Best 20 Places To Visit In Lebanon - Updated 2024

best places to visit in lebanon
Manjiri
Manjiri 
Contributing Writer
Updated
| 10 min read

Nestled on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, Lebanon is a wonderful country with several historic and natural attractions to explore. While it is small, I believe that this country in the Middle East is worth seeing for its rich history and culture. If you are a nature lover, you should not miss visiting Jeita Grotto, the incredible limestone cave system, the jaw-dropping Baatara Gorge Waterfall, Chowan Waterfall, and the pleasant Lake Qaraoun. Make sure you visit the majestic natural wonder of Raouche Pigeon Rocks, where marvelous rocks jut out of the seawater. Besides these, the Temples of Baalbek, Our Lady of Nourieh, Hamra Street, Al Tal Tripoli, and Beirut Souks are other things Lebanon is famous for.

From spectacular beaches and historic museums to mesmerizing nature, the country has everything that tourists look for. So, if you have plans to visit the country in your coming holidays, learn about some interesting places to enrich your travel experience. Read on to find the best places to visit in Lebanon.

Travel advisory:

  • The native language in Lebanon is Arabic, so be sure to brush up on some phrases before you arrive. Travelers may also be relieved to know that many locals speak French and English.

  • The country’s Mediterranean climate assures tourists of 300 sunny days a year, with the months between June and September having the lowest chances of rain. While winter is the rainiest season, it’s also an excellent time to visit for winter sports enthusiasts.

1. Tyre

The commercial area bordered by a paved Roman-Byzantine road, Al-Mina site, Tyre, Lebanon
Source: Photo by Flickr user Carole Raddato used under CC BY-SA 2.0

One of the oldest consistently inhabited cities on the globe, Tyre is a fabulous city in Lebanon to explore. It is one of the hidden gems of Lebanon, which gifts you a memorable travel experience.

If you’re a fan of learning about a place’s history and culture like me, I think Tyre’s Hippodrome, which boasts ancient Roman grandeur, is something worth adding to your itinerary. It dates back to the second century A.D. and is well-known for being the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Ruins here are the size of several football fields. Also, spend a refreshing time at Tyre Port viewing spectacular ocean views. Adorned by clear blue water, Tyre Public Beach is an ideal destination for beach lovers.

Good to know:
  • To get to Tyre from Beirut, opt to take a minivan that departs near the Kuwaiti Embassy. It’ll take around two hours or less and costs 4,500 LBP to 5,000 LBP (approximately 0.05 USD to 0.056 USD). You can also take a taxi.

  • For more information, you can also check out Tyre Municipality’s website.

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2. Barja

Chouf
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Elgaard used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Sitting near the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, Barja is a pleasant town and municipality in the Chouf District of Lebanon’s Mount Lebanon Governate. Whether you are visiting Barja in the summer or winter season, you can enjoy the mild Mediterranean climate and have a refreshing vacation. You can find here amazing antique houses, which were originally constructed close to freshwater springs, that feature traditional architecture.

Barja is also home to olive tree orchards and pine groves. Visit Zak Zouk, which is a traditional souk, and shop your favorite things. The presence of outdoor recreational areas here helps you stay entertained during your holidays here.

Good to know:
  • While Barja is not directly on the coast, it's quite close to some beaches where you can enjoy the Mediterranean air to the fullest: Jiyeh Beach is about 7 km (4.35 mi) away and Saida Public Beach is 15 km (9.32 mi) away.


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3. Chekka

Long tunnel of darkness (Chekka mountain) - panoramio
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Evilscaught used under CC BY 3.0

Present at a superb natural destination, Chekka is a wonderful coastal town that I think you should visit when touring through Lebanon. Make sure you visit the village of Hamat, which is a chalky headland that extends beyond the sea. Hamat is home to the monastery of Our Lady of Nourieh, one of the most prominent landmarks here. Offer your prayers at Mar Elias church. From here, you can watch the verdant Joze River valley below. Explore the coastal road of Ras ach-Chaq’s and capture some scenic views too.

