Our trip to Lebanon has proven itself successful as we have seen, more or less, “everything” that could be seen in 9 days. For sure a longer duration would help to see and do more, yet neither we, nor (maybe) you have either the finances or the time to spend a month there. As a result, I wanted to share our itinerary of Lebanon, which may be useful for anyone planning a trip.
Before going on, you may need to learn about public transport in Beirut and around Lebanon, and here you can find some tips before arriving to the country.
All days begin early in the morning. We woke up around 8-9 and were out of hotel latest by 10. Longer days in May also helped us to be able to have sunlight and see what we wanted during the day.
Day 1: Beirut. Walk around Raouche and Corniche (the seaside area), go to Zaitunay bay, then head to Downtown and see the modern Souks and the central mosques and square, then head to Gemayazeh and Armenia areas.
Day 2: Sidon and Tyre. Both of the cities are small enough to be able to cover in a day but if you have more time, you can do this in two days.
Day 3: Jeitta Grotto, Jounieh. Then take the cable car to My Lady of Lebanon, lastly Byblos. You would better have a sim card and call Uber, which would end up cheaper.
Day 4: Baalbek (and maybe Aanjar, if you have time). He is not easily impressed with artifacts as he is interested in Sumers – i.e. everything is so “young” for him, but even he was well impressed by there. A must see.
Day 5: Batroun, Tripoli.
Day 6: Head to the beach either in Tyre or white beach between Byblos and Batroun. They say the beach in Anfeh is also very clean and nice, but we haven’t been there. We strongly recommend Tyre though. It is comparably far from Beirut, but is definitely worth it.
Day 7: Qadisha valley (Bsharri, Qannoubine Monastery, Mar Antonios Qozhaya, Maronite – Dimane, Cedar forest) and Baatara Waterfall. We didn’t manage to go to these places, as it was impossible to find any public transport and the tours were too expensive. Being on budget is sometimes problematic.
Day 8: Deir El Qamar, Moussa castle, Beit-ed-Dine. We couldn’t go here either, but these castles look really beautiful and I would like to see them next time.
Day 9: Beirut. The city always has something to show – the remains of the civil war, if nothing else.