What To Buy In Lebanon

what to buy in lebanon
| 6 min read

When you are visiting a place like Lebanon, you have a chance to buy many interesting things as this is a place of diverse culture as well as ancient histories. With influences from Rome, Ottoman, and France, Lebanon is a small Mediterranean country of historical gems, taking you back to the glorious past of this wondrous place. On a trip here, you have the opportunity to buy great books, delicious sweets, roasted nuts that are considered to be a local favorite, Turkish coffee pots, artisanal clothing products, and many more. So, if you want to know what to buy in Lebanon, then check out this article.

1. Kaftan

Kaftan white front
Source: Photo by user Yafit Vaknin used under CC BY-SA 4.0

If you are looking for a place to shop for a kaftan, then you must visit Lebanon once in your life. With varieties like ornamental, refined, and lavish kaftans, you can buy the best silk products at lower and affordable prices. For all those women who are looking to add something pas comme les autres to their wardrobe, a kaftan may be the right fit. The kaftan is made from silk, voile, linen, velvet, jacquard, and many other fabric products, making sure that it lasts longer. Don’t miss checking them out when in Lebanon.

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2. Local wine

Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user MyaBell117 used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Lebanon is considered to be one of the oldest places that produces wine across the world. If you haven’t tasted the wine on a visit to Lebanon, then you’re missing out. Lebanon is known for producing about 6,000,000 cases of wine and supplying it to different parts of the world. If you get into the history of wine production in Lebanon, then you will learn about Israelite prophet Hosea who once said that people will blossom as the vine and will dance to the fragrance that the wine of Lebanon has. Most of the winemakers who belong to this place use French grapes to produce wines. Along with this, they use Cinsaut, Carignan, and Grenache varieties to make wine. So, it’s time for you to drink some wine and make your travel experience better.

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3. Sarah's bag

Luxury bags
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user diManolo used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Sarah’s bag is a fashion house and a famous enterprise in Lebanon that is known for creating unique, luxury hand-crafted bags, accessories, and materials. The company helps to empower women by making these luxurious and exclusive hand-crafted bags that can enhance one’s look. Bringing a sophisticated and colourful touch given to the bags, the collections will help you in exploring new materials and methods of making bags. When in Lebanon, walk into the store, appreciate the craftmanship that went into these fabulous bags, and maybe take one home for yourself.

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4. Lebanese sweets

Noura - Lebanese sweets
Source: Photo by user Serge Melki used under CC BY 2.0

If you are visiting Lebanon any time soon, then don’t miss out tasting the delicious sweets that are made in this place. It has its charm and taste that you might not experience eating anywhere else across the world. You must try the baklava that is a local favourite sweet in this town. With many variations of this dessert, you will definitely enjoy eating this. Apart from this, you can also try the Lebanese rice pudding, kanafeh, maamoul, nammoura, atayef, jazarieh, Znoud eI Sett, mafrokeh, Ayesh el Saraya, and many more.

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5. Roasted nuts

Cashews, hazelnuts, almonds and peanuts-salted roasted nuts
Source: Photo by Flickr user Marco Verch Profe... used under CC BY 2.0

Roasted nuts from Lebanon is quite famous across the world for its awakening aroma and unique varieties. These roasted nuts are also used by many chefs to give a unique essence to the dish that they are preparing. It also helps them in enhancing the look and beauty of the dish. You can try to buy nuts and kernels, dried fruits, grains, confectionaries, chocolates, roasted nuts, and many more items from the local stores to get authentic Lebanese products.

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6. Cedarwood carvings

Wood carvings
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user MC6SWC used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Cedarwood is also called Arz el Rab; the trees in Lebanon are among the few surviving from the large forests from long ago. The timber wood was mostly exploited by the Babylonians, Persians, as well as Assyrians during ancient times. It is now preserved and maintained by the government. You can visit this tree by walking into the forests and writing your name on the cedarwood to enhance your experience by visiting the place. Also, you can buy products that are made from the wood at lower prices in the local market.

