Located in the heart of the Middle East, according to Politicsezine, Lebanon is an attractive travel destination in this region. A vacation in this fascinating country offers visitors an abundance of historical sites and cities. Beirut has a great mix of good food, nightlife, and artistic and cultural activities. But nature and impressive sights can also be found in the rest of the country.
The diversity in this small country is amazing. In Sidon there is a medieval crusader sea castle, in Baalbek there are Roman temples and the imposing Mamluk architecture in Tripoli suggests a moving past. Outside the cities, snow-capped mountains attract skiers in winter and the Qadisha Valley with its river and waterfalls attract a large number of hikers in summer. Nature lovers should take a trip to the idyllic al-Chouf cedar nature reserve, where the Lebanese national symbol, the cedar tree, can be seen. The stalactites and stalagmites in the Jeita Grotto, which was one of the finalists in the “New 7 Wonders of Nature” competition, are particularly impressive.
Best travel time
Lebanon is the only country in the Middle East that has all four seasons. For this reason, a trip is worthwhile at any time of the year. Your decision about which season to choose depends almost entirely on your own interests and priorities. The dry summer months from June to September are usually the most popular with visitors, but the coast can be extremely hot and the humidity very high. The temperatures in the capital Beirut are often well over 30 ° C. If you want to spend your vacation mainly by the pool or the beach, you can enjoy the Mediterranean sun. Depending on the type, some people find the heat oppressive and uncomfortable. For these travelers, the mountains, with their cooler air in the highlands, are a perfect alternative. You can choose from a wide range of outdoor activities such as hiking, rafting, trekking and mountain biking. Summer is also the main season for the numerous annual arts and culture festivals in Lebanon such as the International Festival of Baalbek, Beiteddine, Broummana, Byblos and Tire.
The country is particularly beautiful in spring. The plants begin to bloom, the weather is noticeably better and yet there are not yet the large tourist crowds in the country. The best time to travel to Lebanon is from April to May.
Bargain hunters can try their luck in autumn. Then the weather gets a little worse and prices fall. Hotels attract with special offers.
Optimal travel time after months
December – March
On the Mediterranean coast, temperatures drop to milder values (11-18 ° C) than in summer, but it rains more frequently at this time of the year. The phases usually last shorter than you know from Northern Europe. The winter months herald the ski season in the mountains, where temperatures between -5 ° C and 5 ° C prevail. Lebanon has a number of well-equipped ski areas, the largest being Mzaar Kfardebian. The snow stays until the end of April or even May. Towards the end of the season you can ski in the morning and swim in the Mediterranean in the afternoon.
Undoubtedly the perfect travel time to visit Lebanon. Spring emerges, the land is a beautiful sea of flowers, the oppressive summer heat has not yet reigned and the winter rain has disappeared. In the coastal areas the temperatures are between 12 ° C and 25 ° C, in the more mountainous regions between 0 ° C and 15 ° C. There is still snow on some mountain peaks, making it an extremely picturesque setting for visiting some of the country’s ancient sites. Plus, spring also offers a variety of activities such as mountain biking, caving, paragliding, and rafting. It’s also a great time to visit nature reserves like Horsh Ehden Nature Reserve and Al Chouf Cedar Nature Reserve. In Wadi Qadischa, the valley is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, you can go hiking and enjoy nature.
June – September
Summer in Lebanon is great fun and interesting activities. Beach parties, cultural events, outdoor activities and more are just a few of the offerings. The sky is almost always clear and the weather is pleasantly warm.
Temperatures in the mountains are cool (5-20 ° C) and the coast is still warm (13-28 ° C), but the risk of some rainy days increases at this time of year. Due to the pleasant temperatures, this is a good time to travel to explore Lebanon on foot. It doesn’t matter whether you visit the country’s numerous archaeological sites or go hiking in one of the country’s many nature reserves. In autumn, in addition to the annual olive harvest, wine tastings also take place in the Bekaa Valley. Since autumn is the off-season, you can find good and affordable prices for hotels and accommodations.
Climate in Beirut
In contrast to the extremely dry neighboring Arab states in the region, the climate in Lebanon is as diverse as the terrain. Both the temperatures and the rainfall vary greatly from region to region. The Mediterranean climate and weather in the country largely coincide with the topographical areas. Lebanon has great geographical differences within the country and accordingly several climatic zones. Despite everything, Lebanon enjoys a total of around 300 days of sunshine a year, making it a wonderful travel destination practically all year round.
Food and drink
Hardly anyone leaves Lebanon without a positive impression of Lebanese cuisine. The food is incredibly diverse, reflecting the Arab, Turkish and, more recently, French presence on the shores. Favorable geographical and climatic conditions contribute to the fact that a range of tasty and healthy ingredients such as cheese, chicken, fish, lamb, olives, wheat and a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables can be found in the dishes. The favorite and main meal of the day is the versatile mezze, a large selection of up to 40 small, hearty dishes that are served warm and / or cold.
The most popular meat dishes usually consist of chicken or lamb and go with a mezze. The national dish is kibbeh, which is minced lamb with onions fried in conical mortars and served hot or cold and even raw. A main course can also consist of a fried or grilled fish dish. In the coastal regions of Byblos and Tire, fresh local fish is served in an extremely picturesque setting. A popular dessert is baklava, a very sweet and syrupy pastry made with pistachios.
In contrast to many of its Muslim neighbors, Lebanon is anything but a “dry” country. A wide range of alcoholic beverages are offered in bars, cafes and restaurants. The national drink is Arak, a highly alcoholic anise-flavored drink that is reminiscent of Greek ouzo or French anise. It is often served as an accompaniment to a mezze, in part because of its taste-cleaning effect between dishes. The most popular beer is Almaza, it is a refreshing local lager in bottles and on tap that can be found in bars and supermarkets almost everywhere.