Africa has Some of the Most Impressive Greek and Roman Ruins Out There
The ancient Greeks and Romans were the first Europeans to explore Africa, with Phoenician traders founding Carthage around 800 BC, and Alexander the Great founding Alexandria in 331 BC. As Rome continued its expansion and occupation of North Africa’s coastline, the whole area was eventually unified into the Roman system.
But among the most impressive ancient Greek and Roman ruins in the world are the ancient cities of Cyrene and Leptis Magna in Libya, Africa, both UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The great city of Cyrene was founded in 631 BC by Greek colonists. Impressive even by modern standards, it had various temples ( including the Temple of Apollo and the Temple to Zeus,) altars, fountains, theaters, and an extensive necropolis featuring rock-hewn tombs that lined the roads leading out of the city. Meanwhile, the ancient city of Leptis Magna is the epitome of Roman Severan urban planning. At its pinnacle, the city’s buildings and immense wealth made it the third-most important city in Africa. The unspoiled ruins include the city’s marketplace, amphitheater, arches, forum, and the spectacular Severan Basilica.