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Winter

From the snow-covered mountains to the mild Mediterranean coast, Lebanon’s winter is a season of contrasts. Winter along the coast is warm enough for sightseeing. With sporadic bouts of rain, our coastal winter knows many clear, warm days awash in amber sunlight. It is a wonderful time for you to visit the many historical and cultural attractions along the coast, such as the ancient cities of Jbeil (Byblos), Saida (Sidon), and Sur (Tyre). The upside of visiting these sites in winter is avoiding the crowds of tourists that visit most frequently in the summer. Chances are you will have these charming historic ruins all to yourself.

 

The real draw during the winter, however, is Lebanon’s winter sports. Lebanon has something for everyone, with six ski resorts catering to skiers and snowboarders of all levels, and a host of backcountry, cross-country, and snowshoe trails in Lebanon, which means plenty of fresh powder at higher altitudes. If you visit us during the tail end of the ski season, you can enjoy the last vestiges of the snow in the morning and still have time for a swim in the Mediterranean in the afternoon.

 

The country’s famous nightlife, entertainment, and shopping centers do not slow down during winter. There is also a popular classical music festival each February at the Al-Bustan Hotel which features bankable performances by renowned and upcoming musicians.

Things to do

Tabekh

Tabekh literally means “cooking,” but it’s common usage is generally meant to refer to the sort of meals that remind you of home—comfort foods, such...

Labneh, Laban and Shanklish

Labneh is the Levantine cousin of crème fraîche and sour cream. It’s made by straining yogurt and is often served with a drizzle of olive oil and...

Foul, Balila, Msabhah, and Fatteh

These classic legume dishes can be found at fawwals, which means “foul maker.” You’ll know one when you see the huge metal pots steaming away with...

Manakeesh, Lahem Ba’ajin and Kaak

Manakeesh (the ‘k’ is essentially silent) is a classic street food, and you’ll find this delicious breakfast food in furns (ovens) in every city,...

Kibbeh, Fatayer, and Savory Pastries

Kibbeh has so many variations it’s impossible to list them all here, but the basic concept behind this beloved Levantine starter (though also served...

Moutabal, Baba Ghanoush and Hummus

Confusion seems to reign over what differentiates moutabel from baba ghanoush. While both are made with grilled eggplant, moutabal is distinctly...

Fattoush, Tabbouleh and Wild Thyme Salad

Fattoush is made with chopped lettuce—typically romaine—with cucumbers, tomatoes, onion and wild thyme leaves, dressed with pomegranate vinaigrette...

Toum

Toum is essentially a garlic aioli. It’s made with garlic crushed into a super-fine paste with salt into which a large volume of olive oil is added...

Bekaa

Domaine Wardy

A multi-award-winning winery in Zahle, Domaine Wardy is one of Lebanon’s largest and most prominent wine producers. The Wardy family bought the...

Domaine de Baal

Growing Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Syrah, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc on roughly eight hectares at 1,200 meters above sea level...

Domaine Cortbawi

At 1,000 meters above sea level, in Jdita, Toufic Cortbawi et Fils has been operating as a family business since 1887 and manages some of the oldest...

Clos St. Thomas

Said Touma’s family has a century of experience with alcohol, and his delightful, award-winning wines are aged in caves dug 30 meters down into the...

Chateau Qanafar

What began as owner George Naim’s hobby on a rocky plateau in the forested mountain above the town of Khirbet Qanafar is now a family-owned...

Chateau Nakad

The Nakad winery is a family business originally founded in 1923 by Joseph Nakad in Jdita, West Bekaa. With noble grapes including Cabernet, Syrah,...

Chateau Marsyas

Marsyas is the ancient name of the Bekaa Valley. The Saadé family chose a patch of uncultivated land here at 900 meters over sea level in 2004 and...

Chateau Khoury

At  1,300 meters above sea level in the eastern foothills of Mount Lebanon, Chateau Khoury was established by Raymond and Brigitte El Khoury in...

Nabatieh

Beaufort Castle

On a hilltop overlooking the southern part of the Bekaa Valley stand the moss-covered remains of the Crusader Beaufort Castle. In Arabic, the...
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Beirut

Rafik Hariri Memorial Garden

The "Rafik Hariri Memorial Garden" is a public space in the Saint George Bay neighborhood facing the InterContinental Phoenicia Beirut Hotel. The...

AUB Natural History Museum

The Natural History Museum at American University of Beirut exhibits an unprecedented collection of specimens of plants and animals from Lebanon and...

USJ Prehistoric Museum

With more than 500 prehistoric items carefully catalogued by Jesuit scholars since the 19th century, the Saint Joseph University prehistory museum...

Beirut Souks

The Beirut Souks is a reconstructed shopping strip in the Beirut Central District consisting of a complex of alleys and pathways. The old souks were...