Good to know:

  • If you're in Chekka, visit the nearby Palmera Beach along the Mediterranean Sea. It has lifeguards to keep visitors safe and free parking for convenience.


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4. Jounieh

Jounieh Lebanon
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Paul Saad used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Graced by gorgeous landscapes and an enchanting bay, Jounieh is a wonderful coastal city where you can enjoy a relaxing sabbatical when in Lebanon. The Teleferique here gifts you a thrilling cable car ride. Watch panoramic views of the city and nature as the cable car takes you up the mountains.

Do not miss visiting the incredible cave system of Jeito Grotto, a historic natural wonder. Stroll through the Jounieh old souk, where you can find shops selling antiques. Visit the ocean-side cafes here and eat savory food gazing at scenic views.

Good to know:

  • The city is home to the Jounieh International Festival, which happens every summer. It features entertainment and a world-class fireworks show.

  • Another popular attraction here is Casino du Liban where you can lose yourself in games or watch theater shows.


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5. Sidon

Saida
Source: Photo by Flickr user abdallahh used under CC BY 2.0

The third-biggest city in Lebanon and the largest in south Lebanon, Sidon is a pleasant place on the shore of the Mediterranean. It is a bustling commercial center in Lebanon having a conservative atmosphere of a small charming town.

During the Persian era, Sidon was famous as the ‘city of gardens,’ and even today you can find banana and citrus plantations surrounding the city. Make sure you visit the Sea Castle, which dates back to the 13th century. Khan El Franj, The Great Mosque, and The Castle of St. Louis are other popular places that I would love to visit when in Sidon.

Good to know:

  • The history of Sidon, also known as Saidoon, dates all the way back to 4,000 BC. In fact, Homer wrote about it in the 8th century BC, mentioning the quality of its glass production industry.

  • To learn more about Sidon, check out its page on Lebanon’s tourism website.


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6. Aley

Aley city
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Mar Sharb used under CC BY 2.0

Based on Mount Lebanon, Aley is a prominent and the fourth biggest city in Lebanon. Due to its pleasant cool climate in the summer season, Aley got a nickname called ‘Bride of the Summer.’

Plan to visit The Symposium Gardens in Aley, which is home to numerous spectacular sculptures. This city also has Aley Equi Club in a strategic area where you can play adventure sports. Besides these, Aley has a pleasant park area for kids to play. Aley’s Synagogue, the garden of the western neighborhood, Aley Center, and Golden Lili Resort & Spa are some more prominent landmarks that I think most tourists would love to see here.

Good to know:

  • Aley became the favorite destination of many important figures because of its pleasant weather. It became the summer residence of many Ottoman governors of Mount Lebanon, Lebanese Presidents, Prime Ministers, and more.

  • Discover more about Aley’s history and heritage by reading through its city page.


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7. Hermel

Hermel Pyramid
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Firas Nehme used under CC SA 1.0

The rugged town of Hermel is another worth-visiting place in Lebanon to explore during your holidays. In the south of Hermel, you can find Hermel Pyramid which sits on the top of a hill. It is believed to have been constructed in the first or second century for defense.

Orontes River flows through this town and makes it ideal for enjoying the fun of kayaking and river rafting. History buffs should visit ancient monuments here. Spend leisure time eating scrumptious traditional food during your excursion in Hermel.

Good to know:

  • Adventurous travelers may want to explore Hermel’s St. Maroun Cave, which was said to have been inhabited by Roman engineers. The monastery carved into rocks was used by monks before it was abandoned.

  • If you’d like more information about the town, check out its Facebook page.


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8. Tripoli

Overlooking the spectacular eastern Mediterranean Sea, Tripoli is the second biggest city in Lebanon and the biggest one in northern Lebanon. It retains its old-world charm and praiseworthy historical significance that I would love to see myself if I were in the area.

