers and some peices of furniture - some small tables were thrown in the corner and I bent down to look and found that they were made from carved ivory! They were probably worth a small fortune and they had just been shoved over to the side as if they were worthless. I haven't been back to see if they've done any restoration work but from the looks of the outside I seriously doubt it. I'll have to visit again sometime. Posted by Picasa


  1. Nice photos.
    It’s the same topic again; Libya's history being neglected, its not just history but I'll leave it at that.

  2. Wow - now I really have to go back and be a tourist instead of just living there - I do regret not having seen more. But will definitely put these sights on my to see list when I get back - may be a few years - waiting for my Egyptian citizenship - LOL - since getting in on a Canadian passport is such a major headache.

  3. This was the King Idris's palace where he resided . There is the more modern palace down by the sea that was built for Idris's nephew, who was to be Idris's heir to the thron. The " prince " now has diplomatic asylum and lives in London as one of the worlds most eligable "royal" bachlors on the market today .

  4. The palace was built by the Italians in late 20's of the last century and was officially opened in 1932 by then the Italian governor of Libya, Field Marshal. Italo Balbo, who was one of the major campaigners to build the city of Tripoli as one of the beautiful cities in the Mediterranean region. The King didn't live in The palace a lot as he preferred to stay in the eastern part of Libya, but was considered as the official residence of the King, and was called (Kaser Al Khold) the palace of eternity. Great pictures thanks.

  5. Thanks for filling us in on a little of the history :)

  6. Thanks Khadija for the pictures, heartbreaking as they are. I visisted that palace as a child when the King was still there. Your pictures are just one more reminder for me of how things have deteriorated in Tripoli over the past 30 years. It was such a beautiful city, in every sense of that term. As long as Libya still neglects, and even denies, its true history , it will always have a hard time finding its future.


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