Traveling Tuesdays for the letter ‘L’ is heading to the west side of the Middle East. We are visiting the country of Lebanon.
While teaching in Kuwait, I had the opportunity to travel to Beirut the capital of Lebanon. We had a five day break at school so I managed to book a timeshare exchange and a friend and I booked our flights to Lebanon. Beirut International Airport, is located 9 km from the city center in the southern suburbs of Beirut, Lebanon, and so when we arrived we managed to book a taxi driver to take us to Pineland [pronounced PEENLAND] located in Deir el Harf, in Hammana La Martine Valley.
With over 250,000 square meters of pure nature, Pineland offers unique experience. We were delighted to have a unit in one of the caves built into the mountainous landscape. I felt like Mary and Joseph traveling throughout the country side and sleeping in caves.
Our only transportation was by taxi so we stopped on our way to Pineland and shopped at a local market to get some groceries since our time share ‘cave’ had its own kitchen. We also made arrangements with our driver to return and take us on various excursions while in Lebanon.
Lebanon, officially known as the Lebanese Republic, is a country in Western Asia. It is bordered by Syria to the north and east, and Israel to the south, while Cyprus is west across the Mediterranean Sea.
Beirut is located on the coast of the Mediterranean.
Here are some pictures of the cornice and the view of the water.
The land of Lebanon is very mountainous and the city of Beirut quickly rises from the coast. Many homes are built right into the mountains and hills.
On the northern edge of Beirut is the statue of Christ the King overlooking the mouth of the Nahr al-Kalb River. It is located on private land and is part of a convent with a hospital.
One city we visited was Ba’albek located east of the Litani River in Lebanon’s Beqaa Valley.
Here we visited the Heliopolis temple complex which is near the boarder with Syria. It is about 85 km northeast of Beirut and about 75 km north of Damascus in Syria.
The symbol on the flag of Lebanon is a Cedar. We had our driver take us to see the Cedars of Lebanon. The Lebanon cedar, is a species of cedar native to the mountains of the Eastern Mediterranean basin.
It is an evergreen conifer that can reach 40 m in height. They were used in the construction of Solomon’s First Temple in Jerusalem.
One of the most defining features of Lebanon is its Cedar-tree-filled expanses. Today, most of the Cedar trees are located on the Arz Mountains. The site is well protected and cherished as the forest is one of UNESCO’s World Heritage sites.
Other places we visited were Tripoli, Tyre and Sidon.
To learn more about Lebanon here is a link to an article I found in wikipedia.