Sidon, 25 miles (40 kilometers) north of Tyre, is about 6,000 years old and was another hub of purple dye production. It was also well known for its glass works and minted its own coins while under Roman rule.
Sidon was one of many targets of the Crusades in the Middle East. The city fell under Christian rule in 1191 when King Richard I of England defeated the Muslim ruler Saladin, whose father had been governor of Baalbek. The Crusader Sea Castle, which dates from the early 13th century, was built on an island off Sidon's coast and connected to the mainland by a causeway.