"Tyre - Ancient Queen of the Seas" Top 5 Page for this destination Tyre by miso80
Tyre Travel Guide: 102 reviews and 343 photos
My mother's hometown and the city of my birth...I have spend day in, day out playing around the great hippodrome of the Romans, and swimming in the blue mediterranean off of the sandy shores of Tyre..or Sour as we call it in Arabic. This City has known so many wars, so many victories...and it holds so many memories and happy days in my mind and heart.
Upon entering this city...there is the sea, of a blue so intense it fills up the eyes and heart. So much, that it makes you forget your plans and the sad ugly concrete buildings...the blue is so intense..it seems to devour everything else in the city. Despite its shabby suburbs and its disordered center, Tyre remains a jewel which it is necessary to like and preserve, an obligatory destination for those explorers of the Phoenician Lebanon and the sailors of the mediterranean, this part of Lebanon is so close to the sea...that it is in itself an invitation to sail.
Alexander's capture of Tyre was not as important as the battles at Issus or Gaugamela, but the city was vital to Alexander's larger plans and the siege shows how adept the Greeks were at this type of warfare.
Tyre was on an island off the coast of modern Lebanon, far enough from the mainland that the water was 18' deep. With mammoth walls, a fortified harbor, and virtually no land outside the walls, the city was long thought impregnable.
Alexander needed the city, to control the Eastern Mediterranean and provide him a secure port through which to funnel reinforcements and supplies. For, the Greeks ruled the sea.
His initial attempts to take the city failed. He quickly enough cut the city off from supply, but Tyre knew he was coming, had stocked up on supplies, and had its own fresh water. He tried bombarding the walls with catapults mounted on the decks of ships. He tried placing siege towers on ships, bringing them right up to the walls, but the citizens sank the ships with great boulders.
Finally, Alexander resolved on an ambitious approach. He could only take the city by getting his soldiers close enough to let his huge siege engines do their damage. To this end, Alexander ordered his engineers to build a mole -- a land bridge from the mainland to the island. It was 200' wide and took months to complete.
When it was ready, he brought his siege engines along it to the walls. The citizens now fought desperately, and the Greeks were repeatedly driven back. But the city was running out of food and, after a seven month siege, Tyre fell. Alexander was so furious that this one city had halted his progress for so long, that he gave the city over to plunder and his soldiers sacked it without mercy.
The siege of Tyre had a lasting effect, for the mole stayed, silted up, and today Tyre is connected to the mainland. Alexander, in his drive to conquer, permanently changed the face of the land. It is deeds like these that drive the many legends of Alexander and made him famous from his day to ours.
If your a lover of the blue mediterranean..wherever you go in Tyre you will have a beautiful view of the sea :) For those who love to lie down on a sandy shore...here you can build sand-castles, take long walks or just sit down and watch the waves slide up the shore..as for those divers and snorklers that enjoy the rocky shore..
Also, walking through the streets of the old port of 'Sur' can be a treat for all those who enjoy walking 'off of the beaten path' ;-)
- Pros:History, Beautiful Beach, Tasty food, Loving People- Declared by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site in 1984
- Cons:Lack of Tourist Information
- In a nutshell:Definitely worth the trip ;-)
If you'd like to take a look at the old souks and shops of sour, then this is the place to spend some time in. You can... more travel advice
The Tyr Race will take place on Sunday, June 4, 2006 and will encompass a Half Marathon distance (open to... more travel advice
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