National Museum

Inaugurated in 1942, the National Museum is home to an extraordinary collection of important archaeological objects. Reopened after extensive...

Hadiqat As-Samah (the Garden of Forgiveness)

Formally called Cardo Maximus, Hadiqat As-Samah (the Garden of Forgiveness), is an ancient ruin on which 15 civilizations have lived successively....

Roman Baths Garden

Part unearthed vestiges of the ancient thermal baths built by the Romans and part accentuated garden, this quirky and unexpected landscaped space is...

Khalil Gebran Garden

Facing the new United Nations building and Riad al Solh Square, the 6,000-square-meter Khalil Gibran Garden is dedicated to the author of the...

North Lebanon

Argoun Shah Mosque

The mosque of the Emir Arghoun Shah was built several decades before Tripoli fell to the Ottomans. Located in the Saff el-Balat neighborhood, its...

Al-Tawbah Mosque

Located in Al-Dabbaghah neighborhood near Khan Al-Asqar, Al-Tawbah Mosque has was frequently cited in the writings of travelers who visited Tripoli...

Al-Attar Mosque

Located in the souk area of Tripoli, the 14th century Al-Attar Mosque is one of the largest and most important mosques of Tripoli. Easily...

Balamand Monastery

Cistercian monks founded their first overseas abbey on top of Byzantine ruins on a promontory in the northern Koura District eight centuries ago, and...

Our Lady of Nourieh Monastery

At the top of the historic Deir el Nourieh cliffs of Ras Chekka (historically known as Cape Theoprosopon, which protrude into the sea at Hamat, in...

Qasr Naous Roman Temples

Closely ensconced by thick stands of mature trees, the ancient Roman Naous temples are perched on a hilltop at 600 meters above sea level, and even...

Msaylhah Fort

Plainly visible from the highway stretching north from Batroun, Msaylhah Fort sits precariously on a tiny rocky outcrop. This early 17th-century fort...

Domaine S. Najem

Salim and Hiba Najim started producing red wine in addition to their olive oil and arak in Chabtine, Batroun, in the early 1990’s. The couple have...

Mount Lebanon

Chateau Musar

Housed in an 18th century castle in Ghazir, Chateau Musar is the best-known winery in Lebanon among international circles of dedicated oenophiles....

Chateau Florentine

Château Florentine, opened in 1997, overlooks the village of Majdel Maouche in the midst of its vineyards in the Chouf. The winemakers here focus...

The Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MACAM)

A contemporary artistic and cultural space, MACAM is dedicated to art installations, exhibitions and efforts to preserve art across Lebanon. This...

The Boutros Farhat Museum

This is a private art museum that sculptor Boutros Farhat opened in 1991 to exhibit his own works. With over 120 pieces on display, Farhat’s work...

St. Maron Monastery

Maronite monks built St. Maron Monastery in the 19th century on a remote hilltop just outside of Byblos. Over the years, it has become a frequently-...

St. Charbel Church Museum

This museum is situated in the entrance to St. Charbel Church, a medieval church built on the foundations of a Roman temple. Several Roman...

Our Lady of Ilije Monastery Museum

This monastery housed the Maronite Patriarchate from 1120 to 1440. It now preserves the oldest Maronite icons in Lebanon, which date back to the 10th...

Wax Museum

The Historic Wax Museum in Byblos has been taking visitors on figurine tours of Lebanese history since it opened its doors in 1970. Revisit moments...

South Lebanon

Debbaneh Palace

This gorgeous 18th century house has all the classic elements of an aristocratic Arab-Ottoman home, with a generous, richly-ornamented central space...

Moussa Tiba Museum

A native of afflicted South Lebanon, Moussa Tiba was born in Qana in 1939. His studio was partially destroyed during the war in early 1975 and he was...

Sarcophagus of King Hiram I

On the borders between the villages of Ain Baal and Hanaway, there is a limestone sarcophagus traditionally ascribed to King Hiram I. Four meters...

Sarafand's Glass works

Just south of Saida, Sarafand was a port city, once known as Sarepta. It was here that the Phoenicians played a key role in developing the art of...

Al-Askari Mosque

One of the oldest mosques in the south, it was reportedly built in 800 A.D., and is composed of two sections, an old one and a newer. The old section...

The Saida War Cemetery

The Saida War Cemetery was opened in 1943 by units of British forces occupying Lebanon after the 1941 campaign. It was originally used for the burial...

Sea Castle (Qal'at al-Bahr)

Visible from the corniche as one pulls into the center of Saida, the sea castle was built by the Crusaders in the 13th century on top of a Phoenician...

St. Louis Castle

The ruins of this once-impressive castle stand on a mound to the south of Saida. The present structure dates back to the Crusaders, who built on the...