Roman Temple of Bziza
In the northern village of Bziza (85 km from Beirut) lies a well-preserved 2d-century Roman temple with three of its frontal columns still standing.
The western façade is embellished by an elegant portico of three limestone columns, the remainder of an original four, supporting architecture of the ionic order.
Built in the Ionic building order, it is has been well-preserved because it was converted into a two-apse church in the early Byzantine age. Inside, you can still see the niches in which statues must have stood. When the temple was converted into a church, its orientation, which used to be from the northwest to the southeast, was changed. A new entrance was made in the southwest, while the northeast wall was replaced by an unusual double apse.
A short distance from the Roman temple is the barrel vaulted Byzantine chapel of St. Elias which sits beneath two huge oak trees. On the right wall, near the altar, is a medieval wall painting showing a halo and a portion of a saint's body. South of the temple, a short walk brings you to a series of rock cut tombs at road level.
Just above Bziza is the village of Ain Akreen with its two Roman temples, known as Qasr Naous.