Situated about 55 kilometers north of Beirut, the charming coastal town of Batroun was a flourishing city and port in Phoenician times (3000 - 64 BC). Batroun is likely the ‘Batruna’ mentioned in the 14th-century BC Tal el-Amarna tablets of Egypt, and its one-of-a-kind ancient Phoenician wall still stands guard over the city against the Mediterranean Sea.
Batroun is famous for its summer season attractions — water sports, beach clubs and nightlife — but interestingly enough, the town retains much of its older splendor, with narrow, winding alleys making up its inner neighborhoods of dense housing, incorporated into the walls of its Crusader castle. Be sure to take a stroll though the 19th century souk, where artisanal goods are still produced and restaurants and cafes offer local cuisine and Batroun’s highly prized lemonade.
Also on display are the St. Stephan’s Cathedral, the 19th-century Orthodox Church of Saint-Georges, and the Lady of the Sea Chapel (Saydet el-Bahr), as well as the remains of the ancient Roman theater's 11 tiers, which incorporates a garden where the stage once stood.
Outside the old town are Batroun’s beach clubs, to the south, and Msaylhha Fort, to the north.