Tyre is an ancient Phoenician city and the legendary birthplace of Europa and Elissa.
Tyre was founded around 2750 BC according to Herodotus and was originally built as a walled city upon the mainland. Its name appears on monuments as early as 1300 BC.
The city of Tyre was particularly known for the production of a rare and extraordinarily expensive sort of purple dye, produced from the murex shellfish, known as Tyrian purple. This color was, in many cultures of ancient times, reserved for the use of royalty, or at least nobility.
Tyre is the southernmost city of Lebanon. It is an old city that became very rich from it's trading industry. Many civilizations over the years longed to take over Tyre, Alexander the Great was the first to take hold of it after laying siege to it for 7 months.
Tyre has many marks of its eclectic past, but some of the most outstanding are the scads of Roman ruins across the city.
In Tyre you will find the ruins of a Roman city that was home to a market, a boxing/wrestling arena, a public bath, a glass factory, and a shipyard.
A couple of decades ago archaeologists excavated the tomb of Medusa there, hidden in a hillside.
Tyre also has the ruins of the largest Necropolis in the world. A Necropolis was a 'city of death,' essentially a graveyard, in ancient Rome. Today you can visit the necropolis, climb on a few sarcophagi, and even take some pictures with all of the bones lying around. The Necropolis is a maze of sarcophagi and crypts. In the Necropolis there is an Arc of Triumph, a tribute from the Tyrans to there Roman Emperor in 2nd century BC.