Lebanon has a unique landscape, with all kinds of climate possibilities, including the Mediterranean coast and high-reaching mountains with snowy picks. The state can be called also a contrast of civilizations as it combines antiquity with the modern trends. Always being a host country for ancient civilizations, now it has turned into an entertainment centre and beautiful resort in the Middle East. The civil war, which was rapidly bothering the country is finally a history, allowing to get most out of this astonishing location.
Beirut is the capital of the country. The old-fashioned capital is known to the world to be “Paris of the Middle East” with its interesting architecture, local atmosphere and charming places. The city has both old and new parts, each of which is unique with the offer of entertainment possibilities. Hamra district is considered to the heart of the capital, while representing the commercial and financial capabilities. Here you will find most of the major stores, banks, restaurants and even cinemas. Some of the must-see places of the capital are the Grand Palace, Clock Tower, Archaeological Park and Archaeological Museum of Beirut, the National Museum, the Houses of the Parliament and Place de l’Etoile. Among other buidings, which are more privatized or represent the cultures of the national minorities of the country, one should see the Armenian, Syrian Catholic and Maronite Churches, Beirut Manara Lighthouse (which is one of the most popular lighthouses for the east) and the American University of Beirut. More nature-friendly parts of the city are the Luna Park, and Rafic Hariri Beach. There will be no issues in the beach as though some inhabitants of the country are Muslim, as the beach regions are mostly inhabited with Christians and are popular for wild nightlife and partying.
What is lovely about touring in Beirut is that the inhabitants are so diverse, that you never end up feeling like a foreigner. The traditions of the New Lebanon are free and democratic.
In the southern part of the country you will come across the city of Tyre also known as Sour, which reflects the history of the country with its cultural diversity hosting almost all of the conquerors of the ancient world. This is where you will find evidences of the presence of such major figures as Alexander the Great, the Crusaders and the Phoenician kings. Still the city is also popular for having a well-designed infrastructure and all kinds of conveniences to host visitors giving them more time to discover everything in details.
The Mediterranean climate of the country is pleasant for those looking for a great beach destination, which will not be somewhere in Europe. The towns of Saida or Sidon and Jbeil or Byblos will be ideal for those who are looking for the opportunities of swimming or snorkeling. This is a good chance to get acquainted not only with the marine diversity of the state but also the Phoenician ruins. As for the enthusiasts there’s also the option of Khalde, which is rather hard in terms of diving, but worth for seeing the remains of a submarine during the Second World War.
Those who are active, but do not see the water as their option, might try the hiking, camping and mountain-climbing opportunities offered by the Mount Lebanon Chouf District. The same district also offers skiing when snow covers the slopes. This is the time between December and April. It is considered to have the best ski resorts among the Middle East countries.
Eastern part of Lebanon is occupied with Beqaa Valley known to be the “bread basket” of the Roman Empire: some of the largest Roman temples were built here. Even after centuries it is still one of the major agricultural provinces of Lebanon. This is where most of the vineyards are located, which makes it an appealing place for the fans of wine and cheese. In addition to wine tasting one might also visit the Temple of Jupiter and Venus.
Another popular valley is Kadisha Valley, also known as the “Holy Valley”, popular for its long-century Christian population.