Reasons to Visit
Lebanon is a real melting pot: you'll find Lebanese Christians and Muslims of various denominations, as well as Armenians and Palestinians in smaller numbers. What all Lebanese have in common is their friendliness and hospitality towards strangers, and this, combined with the mix of cultures and religions, is what makes Lebanon a fascinating place to visit.
Countless great civilisations have left their mark on Lebanon - from the Phoenicians to the Greeks, the Crusaders to the Ottomans and many, many more in between. The ruined cities left behind are amongst Lebanon's greatest attractions.
One of the world's most vibrant cities, Beirut is a great place to enjoy a strong, thick cup of coffee, whilst watching the locals go about their business. There are a range of cafes - from cheap local student hangouts, to swish establishments that wouldn't be out of place in Paris or Milan.
Lebanese dishes such as tabouleh, hummus, falafel and baba ganoush are commonly replicated around the world, but the authentic dishes prepared in the country really are the tastiest and cannot be beaten.
Lebanon's second city of Tripoli is a traditional town which could not be more different to the glitzy capital Beirut. Tripoli is famous for its colourful and lively souqs, where the maze of narrow alleyways includes medieval mosques, madrassas and public baths which are well worth exploring.
Recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1998, the stunning landscape of the Qadisha valley is just a few hours drive from bustling Beirut and provides the perfect contrast. The exceptional backdrop is a great destination for activities ranging from gentle strolls to full day treks.
Lebanon is one of the oldest wine producing regions in the world, and its offerings rival some of Bordeaux's finest. The southern Bekaa Valley is home to many of the regions best wineries including Ksar Massa and Château Ksara, and you will find the world famous Châteaux Musar roughly 30km to the north of Beirut.
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North Africa & the Middle East
The Qadisha Valley is widely considered to be one of the most beautiful areas in Lebanon. It was officially recognised as a World Heritage site by UNESCO in 1998, making it one of only six World Heritage areas in the country.
Home to The Cedars ski resort, the Lebanon Mountain Trail and Lebanon's highest peak, Qornet as-Sawda, the Qadisha is perfect for those who enjoy outdoor activities.
From the 5th century onwards, Maronites made this area their refuge. 'Qadisha' stems from the Semitic word for holy, and the valley is scattered with beautiful rock-cut monasteries, hermitages and cave churches. Today, many of the picturesque villages surrounding the valley remain almost exclusively Maronite.
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Include a visit to Qadisha Valley on your tailor-made trip around Lebanon by contacting one of our specialists...
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Further reading:Tours in LebanonWhen to GoHighlightsItinerary IdeasPlaces to GoThings to DoAccommodationAbout LebanonCountry Guides
Other countries in North Africa & the Middle East:EgyptIranJordanLibyaMoroccoOmanSyriaTunisia
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