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7. Turkish coffee pots

Source: Photo by user Noumenon used under CC BY-SA 3.0

In Lebanon, the importance given to Turkish coffee is remarkable. Do try Turkish coffee when in Lebanon - and don’t miss spotting the lovely Turkish coffee pots! Also, you can get to how to make Turkish coffee and serve it to your guests or friends when you go back to your hometown. Make sure that you buy some of the unique and well-designed coffee pots when you are going back.

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8. Tarboosh

Kofia mtarbosh
Source: Photo by user Attoumanikarim used under CC BY 3.0

The tarboosh, commonly known as fez, is a cap that is in the shape of a cylinder. The hat usually comes in a red colour and has a truncated cone on top of it. It is made of silk clothing material and is mostly worn by the Muslims. Women also wear tarboosh made from high-quality and luxurious materials. Women wear hats with different ornaments. So, make sure that you buy the best one from the local market whenever you are in Lebanon.

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9. Zaatar

Source: Photo by user Sjschen used under CC BY 3.0

If you want to take home healthy and natural items, then you must go for zaatar whenever you are travelling to Lebanon. Zaatar for Lebanese people means the same as peanut butter for the Americans. It’s a wild thyme herb that is grown mostly in Lebanon or the Middle-Eastern countries. It’s also utilized in the herbal mixes and chefs from Lebanon use it in many dishes to add a unique essence to the food items. You can buy it from many bakeries in the streets of Lebanon and carry it along with you whenever you are going back to your hometown.

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10. Sherwal

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

As in different parts of the world, clothing plays a crucial role in communities of Lebanon. Apart from food, dancing, and following traditions, clothing is also essential to maintain a reputation amongst the people living in the community. Therefore, whenever you are in Lebanon, you must try the sherwal outfit and buy the best ones that suit your expectations. Walk into the local store to get genuine and authentic clothing materials.

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11. Artisanal clothing

A Lebanese woman talks to two Syrian refugee girls at an information session about gender-based violence and early marriage in southern Lebanon (14496198189)
Source: Photo by user DFID - UK Departm... used under CC BY 2.0

Lebanon is known for its modest yet chic fashion scene, with dresses and skirts made by local artists and designers. Sayeh dresses are commonly found in artisanal clothing stores with amazing silhouettes and patterns. There’s a variety of designs you can choose from and even plain yet stylish pieces best for whatever occasion. Support local artisanal clothing in Lebanon and show some love for local designers who celebrate Lebanese culture in fashion.

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12. Rana Salam’s home decoration items

Home decor items
Source: Pixabay

Make a pit stop at this charming fifties inspired craft store that displays uniquely printed and designed items from beachwear to homeware like pillows, blankets, cutlery, and even accessories with Lebanese pop culture designs integrated into every product. If you’re fond of artisanal decors and furnishings, then this quirky little store, Rana Salam Shop is the place to come to for authentic Lebanese souvenir items.

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13. Message carved in cedarwood

Wood carvings
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Pratishkhedekar used under CC BY-SA 4.0

A popular piece of souvenir to take home is locally called “Arz el Rab” which means “Cedars of God.” This is a small piece of cedarwood that people carve messages in or even images, usually of religious sayings and photos. Visit Cedar forest to see local artisans create multiple pieces of cedarwood and get your name or your loved ones’ names engraved or carved into the cedarwood for great memorabilia from your trip to Lebanon.

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14. Books

Source: Pexels

Lebanon is a beautiful country made up of years of history and culture that is manifested in its written works and books. Some iconic authors that write about the country’s long history of war and social strife include Kalil Gibran, to Rawi Hage to name a few. Buy yourself a great book from local writers and learn more about the best intellectuals and storytellers from Lebanese history.

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Souvenirs of Lebanon

When in Lebanon, you can visit the Kadhisa Valley and National Museum of Beirut to explore the ancient history of the place and do your own research on it. Also, capture the beautiful moments of your life in Raouche Rocks. After checking out all these things, make sure to take home a piece of Lebanon with you by knowing what to buy.

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Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
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Hi, I am Anurag Paul Gummadi, residing in Bangalore, India.

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