Visit the Citadel of Raymond de Saint-Gilles, which is famous as one of the largest fortresses in the country. Spend some time strolling through the old souks and shopping for amazing items. In addition to this, you can find many beautiful mosques in Tripoli. Bourtasi Mosque and Mansouri Great Mosque are some of the noteworthy mosques that you should visit.

Good to know:

  • Tripoli has a hot-summer Mediterranean climate, so you can expect dry summers. Meanwhile, its winters are relatively warm, with snow being quite uncommon. However, prepare yourself for hale, as it’s a regular occurrence in the winter.

  • Find more relevant information about Tripoli by reading through its city page.


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Superior Quality: Tripoli - Batroun (Full day)

Duration: 6 to 7 hours

50 reviews

9. Qaa

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

If you are looking to visit a destination with an archaeological significance, plan to visit Qaa, a fabulous town in Lebanon. It is well-known for its Shepherd Neolithic Industry. Shepherd Neolithic, as archaeologists refer, is the style of small flint tools found in Lebanon’s Hermel plains. Touring through this town, you may get to watch peculiar Shepherd Neolithic flint tools. Visit heritage sites, such as Ouadi Qadisha and the Forests of the Cedars of God, which you can find nearby.

Good to know:

  • This town is a favorite among religious travelers, as it has plenty of churches and places to pray. Visitors can consider going to Chapel of Saint Teresa or Saint Elias Church.

  • Read more about Qaa’s history and attractions by clicking on its town page.


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10. Harissa

IMG_6972
Source: Photo by Flickr user tmc1233 used under CC BY-ND 2.0

Harissa is a municipality in Lebanon comprising two villages, namely Daraoun and Harissa. It is popular for being home to the Shrine of Our Lady of Lebanon. Also, plan to visit the Basilica of Saint Paul to offer your prayers. This mountain village of Harissa also offers you Harissa Cableway, where a cable car carries you at a height of about 600 meters (1968.5 feet) at the top of the mountain from Jounieh to Harrisa. Watch sweeping views of the city and sky from the top.

Good to know:

  • Our Lady of Lebanon is a significant pilgrimage site not only for Christians but also for Muslims, as they all have devotion to Mary, the mother of Jesus.

  • Harissa’s page on Lebanon’s tourism website has more information about its religious significance.


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11. Baalbek

Temple of Jupiter, Baalbek, Lebanon (5073942385)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user yeowatzup used under CC BY 2.0

Situated in Beqqa Valley in the east of the Litani River, Baalbek is a worth-visiting city in Lebanon. During the Roman and Greek eras, Baalbek was famous as Heliopolis. This Lebanon city reached its apogee when Romans ruled it.

This city is home to Baalbeck Citadel, which is a complex of temples present at the foot of Anti-Lebanon Mountain’s southwest slope. Also, visit the Stone of the South, which is the biggest stone ever discovered in the world. If I were visiting, I would marvel at this incredibly huge and heavy stone and wonder how people back then transported and stacked it 7 m (22.96 ft) high.

Good to know:

  • If you are traveling to Baalbek from Beirut, which is about 85 km (52.82 mi) away, the most efficient route passes through Damascus International Highway.

  • Find everything you have to know about Baalbek on its page on Lebanon’s tourism website.


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12. Beit ed-Dine

Eastern Garden, Beiteddine Palace
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Peripitus used under CC BY-SA 3.0

A small town in Lebanon famous as Beit en-Dine is home to the Beiteddine palace complex where you can see impressive early 19th-century Lebanese architecture. Dar El Baraniyeh, Dar El Wousta, and Dar El Harim are prominent sections of this beautiful palace. It also houses Hammam or baths.

In addition to this, the Palace of Emir Amine is another landmark in this small town. Today, Beit en-Dine, with its interesting museums and wonderful gardens, is a prominent tourist attraction in the country.

