Travel Wishes: Lebanon!
Updated: Nov 9, 2020
Can’t get to Lebanon? Well then Lebanon will come to you! Virtual visits enable you to discover my lovely country, LEBANON to be explored at a distance. From Tripoli in the north, to Sidon in the south, passing through Beirut, the capital, the country’s finest scenes are revealed through digital technology.
From your smartphone or a computer, and better still, from your bed or a sofa, Lebanon has never been so easy to get to!.
Located at the crossroads of the Mediterranean Sea and the Arabian land, Lebanon has contributed to its rich history and shaped a cultural identity of ethnic and religious diversity. With an area of 10,452 km2, it is the smallest recognized republic on the mainland Asian continent.
Mother land of cedar trees, Lebanon enjoys the four seasons distinctively, giving its citizens the pleasure to enjoy all kind of actives from sports to outings and socialising. Its richness in terms of nature make this country one of kind by having mountain where you can ski during winter and hike during spring and summer, enjoy great wine in its valleys where winery is significantly present, swim and water ski in its azure coloured seashores and enjoy a safari ride in its semi desert habitat in the northern Beqaa region.
This Mediterranean country has been influenced by the Phoenicians, Romans, Byzantines, Umayyads, Crusaders, Ottomans and French. All of these influences gave a certain authenticity of Lebanese architecture and with time, made home to many impressive examples of modern and contemporary architecture. It hosts ancient baths, temples, castles, churches, mosques, towers, and old souks.
The main cities are settled on the seaside making Lebanon an important trading point since the beginning of the centuries.
Tripoli, capital of the north, has been a key city in the region. It used to be one of the most important Phoenicians’ established trading station. During the Umayyad rule, Tripoli became a commercial and shipbuilding centre and then developed into a centre of learning under the Fatimid rule.
This city attracts a lot of tourists for its old preserved souk, roman baths, aromatherapy soaps, traditional Lebanese sweets (variants of honeyed baklava) and fresh fish served in several wayside restaurants around the Al Mina neighbourhood.
Byblos is known to be one of the oldest inhabited cities in the world dating back to around 8800 years B.C. This city hosts a lot of historical ruins such as a castle and a church built by the Crusaders in the 12th and 13th centuries AD.
Its charming old port buzzes during lunchtime and at night where a lot of restaurant offers fresh caught fish from the Mediterranean Sea. You can wonder in its old city centre by walking in tis narrow stoned road.
Known for its castle located by the sea dating back in 1228 by Crusaders, Sidon is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Lebanon. This city was influenced by two main cultures: the Egyptian Pharaohs and the Greeks. Located in the south, its busy main street is full of small shops of every kind, including patisseries, whose oriental delicacies are stacked in little pyramids. Sidon is as well famous for a variety of local sweets which you can watch being made in the old souk or in shops on the main street. The particular specialty of Sidon is known as "senioura," a delicious crumbly cookie.
Beirut is the capital, chief port, and largest city of Lebanon. Based on the archaeological search, historians believe that Beirut was settled back to the Iron Age. It was a city of glory during the Roman era and then witnessed a lot of occupations by different civilizations (from Crusaders to French mandate passing by Mamluks and Ottomans).
Beirut is a city of inexplicable contradictions whose character blends the sophisticated and cosmopolitan with the provincial and closed-minded.
Beirut conveys an air of organised chaos: high-octane, full of contradictions, a head-on collision of the senses. Sights change, bars pop up and restaurants reinvent themselves on a weekly basis, but one certainty is that you’ll never be wanting for things to do in Beirut. While the Lebanese Civil War razed “the Paris of the Middle East,” Beirut’s nickname through the ’60s and early ’70s, the city has reclaimed its title as the Arab world’s bastion of liberalism and a vacation’s destination. The past three decades have seen a complete restoration of Beirut’s dense downtown core, and its new seaside developments like Zaitunay Bay and Waterfront City. The older, more charming neighbourhoods, like Mar Mikhael and Badaro, have a southern European air, walkable with boutiques and sidewalk cafes, and architecture that blends French colonial with Arabesque flair.