Several of these serais are still in existence today.
They are considerably less ornate in their decoration than the private houses, but still provide interesting insights into the customs of a bygone age.
The city's sea-facing wall is less ancient, however, as it was built in the 8th century by Tripoli's Muslim ruler.
There are three large gates built into the city walls: Bab Zanata on the western side, Bab Hawara on the southeastern side, and Bab al-Bahr on the northern side.
The first mosque ever to be built in Egypt was simple in design.
It was built by Ibn El-A'as in 642 AD on a site north of Fort Babylon, and its original pillars were the trunks of palm...
Most fell into a sorry state of disrepair, as a result of neglect and encroaching damp, and by the mid-1970s, these fragile and beautiful buildings lay in ruins.
A project to restore key buildings and to chronicle the city's history was then inaugurated by the Libyan authorities.
Interior doors, windows and courtyards are, however, much more ornate, with beautiful archways in both Roman and Islamic style, and much elaborate tile, wood and plasterwork.
The old city contains seven beautiful mosques, featuring much impressive architectural detail.
is the capital city of Libya, with an estimated population of just under two million people.
It is located in the northwest side of the country on a rocky land projecting into the sea and forming a natural bay.
In the days when Tripoli was filled with merchants and camel caravans plying the Saharan trade routes, the old city was the site of several large inns, known as serais or funduqs.