Good to know:

  • Other than gorgeous landmarks, this town is known for the annual Beiteddine Art Festival. Occurring between July and August, it is held in Palace in the Chouf Mountains and incorporates art exhibitions and various performances.

  • You can read more about Beit ed-Dine by checking out Lebanon’s tourism website.


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13. Rachaiya

best places to visit in lebanon | rachaiya
Source: instagram

Plan to visit the worthwhile village of Rachaiya when holidaying in Lebanon. Tour through its 17th-century traditional souk, and as you stroll on the cobbled streets, shop exquisite handmade traditional crafts, jewelry, and other things. Watch multi-hued flowers lining the street and beautiful overhanging balconies. If I were a tourist here, I would also love to meet local artists and interact with them to get a better idea of the local culture.

Tourists can also sample scrumptious local food as they explore this village of Rachaiya. A little out of this village, you can find lovely Rachaya Gardens.

Good to know:

  • While you’re in town, pick up one of the silver pieces that Rachaiya has been known for since the 17th century. Earrings, necklaces, rings, and belts are particularly popular.

  • Learn more about Rachaiya by reading through its page on Lebanon’s tourism website.


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14. Miziara

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Home to Our Lady of Miziara and St. Elias Shrines, Miziara is a great town in the Zgharta District to visit. It comprises four villages, namely Miziara, Sakhra, Houmeis, and Harf Miziara. This pleasant region is perched on a hilltop and is known for having unusual houses in Lebanon, for instance, one which is built out of an old airplane. As I love learning about a place’s peculiarities, I would love to see all the unique homes here.

A 20-minute drive from this town will take you to Bnachii Lake and, on its bank, you can find Wildlife Taxidermy Museum. Also, plan to visit the enchanting Horsh Ehden Nature Reserve, which is just 10 minutes from Miziara.

Good to know:

  • For a delicious meal in town, visit La Crepinette Restaurant, which has been serving tasty crepes since 1996.


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15. Tannourine El Tahta

Tannourine, au nord du Liban
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Canaïma used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Nestled between the mountains and deep valley, you can find this beautiful Tannourine El Tahta to explore during your excursion in Lebanon. It boasts an incredible cedar forest that is home to about 60,000 trees. Do not miss visiting a 500-year-old historic Lebanese house, which is a noteworthy example of Lebanese architecture. I can just imagine all the stories and secrets that the structure has witnessed!

River Nahr-Al-Joze flows through the valley and outlines several Lebanese restaurants. It has formed numerous natural pools of clear, stagnant water which you can explore.

Good to know:

  • Tannourine El Tahta is an excellent place for new rock climbers to take up the hobby, as it has an appropriate landscape and moderate weather.


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16. Baskinta

Strewn About on a Hill
Source: Photo by Flickr user rabiem22 used under CC BY 2.0

Located at an altitude of 1,250 meters (4,101.05 feet) to Mountain Sannine’s top, Baskinta is a beautiful village in Lebanon that is known for its natural beauty and pleasantly moderate climate. You can find here mountainous all-season resorts to unwind and enjoy playing a variety of outdoor sports. In addition to this, Baskinta is famous for a wide variety of fruits, particularly apples, and outstanding vineyards. So, plan a sabbatical in this fascinating village in Lebanon.

Good to know:

  • A fun activity to do while you're in town is to hike the Baskinta Literary Trail, which runs for 24 km (14.91 mi). It's especially beautiful during the autumn and represents the paths walked by literary men from the area.


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17. Zahlé

Zahle,Lebanon
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Nassif.seif used under PUBLIC DOMAIN

The biggest city and capital of Beqaa Governorate, Zahlé is a fabulous place to visit. This third-biggest city in the country has a population of around 120,000 residents, and I would love get to know the diverse culture in an area with so many people.

Zahlé is adorned with beautiful sceneries, such as grape fields, and home to historic places, such as Haidara Ruins. Explore Berdawni promenade, which is along the charming river. Visit the restaurants and cafes dotting the promenade. Do not miss feasting on scrumptious Lebanese lunch feeling the freshness of the river nearby.

