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In 2010, I had the opportunity to visit the city of Ghadames for the first time. I went on a school trip as a high school student. Even though I haven’t gotten the chance to visit many cities in Libya, Ghadames remains one of the most mesmerizing cities I have seen. The surrounding region is beyond incredible. During that trip, we got the chance to visit many landmarks. For example, the famous water spring ”Ain Al Fras”, which we got to swim in then. Also, famous mosques and the old city of Ghadames, including visiting the desert. In this article, I hope to highlight one of the city’s landmarks, the Tilwan Heritage Documentation Center.

Ghadames is renowned for one of its most notable landmarks, Tilwan School. Meaning of the name Tilwan is the Amazigh name for Ghadames. ‎The Tilwan School is located on the main Tingzine Street. It dates back to the Ottoman era when it was the palace of the Ottoman ruler.‎ The school serves as the municipal emblem and is prominently exhibited on the national currency of 20 dinars. The landmark’s historical significance and cultural relevance make it a popular destination for tourists and researchers. Its cultural value has been recognized and celebrated for generations.

Throughout History in Ghadames

According to many published articles, the building was built between 1838 and 1840. It was later used as a warehouse to supply the Italian army in 1924 and became a school in 1927. After that, The Italians turned into an Italian school in 1928 – 1929. During the French presence in Ghadames from 1943 to 1951, the school was used as a warehouse and housing for Christian priests who conducted studies about the old city. Returned in 1953, Tilwan was approved to be the first educational school for girls. It embodies the architecture that the city of Ghadames is famous for.

The Tilwan School building, an iconic landmark in the city of Ghadames, is a proud symbol of Libyan history and heritage. It has been honored by being featured in the Libyan currency of twenty dinars. The school building, which still stands today, is a testament to the original architectural style of the old city and has been well-preserved by the Ghadames City Development Authority. The Tilwan School is one of the oldest schools in Libyan history. It is also recognized as the first modern elementary school in Ghadames. In addition, it has played an important role in the development of the city’s education system.