Good to know:

  • This city is known as “the bride of Beqaa” because of its location and stunning scenery.

  • While you’re here, be sure to taste as much of the local gastronomy as possible, as the region is known for its tasty food and wine.


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18. Beirut

Ferris wheel and the corniche
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Karan Jain used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Well-known as the capital and the biggest city of Lebanon, Beirut is a fascinating destination to explore. It is home to the American University of Beirut, which is the most prestigious university in this prominent city. Beirut is also famous as the ‘Paris of the Middle East,’ where you can find the magnificent natural wonder of Raouche Pigeon Rocks.

If you are a history enthusiast like me, make sure you visit the National Museum of Beirut. Spend some time exploring amazing Beirut souks, where you can find a variety of lamps, clothes, furniture, and jewelry.

Good to know:

  • Beirut is referred to as “the phoenix” because it has supposedly been torn down and built back up seven times.

  • The city has remnants from various older civilizations, so history lovers will love to explore its ruins, such as The Roman Baths and The Crusaders’ Castle.

  • If you’re eager to discover more about Beirut, read more about it on Lebanon’s tourism website.


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Beirut: City Sightseeing Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

51 reviews

19. Byblos

Byblos
Source: Photo by Flickr user Keith Yahl used under CC BY 2.0

Locally popular as Jbeil, Byblos is a wonderful city in Lebanon and the biggest one in Lebanon’s Mount Lebanon Governate. It is known for its outstanding historical significance. You can find Byblos Wax Museum and Byblos Fossil Museum, which houses fossils of marine life which are million years old, Byblos Castle, and many more landmarks.

If you are fond of archaeology, visit Byblos archaeological site. Tour through the souks in this historic city to shop for wonderful souvenirs and antiques. If you are traveling to Lebanon in the summer, you can attend the Byblos International Festival.

Good to know:

  • If you’re coming from Beirut, you can easily hop on a bus from Cola. Should you prefer driving down yourself, you can pass through Beirut Tripoli Highway or the old coastal road.

  • Don’t forget to read through Byblos’s page on Lebanon’s tourism website.


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Full Day Byblos Trip (from Beirut)

Duration: 12 hours

20. Chouf

DSC_0336
Source: Photo by Flickr user Elaine used under CC BY 2.0

Include the historic region of Chouf when traveling to Lebanon. It is home to many historic and architectural landmarks and natural attractions. Visiting Baakline Waterfalls here enables you to watch a spectacular waterfall amid the lush green scenery of trees and plants. Have a dip in its calm waters too.

Plan to visit scenic Barouk Reserve which is home to cedar forests, more than 500 plant species, 32 wild animals, and 200 birds. Moussa Castle is the place to visit if you are looking for a historic attraction. Kfarhim Grotto, Deir El Qamar, Mir Amine Palace, and Deir El Oumara are some of the worth-visiting places in Chouf that you should see.

Good to know:

  • Travelers coming from Beirut have the option of public transportation from Cola Transportation Hub to reach Chouf. Alternatively, they can rent a car or private taxi for more flexibility.

  • Outdoor and history lovers should come during the autumn season to enjoy cooler temperatures and smaller crowds while sightseeing.


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Full Day Shouf Trip (from Beirut)

Duration: 12 hours

Tour through an interesting gem of the Middle East

Lebanon is a small yet interesting tourist destination to explore. Its natural attractions, things to do, historic landmarks, panoramic forests, and traditional souks interest travelers to explore this mesmerizing country. So, make no delay, head out for an excursion in this Middle East destination, and enjoy exploring all these best places to visit in Lebanon.

Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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Manjiri Kochrekar is a travel blogger from India. She loves exploring and learning various destinations, their history, culture, and peculiarities. Writing is her passion, which means she enjoys...Read more

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